…two very different sides of LL.
Ah – enjoying sweet hydrangeas.
And then…roaming nude in the dirt with a stick just after a pool bath.
A few months ago, Tad and I decided that it’d be a good, fun and beneficial thing to get a way just the two of us, post-nursing Linley and pre-baby ‘a’ #2. So we did some research booked two flights and made our way down to Sarasota, FL. (For those of you Iowans looking for the cost effective way to do this: fly Allegiant into a nearby city, rent a car if you’ll be doing that anyhow, drive to your destination and save $.)
Tad has gotten into the habit of always asking the front desk for free room upgrades, so that we did and this is what we got!
We were a little weary of bad weather during our 2 day stay on the beach (it was my first time away from LL, so leaving Thursday morning and returning early Sunday morning for a 2 day stay was just right). The forecast was about 70% chance of rain or higher the entirety of our stay, but we resolved that if it rained, we would just go play in it!
We arrived at our destination before dinner so we were able to walk around a bit and found a place to fill our bellies. Dining outdoors when the weather is lovely is probably one of the most enjoyable things to us, so of course we opted for outdoor seating, despite the discount they offered for indoor seating. But no sooner did we start our bread and soup did the rain come’a pourin’! Can you see the splashes on the ground in the image below? We were getting wet at a table across the walk and moved to this one.
*Side Note: the dish seen on the table was the most delicious gazpacho I’ve tasted!
Praise the Lord, though, that before we were finished with our dinner, the rain went away, and we were able to enjoy an evening walk on a nearby beach.
Because we had a full kitchen and balcony to enjoy at our room, we decided to head to the downtown Sarasota Whole Foods and pick up some snacks and breakfast items to enjoy for the morning.
The cherries were so delicious – so pricey – and so delicious!
For breakfast the next morning we opted for vanilla yogurt with granola and OJ with the birdies serenading us. (We watched a bird couple build their nest just a few yards away.)
Oh, yes – coffee.
Despite the NINETY PERCENT chance of rain that day, it was sunny and warm at 9am, so we made the most of the morning and headed to the beach. This is the entrance side of our room looking out to Long Boat Key.
And this is us in our
foolishness blissful ignorance – because even between the hours of 9 and 11am in the Florida sun is enough to be fried. But it was so pleasant while we didn’t realize the damage being done. We both read while listening to the ocean. We soaked in the water and enjoyed the waves. It was lovely.
And then we began to realize. So we breaked for lunch. (still not ONE sign of rain!)
After realizing just how badly burned our skin truly was, we decided it’d be wise to go get some sunscreen (we should not have assumed!), aloe, and black tea to soak in – we had heard that it was good for burns.
So we brewed a handful of bags and carefully applied it liberally. I’m not really sure just how much it helped, but at least we tried. Perhaps soaking in a bath of it would have been best.
Despite our pain, we were still able to enjoy a sweet night out with surprise company – friends from home! We found out that we’d be vacationing just a few miles apart and our time would be overlapping so why not make a double date of an evening?
We went to a fun tapas bar called Ceviche in downtown Sarasota and enjoyed dinner and conversation before returning to our homes. Oh, and THEN the 90% of rain became more of a reality when we left the restaurant to this. Tad was offered an umbrella by one of the waiters and ran to provide us with curbside pickup!
Afterwords, I was remembering how I only had a handful of photos of LL in utero, so Tad snapped a few quick ones. Thank you to my friend Lindsey for providing me with a dress to wear that night.
Needless to say, we did NOT soak out in the sun day two and last day on the beach. But that doesn’t mean we didn’t enjoy it! We drove over to Siesta Key beach to go for a walk and enjoy the less ‘shelly’ sand in our toes – tshirst + pants! – before grabbing lunch and a cabana at the beach at the resort where we stayed.
I had to take a picture of the purple/blue flag up when we came back to Long Boat Key. On the way down a little boy stopped us and said, ‘hey, there’s a shark down there.’ Tad’s response, ‘hey, cool!’ :) Not minutes after, however, people began returning to the water and enjoyed the afternoon.
And so did we. But we spent most of our time covered, reading under the cabana, and limited our time in the water and in the open rays to about 20 minutes WITH sunscreen. Even though Long Boat Key beach is much more shelly and the beach is more rough, it’s also much less populated and therefore more peaceful. Not to mention, Tad found a souvenir as we were exiting the water.
All the shells washed ashore:
Let me just take a moment to confess just one of the many reasons why I love Tad. He is a planner and thinks of things that I, well, I do not. One reason we only had two nights in Sarasota was because he knew that our flight was leaving early and that we’d still have an hour or so drive back to St. Petersburg where we flew in to. So instead of sleeping there one more night, we booked a hotel in St. Petersburg near the airport and enjoyed an evening out there. We parked downtown, enjoyed a meal (you guessed it – out doors! In fact, I don’t think we ate inside once on our trip!) and then guess what we did?! We went to a MOVIE! Something we almost never do at home. Dinner AND a movie is just too long of a date to have someone stay at our place to babysit, so we usually opt for the dinner or dessert portion and skip a movie/other entertainment altogether. Not this night though! We went for it!
Tad at ‘Muvico’ downtown St. Petersburg.
Tad being fun and my red face before seeing the Hunger Games.
We then packed our bags so they were ready for the morning, rested for a few hours, boarded the plane and flew home.
It was a lovely – well worth it – weekend June getaway, and I’m looking forward to more of these shorties. It was just the right amount of time, as we were (I was especially) ready to return home to the little babe. I had heard awful stories of feelings of abandonment when parents left for a few days, so I was a bit anxious. But LL acted as though we’d been gone for an hour and was just as happy as could be! She even saved a surprise for us until we returned home!
Too bad she’s struttin’ around in her dipe, but we’ll take it. Just one day shy of 14 months! Way to go Little Lady! Welcome home to us!