Most winters, we experience a little bit of it all as we travel across the country from Oregon to Florida. Were it not for my parents in Apalachicola, I doubt we would make it as far as Florida every year. But the upside is that we get to enjoy winter in a semi-tropical paradise without leaving the country.
We spent February and March in Florida this year, and in between spending time with my folks, made little trips to some of our favorite places. There’s a wild side to Florida, and that’s the Florida that we love.
I’ve written a lot about Florida in our travels, so if you’re interested in more details, check out one or more of the 39 posts in the sidebar. I’ve written about everything from the Keys to the Everglades to the Panhandle…and we’re not done yet. See you next winter, Florida!
P.S. Our site is undergoing a much-needed overhaul sometime in the next week and comments will be closed for several days, so if you don’t see the comment section, that’s why.
We always enjoy our time spent in Florida….in hindsight. When we’re there we (I) complain about the bugs and the humidity, the mold and mostly the distance between there and our beloved west.
When we’re not there we have such fond memories of the warm soft air, the dappled light along the rivers, the sweet manatee floating along below or their whiskery noses breaking the surface, the great seafood, etc. Never happy!
Love your bird pictures, especially the “other” herons…they’re such a treat to see. The Wood Stork is positively prehistoric!
Haha, that’s exactly why we visit Florida only in the winter and make sure to leave by the first of April. And we spend most of our time in north Florida. Although it can be chilly, we avoid the bugs/heat/humidity problem. I grew up in Florida, and now that I live in the west, there’s no turning back…but I do still love the “wild” old Florida. Your description of your good memories of Florida is wonderful, Sue.
I have a special love for Northern Florida especially. A friend of mine lived there, and when I went to visit her in 2000, I learned that Florida isn’t anything like I once imagined. As a Westerner, it was my official role to poopoo Florida before that time. I had no desire to see it. That was forever changed and I flew to Florida 2 or 3 times a year until my friend passed away. Mo and I will be camping at Oleno and Rainbow Springs, and Silver Springs in addition to staying at the base in Jacksonville for more than a month of kayaking every single spring we can find, and the Ichetucknee is big on the list. Oh yes…St Joseph and St Mark. Maybe we will even see you there. Will be there in February. Love your writing and your bird photos.
Sue, I’m so glad you’ve experienced the “real” Florida. And how fun that you’ll be there next winter! It truly is a kayaker’s paradise, as you know. You may already have these on your list, but don’t miss the Wekiva River and Alexander Springs in addition to Rainbow Springs and the Ichetucknee (my all-time favorite). It would be wonderful to meet up with you and Mo for some kayaking!
It must be wonderful to have this beauty all around you as you face the roller coaster of emotions that come with helping aging parents.
You are absolutely right, Lisa. Being surrounded by so much beauty and being able to spend so much time outdoors does help provide balance for us as we navigate the challenges of helping my folks. We’re lucky they live in such a beautiful area.
Thank you, Leah! I appreciate your comment.
Oh, Laurel, reading your posts brings such a peace, the reverence of nature, the bounty of healthy food and stopping to pause….. The quiet is something we don’t take time for, yet it’s needed.
Can’t wait to see the new site and the future posts. This country has such beauty to enjoy, being on the road we savor the days and reflect as ‘the best day ever’. Sweetwater did that….travel safe and see you next time. Enjoy your summer!
Julie, we share the same appreciation for the beauty and peace of nature. We’re still talking about our remarkable day with you two at Sweetwater. I hope we’ll meet up again next winter in Florida, if not before!
While we are very much enjoying being out west, and we are super happy to not be dealing with east coast summer weather, we really did love our time in this part of Florida last year. There’s so much to see and do and the opportunities to see wildlife are seemingly endless. Your photos are just wonderful and have me looking forward to our return trip in 2019. Can’t wait to see the new blog!!
Laura, we definitely do not ever want to be in Florida in the summer! (Which is approximately April through November.) But we’re excited to hear that you guys are going to be in Florida next winter! If we don’t manage to meet up with you before then, we’ll see you there!
What else can you say except: WOW!!!!!
There’s a lot of “WOW” in Florida, Peggy. It’s so different from anywhere else in the country!
What beautiful photos:) Love the trees, sunsets, and those gorgeous birds. Kayaking the springs and rivers would be fun with the manatee. We’ve only kayaked with them once and loved it! You make Florida sound so inviting. Really sweet that you had Amanda and Findlay come out for a visit:)
Pam, as long as we stay north of the bugs/heat/humidity, we enjoy our time in Florida. I know you understand. :-) We loved having Amanda and Findlay visit for a week. So fun to share adventures with them.
Wow, that’s how you catch up with your blog,short, sweet and snappy photos! I’m enjoying this for these are previews of our winter soon in Florida. We just hope we cross paths on our way back to west next winter.
I’m so looking forward to your new look. I had been thinking, just thinking of refreshing our look too but too lazy to do it or just have no time.
ML, I’m getting so far behind that I need to take some shortcuts to get caught up! The problems that I’ve been having with our blog have conspired to put me further behind, so the overhaul is necessary. Otherwise I probably wouldn’t do it, either! Too many other fun things to do in life. :-)
We’re definitely planning on seeing you two in Florida next winter!
Always enjoy reading your blog to Perry going down the road. And he always enjoys hearing it. Can’t wait to see the new blog site. We will miss Lopez this summer! Perry said, Lopez is only a few inches on the map from Calgary, where we will be close to lol.
Beth, I love knowing that you read the blog to Perry. We are going to miss you so much this summer! But hey, it’s true, you’re only going to be a few inches away…so come on over! Can’t wait to hear about your Calgary adventures.
We too LOVE old Florida. Your amazing pictures seemed to capture it all. The Rocky Mountains are calling us now, but your post lit the fire of the next season, when winter drifts back in and we point the compass back to that sweet Oranges, Fresh tomatoes in January, bubbling aquifer, Sunshine State.
David & Sharon, so glad you enjoyed our snapshot of the “real” Florida. Loved your description of the Sunshine State! Enjoy your summer in the Rockies, and perhaps we’ll see you in Florida next winter!
Not sure we will ever venture as far as Florida so I am so glad that you do. It’s almost like being there. Love the family photos.
Thanks, Brenda. :-) I’m glad you enjoyed your virtual visit—maybe one of these days you’ll take your little Casita on a Florida vacation! There’s lots to see along the way…
There’s a saying they have down there in Florida, “People come for the beaches, but they stay for the rivers.”
I believe it. We just loved kayaking the rivers and swimming with the Manatee.
JC, I love that saying! That’s the first time I’ve heard it, but it’s so true. The pure white sand beaches of Florida are beautiful, but the spring-fed rivers are my favorite by far.
Hi you two.
Great beautiful photos, great subjects,lovely people, absolutely beautiful mysteriously mystical and as always adorable. I miss you boat loads. Wish I were there or…..wish you were here!
Cyn, we miss you and Kyle, too! Thanks for your sweet comment—are you coming up to Lopez this summer? If not, we’ll see you in October! oxoxo
I am always astonished by your ability to capture such stunning bird portraits. The barred owl stole my heart. And the belted kingfisher! And … and … all precious.
Thank you, Melissa! We love the birdies. :-)
Haha, as you know, we love the birdies, too :-)
Oh my, yes—I do know how much you love the birdies! Especially your two feathered family members. :-))
Always so great to get your posts!!
Thanks for sharing the beauty.
Thanks, Sue. I’m always so happy to hear from you, and to know that you’re following along with us!
Florida, it’s where we first met!
We keep talking about returning to Florida to spend the winter but so far Texas is as far east as we’ve gotten in the motorhome since we started fulltiming 3+ years ago.
Wow, I really like the new look of your blog especially the artwork on the header. Nice job!
Henry, we think of meeting you and Loretta every time we’re in Florida! We’re hoping that sooner or later you’ll come back. :-) Thanks so much for your nice comment about our new blog look. You even noticed the new header! The fabric wall hanging is in our trailer.