Saturday, January 28, 2012

Happy Anniversary to Us!

Paul and I celebrated our 32nd Anniversary last Thursday. Many years, we would say "Happy Anniversary" to each other as we headed out the door to work and that would be it for another year! You know how it is, one's job consumes the day. Now, we've decided to have an "Exploration Day" as our retirement tradition.

Early Thursday morning we set out for Tarpon Springs.

Tarpon Springs, incorporated mainly by Greek immigrants, was once famous for its sponge diving industry. Now, the sponge dock area is mostly gift shops, museums and restaurants.

Fishing boats are now much more predominate than sponge boats, but there are still a few along the water as tourist attractions. We had fun poking around.

We asked a local for a restaurant recommendation and we were glad we did!

He sent us to Rusty Bellies, which is located right on the water. In fact, the restaurant even has its own boats! We sat at our table and watched them unload the shrimp. It doesn't get any fresher than that!!!

We definitely enjoyed our anniversary lunch! Crab cakes and fritters, calamari and shrimp. I never tasted the onion straws on our plate. Why???

After lunch, we headed to Ybor City. This Tampa neighborhood has been designated as a National Historic Landmark District. It was founded by cigar manufacturers in the 1880's.  

Paul and I visit Ybor City during the day, while 99.99% of their clientele visit at night, judging on how many of the buildings are now occupied by nightclubs and tattoo parlors! There even is a store where you can buy a personally tailored pirate suit!  Dandy!!!

We go there for the food and the cigar shops even though we were obviously too full to eat there this trip. Paul likes to pick up a bundle or two of hand rolled stogies for his evening smoke out under Betsy's awning. 

It was a great day! It's been a great 32 years!! Love you, Paul.  Let's go to the beach!!!

Monday, January 23, 2012

Time just slips away!

We have been enjoying life in Florida, Paul, Bauxite Betsy and I.

We added a screen house to our set up, so we have a defined outdoor dining area. We are finding our new cabin on wheels to be a very comfortable place to live. Of course, the country club set doesn't comprehend our happiness, but oh, well.

The routine seems to be pretty well established.  In the morning, we are around the camper. I do my computer work. The rest of the day is usually centered around Caspersen Beach. The beautiful weather makes us, we can't help it.

I can usually be found under "my" personal palm tree,

while Paul is off down the beach, looking for whatever washes up on the shore.

When the sun gets to us, we head back and pick up something at the local market that looks good. Last week we were in a salsa state of mind. Good deals on tomatoes and peppers were too good to pass up!

Tonight will be the fourth straight evening we'll have seafood for dinner.

That is all. Simple. Sweet.

But, I miss my kids. Can't have everything, I guess!!!!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Happy Birthday, Jim!

This one is for our family.

As you know, yesterday was Jim's birthday. The Florida family, minus Kent who is in Los Angeles this week, met at a local Mexican restaurant. Someone at the table alerted the strolling Mariachi band it was his big day.

Dance to the music, take a swing at the piƱata and wear the sombrero. It's your birthday!!!

This guy would NEVER have smiled through this attention in his younger days. He even refused a graduation party!

Happy Birthday, Jim. We love you. I'm glad we were able to be here to celebrate with you.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

2012 New Beginnings

Hello again!

I've been absent from this spot for awhile.

We were busy. You know, the holidays, family events and traveling across the country.

And now, we are in Florida. We arrived in Venice on New Year's Day. We're getting "moved in" to our little spot at Camp Venice Retreat.

We're tired. Last night, Paul read and I worked on my knitting while we listened to music.

It was great.

We plan to start our container "garden" soon. So far, all I've started are the two mushroom gardens Suzanne gave me for my birthday. They grow in recycled coffee grounds.

I'll bet people are SO looking forward to visiting us. We are such an exciting couple!!!!

It's not much, but we're back, sharing our action packed lives!

I'll talk to you soon. Hopefully, the mushrooms will grow so I have something to report.