Run Doodle Run

The long road to 26.2

#tbt Florida, Part I

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As I watch the snow pile up outside my window, it seems like a perfect opportunity to blog about my recent trip to Florida. Ahh, sun… how I miss thee…

I have never been a Florida person. Never in my past did I wake up and say “Ooh! Let’s go to Florida!” No, there are far too many other places I want to visit in this world than the place where old people go to be eaten up by sinkholes.

Well, that all changed last year. Some great friends of mine purchased a vacation house in Naples a few years ago. They had invited me down in the past, but with school and work and tight finances, it just never worked out. Then he asked again last year, as we were being stared down by two nasty winter storms and my marriage had begun to fall apart. I desperately needed a change of scenery (and warmth!) My answer this time? “Yes, please!”

It was love at first sight. So naturally, I got invited back again this year and didn’t even have to breathe before saying yes. But, one of them had just been transferred to Miami for work – so I got to see two great (warm, sunny) places. AND my aunt and her husband just relocated to central Florida this past summer – three places! Two weeks! Adios, frozen tundra!

I traveled with my mom this year, stopping in Miami first. The weather was darn near perfect – low 70s, no humidity, perfect sun. Heaven.

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We visited Miami (South Beach) last year and I didn’t really care for it – it was just too frenetic and jam packed and honestly, kinda trashy – but I must admit, I LOVE Coral Gables. I could totally move there.

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Two of my favorite places in Miami are in Coral Gables as well – Fairchild Tropical Botanical Gardens and Matheson Park Beach.

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On Friday we drove across the Everglades from Miami to Naples, stopping half way through to check out some gators.

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Saturday morning I had my race, which I totally kicked ass in.

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And then we got to see some seriously cool cars at the Cars on 5th show along Naples’ main street, had some super yummy gelato at Adelheidi’s and walked along the (unseasonably chilly) beach. It was “cold” enough that we had to turn on the heat in the house in the evenings, but out in the sun it was darn near perfect.

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The couple we stayed with in Naples is the couple we got our Westies from over 11 years ago (how is it possible that that much time has passed???). They are true dog lovers, with 6 pups of their own, who stay with them in Naples all winter.

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And all of this was while it was near zero at home. 😂

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Part II will be coming later 🙂

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