Welcome to my "Florida" blog

Being a third generation Florida native, I'm completely enamored with the diverse beauty of this gorgeous peninsula. For most of the year the weather is divine which makes exploring its unlimited nooks and crannies fun and easy.

Wherever I go I appreciate nature and the world around me. Come along with me as I share the places I visit and perhaps a few other amusements I find interesting along the way.

(FYI: Every post prior to January 1, 2009 was previously published and imported from my garden blog)

Monday, April 20, 2009

Where Am I? Revealed: Canopy Walk

A couple of months ago when Mr. Meems and I took a day trip out of town our destination was Myakka State Park. By way of the back roads we drove all around the area and the perimeter roads of the park before entering. We just like to see what we can see in rural Florida. It was a perfectly beautiful day.




Apparently the city's name used to be spelled Miakka. I've tried to find some history about it but to no avail.







Did you know?

Florida’s state park system is one of the largest in the country with 161 parks spanning almost 700,000 acres and 100 miles of sandy white beach. We are on a quest to make sure we visit them whenever we have the chance. Well, it's probably more fair to say I am on a quest and Mr. Meems is along to keep me company. He knows he's in for lots of tracking around looking for critters and all kinds of plants, trees, and flowers.

There was a lot of camping and canoeing going on. The park offers loads of activities for families with children. Since we aren't campers... yet

... besides the vast amount of woodlands and waterways the main attraction of Myakka State Park, for me, was the idea of the nature trail and getting a gander Florida from the top of the tower on the canopy walk.


It was a leisurely trail getting to the tower.


Our state parks are chocked full of handy information with curious facts.


Acres and acres of hammocks and woodlands have been left mostly undisturbed. There are some really cool things to photograph.

So here we are. You'll want to be sure there's only a couple of folks on here at a time. It sways and flexes as you walk over it. But what a unique experience to be high in the trees with every living thing.


Suspended by cables it gives you a bit of an insecure sense.

Climbing the tower things got even more interesting. We didn't realize it was going to creak and sway with the advancement of trails of people traversing all those narrow steps.
It doesn't seem so high when you are on the ground looking up.


But once you are on the top and the trees below look so small you begin to take in just how high up you really are. With just a railing between you and the atmosphere it does make one feel a little bit vulnerable. There is only room for a few people at a time on the top so folks rotate on and off that top level.

A view of the walkway on my way down.

Now here's a walkway we can all easily negotiate. Let's go out on the water to see what might be hanging around out there.


Just a couple of sandhill cranes making their way along the edge of the water for some afternoon foraging. Mr. Yellow Crowned Night heron never woke up or budged.
Thanks for coming along for Where Am I? And thanks to those who guessed and to Sophie Mae for guessing correctly. She is two for two so far.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Where Am I?


For all you Florida enthusiast and even those who have an occasional interest in my beautiful state... here's how this works:

I thought it might be fun to occasionally post some of the random photos I've taken from my romp-abouts in Florida and then let you guess where I was when I took the photo... or where the scene is that the photo represents (whichever applies).
If you'd like to include your thoughts (experience) about the photo or the area it represents I'd love to hear about that, too.
Meems

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Where Am I? Revealed: Sarasota


The photo I took of the soldier kissing the nurse was shot while driving by the sculpture in Sarasota. There are better photos (above)on the Internet and the back story you can read if you are interested.
Sophie Mae knew where these two were all along. See the comments section of the "Where Am I?" post from Thursday, April 9.

Here's part of the back story I found on the Internet:
At the end of WWII, photographer Alfred Eisenstaedt snapped a now famous photo of a sailor kissing a young nurse in New York’s Times Square. In 2005, when artist J. Seward Johnson was invited to participate in the annual exhibition of large scale sculptures displayed along the Bayfront in Sarasota, Florida, he decided to recreate the photo in a 26-foot high Styrofoam sculpture. The piece, named “Unconditional Surrender” by Seward, was so popular that local residents attempted to keep it in Sarasota permanently, but they were unable to find enough donors to pay for the sculpture. Recently, a new aluminum version returned to Sarasota, where it is scheduled to remain until March 2009. However this time
Sarasota Season of Sculpture, the non-profit group that sponsors the event, is determined to keep the sculpture in Sarasota.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Where Am I?


For all you Florida enthusiast and even those who have an occasional interest in my beautiful state...
I thought it would might be fun to occasionally post some of the random photos I've taken from my romp abouts in Florida and let you guess where I was when I took the photo... or where the scene is that the photo represents (whichever applies).
If you'd like to include your thoughts (experience) on the photo or the area it represents I'd love to hear about that, too.
I'm starting with an easy one.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Cooling Down in the Spring Heat


Love those planters!

It's been pretty hot and steamy this last week in Central Florida. Too hot for me. I don't particularly care for the humidity with these temps in the 80's.
The up side is that it cools down a bit at night and the humidity goes away. That means the mornings are nice and the evenings are nice.
On a day when my 3year old grandson was here we packed up a picnic lunch. On our way to the park we picked up my 6year old granddaughter from school at noon.
She takes such good care of her cousin. He is completely enamored with her. I'm completely enthralled with both of them.

Except for the squirrels that wanted to share our lunch with us we had a blast sitting under the huge oaks with just enough breeze blowing to keep us comfortable. Since the kiddies like to sit on a blanket rather than at a table I guess we were kind of in the squirrel's territory.

We weren't on the blanket too long because that huge playground was within reach. Oh the fun children have running and playing with abandon. Up the slides, down the slides, over the monkey bars, to the playhouse, through all the nooks and crannies and then some. They played their little hearts out until they were hot and sweaty and ready for a cool down. The most fun was to be had running through the fountains getting soaked to the core. We didn't have swimsuits with us so they braved the fountains with their clothes on... neither of them thought it was possible. Mimi let them get wet with their clothes on.
Actually they each had a change of clothes in the car since they were packed for Mimi's house.
We dried out and walked across the street for ice cream... maybe that vanilla ice cream with M&M's on top was the most fun part of the day!