Category Archives: adventures

Christmas Eve in Florida: Maxwell Groves

Christmas Eve in Florida: Maxwell Groves
I told y’all to stay tuned for part 2 of Christmas Eve in Florida and here it is! I was so excited to take Nate out to Maxwell Groves in Avon Park, Florida. (You may remember the last time I blogged about it here.) I talked his ear off about their homemade orange ice cream and fresh squeezed orange juice for months prior to our trip down. You’d have to ask him, but by the look on his face that day, I’d say both the ice cream and the orange juice lived up to the hype!
Christmas Eve in Florida: Maxwell GrovesChristmas Eve in Florida: Maxwell GrovesChristmas Eve in Florida: Maxwell GrovesChristmas Eve in Florida: Maxwell GrovesChristmas Eve in Florida: Maxwell Groves
I absolutely love places like this – tucked away like a perfectly kept secret, full of southern charm and hospitality. Their store is stocked with tons of amazing local items, too. I most definitely brought home a bottle of Orange Blossom Honey Wine, some local orange blossom honey, and Everglades seasoning! (Fun fact: Everglades seasoning is made right in my hometown of Sebring, Florida! And you can totally buy it on .. which is weird to me. Ha!)
Christmas Eve in Florida: Maxwell GrovesChristmas Eve in Florida: Maxwell GrovesChristmas Eve in Florida: Maxwell GrovesChristmas Eve in Florida: Maxwell Groves
If you’re ever in the Highlands County area, make sure to stop in to Maxwell Groves and buy yourself some Florida goodies!! This is no tourist trap, it’s the real deal!

Christmas Eve in Florida: Highlands Hammock

A warm Florida Christmas is something that will always feel like home. I couldn’t think of anything more fitting for the trip than to spend Christmas Eve out in nature, exploring Highlands Hammock State Park in my hometown. Dressed in clothes that wont be worn again for months- bare legs, sleeveless top – scouring the water for gators and turtles. It was the perfect temperature under the canopy of cypress trees, with just the right amount of breeze flowing through.
We took so many pictures because how could you not? The scenery is gorgeous. We only saw one gator but I assume there were many more hiding just out of sight in the weeds. I have so many memories in that park – field trips, family get togethers, etc. The catwalk through the cypress swamp (pictured) is by far my favorite part of the park. It’s so peaceful out there and there’s just something so fun about the tiny little bridge with only one rail. I remember falling halfway off of it once on a elementary school field trip, foot stuck in the mush. Now that I think about it – taking a ton of tiny unbalanced little people on a small bridge trail with one rail seems like a bad idea. But anyway – I love having those memories. ;]

Stay tuned for photos from the second part of our Christmas Eve afternoon out at Maxwell Groves. =)

Photography Love: Little Seahorse Family

We took a family trip to the aquarium in Sarasota when we vacationed in Florida a few months back. I took a ridiculous amount of photos and have since been meaning to share them here! I originally planned to go through every photo, edit them all, etc. but a few nights ago I decided they looked pretty darn good straight off of the camera. I’m sharing a handful at a time because I just can’t choose which ones to share! I especially had trouble picking out just a few seahorse photos – so prepare for seahorse overload!

The above photo is kind of intriguing, right? I’ve never seen a seahorse lay down and take a nap, but that’s kind of what it looks like this guy is doing. At least, I hope that’s what he’s doing! Also – I can’t look at the photos below without thinking that they’re all just hanging out and having a chat. Who can really prove that’s not what is happening? :]
The teeny tiny babies blew my mind- they were so itty bitty! You can see that they are just little specs in the last photo with my nieces and nephews. These photos may not be that cool to anyone else but I’m kind of a nerd about this kind of stuff so- sorry, not sorry! ;]

Pieces of The Days: Nashville

Our quick trip to Nashville over the long weekend went by in a snap! We had such a great time hanging out with Sully and Phlecia, who were gracious enough to let us all crash at their place! We rarely get to see them and it was nice to have someone show us all of the cool spots to visit! We met up with them, Jackson and Kristie, and several other mutual friends late Friday night for a few drinks, delicious burgers, and some great live music at The Basement! At 3AM I finally fell asleep on the top bunk in their guest bedroom. We got back to their place a few hours earlier but we all ended up standing around in their kitchen talking about anything and everything until we couldn’t keep our eyes open in any longer.

The next day was filled with long lines for coffee at Fido’s, lunch at Kay Bob’s, the cutest dog ever, window shopping, popsicles from Las Paletas, lots of walking in the intense heat, and some downtime before the UK game. The UK game was … well… we lost. That’s all there is to say about that. ;] Nate and I headed home after the game and slept in late Sunday morning. Such a perfect whirlwind trip!

PS: Is this not the cutest dog ever? I really want a Shiba Inu puppy now!