Thursday, January 30, 2014


We stopped at the Publix market today for the ingredients necessary to make dinner and scored these TWO six packs of my favorite brew...Magners Original Irish Cider on sale.  YES!
(Well, one of my favorite brews; however, I have been told that Bud Lite is not really beer, but then Irish Cider isn't really beer either, is it?)

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Friday, January 24, 2014

I'm So Blue

I lost something very special today!
One of the gold loop earrings that Bill gave to me many years ago, early in our relationship.  They were one of my favorite pair of earrings, just because they were simple and went with anything and everything.   I always, ALWAYS check to make sure they are latched securely so I'm not sure what happened.

We took our usual morning walk this morning, from near the Courthouse to the hospital and back.  It was chilly, 58* and windy; I was wearing my hooded sweatshirt and I put my fleece jacket on when I got out of the car.  Maybe it came off when I flipped my hood up to put on my jacket.  We took Titan home then drove to Panera Bread for lunch and that's when I noticed it was missing.  I'm in the habit of checking several times a day just to be sure my earrings are both there, mostly because I'm afraid I'LL LOSE ONE! :(  I had taken off the sweatshirt at home but searched my jacket, the car seat and the floor with no success.  I checked when we got back home, thinking I might find it on the floor or in the chair where I had set my sweatshirt, then hoping I had gotten sidetracked while putting them on and maybe I didn't really ever put it on.  Not the case, it wasn't in my jewelry bag.

So, tomorrow we will walk the same route and see if by some miracle, we can find it.  I'm staying positive for now, because stranger things have happened.

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Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Did You Pick the One I Picked?

And the winner is...
I think it actually looks better in person than in this photo, not that it looks good.  It will keep the sun off and that's the purpose.  Now it just needs to warm up enough to go to the beach!

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Monday, January 20, 2014

Hats Off

Maybe it's my small pinlike head.  Maybe it's my haircut.  I don't buy hats.  I don't even look good in hats.  However, I've been wanting a "beach hat" for a couple of years but was never inclined to spend $30 or $40 or more for a silly hat.  So, I always wear my ball cap.  While at the farmer's market on Saturday, we stopped by one of the vendors whose wife sells hats for $12 - $15.  I don't think she makes them necessarily, but she decorates them. Some have scarves...

Some have flowers...
There's a flower in the back.

I was told by the husband that one can move the flower around.  Don't think that would have made much difference.

Some have beads...
This hat is Liz Claiborne
Now, clearly none of these look good (see first paragraph).  I was told by the woman next to me that I needed to wear them lower on my face, right above my glasses.  "See?  Doesn't that look better?"  Yeah, whatever...

Anyway, I did purchase one of these to wear to the beach, which considering I'm wearing long sleeves and fleece, won't be anytime soon.  Any guesses?   Check back tomorrow for the answer (if I can remember to post again tomorrow).

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Sunday, January 19, 2014

Linear Park

The City of Punta Gorda is a great place to walk, with or without a dog and bike.  They are in the process of designing an 18 mile pathway around the city, all pedestrian, bicycle and pet friendly.  We have often walked along the Harborwalk section of the pathway, as seen here and here.  We haven't walked this section much recently because there are so many other people walking dogs and we all know how Sir Titan is around other dogs.  So instead, we walk mostly along the road.  The Linear Park path is a new section of the pathway that intersects part of our walk, which wasn't completed when we left last year.
I like it because it is fairly open and easy to make an escape in the event of another dog and there are strategically located dispensers of doggie poop bags and receptacles in which to throw them when used.
We pass behind a church rectory which has a nice garden area, as well as this interesting stained glass.
There are markers along the path describing the trees and bushes planted there.
The path follows a canal and we all know what lurks in FL canals.
Seriously, who in their right mind would approach, feed or harass an alligator. 

About half way along this pathway, there is a nice rest area, including shade, a map of the pathways system, a trash container

and a water fountain with a doggie spout, (like this one but not this one). 
It's a great addition to the pathway system!

At some point, we spotted the inevitable "other dog" so we scooted off the path, walked a few blocks and headed back to the car.  We did come across this oasis for people and dogs in one of the yards on a side street.
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Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Conservancy of Southwest Florida

We saw this advertised on tv and decided to check it out.  It took us a little over an hour to reach it, located in Naples.  The entrance fee was $12.95 and as it turned out, we thought it was a little pricey.  That being said, the Conservancy does have a well intentioned mission statement: "To protect Southwest Florida's unique natural environment and quality of and forever." so we considered it a donation.
The venue didn't seem very large but it does cover 21 acres.  The fee included an electric boat ride around the lagoon and a section of the Gordon River.  Unfortunately, trees had fallen across the river so the ride was quite abbreviated.  It was very relaxing because the electric boats don't make any noise, so you are just floating along checking out the wildlife.  We did see a great blue heron, an anhinga and a golden retriever.
My middle name, kind of cool.  Bet they have more money than I do!
Bill and the electric boats

We're off.
We visited the von Arx Wildlife Hospital but there wasn't much to see other than several Pelicans rehabbing in the Shore Bird Pool.
Wants to be a trapeze artist in the next life

We checked out the newly remodeled Discovery Center where there are a few fish and snakes, along with a "touch me" pool.  
Gorgeous Lion Fish, too bad he's poisonous
The Lion Fish was not in the pool but there were horseshoe crabs, decorator urchins that put shells on themselves and sea stars.  Sea stars used to be called star fish but since they aren't really fish they are now called sea stars.  

I will say that each employee and/or volunteer we came into contact with was very friendly, helpful, knowledgeable and informative.

It was a cool and cloudy day so this was a decent way to spend the afternoon, although we probably won't go back and it's unlikely we will recommend it.  We would much rather recommend Corkscrew Swamp!

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Saturday, January 11, 2014

A Busy Day

When the kids were little and tucked into bed, we would often talk about the day.  I remember many times when one of them would say "I had a busy day".  Well, today was one of those days.

We were up early, well early for me, before 8:00.  After a quick breakfast at McDonalds (I know, I know, yuck) we headed to the farmer's market.  It was a busy day at the market, too.
Bill was so excited to see that these are now in season.
They are the best onion you will ever taste.  The gentleman that totaled up our purchases apologized that they were so small, it's the first week they have been available.  By the time we leave, the season will be drawing to a close but the onions will be huge!  We picked up more strawberries, which went up 50 cents a quart since last week, more feta stuffed olives and a few other items.  Only spent about $20 this week ;o)
Where, or where, is Bill McG?
We walked our veggies back to the car, then walked a block past the market to peruse the Sullivan Street Craft Fair.  It, too, was very busy.
Several blocks of Sullivan Street (one of the main streets running through downtown Punta Gorda ) are closed to traffic and lined with numerous booths full of the usual craft fair wares.
orchids and exotic plants

a carnivorous pitcher plant

interesting paintings
glass work
wood carving, almost as tall as me
It was definitely one of the nicer days we have had since arriving, sunny and warm.  Actually, the temperature was in the 80's and humidity about 180!  The weatherman stated this morning it would be "air you can wear".  No complaints here, tho.  Good reasons to purchase a nice beverage and stand in the shade for a minute or two.
Along with the usual, there was the somewhat unusual.
All fun and games till someone gets an eye poked out with one of those babies
Ahoy, Matie
Plus, there were dogs, lots of dogs, big and small, short and tall...

This was the only stroller I saw that actually carried a human baby.
From here, we returned home to get Titan and went for a short walk.  We keep forgetting to turn on the app, Map My Ride, on Bill's phone to track our mileage while walking.  We did go back and drive our route today, 1.7 miles.  Hopefully, between the two of us, we can remember to track it each day.  It will be interesting to see how many miles we log this winter.

We had lunch at home, then headed to Ponce de Leon park and the beach, where we stayed for a couple of hours.  Although it was hot at "home", the wind was coming directly off the water and I got cold enough to cover up.

All in all, it was a busy day.

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Thursday, January 9, 2014

The View at Lunch 1/9/14

Ponce de Leon Park, Punta Gorda, FL
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Saturday, January 4, 2014

Farmer's Market

Our first visit to the Punta Gorda farmer's market was very successful.  We spent most of our $40 but got a lot of great, fresh veggies.
I can't remember all the prices but the stuffed olives were $9, the most expensive item we purchased.  We have been craving them ever since we left last April, the ones at W-M aren't quite the same.  

The three lemons were $1 (something like 47 cents each at W-M), the two containers of strawberries were $5 and the avocado was $2.  Now, that seems like a lot for an avocado but it's huge!
happy avocado
I bet it weighs more than a pound and it's nearly as big as Bill's head.
Bill is such a good sport...the avocado had no choice
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