Hello, friends!! Anyone else wanna bug out of the Winter weather? We planned this little vacation knowing that we would be tired of the gray days and piles of snow by February. We just need that little getaway to boost us through until we get some warmer weather. Hubby and I were talking as we were waiting in the airport that we haven’t been on a trip without the kids since our honeymoon, 32 years ago! I guess I hadn’t stopped to think about that, but it’s true! My stance as a Mom was never to fly away from our kids until they were all over 18. Call me weird, but I just wasn’t comfortable!
Well, come with us to Indian Rocks Beach, Florida for a little 6 day getaway!! We left on Sunday, February 19th and returned on Friday, February 24th. I may have included too much detail in this post, but I want to remember everything and this is a great way to reminisce later! Haha!!
AWAY WE GO!!!
Day 1- Fly In
We left our house early Sunday morning, headed for the airport. It’s about a 40 minute drive when there’s no traffic. Our flight was on time, and was totally uneventful! (Thank you, Lord!)
We landed in Tampa, grabbed lunch & our rental car, and headed to Indian Rocks Beach, Florida. We had never been there before but had stayed about 20 minutes north of there in Clearwater Beach, a couple of years ago. It was a little early to check into the house so we made good use of the time and did a little grocery shopping at the local Publix before heading to the rental house. We ate dinner at a local place called Beach Waves Grill. I had Grouper and hubby had shrimp tacos! From there we wandered a block and found the beach! It was a little crowded, but the sunset was beautiful! I’m always so surprised at how fast the sun goes down!
Day 2- Monday
Monday was a slow morning and then we hopped in the car & headed south to Madiera Beach, specifically John’s Pass shopping area. We arrived just in time to have lunch….at Hooters. I don’t know why we ate there- I guess it was convenient, had outdoor seating and a table was empty. I was told that they had good food, and they weren’t wrong. I had the Grouper sandwich, hubby had a chicken caesar salad. The birds were plentiful, just waiting to snatch anything we dropped.
Shopping was plentiful at John’s Pass, and we made a few purchases. My personal favorite was watching guys filet fish and get them ready for the fish market. The pelicans and egrets were close by to catch the scraps!! I tried Italian Ice for the first time, too. It was so refreshing in the 80-degree weather!
Bon Appetit!! That was the name of the restaurant where we ate on our first full day in Florida. The restaurant opened in 1976, and has continued to be successful since then. We were hoping to see the sunset from the restaurant, but it was cloudy. I had steak, he had some kind of ravioli.
Day 3- Tuesday
I woke up to this message. A winter storm warning seems much less worrisome when you’re looking at palm trees!!
We took the morning to relax…that’s what vacation is all about, right?? When we vacation, we always have to discuss the balance of rest & activity. Hubby tends to want to go, go, go, and see everything. I, on the other hand, like to have a less busy schedule.
Around noon we drove back to Tampa for a Segway Tour through the downtown area. We had never been on segways, so it was way out of our comfort zone. After a mere two minute lesson, we took off. We saw Amalie Arena, cruised the Riverwalk, Curtis Hixon Park, and saw the gorgeous University of Tampa campus. Did I forget to say that parking was $42 for 3 hours? My accountant husband about flipped his lid over that!
We were thanking the good Lord above for getting us through the segway tour without an injury. Two of the eight riders in the tour ended up falling off and skinning themselves up pretty good.
Dinner that night was a frozen pizza and salad. (To make up the cost of the parking!) Hahaha! I might add that it was the BEST Philly Cheesesteak pizza that I’ve ever had!
The sunset, a mere two blocks away was once again, stunning!
Shortly after we made our way down the road, we found an ice cream place. I had Cookie Monster flavor, and he had a key lime cheesecake flavor. It was a great way to end the night.
Day 3- Wednesday
It was a day of golfing for the mister. Since he had the rental car, I stayed in my cozies and watched a movie on Netflix- it was heavenly!! Before he left, he walked to a bakery and got us a few pastries for breakfast! YUM!
Meanwhile, back in Wisconsin, this was happening! Hahaha! Isn’t it great when you can leave and know that your dogs are well-loved and taken care of while you are gone? We have the best dog sitters! I know you animal lovers out there get it!!
Guppies was a restaurant that was close to our rental house, so we walked and ate there for dinner. I was hankering for shrimp & grits, and I found it there. We ordered dessert and took it home with us. But first, we enjoyed another sunset from our beach. Are you sensing a theme here? Our vacations are centered around food!! Is anyone else like that??
Day 4- Thursday
Once again, a slow morning.
I will be the first to admit that I am a birdwatching NERD, and Florida did NOT disappoint! I have a fun app (Merlin) that listens to the sounds and then identifies the birds that it hears. It was fun to see the names of different birds!
We had lunch with friends that were vacationing in Florida, too! How fun was that? It was a super cute little cafe that served breakfast & lunch. (Maggie Mae’s) We were all so thankful that we could eat outside in the month of February!
What do you do on your last afternoon in Florida?? Hit the beach all afternoon, of course!!
We learned a very important lesson. Don’t throw any crackers out on the beach or you will get THIS!
WHO DID THAT??
Dinner was a clean-out-the-fridge night so we didn’t have to throw away a bunch of food!
Don’t worry, we found the ice cream place near us and imbibed again! Cookies & Cream this time for me!!
Day 5- Friday
We got up and out of the rental house by 7:15 the next morning to head back to the airport for our 10:05 flight! We got there in plenty of time to potty, buy snacks for the flight, and chat with our friends who just happened to be on the same flight back home!!
Oh, I forgot to show you what I packed for the trip! It was so simple to put everything back in the cubes and lay them in our suitcase. This is what I brought for a 6 days trip.
I’m starting to share my simplified ways of life on my new Instagram! You might want to join me there!!
Facebook: Jill Peterson Coaching
So glad you joined us on our vacation! I appreciate you taking the time to read the post!!
Phillip Mackey says
What wonderful coverage of your winter getaway. Loved all of the many photos and the stories behind each of them. Beautiful and thanks so much for sharing. So happy that you could get away for a bit and enjoy warm weather and different terrain….and beaches….and food. This whole article about your trip is fantastic. Nice job! Loved it all!
Jill on the Hill says
We hated to be away from you guys, but it was a really nice getaway! Thanks for commenting, Mom!
Kathy Trotter says
I loved reading about your trip. It is a special place for our family. I’m glad you enjoyed it. Maggie Mae’s is one of our favorites also. I’m jealous. I’m glad you could rest and recharge.
Jill on the Hill says
We were so appreciative of your recommendations! It was a great trip, indeed!! Thanks!
Joan Heiden says
Looks and sounds like tons of fun! So glad you got to get away. We have friends visiting Indian Rocks Beach right now!
Jill on the Hill says
Wow, Joan! What a coincidence!! Have a great week!!