Florida . . . Yes!

If you live in the northern hemisphere, you might need a break. I know I did.

At our house, right now, it’s 15 degrees Fahrenheit (about minus 9 Celsius), with a forecast of colder temps and heavy snow in the next few days.

But that’s okay. Because I just had my mid-winter break in Florida and filled up on sun and sea, good food and beautiful sights. Even better, we had 12 days of time with family and dear friends. So, in spite of the weather outside, my inside feels warm and cozy. Maybe these photos can warm you up, too!

Florida can be annoying. Too many people are loving it to death. We all want what Florida has to give and we all want it in the same three-month period. That makes for hellish traffic, ugly strips of chain stores, and garish tackiness.

And yet . . .

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Florida still retains its considerable charms.

Amazing wildlife. We didn’t see dolphins this year but we saw lots of birds! (Click on any photo for the details)

Lots of vintage linens! I found a lot to love in the historical village on Sanibel Island and in the town of Arcadia, where there are dozens of vintage/antique shops in a two-block area.

Sun. Sand. Glittering turquoise water. Flowers everywhere. The beaches on the Gulf Coast, on Sanibel and Gasparilla Islands and at Longboat Key, offer miles of aimless walking, with nothing more important than looking for shells.

The perfect antidote to winter.

Miles of perfection

Miles of perfection

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Autumn Senses–Sight of Snow Geese

In late autumn, the leaves are off the trees, after that amazing show they put on before they blew away. The flowers are gone, the grass and fields are brown, everything is a little drab and monotone and low key. The lights have been turned down on the show.

And the snow geese, clever birds that they are, know that at this time of year, nothing can upstage them! They have the spotlight, they are the stars of the local stage.

I posted last week about a magical moment when I saw snow geese taking off against a dark sky. Since then, I’ve pretty much stalked them like a paparazza. They are always fascinating but still photos don’t necessarily capture their glory fully. The constant, seemingly chaotic, movement that suddenly resolves itself into a perfect V in the sky and the raucous, noisy chatter are a critical part of the overall experience.

But I can offer you photos. Many of these are taken at a distance, to show the spectacular numbers of geese gathered in one spot. I hope you’ll click on the photos to get a better look!

That Magic Moment, When I Looked into the Skies . . .

IMG_3855And saw thousands of snow geese taking off from the lake and swarming south.

IMG_3852I was tempering chocolate for an order, and glanced out my kitchen window. The sky was black and blue, and the geese sparkled against it.

IMG_3841I wish I could provide you with sound effects, too!

Ten minutes later, the sky was overcast and gray and the geese were out of the picture. Isn’t serendipity a wonderful thing?