Well, I believe I can honestly say that I've never been so unexcited to be back in North Carolina. I left a very hot, 85-degree NC on Wednesday, spent 4 days of wonderful 70-80-degree weather in Florida, and came home Sunday evening to freezing temps! And the outlook for the coming week isn't good. What happened?? I can say, though, that it made me enjoy our time in Sarasota even more knowing it was much colder back home.
Jarrod and I had a wonderful time visiting some of our favorite people in the world: my cousins, T&K and their 3 kids (who, by the way, are the coolest kids ever!) It was a looong drive, though. But we had fun. It was the first big road trip Jarrod and I have taken together, so it was really great to have those 11 hours together, just the 2 of us. Nothing too eventful from the trip to report: just greasy food and sketchy little towns.
Thursday was actually our most relaxing day. The kids were in school, so we had lunch with T&K and hung out around the house until everyone got home from school and work. A very strange thing we noticed in Florida - we watched an episode of 24 while we were there and the TV picture is really weird! It's hard to describe, but it almost looked like a documentary. Something was different about the back lighting and made me very aware that we were watching the show through a camera lens. We noticed it on other TVs while we were there, too.
The next day we spent on the boat. Everybody took off from work and school and we took a friend's boat out on the gulf. It was a gorgeous day and the water was so blue. But the amazing part about this trip was the dolphins. They were everywhere and would often come right up near the boat. We probably saw about 10 of them and I've never seen dolphins up close, outside of a marine show. But that's not even the best part! So as we're coming into the Venice area, we're slowed down since we know there are dolphins in the area. I'm up at the very front of the boat with K, just looking out ahead of us when a dolphin literally jumps straight up in the air! It had to be 5 or more feet out of the water. It was one of the most incredible things I've ever seen. Totally different than at a Sea World show. This was just a wild dolphin showing off. We all just kind of sat there in shock for a minute afterwards. So the boat was a great experience, however, apparently I'm no good and putting on spray-on sun block, because I got some crazy bad, splotchy sun burn.
Some more exciting news from that day, Jarrod was offered a new position that he'd interviewed for at Gregory Poole CAT. We celebrated that evening at the Blase Cafe on Siesta Key. Congratulations, baby!
On our final full day we made a trip to Tampa to go shopping but wrapped up the day on Lido beach to watch the sunset. And I've never seen a sunset like that (obviously that's because I don't live on the West coast, but still, it was gorgeous). After dinner we went to Kilwin's to get ice cream. Apparently this is a very popular place, because the line was out the door. A fun story: my cousin T worked there after high school and actually served Steven Tyler ice cream one time (sadly, he was not there this time).
Sunday was get up and go time (Jarrod does not hang around on travel days). So we set out that morning on another 11 hour trek. We did listen to the Carolina basketball game on the radio, but I wasn't feeling great and ended up sleeping for half the trip. But Jarrod was great and drove the entire time. That's why I love him!
So after a day of travel and not feeling well, I came home to a freezing house. Thank you, North Carolina. Florida, I miss you already!