I stepped away for a few weeks, we had a few things going on that prevented me from giving priority to documentation.  This winter cold went through everyone in the house and my husband and I had to update our transportation.  Now everyone is slowly recovering, we have 2 new vehicles in the driveway, my daughter has inherited my old car and has gotten her first job.  We are so very proud of her for her determination in being the best person she can possibly be.  Her younger brother is right behind her working on bringing up his grades and getting off the couch and into life.  He gets his own big dose of proud from myself and his father.

I have to admit the snow we received here a few weeks ago was beautiful, we also had a well deserved “snow day” or two but, I am done with this.  Being a Florida Native living in a place that actually has a winter has it’s pros but also its cons.  I love the fact that we have all four seasons, but hate the fact that it stays cold until May (at least to me).  So, we are planning to take a family vacation and go down to our condo in Florida for a week in March (thank God) and I will be ready for some warm sun on face and sinking my toes into that cinnamon sand.

Once we started discussing vacation it dawned on me that of course the winter had taken hold of me and I was not in beach shape so I have gotten back on my clean eating routine and renewed my gym membership.

But all narcissism aside, March 26 will be the one year anniversary of my fathers death.  The beach we go to was his home (and ours) for over 20 years.  We laid him to rest there in the warm waves of the atlantic in the morning as the sun rose above the horizon. This is the main reason I return, to be with my beloved father.  I grew up fishing with my father up and down the atlantic coast of Florida.  We’d fish the bridges of Cocoa Beach and the inlet of Sebastian.  The edges of the Banana River and beaches of Melbourne .  When he settled on the beach in Palm Coast it was no different.  We would get up early and run to the intercostal to cast for bait.  Then run back to the condo to grab coffee and fishing gear then we’d lug our gear down the dock to the beach, set up our beach base and case out into the waves.  The total zen of standing against the warm August sea breeze with a pole pulled by the surf as you wait for that first “hit” of a fish, there is no other joy to me.

We would make out way back to the condo when we finally got hungry or the afternoon thunderstorms rolled through.  After a quick lunch and a round or two of dice a quick dip in the pool was in order.  Then it was off to get crab legs, lots of butter, yellow rice and some plump pink shrimp to go with anything we may (or may not) have caught that day.

These were the glory days, these were the days of summer to our family.  But, about fifteen years ago my father’s health began to fail.  Many many years of heavy smoking and southern menus has began to take their toll.  not soon after we were hit with the news that he had COPD and his lifestyle slowed dramatically.  Dee Dee, his long time girlfriend and the family still fished the beach and intercostal but it was not quite the same.  I remember catching a shark off the beach one August evening and I desperately needed help getting it off the line.  Daddy laughed a little as he sat up at the doc, then had to proceed to explain how to get off the hook because he could not make the track down through the rocks and sand to get to where I was fishing.  It was then I knew.  There were a few more short afternoon fishing jaunts to the dock on the intercostal.  There were benches where Daddy could sit and we could park close.  As time passed he would sit on the couch or his scooter and would stare out across the ocean and tell us to go, go to St. Augustine to the fort or go down to the market in Flagler or “just go” and enjoy the bright sun, the sea air and pleasures that the Salt Life holds.

In March 2015 my father passed, in October 2015 Dee Dee passed, both the same year, both from years heavy smoking, one from COPD the other from lung cancer and this is 4 family members I have lost to lung cancer, five from the negative affects of years of smoking.  I also lost an aunt this year, my aunt Dianna.  She was 53, Dee Dee was 55 and my father was 72. In my opinion way to young to leave this earth and it many blessing.

I do not smoke although I did until August 2005.  My fathers sister died of lung cancer the Christmas before and I was determined to quit and I did.  I have not touched one since.  I know it is ultimately the choice of that person and that person alone but, for a happier healthier life.  I hope for strength of those who want and are ready to quit to do so.

We will be carrying on the tradition this year of fishing and swimming and crab legs, sauntering through the narrow streets of St. Augustine on a warm summers evening smelling gourmet popcorn and fried shrimp as our sun burn skin collects the salty humid night air.

The sun is out and I have the overwhelming urge to put on shorts and a tank top so I can feel as much sun on my skin as possible.  But, I will instead go put on my warm boots, some jeans and a sweater and charge my camera battery because although it is winter we are going trail riding out on state land this morning.  I will take my camera and try to get some good picture to share.

My intention was not to write such a lengthy post but it just happened, it poured out of me like an emptying river, I guess I need to remove this from my soul so I could go on.  So, my original intent was to post my breakfast and say “have a happy, healthy, glorious Saturday.

1 c. Almond milk

1 c. granola banana nut cereal

1/2 c. blueberries

1/2 c. strawberries

sprinkle of unsweetened coconut






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