Monday, January 28, 2013

Lady Lamons in FLorida

I didn’t do the Jamaica post justice so with the help of the Color Note app I committed to documenting our FL trip including individual highlights.  This post is from the perspective of Lady #4, so if you were to ask a different Lamon Lady you might hear the story differently.   However, I assure all my readers that my version of everything is the the most accurate!  346 pictures of the adventure of Pocahontas, Fever, Jillian, and Click.

Per request of Father Lamon our foursome split into 2 for flight travel.  Kelly and I departed together and picked up Colleen and Mom in Fort Meyers Florida.  As we waited for take off I took a glance around the plane.  I noticed a lot of grey.  I shouldn’t of been surprised as I watched the 3 walkers go up the baggage belt.  And you should of seen all the golf clubs.  I think I might have to retire in FL if there is that much golfing. 

It was interesting flying with Kelly.  She jolted to grab onto something when we hit turbulence and during take off and landing she closed her eyes to meditate.  I couldn’t decide if I should just keep talking to her for distraction or hold her hand.  Colleen and Mom were very excited to have their picture taken as they got off the plane.  Colleen, a.k.a. Fever, was sick.  Drugged heavily her fever would come and go through the week. 

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Off to pick up the rental car.  $14 later Kelly and I had managed to get the Hertz man to give us a car upgrade.  Colleen was convinced that we had gotten the convertible, but to my dismay we upgraded to a mini van.  A vehicle that we were all too familiar with.  Apparently if you want the convertible you can’t bring so much luggage.  Kelly managed to get us to the hotel.  Colleen, Kelly, and I shared the driving, but no matter how well you were doing someone was barking about your driving.

Highlights day #1

MJ = At the hotel we wore these bracelets that had a chip in them that was our room key and the key to get through all the hotel gates.  Brett would have loved this idea because I can’t manage to carry a key with me.

Kelly = The Hertz guy was friendly and funny.  We were on top of the world with the VAN!  He referred us to locate his friend Jamie (pronounced Yam-ie) at the Pink Shell for some deals.  Never found him and you should have seen the looks on the resort staff when we asked if a Jamie worked there.  Jamie will remain a mystery.

Mom = Dinner by the pool with her girls.  It was good!!  That or we were really hungry.

CJ = Getting off the plan into the warmth and humidity.

After dinner, mom insisted that we had to go see the ocean.  It was dark!  The next day we could see where we were…the Pink Shell!

View from our room.

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The first day we headed to the beach which ended up the day with the best weather.  I guess I didn’t realize that FL could be so chilly!

Our chairs await!

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Highlights Day #2

CJ = We ate breakfast at a great coffee shop.  That morning we were up early to go get groceries, but the stores didn’t open till 8am.

Mom = Loved wading in the water

Kelly a.k.a Jillian = We found the adult pool and did some pool races.  Even after 2 laps Jillian made us walk up the stairs to our room.  We were on floor 7.

MJ a.k.a Click = Taking pictures and the sun!

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The next day we headed to Sanabel, not to be confused with Santa Barbara.  I took the pictures while I was biking!

Our transportation

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We did lots of shopping and ate at the Blue Giraffe.

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We saw lots of these trees.

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Colleen and I made it to every shop.  I won’t tell you how long we spent in the swimsuit shop or worse yet, how much we spent in the same store.  After we filled our bike baskets with boutique goods we headed back over the causeway to Fort Meyers Beach.

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But not before we pulled off the road to take in the sunset!

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Highlights Day #3

Mom = Biking on a flat road.

CJ = Swim suit shopping and excellent service. 

Kelly = Tropical wine shop.  Enjoyed that Orange wine!

MJ = Shopping without kids and being able to go to every store.

The next day Kelly, Mom, and I walked to the pier while Colleen got a massage.

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Mom made some friends on the pier.

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After we headed to the Mound House.  The oldest standing structure that sits on an ancient Calusa Indian Mound.  Learned a lot about a bunch of plants which I can’t remember now.

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This was the day that Eva, Dale, and their boys came to Fort Meyers.  That night Dale watched Coen and Drew so that Eva and I could go out.  We had so much fun.  Love this girl and can’t wait until we get to see each other again. 

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Highlights Day #4

CJ = Her first deep tissue massage

Mom = Fishing pier

Kelly = Face time with her kids when we were walking the beach.  She was showing them all the critters (dead and alive) to her kids.

MJ = EVA!

A fantastic day, complete with 2 arts and craft fairs, dinner and talking at the pool. 

The next morning we made it to church.  Leave it to us to find the Methodist Church with an appropriate name of Beach United Methodist.  When I saw the first sign I thought wow, that was nice of the Methodist Church to share their signage so that the tourists knew how to access the beach.

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The church service was slow and the sermon had an unusual interpretation of a piece of scripture.  Good news, is that the pastor confirmed one thing for me…there will be wine in Heaven.  Thank goodness!

After church we did some kayaking. 

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So before we got into the kayaks Mom requested to go with the daughter that would yell at her the least.  So obviously I ended up with Mom.  This turned out to be a horrible decision on my behalf.  Once we crossed the bay mom turned into Pocahontas.  She took us down channels, with foliage overhanging, very still and dark waters.  When we came to forks in the river she wanted us to go down the narrowest path.  Pocahontas wanted to see what was down there or what was lurking in the trees.  Kelly and I wanted to stay far away.  It was at these moments that mom did all the paddling.  I wasn’t going to help her get us there.  Colleen spent her time getting Kelly to relax to avoid getting tipped into the water.

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After confirming with a nice man fixing his boat that there were no alligators in the water we had some relief.  That was until within 10 feet of our boats 2 fins popped out of the water.  Kelly and Colleen immediately starting paddling backwards, I followed!!  Mom started laughing as the 2 dolphins popped out of the water.  That was a horrible feeling.  After 2 hours into our 4 hour trip we finally made it back to land.  Whew!  Mom, so sorry that your daughters didn’t get your Indian blood.

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That night it was dinner with the Jackson’s.  Really, really good seafood.  Colleen, how was that tomato?

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Highlights Day #5

CJ = Hearing Kelly want Peach Schnapps when we were kayaking

MJ = Not seeing sharks!

Mom = Kayaking despite her lame children.

Kelly = Seafood Dinner

Next day back to Sanibel for the Ding Darling Preserve.  Grateful we didn’t see any Alligators.

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And then to take a boat ride on the Thriller! 

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We got to see dolphins.  I’m so glad I brought the good camera.

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It was windy!

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Highlights Day #6

Mom = Ding Darling wildlife refuge and the birds

Kelly = Narration on the Thriller

MJ = Riding the Thriller

CJ = Dolphins

It was kind of cool the next day with spots of sun.  We covered up and then threw off all the covers when the sun came out. 

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Colleen stayed completely covered the whole time!

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That was our last full day so regardless of having to wear the same outfits we wore leaving MN we still went to the beach.

That night we ended with dinner and happy hour by the pool.  Luckily our friend Dane from Jamaica was willing to blow the conch so we could have our sunset shot.  The food again was really good.

Despite the weather that didn’t corporate, we held back from complaining about being cold since we got frequent updates on the weather in MN.  I think that might have been second to why we really went.  Don’t get me wrong, I would have gone somewhere else with my mom and sisters, but I would prefer to go somewhere sunny.  The trip was surprisingly successful.  Oh don’t be so surprised that I said it.  Look at the 4 of us.  There was great potential for chaos.  Spending a week together reminded me who and what I love about the Lamon Ladies are.  I love Kelly’s insightfulness and discussions, but appreciate when she kicks back and shows us she is human.  Colleen is sensitive and loving.  She enjoys relaxing and taking it all in!  And our fearless leader Mom.  She is independent and adventurous.  Beside taking in the wonders of nature she watched her girls that live separate lives play together again.  Mom has taught me a lot and I hope that she enjoyed vacationing with us (we hope she takes us again)!  I know I loved every bit of it!

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