Sunday, July 11, 2010

Do we seriously live here?

That's a question I ask myself every now and again and I thank God for giving us this beautiful place to now call home. Living in Sarasota has many perks, yet there are many things we haven't taken advantage of... yet. Since my parents are in town visiting us, I wanted to find something different to do. Something different than the usual trips to the park, mall, and favorite restaurants (and yes, we did all those things too).

Enter Marie Selby Botanical Gardens. Jim and I have lived here for almost 6 years now and have never taken the time to explore the beauty of the Gardens. When I was pregnant with Abby, my dad came to stay with me for about a month when baseball season started. We got into the routine of walking down by the marina almost every night. Dad would walk faster (much faster!) and longer, but at least I would tag along for some of it. Most of the time, I would find myself relaxing on the swing overlooking the water, but that's beside the point. The point is, we would always walk by the fence of the Gardens and always comment on how it must be such a beautiful place. So.... our chance to visit came along and we jumped right on it, despite the heat.

The Gardens are almost 10 acres, with a collection of over 20,000 different types of living plants. I would have never expected it to be like this ... it truly is a magical place! Even though it was blasted hot outside, we enjoyed looking at the plants, watching fish and boats in the water, and touring the historic home on site. It was definitely something different and such a wonder to see!

Gramma & Grandad take a break to look for dolphins in the bay.
Abby only saw boats and little fishies instead!

Abby & Mommy enjoying the breeze on the bayfront.

What a beautiful view!

I was also excited to try some different things with my camera. This camera can do so much, that sometimes it's overwhelming to me. I still have so much to learn. I'm getting there! I put away the standard lens that I'm most comfortable with and used the zoom lens today. It was fun taking pictures of a subject other than a child that moves too quick for a good picture. The shots of the plants turned out great!

We will definitely take another trip back to explore even more of the Gardens during the winter months, when it's a bit cooler. At least now I know what beauty the Gardens behold and instead of saying, "I want to go there someday", I can now say "The Gardens are a beautiful, magical place."


Carol said...

When did you change your blog design? Love it!

That picture of the butterfly turned out fantastic! We'll have to go in December or January without kids, when the weather is cooler!

And, Dang you for carving your name in to that tree! LOL. We noticed that too, and thought, what a shame to do that in such a beautiful place.

Glad you had fun! See ya tomorrow hopefully!

Liz said...

I just changed it over the weekend due to the Scrappin Blogs dilemma. Will fill you in later :) But, thank you!!

I had so much fun taking pictures ... would love to go back without kids! We are doing the membership :)

Of course I had to snap that picture of my name in the tree. Can't believe someone did that, but it made for a great pic!

Anonymous said...

Love the blog change! It's super cute! I've never heard of the Gardens. Looks and sounds beautiful! We might have to venture over that way some day to check it out!

Michelle & Jimmy Rivas said...

Liz, I love the new blog design! So happy to see that you had a great time with your parents.
It's so funny that both you and Carol posted pictures of the gardens...we were there last weekend and I have some pics to post too! I love it there, we've gone several times over the last 6 glad you found it! :)