Saturday, March 26, 2011

Days 5 and 6 - Howard Island

We spent our last two days of vacation at a great little island near Tarpon Springs, FL.  Day 5, we ate lunch at Rusty Bellie's restaurant and had some yummy seafood.  Then we went out to Howard Island, which was fantastic.  Calm, crystal clear waters with TONS of wildlife.  A great place to just be on the beach as it was intended - no condos, no man-made much of anything, except the parking lot and a couple of restrooms. Enjoy the pictures of our last two days:

A little crab that tickled my foot, then decided to hang out and play with us

Another crane, looking for food

Both days we saw dolphins chasing dinner

You could tell where they were going to come up because the schools of fish would be FLYING out of the water to get away from the dolphins

We saw a few of these scallops just hanging out.  One of them "spit" at me when I picked it up.

Benajmin and Jim snorkleing - they saw crabs and fish and scallops

Friday, March 25, 2011

Busch Gardens

Yesterday, we went to Busch Gardens.  We had a lot of fun looking at the beautiful plants and animals and even rode a few rides.  We took a little tour in a Jeep called the Rhino Rally.  It was pretty neat to see the some of the animals a little closer "in the wild".  The driver had a script he followed and Benjamin got the better of our tour guide and he lost track.  See, there was a Rhino that had just come out of a water hole and the driver pointed him out.  Benjamin said, "Hey, his bottom is all wet" which cracked our driver up and that made a lot of us laugh.  The tour was sort of cheesy, though, and they said they were looking for a "lost driver" and we would see "signs" of where he'd been.  Near the end, we saw his "lost jeep" and Benjamin said, "There's his Jeep" and the driver said, "Yeah, but where is he?".  Benjamin didn't hesitate and said, "Well, maybe he's dead!".  
Here are some pictures from our day yesterday:


Giant Anteater

Ostrich Egg

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Day 4 - Indian Shores, FL

Day 4 was a day to just relax.  Oh, well, we've been doing that, huh?  We went to the pool in the morning and spent the afternoon indoors, just lying around reading and napping.  Kind of a nice change.  We went to the beach to watch the sunset and here are a few pictures from last night:

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Day 3 - Indian Shores, FL

The evening of Day 2 has made us laugh about me (not at me). We were walking the beach picking up shells when I saw a bird hopping on one leg. I thought it was very interesting that we saw this one-legged bird...until Jim and Benjamin pointed out it was just resting one of its legs. We all laughed at my gullability. :)

Day 3 was gearing up to be a good day.  We went to the beach, then to the pool for a little while, then decided to spend the day back at the beach.  We packed up the tent, chairs, cooler, etc. and headed back across the street to the beach.  The tent was great!  We could get out of the sun and nap, but stayed cool with the breeze flowing through it.  The waves were bigger yesterday and we found some bigger shells that washed up on the shore.  I promise to get pictures of the devilfish this morning - heading out now!  Have a wonderful day!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Day 2 - Indian Shores, FL

Day 2 of our vacation was fun.  We went to the beach around 8-ish in the morning and as we walked onto the sand, seagulls started making noise.  Benjamin said, "They're announcing our arrival" and that is what it seemed like.  :)
Here are some pix of the morning at the beach:

This HUGE bird was taking off not 15 feet from me!

Here is the bird again

The bird was watching and stalking these guys. After they caught the fish, the man fed it to the bird.

Benjamin took a picture of this sailboat.

And a seagull

Since we needed to be out of the sun for a bit yesterday, we drove around looking for some different shops.  Did you know that they have a Publix and Home Depot on nearly every corner?  It's almost like the way they have built all the Walgreen's in the Nashville area.  Everywhere you look, there's one!
Starting Day 3 and more pix tomorrow, I hope! 

Monday, March 21, 2011

Day 1 of vacation

Yesterday was the first day of our vacation at Indian Shores, FL.  It's beautiful here.  We went to the beach across the street around 9am and within a couple of minutes, saw a bunch of stingrays near the shore.  They are so pretty and fun to watch.  At first, we saw just a couple, but soon we started seeing larger groups of 4 and 8 together.  For this landlocked girl, it was extremely exciting and I watched them for quite some time. 
No pictures on Day 1 - we forgot the camera in the condo!  WOOPS!  Day 2 will definitely have pictures, of some wildlife.
After an hour or so, we decided to drive out to Honeymoon Island.  It's a state park and very pretty if you go early enough.  It gets crowded fast!  The first area we went to had a really rocky sea floor and shells for days!  You HAD to wear flipflops or foot protection - you could barely see any sand and those shells are sharp!  So we hung out there for awhile and enjoyed finding some interesting shells.  I was sitting on a bench just watching the waves roll in and saw a small conch shell, so I leapt up and snatched it before anyone else could.  Later, at the condo, I had put the shells on a table.  As I was inspecting them, I realized this one I snatched up after being washed on shore was not empty!  It startled me to find a live muscle in it.  So, we took it across the street and I put it back in the ocean where it belonged.  Sure was a beautiful shell, but it seemed pretty selfish to kill the muscle to keep the shell.  I'll find others, I know. 
Looking forward to the rest of Day 2 and will write more tomorrow!

Friday, March 18, 2011

Old Timey Pictures

Here are some old pictures.  Enjoy!

My Mom and her kitten

My Mom

I think this is my Grandad Tingley

Ted and Gale (my Dad and Uncle)

My Dad

Thursday, March 17, 2011

You never know what you're going to see

A few months ago, Benjamin and I saw a chicken crossing HWY 41 while we were driving on our way to school.  Of course, we thought it was pretty funny. 

A few weeks ago, Jim, B and I were going to Springfield to the library and saw a hedgehog trying to cross the road. That was pretty surprising! I believe that is the first time I've ever seen a hedgehog in real life.

Last weekend, Jim and I were driving home and I saw a woodchuck up on a hill (not on the road this time) watching the cars go by. That was pretty funny to see too.

This morning, I saw a VERY large wild turkey crossing HWY41. Now, I've seen wild turkey's before, but not one this big. I was pretty stunned at its size.