Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Remember When?

When you were a child, did your kindergarten class have a graduation? If you have children, you will surely never forget seeing your little one "graduate" for the first time. I'm thinking of you Florida Cracker who just experienced your son's high school graduation.

Easter Seals Volusia Flagler has a charter school serving children of varying abilities pre-k through kindergarten. Here is a slide show of their graduation, it made my day!

Florida's most dangerous jobs

When you think about dangerous jobs, you automatically think about firemen, police officers, and roofers in the summertime heat. But what about environmental consultants? Sounds fairly harmless, right?

Yesterday an environmental consultant was chomped by an 11 foot alligator in Silver Springs, Ocala. I guess a job monitoring the flow of water in a Florida spring is only dangerous if it happens to be inhabited by a humongous alligator. Luckily, it was just a flesh wound (shout out to Monty Python fans!) and the guy was okay. The alligator was caught and euthanized.

Think ticket sales for the glass bottom boat rides at Silver Springs will be through the roof today?

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Anna Maria Here We Come

Like a hurricane, only much more fun, the girls and I will be blowing into Anna Maria Island this weekend. It will be our biggest group ever with at least 12 ladies from all over the state of Florida coming together to liven up the island. I'm looking forward to some shelling, seafood, and sauvignon blanc with my sassy sistas! (Yes, I love alliteration!)

Beloved asked what we had planned for our trip. I told him that ,unlike men who fill their vacation schedules with things like hiking, motorcycle rides, fishing etc., the most important thing to us ladies was having time to just relax with the girls. We're really very low maintenance.

Top 5 Things to Do on Girls Trip
5. Eat food that's been prepared by someone else and served to you
4. Enjoy a room with a view
3. Happy Hour all day/night long
2. Laugh and talk
1. Repeat items 2 to 5

Friday, June 18, 2010

What Oil? Beaches are Clear!

While my heart goes out to the beaches along the Gulf that are now seeing oil creep onto their beaches, over here in Daytona Beach we're doing our best to let folks know that they should still come vacation here. Harry Potter's not all that the Sunshine State has to offer this summer.

Take a look at the video from Daytona Beach's Sunsplash Park today.

Fish for Free

Just in time for Father's Day, the state of Florida is letting people fish without a license this weekend - free fishing! This is just another way that that the state is trying to combat the effects of the oil spill and show the world that Florida is still open for business. Enjoy a free, fresh Florida seafood dinner this weekend and spend some quality time with your dad, granddad, step-dad or the man in your life who's been like a father to you.

Florida Governor Charlie Crist announced that residents and visitors may enjoy a weekend of free fishing in honor of Father’s Day on June 19th and June 20th, 2010. Florida Fish and Wildlife Chairman Rodney Barreto remarked upon Governor Crist’s decision to waive fees and have the free fishing weekend, “Governor Crist’s actions to extend another free fishing weekend will help bring families together to enjoy the outdoors and lend a hand to Florida’s fishing communities, which have been suffering due to mistaken perceptions that fishing is not open because of the BP oil spill.

They just keep growing

My brother-in-law created a great montage of my niece Lily Kate. Below you see her at newborn, 6 weeks, 3 months and 6 months. My how time flies!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Who Knew Trucks Could Talk?

My truck called me yesterday. It was quite startling. I was out running errands in my Chevy Avalanche (which I love, best truck ever!) and listening to the radio, when all of a sudden the radio went silent. I heard the sound of the phone ringing and that familiar phrase "Now connecting to OnStar."

Seems it was time (past time actually) to renew my OnStar subscription and since I had not responded to their repeated e-mails or the snail mail they sent me, they waited until I was in my truck and called me up. I know I should have taken care of this when they first sent me the e-mail notifying me my subscription was almost up. But hey, I've been busy and slacking at the same time.

It was bizarre and quite unexpected for OnStar to call me. Kind of "stalkerish" actually. The fact that they knew I was driving my truck and called me is a little spooky. But I guess that's what OnStar does, it keeps track of you while you drive in case of an emergency. Which I appreciate .... but still. Creepy!

As always, the OnStar person was extremely polite. Disney-like politeness. And she even helped save me money on my new subscription. Bonus!

I wonder if they know I'm putting on my make-up while I'm driving and that I cheated on my diet last week at the McDonald's drive thru.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

You could be the next Duck Master!

The hospitality and tourism industry in Florida offers a wide variety of career opportunities. I found one I'd never heard of before, but thought it would be fun for the right person.

Duck Master.

That's right, I said Duck Master. The Peabody Hotel and Resort is looking for a Duck Master to manage the 5 mallard ducks that are an attraction in and of themselves at the property. Who wouldn't love to have Duck Master on their business card? The job description is below.

Responsible for handling and maintaining the health, diet, rotation and living quarters for the five mallard ducks and conducting the daily march of The Peabody Ducks before hotel audiences and off-property audiences. Required to take the ducks to schools and give presentations about wildlife, ducks, and the environment. 

Tuesday, June 8, 2010


Today was MiniMe's 5th grade graduation. Despite the fact that she acted as if she was embarrassed to see me, I know she really enjoyed having me there. Here is the photo I got of her at the breakfast awards ceremony before she realized I was there.

This is the photo I got after she saw me.

Eyes rolling, arms crossed. I guess I'll see a lot more of that now that she's heading to middle school.

The 5th graders were dismissed after the breakfast so she spent the afternoon at home with me. And she didn't waste time transitioning into full-on middle-school almost-a-teenager mode.

"Mom can I go to the movies on Friday to see Karate Kid?"

I guess so. Who are you going with?

"Well if I go with my friends, would you want to go or would you be OK with dropping us off?"

That depends, how many friends are you going with? 

"Right now just one friend, but I plan to ask a few more friends to go, too."

Who's the one?

You guessed it. The boyfriend. She hadn't been out of elementary school for more than 2 hours before she's asking to go on a movie date with her little boyfriend. But wait, it doesn't stop there.

"So when do you think I'll be able to shave my legs?"

Well, like I've said, when you go to middle school, 6th grade, then if you want to shave your legs you can.

"But I'm going to be in 6th grade in just a few months, and Mom, look at my legs! I really think I need to start shaving."

Just like a single gal, gotta shave before her Friday night date. I figure by the end of the week she'll be asking for the car keys and arguing with me over the time of her curfew.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Keeping it Real: The Oil Spill and Florida Beaches

What's going on with Florida beaches as a result of the oil spill? If you really want to know, ask someone who lives here in Florida.

That's the idea behind Florida's statewide tourism bureau campaign to save our state's tourism economy. 
Visit Florida is encouraging local Floridians and visitors to the state to let the world know that our beaches are open for business. Very few miles of Florida's beaches have been affected by the oil spill, yet hundreds of coastal cities are losing travelers due to the media attention and coverage of the issue. 

Visit Florida is approaching this problem in the most up-front, transparent way I've ever seen something like this covered in a campaign. They're asking local Floridians or people here visiting to share their photos of what is happening on our beaches right now. 

Ok Florida Bloggers, this is right up your alley. Very few miles of Florida's beaches have been affected by the oil spill, yet hundreds of coastal cities are losing travelers due to the media attention and coverage of the issue. I know my blog friends (yes, that means you) are fantastic photographers. Share those great photos and be a part of a real-time, real life social media effort to show the rest of the world what Florida's beaches are really like this summer.

Come on down! Florida needs you!

Alls Well That Ends Well

We survived MiniMe's pool party! Actually, it was a great success. Yes it did rain, but that gave us a chance to get the kids out of the pool long enough for ice cream cake and presents. Learned something new this weekend. Our pool can actually hold 17 kids!

Another positive - the parents all arrived on time to pick up their darling boys and girls. Can't beat that. I spent Sunday on the couch reading and watching movies. Momma was whooped!

Saturday, June 5, 2010

How could I make such a rookie mistake?

I think someone should revoke my Florida Native status. I've made a terrible rookie mistake. I scheduled MiniMe's birthday pool party for today beginning at 3 p.m. What was I thinking? Obviously, I wasn't thinking. By 3 p.m. this afternoon thunderstorms will be rolling in and I'll be stuck with 2 dozen 11 and 12 year olds in my house with nothing to do. Shoot me now!!

In my defense, no wait there is no defense for this native stupidity, but to explain my moronic planning skills, I was thinking I needed time on Saturday to get the house cleaned, the dogs walked and fed, the food picked up from the supermarket and the signage placed in the neighborhood leading the way to our house like breadcrumbs.

This day may end up more painful than the 13 hours of labor I went through 11 years ago today.