Monday, February 28

Gee willies....where oh where did February go?    We had planned to leave tomorrow for Lakeland, but staying one more day as traffic is always very heavy on the 1st day of the month when leases are up and folks are movin', Wednesday, we'll head north.

Had a nice leisurely day - warm, windy and sunny.   We rode bikes and did a load of laundry and spent most of the afternoon reading good books!

My Dad has shingles - imagine that???    He is quarantined in his room for 1 week - can't go to the dining room and no visitors unless they've had the chicken pox!

Mark's Mom is dealing with a painful hip.....his Dad is doing well with his new pacemaker.

Thoughts and prayers are with our friends, Kathy and Paul who flew home last Monday from FMB.    Kathy's Dad passed away Saturday evening and tomorrow is the funeral.

Sunday, February 27

Warm, sunny Sunday and went to a  favorite for breakfast (1st time this year) "First Watch"  - they have great breakfasts and lunches!    Then to 11:00 Mass at St. Columbkille (different church this week as the timing was better).   Stopped at Target and CVS and on back to Daisy!

Mark put the awning out and we exercised in the shade, then rode bikes and settled in with our books.    Met Sue and Jerry, their daughter, Julie and twin granddaughters, Haley and McKenna and Connie and Steve at The Prawnbroker (think this place gets our vote for overall favorite restaurant in Fort Myers)!    Another wonderful dinner and lots of good conversation with the girls on one end of table and guys on the other.
McKenna and Haley watching "Snow White"
Jerry, Sue, Steve, Connie, Mark, Pat, Haley, Julie and McKenna

Sad to say good-bye to Connie and Steve......hopefully, we'll be together again next February...and look forward to seeing the rest when we all return home.

Saturday, February 26

Whew....Daisy's temperature gauge hit 88 today!    Mark left with Glen at 7:50 and both were part of a racing crew on a 42' sailboat.    I left at 9:50 and walked across the bridge to the beach - browsed the shops and then meet Claire and her daughter Emily visiting from WI.    We had a great visit and lunch at Nervous Nellie's with the highlight of our chatter all about the twin babies Emily is expecting in August!!!

Fort Myers Beach and all the sun seekers
Emily, Claire and Pat at Nervous Nellie's

Met Barb and Roger at Terra Nostra (excellent Italian dinners) and then we all shared a cannoli.   Had so much fun and sorry to leave them as we'll be moving on from Fort Myers Beach next week - they'll stay in Bonita Springs another month.

Mark, Pat, Barb and Roger at Terra Nostra

Friday, February 25

Warm, sunny, windy today!!!    SHOCKEROO...............I know you won't believe this (we sure can't), BUT...we did not go out to eat anywhere today - breakfast, lunch or dinner!    Just hanging out on Miss Daisy!!!!    Our tummies are saying "hurray" as they sure needed a break from all this wonderful stuff we've been inhaling.   My sophomore biology teacher said long ago...."The #1 illness Americans have is "Hand-to-Mouth" disease!    How true that has been for us!    HA!!!!!

Did our exercises, rode bikes and I got a manicure/pedicure - pretty nails and toes in "Strawberry Margarita  "Wishing you all a fun, safe weekend!

Thursday, February 24

Very fun day spent with long-time boating friends.    Barb and Roger picked us up at 9 and off we went to Punta Gorda for the 4th Annual Mid Illini Reunion hosted by Fred and Jeanne.

Eight couples gathered for a yummy lunch and lots of chatter throughout the afternoon around the pool.    Here are some nice memories...

"The Buoys"
Glen, Leon, Fred, Roger, Mark, Roger, Cy and Ron
"The Gulls"
Jeanne, Marcia, Helen, Carol, Pat, Barb, Pat, Paula

Big thanks to Fred and Jeanne for hosting this fun event!

After this get together, Barb, Roger, Mark and I went to the Wyvern Rootop for drinks and enjoyed the lovely afternoon and beautiful view.

Top of the Wyvern

Back to Fort Myers Beach for late supper at Big Game - more good eating and visiting!  

Wednesday, February 23

Foggy start to the day but burned off much quicker than yesterday - warm and sunny (82).     Our neighbor told us we had a flat tire -"I know you folks get up and outta here every day, so just wanted to warn you that if you had to be somewhere at a certain time, better check the tire first".    Fortunately, no plans this morning - Mark put the spare on and was off to have the bad one repaired (found  big screw embedded).    I was off to do 3 loads of laundry - by 12:30, tire was fixed, clothes all clean and after lunch, stayed inside cool Daisy reading our Nooks!

Took a walk this afternoon......Brooke called and told us Drew fell last night from basketball pole (boys will be boys) and needed 4 stitches in his right shin.    So, he's our first grandson to need stitches and Davis was first to break a bone!    Connor and Liam are dealing with croup (Connor) and croup and strep (Liam).   
Wish all 5 of the boys could be down here with us for a few days - so much neat stuff to do!

Ryan is back on shore from his month in the Pacific.    He and Philip are having some brotherly fun along with friends in Las Vegas.

Late this afternoon we drove to Lover's Key and met Barb and Roger at Helen and Leon's condo - wow!    What a beautiful place with a magnificent view!    They are renting this place for a week and will return to Muskegon, MI on Saturday (where Catrina is spending the winter).    After drinks and snacks, we all enjoyed a delicious dinner at Big Hickory.    I had a wonderful lobster salad and Mark and I shared bourbon pecan pie - oh my............

Roger, Barb, Helen and Leon at the condo
Roger, Mark, Pat, Barb, Helen and Leon at "The Big Hickory"

Tuesday, February 22

Whew....heavy fog this morning and everything was very drippy!    Did our exercises and around 10:00, started clearing.   As we were lifting our weights, looked across the park to this tree (is it a monkey tree, Sandy?) and saw this bird perched at the very top!

  Turned out to be beautiful and clear skies....boarded "Freestyle" with Glen and Paula in hopes of sailing, but once we got on the gulf....yikes, very foggy.   We cruised around the back bay and had lunch and then skies cleared up on the beach so had a great sail...very fun day with good friends doing what we all love - boating!!!

Pat and Paula soaking up the sun!
Mark and Annie
Big ole shrimp boat
Captian Glen and First Mate Paula

Ater freshening up from a full day in the sun, we went to  The Nauti Turtle for dinner and then back to Daisy to look at pictures on Paula's I-pad!    GREAT day...
Glen, Paula, Pat and Mark
at The Nauti Turtle

Monday, February 21

Packed in a whole bunch of fun today!!!!!!!   It all started at 8 AM when the guys (Mark, his 2 brothers-in-law, Mike and nephew, Reuben and Rich and cousin, Mike, along with Captain Joe) took off on a charter fishing trip.   We girls (Mark's sisters, Theresa and Doris and I) went to Mimi's Cafe for delicious breakfast followed by browsing around the Bell Tower Shops.    Then we all met back on Daisy, had some drinks/snacks and visited.   Off to The Big Game for Polish Poker and 7-Up soaking up all the warm sunshine.  

The Parrot Key prepared the fish the guys caught (trout and mackeral) and it was sooo good along with side dishes.    Just a super fun day and with all the sun, wind and fresh air, we should all sleep well tonight!

Here are some highlights of our day...

Cheers to "sisters"
Pat, Doris and Theresa at Mimi's
The fishermen
Mike, Reuben, Rich, Mike, Mark and Captain Joe
Playing cards at The Big Game
Mike, Theresa, Mark, Rich, Doris and Pat
The siblings
Theresa, Mark, Doris
After dinner at Parrot Key
Rich, Doris, Mike, Mary, Mark, Pat, Theresa, Mike
Doris in the Salty Sam gift shop with her hat and sword
Theresa and Mike in their silly pirate hats

Sunday, February 20

It's my birthday and what a GRAND, FUN day!!!!     It all started waking up to several e-mails and e-cards from family and friends and then reading regular cards, opening a package and all the text messages.    Thanks so much!    Then off to 9:00 Mass - we really like our Fort Myers church (Resurrection of our Lord) and along with a great homily, today we had the most wonderful soloist and violinist as an extra treat!    Stopped at McDonalds for a quick breakfast and then drove to Punta Gorda.

Met my brother Bob and Linda at Fisherman's Village.   Bob and I are both celebrating today (he's 6 years older).  Sat and had coffee outdoors and visited and then Linda and I browsed the shops while the guys sat and read (Mark) or did crossword puzzles (Bob).    Met for lunch at The Captain's Table overlooking the Peace River.   Back to shopping for we girls; the guys did their thing and we left around 3:30 for Lakeland and Fort Myers Beach.    A beautiful day weather-wise and so enjoyed talking to my kids, my Dad, Mark's parents, skyping with the grandsons and even got messages from friends in Hawaii and Zurich, Switzerland!   WOW....gotta love this technology!   

At the Captain's Table
The Birthday Kids

Saturday, February 19

Happy Birthday, Patrick!

Today is our son-in-law's birthday!!!

Sunny Saturday and after breakfast and laundry, Paul and Kathy picked us up and we were off to Punta Gorda for the State Farm Retiree luncheon at the Elks Club on the Peace River - always a fun time seeing old friends, good lunch and everyone just yakking away.

Aftr lunch 6 couples (all long-time boating friends) went to the rooftop of the Wyvern Hotel in downtown Punta Gorda for drinks and more visiting.    Such a pretty place on a perfect day
 (hard to believe it's February).

Kathy, Birthday Girl Paula, Pat, Carol, Nancy and Helen
Paul, Mark, Bill, Glen, Roger and Leon

Back to Daisy and settled in with our Nooks!

Friday, February 18

Ahhhh, another perfect day and spent almost the entire day outdoors soaking up all this sun and warmth!    Picked Mike and Theresa up at their hotel and we were off to Sanibel and Captiva.   Nice drive amongst all the vegetation, huge homes, etc.    We had planned to drive on the 4-mile tour of the Ding Darling Wildlife and Nature Center; however, it is closed on Fridays!, we hiked the Indigo Trail with Mike, the biologist, as our guide identifying the various birds.

Here come the hikers - Mike, Theresa and Mark
An immature egret
Pretty flamingo

Then off to The Green Flash for scrumptuous lunch on the water and leisurely trip back to Fort Myers.    It was a fun day enjoying all of nature's grand beauty!
Theresa and Mike at The Green Flash

Mark's sister Doris and husband, Rich arrived this afternoon and staying on FMB.   Looking forward to all 6 of us being together on Monday! 
 Here's wishing you a great weekend and keep on melting that snow up north!

Thursday, February 17

 What a day................Mike and Theresa (Mark's sister) from Chicago are visiting Florida for 10 days.    They arrived this morning and we spent an awesome afternoon sailing on our friend, Glen's catamaran "Freestyle".    Just a fabulous day on the water with turquoise water, gentle breeze, lunch, visiting, dozing, etc., etc.     Took Mike and Theresa to their hotel, we came back to Daisy to shower, change clothes and then picked them up for dinner at The Prawnbroker (a BIG favorite here in Fort Myers).    It was sooo good and enjoyed by all!   

Hopefully we'll all sleep like babies tonight after all that  fresh air and sunshine!   Here are some memories from today...
Mike and Theresa
Mike and his "funny"shoes
Theresa and Pat 
Captain Glen
Mike, Theresa, Pat, Mark
After a great dinner at "The Prawnbroker"

Wednesday, February 16

It's great to hear that while we're enjoying wonderful weather here in Florida,, so is much of the rest of the country!    Today was a real beauty and after exercising, we did laundry, rode bikes (12 miles), washed Daisy's outside windows and then off to meet friends from back home....Paul and Margaret in Bonita Springs.    What a fun time we had - great visiting and catching up, seeing the area where they spend the winter and then a delicious dinner at "Stir Crazy" in Coconut Point!   Back to their home for key lime pie----thanks for a delightful visit!

Mark, Paul, Margaret and Pat at "Stir Crazy"

How ironic that our grandsons (their Jack and our Connor) are in the same preschool class!

Mark talked to his Dad today and he's home from the hospital with his brand new pacemaker!

Tuesday, February 15

Beautiful day and great to be on the water!    We met Roger, Barb, Paul and Kathy at Salty Sam's and rented a pontoon boat from 11-4 cruising Estero Bay.   It was delightful and today was "all about Roger" and celebrating his retirement!   We had a great lunch at Bayfront Bistro.
 Here are some highlights:

Just before leaving the dock...Barb, Roger, Kathy, Paul, Mark, Pat

Pat, Barb, Kathy outside Bayfront Bistro

Paul, Roger, Mark enjoying their favorite past time - boating!!!

The new retiree and his honey!

Paul and Kathy invited us to their condo for key lime pie (awesome) which Kathy made.   Sat and visited and then walked down by the beach for sunset!    Great day with great friends!

Paul and Kathy

Mark's Dad had his heart procedure and pacemaker installed today - all went well.   He's staying in hospital overnight - last we heard he was asking for a milkshake!!!

Valentine's Day 2011

A beautiful Vday here in South Florida - Mark got a haircut, we exercised and then rode bikes 8.5 miles.  It was a very pleasant ride.  Leisurely afternoon having our leftovers for lunch from Nervous Nellie's, reading, doing e-mails and a little cat nap.

 My Dad is settling back into nursing home but not feeling all that good - goes to dining room for some meals and stays in  his room for others.  He talked today about changing rooms (at a nurse's suggestion), so he would be closer to nurses station, but tonight, not sure he wants to do that?

Tonight we celebrated Valentine's Day with good friends, Steve and Connie.    They came to Daisy for drinks/snacks and then we had a wonderful dinner at Doc Ford's.   We've known them since 1972 when we started playing bridge.  So much fun chatting away...

Steve, Connie, Pat and Mark

Tomorrow Mark's Dad is having a heart procedure done followed by having a pacemaker installed in the quad cities - prayers are with him that all goes well!

Sunday, February 13

It's so good to be back in Florida - just a picture-perfect day!   However, my heart and thoughts are back with Dad - really enjoyed my time with him despite the ups and downs, emotions, worries, etc., and know that this roller coaster ride is ongoing.   As Dad said "This ole body is wearing out" (he's 93) but now dealing with a double whammy with heart and lung issues!
A BIG "thank you" for all your kind thoughts and prayers!

I so enjoyed visiting Mark's parents, my Aunt Marian (Dad's sister whom I stayed with), Anne, Liam and Connor,  my cousin Dick and Mary and Aunt Dorothy (another sister of Dad's).    And of course, Judi, our advocate for Dad while we are gone and so faithful with her visits and putting her nursing knowledge to work with questions, concerns, etc.

Pat, Aunt Marian, Mary and Dick at Primo's Thursday night

We went to 10:30 Mass at Church of the Resurrection of our Lord, stopped at Publix for a few groceries, and back to Daisy to change clothes.    Walked across the bridge to meet Paul and Kathy and have wonderful lunch at Nervous Nellie's followed by long walk on the beach!

Pat, Mark, Paul and Kathy at Nervous Nellie's

Paul, Kathy and Mark on Fort Myers Beach

Fort Myers Beach as seen from the top of the bridge

Back to Daisy - walked 6 miles total!!!

Wishing you all a very Happy Valentine's Day tomorrow...