Sunday, July 31, 2005

Our Last Summer Fling

Jason and I wanted to go to the beach last Saturday because I start work on Monday. It was going to be our "last fling" before getting back to the grind. But of course, after a week of hot sunny weather, Saturday was rainy. So instead, Jason suggested we go to the small town of Apalachicola, just over an hour away. It is a very small charming town with about a dozen shops, boutiques, and antique stores. Most everything was too expensive for our little budget, but it was still fun to look. After being deprived of (window) shopping for so long, I was feeling pretty excited to have discovered this place. All we ended up buying was dinner, seafood, of course, which was excellent. For dessert we went to an old fashioned ice cream parlor. Jason got a shake and I got an ice cream scoop which they topped with free hot fudge when I asked nicely. All in all, it wasn't quite the "fling" we had in mind for our last free weekend, but a very good day and a great find. We'll definitely be back. In fact, we'd love to take you there!

Monday, July 25, 2005

My husband, the fisherman

Well, Jason finally got to go fishing! He has been wanting to catch a fish ever since he learned we were moving here. Almost everyone around here fishes. There are tons of lakes, rivers, and yes, a gulf to fish in. We met some new neighbors, Tim and Becky, this weekend and they invited Jason to come fishing with them on their boat the very next day (the people around here are so friendly!)

This really isn't the time of year for "good" fishing (too hot so the fish go to cooler waters), but Jason had some luck. In fact, he was the only real success of the whole day! He caught a 22 inch grouper just big enough to keep. (Anything under that has to be released). Several other fish were caught but they were fortunate enough to be smaller. This poor fishy became our dinner. Tim came over to cut and clean it for us (thank goodness), while Jason was the chef. He made lettuce wraps with pan seared grouper and a cilantro-jalapeno-dijon sauce (a Rachel Ray recipe). It was mighty tasty. I just might let him go out with the boys again if he can bring home more "bacon!"

BEFORE...yuck! Posted by Picasa

AFTER...yum! Posted by Picasa

Friday, July 22, 2005

Back to Work

I met with my boss yesterday. We discussed information about the school year, policies, procedures, etc. All things I wanted to know, but all I could think about was, "where is my room and when can I get into it?" For those of you who don't know, I am going to be the speech pathologist at the county preschool. I will be working with 3 and 4 year olds (my favorite age-group). I am ready to get started because I honestly am getting a little bored! Never thought I would say that!

My school building is the second oldest in the county. It once was the school for all the black children during segregation. It is set back in a field surrounded by lots of trees. A bit primitive, but I think it is charming and peaceful. My room is what I call a "portable". A manufactured trailer thing set up close to the parking lot. It does have a separate office in it and is a bigger space that I am used to. I am anxious to go and fix it up (right now it is a mess). I plan on getting in there on Monday to get started. Anyway, it feels good to be getting back into work. Things will be different, there will be a lot to learn, but I am ready!

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Creative Wall Decor

Jason's home-made CD shelves, pretty cool, huh? Posted by Picasa

The Massey Family Tree Posted by Picasa

The Front of our House

Mamma, did you notice the barrels? Posted by Picasa

How do you like the new front door? Posted by Picasa

Workin hard on our front lawn. Posted by Picasa

Dennis the Menace

This is what the hurricane did to one of the favorite local restaurants. It is just 10 minutes down the road from us. Posted by Picasa

Friday, July 08, 2005

Our First Week in Wakulla

Hey folks,

So, we've been here a week and already we're filling up the bath tubs and stocking up on batteries for Hurricane Dennis....sheesh, welcome to Florida!

Still, we're loving it here. Kristin was really homesick for a few days but already is doing so much better. We went down to the Sopchoppy Fair for the Fourth. Big ol' greasy bratwurst dogs with grilled onions, fresh watermelon, and really bad live country music--it was a perfect way to celebrate America! When it got dark, we laid our towels down on the river bank and saw what I would say was the best fireworks show I can remember. The fireworks were launched from a boat out on the river and they exploded right over our heads. You felt the "BOOM" right down in the pit of your stomach! It was awesome, and it went on and on and on. I gotta say, the show at Texas Stadium had nothing on the proud citizens of Sopchoppy, who--by the way--proved to be very interesting subjects for observation. I mean, sorry to sound like a snobby Californian (can we really help it?), but man, the place could really use another orthodontist or two, hehehe.

But hey, what folks lack in teeth, they more than make up for in friendliness. I've never been somewhere that is so friendly; it's almost a little creepy. In L.A. I was afraid of waving to strangers 'cause they might shoot you. Here, you're afraid of getting shot if you DON'T wave at everybody! If you're out in the lawn or driving around town, you better be waving, nodding your head, and smiling like an idiot at every pedestrian and vehicle that happens to pass through your line of sight. You also can't go out anywhere without getting into some long conversation about the weather or college football. Those are the two most important topics around here; fortunately, they're both topics that I happen to enjoy talking about.

So far, we really love how unpretentious it is here, but that's not to say that it's totally backwards. Contrary to popular opinion, most of the people in the South really aren't toothless, racist rednecks, waving Dixie flags and marrying their cousins. In fact, about half the people we've met aren't even from here--lots of people from the North looking to move somewhere warmer or people from the cities looking for a slower pace of life. Indeed, life here does seem to go just a little bit under the speed limit, metaphorically speaking, and that's okay with us.

The scenery is really gorgeous. Lots of cypress and slash pine forests, beautiful rivers and bays, and yes, lots of alligators! There's also some really good restaurants here (about the best seafood we've every had), but they're not the kind of places you'll feel any need to dress up for. In fact, that's sort of the philosophy that sums up the whole area--"come as you are!"

The house is really coming together. Kristin's got a great eye for decorating on a budget. Even though it's a pretty big house, she's managed to make it feel real cozy. So, anybody who wants to visit, we got plenty of room for you and we'd love the company!

Guess that's about it for now. We'll try to get some photos posted in the next week or so.