Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.

Henry David Thoreau

Last Days with Carrie

Friday and Saturday                                                                  Most Recent Posts:
December 25 and 26, 2015                                           Who Doesn’t LOVE Sea Turtles?  A MUST Visit in the Keys
Long Key State Park                                                     Final Visit to Key West – 6 Toed Cats
Layton, Florida





Dawn is always beautiful even if it is mostly gray.



This morning I walk along the shore  and give my Best Decorations award to this site with the lighted walkway and fake Palm Tree.




Runner Up goes to this coach with its driver and passenger in their Santa Hats.





As is frequently the case here, the colors are in the sky but surrounded by clouds which cover the sun at sunrise.



It’s a gray day in all directions.




Color drains away as the sun breaks the horizon. 




STILL windy!




After sunrise, the first order of the day is chocolate chip pancakes.  We somehow ran out of oats and had to make up a recipe which was “OK” but not as good as our standard.



The topping is always fruit.  Today it’s raspberries, blackberries, blueberries and bananas.


I forget to get my camera out until Carrie Berry (as she was called for obvious reasons in her childhood) has finished both her pancakes and the fruit with no trouble at all.   Sure looks like yummmmmmmm to me.





For her last day with us, Carrie wants to visit Sombrero Beach, the best beach in the Keys in my opinion.  Although Higg’s beach in Key West is also nice.  It’s windy today but as long as we don’t end up eating sand, we can handle it.





The King of naps practices his art.



It’s a beautiful day and lots of other people think Sombrero is also the place to be.






Off and on during the afternoon we stroll the beach looking at the sand works being created.  This is a pretty laid back snowman.  Appropriate for the keys.   Snowmen seem to be popular creations today.







But  the most fantastic sculpture is this sea turtle which is so detailed and correct I am amazed.



Look at the detail on the shell and flippers.  I hate to think of it being washed away.



Later in the afternoon the water beckons.




 They play around with trying to get together on a thumbs up signal for the camera.  Victory at what David?



I snap these in rapid succession as they laugh and try to get their hand signals in sync.  Two victories, too funny!



They’ve switched places – Carrie’s got the Victory.



Ok now they’ve got it, 4 thumbs up.





Looks like Carrie floats even better than before.  HA!



A kind woman from Sweden volunteers to take our annual holiday picture.  Beach bums in Santa Hats.



Back home, it’s dark, it’s dinner and then the end of the cake……we eat the very last pieces on the night before Carrie leaves.



What a sad sight.






Gray day – strong winds.   A typical day for us in the Keys..




David castches this night heron, a constant visitor to our site, with a morsel in his mouth.




Is it a frog?  A crab?





And he catches me taking pictures of the teeny weenie bit of color in the sky as the sun beams shine out.







It’s our last sunrise together.  Carrie’s flight leaves at 12:30 so we need to have breakfast and get on the road for the 67 mile drive to the Key West Airport.   It’s certainly better than the 90 mile drive to Miami.



At the airport we find her plane is delayed so we enjoy the little snow village set up in the departure terminal





The ferris wheel and merry go round both are turning. But today’s train only has two cars.  Last week, when she arrived, the longer train sitting on the inner tracks was running.






You just never know what you’ll see even in the small airport in Key West. 


Wish I could send this picture to her mom.


It’s always so sad to say good bye. 
We won’t see Carrie again until the spring. 
But we’ll be there with bells on for the birth of our first grandchild.




Back home, it’s our last sunset in the keys. 
We leave tomorrow after 8 weeks here.
The weather has, with only a day or two exception. kept us from kayaking and snorkeling due to the constant winds and the frequent rains.
I am sorry to leave the variety and beauty of the sunrises and sunsets.




But most of all to Carrie.   “We miss you when you go…….”



Not sure whether we will return to the Keys.
We have given it two full months to show us the Paradise thing.
Without being able to be in the water, the Keys, outside of Key West,
don’t offer much that we enjoy.
Biking is limited. Hiking is even more limited.
Kayaking and snorkeling are totally weather dependent
and for the latter you really need to be off shore.
No-see-ums are numerous.

If you are a restaranteur there are plenty to choose from.
If you own your own power boat, the winds won’t matter as much.
If you like to fish, this is your place.
So it might be Paradise for you.


  1. I know how you feel when Carrie left. I cried when Kate left on Sunday and she only lives in Richmond.

  2. Wonderful memories! Love the two Santa capped travelers in the front of the Class C, Carrie Berry's smile after pancakes with berries and of course the fantastic sea turtle sand sculpture - near perfect in every detail. Bye-bye to the Keys - it was fun, even though we did not have the weather and opportunities we would have preferred.

  3. Beautiful shots to end the year with. Happy New Year!

  4. Sweet close up picture of the three of you. But why, Sherry, are you wearing a "Naughty" hat? Is there something you need to tell us? Confession is good for the soul.... :cD

  5. Sad and lonely when everyone leaves. Happy New Year! Love,

  6. We would like to go to the Keys, but we won't be doing it with the motorhome. No interest at all in returning to Florida with the RV. So one day, we will fly to Miami and rent a car to take to the Keys.


  7. :-(( always hard to say goodbyes after such a great visit. Love the pic of the three of you on the beach and at the last sunrise - such cuties, all of you. Those girls did a great job on that sea turtle, wonder if they're practicing for a competition? The photos in the water are a crack up - what fun!!

  8. The weather in recent years is disappointing many people. South Florida was once a Utopia, and a delight to live in. I have been gone since 1985, and do not miss it. Way back when . . . the Key West airport was so unique - it was right out of "Casablanca". We were there during the height of the hijacking years back then, and they really went through EVERYTHING in one's possession.

    My outdoorsy son still lives in Miami, and he is sorely disappointed at how recreation opportunities have all but vanished due to inclement weather and overcrowded conditions.

    Virtual hugs,


  9. Wishing you guys a Happy New Year in the Everglades. The Keys are fun for a short visit, for us anyway. Great pics for next years Christmas cards.

  10. What a great post you had today having such fun at Christmas your family... beautiful pictures when the Sun... and of course you all too... and like all sea turtles... out to the sea they must go.... here's to having a wonderful new year....

  11. Sorry to see Carrie heading home, but love your Family Christmas Beach Portrait. You will have to come up with another portrait for next year;o)) Sorry the Keys didn't present itself in the nicest of way for your visit. Might have to take up fishing;-))

    Happy New Year to you both!!!

  12. Oh yes, saying goodbye is no fun at all. You are lucky she has time at work to visit you.

  13. Hope we can catch up when you move further North.

  14. Oh, I know that you hated to see her go. I do love those pictures of y'all in the Santa hats though. I'm so excited about the baby. How fun to think that the next time you see her, you'll also be seeing your infant grandbaby. SO exciting!

  15. This makes me want to be a "beach bum" next winter. Maybe not Key West with it's lacking in outdoor activity. Costa Rica might be nice. You are so fortunate to have Carrie visiting even though you say, see ya' next time. Wondering where to next. Happy New Year!!!

  16. You are all good looking beach bums in Santa hats but the close up are so sweet. Sometimes I wished we are in Florida right now, especially seeing you enjoying the beach.
    Its only for a short time that you will be missing Carrie, pretty soon your post will be laden with cute baby picture. But for now I love all the beach scene, the birds, sunrises and sunsets for its cold in AZ.

    Happy New Year to you and David, and wishing another great year of adventures in 2016

  17. Such beautiful family photos! You certainly showed Carrie a wonderful time—she looks radiant! I agree with you, the weather in the Keys was less than idyllic this year. If it makes you feel any better, the weather hasn't been all that great further north in Florida, either. Way too hot and humid for this time of year. Let's hope it cools off soon! Meanwhile, Happy New Year, safe travels, and have fun! :-)

  18. Beautiful final beach day for Carrie. Yes, it is very hard to send our daughters off knowing we won't see them for awhile. But we are lucky to have them visit:)

    I totally agree with your description and thoughts on the Keys.

    Wishing you and David a Happy New Year:)

  19. our baby left yesterday... sigh, another year another day

  20. Leaving really is hard - I hate that part quite a bit, but it was a wonderful week and I felt so lucky to be there and feel lucky everyday to have such a wonderful family unit as we do - such fun making memories. I float better now, eh? LOL! Love to you and Pops!! I do miss you and look forward to spring! :)

  21. Key West doesn't sound like my kind of place, but I do like the sand sculptures on the beach!


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