a week in paradise

Vacation was awesome. And I mean awesome. A big, huge thank you to all of the lovely and talented guest posters that were able to step in while I was doing this…

And some of this…

And a whole lot of this…

A week on the beach was exactly what we needed. While we’ve taken trips in the past few years, this was the first vacation where Babyface and I both totally shut off from our responsibilities in our entire marriage. It felt so good to not be tethered to my phone or laptop. I was able to take naps on the beach. Drink mimosas for breakfast. And read. I read four books, kids. FOUR! There were even a couple of days where I read an entire book start to finish on the beach. It felt so decadent and amazing.

For the most part, while we were on the beach we did exactly that—stay on the beach. But we did put on real pants a few times and venture out into the not-so-sandy-world. We got out to watch a Blue Jays Spring Training game in Sarasota, which was fun, but neither of us are huge baseball fans. We did really enjoy the hot dogs and beer, though.

One adventure that took us all around the area was our quest to find local seafood. You’d be amazed at how hard it is to find local seafood in the Sarasota area. We were finally able to track down a few places to buy freshly caught fish and shrimp, but the choices were really limited. Even the restaurants in the area flew in the vast majority of their seafood. But what were able to find was incredible!

And of course, we did our fair share of shopping. Babyface and I both get a kick out of kitschy, cheesy souvenir shops, so we spent quite a bit of time going through those. Beyond those shops, there were also some amazing artist co-op stores in the area. We were able to snag some fantastic original pieces from local artists as souvenirs. We did not, however, buy this hat. Dreads work on me, no?

I wish I had more to share with you, but I can honestly say, 90% of our time on vacation was spent on the water. We walked along the beach. We searched for seashells. We got our fill of Vitamin D (and went through SIX bottles of sunscreen). We splashed in the waves. We Babyface boogie boarded.

I think the mark of a great vacation is how you feel at the end. So often, I feel like I need a week’s vacation to recover from my vacation, but this time I feel relaxed and ready to get back into the swing of things. I loved being on the Gulf Coast, but I’m also happy to be home (and SO happy to see Puppyface).

I just wish we could bring the beach with us.

When you go on vacation, do you go off-the-grid? Or do you like to stay connected?



  1. Shauna says

    My favourite vacations are cruises! There’s no WiFi out on the sea, and no cell phone towers. It’s just so nice to totally leave EVERYTHING behind and just enjoy my family. Even our last cruise, with a 9 month old who was getting his top teeth was awesome. We barely slept, we hung out a lot in the splash pad and the baby play room, but it was so much fun to just… exist only for my family. No cooking or cleaning or shopping or going online. It was amazing.

    Looks like you had a well-deserved vacation!

    • Cassie says

      I’ve only been on one cruise and it wasn’t the best experience. But that was not the cruise’s fault (I was 15, with my parents, and away from my boyfriend I was totally in “luuuuvvv” with). I’d definitely like to try another one as an adult. I’d imagine the whole everything is taken care of thing, is awesomely nice. There are these amazing Greek cruises that sound like perfection. :)

  2. says

    I really, really want to take a vacation on the beach now.

    The cottage my family owns up at the Cape has no internet, so for most of my life, I spent the two weeks there completely off the grid. In the past few years, though, I’ve noticed I have 3G access, so I can at least check my email on my phone while I’m there. Besides that, I’m off the grid. I’d rather spend time enjoying myself more than looking at emails, Twitter, Facebook… I like spending time in the here and now.

    Sounds like you had a great time!

    • Cassie says

      That cottage sounds amazing! I’m always hesitant for the first few days to “turn off” but once I get into the routine of it, it is no nice!

  3. Athena says

    Looks like a great vacation. Glad you enjoyed it. Love that hot red bathing suit! I love to go off-the-grid when on vacation.

  4. says

    I love Sarasota!! Your trip looks like SO much fun- and I’m so glad that you had a wonderful time! I am a huge baseball fan and totally jealous that you got to go to a spring training game. I never have- except for the last training game that’s always at the home stadium (which I’ll be going to in a week). And love the Orioles poster- shout out to Baltimore! (I’m a Red Sox fan but worked at Camden Yards through college :))
    Your bathing suit looks fantastic! I need to go get one! I love the red color too!
    And at first glance, I thought the dreads were real. Yeah, I like YOUR hair better.
    Oh- Gretchen and I hung out Saturday and were talking about how much we love your blog. Wish you lived closer! :)

    • Cassie says

      I could see where the spring training thing would be AWESOME if you were a big fan. I mean, we could walk right up to all the players if we wanted to. It was definitely an intimate experience. :)

      Awww! I wish I lived closer, too. :)

    • Cassie says

      I definitely feel refreshed. :) I’m almost all the way through my workday and I still feel that way. Score!

  5. Lisa Broadley says

    I loved your pics Cassie!! Makes me excited to go on my vacation…we leave April 22 for VEGAS!! The dreads were hilarious!! I think this vacation will be pretty easy to turn off the phone. Last year in Newfoundland it was extremely easy….NO SERVICE!! LOL!!
    Glad to have you back (I did enjoy the guest posts)

    • Cassie says

      I’ve never been to Vegas! I hope you have an AWESOME time. Was Newfoundland great? The Canadian Husband and I have always wanted to go there.

  6. says

    Is that the Old Salty Dog I spy? Great little place to sit and watch the boats come in and out!
    Happy to hear you two had a great time – and hope you’ll be back soon!
    I usually get one “unplugged” short vacation a year in north GA …but mostly because its hard to find an internet connection or cell service where we go!

  7. says

    First of all, your red bathing suit looks FANTASTIC on you! I love the retro look to it. So pretty :)

    Your vacation sounds perfect! I love unplugging when I’m away- phone off, no internet, just relaxation. Ahhh :) Glad you two had such a great time!

  8. says

    Wow, looks like a fantastic vacation ~ the perfect getaway!

    When we vacation, my hubby definitely struggles to unplug, and unfortunately I’ve allowed that habit of his to creep into my own habits. I’m definitely rededicated to working on switching back to the unplugged version of vacationing, and even finding time to unplug at home.

    That red swimsuit is completely incredible ~ you look gorgeous lady!!

  9. says

    Sounds like the perfect holiday! I’m also in awe of your swim suit, I used to have an awesome red swimsuit but I left it on a beach in Africa, I’ve bought other ones since but I loved that one best of all. Reading about your holiday has got me excited for mine. 6 and half weeks time, and I am for the first time ever, counting the days. Perfection for me is a week in Northumbria, there’s hardly any mobile (cellphone) signal and no internet, so it will be pretty unplugged. Can’t wait. Hope you have a good week getting back into the swing of things…

  10. says

    So glad that you enjoyed Florida– I live on the east coast, and absolutely love my state! You’ve got to take a trip to St. Augustine sometime. It’s a tad north of me, and there is SO much history and beauty there.

    It’s so hard for me to unplug, but I’m inspired by your trip. I’m going to try it myself in the near future!

  11. says

    Aww I can’t believe you visited my city! So cool! :) It sounds like you two had a good time. I wish I would have known you were going and I would have suggested a few good seafood spots that the locals flock to 😉 Love love LOVE the red bathing suit! Hotness girl!

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