Thursday, December 20, 2012


Dec. 17th Monday – It was a pretty light day; we ran some errands around Sarasota. I got to set foot in Publix! It’s pretty much like any other grocery store. I baked some mint chocolate chip cookies and Keenan baked these amazing brownies (of a sort) that had graham crackers, chocolate chips, butterscotch chips and coconut. It was pretty rich, but so yummy! I guess all the baking made us sleepy as most of us took a nap before dinner. After a quiet dinner of leftover chili, our guests began to arrive. Ruth Quimba, Donna and Stan (Wynn’s friends), Pastor Jackson and his wife Martha and Cinnamon and Vinton came. The girls had very interesting conversation topics, including Florida bugs, homeschooling, etc. My family kept me up late texting all kind of silly things. I think they miss me.

Dec. 18th Tuesday – We woke up early and began our trip to the Bok Tower Gardens located in Lake Wales about 2 hours away. After grabbing my first mocha frappichino from Starbucks, we drove on a beautiful highway surrounded by many green trees and shrubberies. We arrived at Lake Wales and saw this neat old train sitting there neglected on the tracks. The train had a bright red quaint caboose, a passenger train and an old disintegrating locomotive. Keenan and I took a lot of pictures around the train, and the tracks. Wynn convinced us to check out this little tourist trap that had a lot of dolls, dollhouses and other memorabilia from Lake Wales and its history. It had a very nice N scale train setup in the back of the museum, even though it was very warm in the building. Apparently, the city helped export oranges, and during the depression, the craftsmen were able to find work by designing the ornate ironwork for the nearby Bok tower. After grabbing a quick lunch at McDonald’s, we drove through the town again, admiring the little quaint old town.

Once we arrived at the Bok tower gardens, I knew it was going to be awesome! The trees were beautiful, and the squirrels have quite the character out here! The tower was huge, and looked pink from a distance. It seriously did look like Isengard with the balconies so high near the top. It had a moat surrounding it with the biggest fish swimming near the surface, hoping for people to feed them. The bell tower began to play Christmas carols as we admired the beauty of the tower and its surrounding area. Keenan and I got a lot of nice shots. After the songs ended and the mosquitoes started showing up, we moved on to the house. Every room was decorated for Christmas and was outstanding. The living room/music room was one of my favorites. I loved all the lights that permeated the place. After enjoying the outdoor gardens some more, we headed to Chili’s for dinner. I got these delicious chicken bacon ranch quesadillas. It was a very fun delightful day,

Dec. 19th Wednesday – I *majorly* slept in; it felt so good after that long day on Tuesday. I got to play Minecraft for the first time, it’s a very addicting game (so much so, I can understand why its called “Mine crack”) We went to church in the evening and brought one of Wynn’s friends, Nancy, with us.

Dec. 20th Thursday – Keenan, Mark and I played Minecraft again during the morning and early afternoon. Wynn went to teach at the Christian school at the church while we played the computer game. Mark and Keenan left briefly to go grab sub sandwiches from Publix, Keenan got me a turkey club. After Wynn got back, we all went to Siesta Key Beach, where the sand is super soft, white and with the consistency of flour. It was absolutely stunningly spectacular! We ate our subs there on the picnic table and walked around on the soft white beach. The sunset was spectacular with its bright vivid pinks reflecting on the sea. There was long grass nearby the shore along with some blooming little sunflowers. The Mexican gulf was a light sea green color, quite unlike the Pacific which I’m used to. I got my feet wet after the sun started to go down; the water was still pretty cool, but not bathwater warm. We collected some shells as we walked along and took a lot of pictures. After we rinsed our feet and dried off, we checked out a few touristy shops nearby in Siesta village. On the way home, we grabbed some mint chip ice cream and double chocolate chip ice cream. Keenan and I ate our ice cream while watching the first half of Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring (movie one, part one). It was a perfect day. We even have a light lightning storm tonight!

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