We left the sunny wetlands behind, as the current on the Ichetucknee river pushed us forward into a dark tunnel of cypress trees. They stretched upwards, so tall they seemed to join each other at their tips, blotting out the winter sky. Bright orange foliage poked between the bleached white trunks. Gnarled stumps jutted from the rich soil. Nature’s art, worn smooth from years of river flooding. Turtles perched on half-submerged logs, stretching their legs out in a ‘plank’ pose. And schools of fish dashed beneath our kayaks, their bodies silvery flashes over the pools of turquoise on the limestone riverbed. It was us and the river. The only sounds were the swish of our paddles stirring the water and the birds in the trees.
Take a dive beneath the water at Salt Springs, a unique swimming hole in the Ocala National Forest.
A huge black winged bird swooped across our path and landed neatly on the picnic table in front of us. The ebony reptilian rolls around the bird’s neck jiggled as the creature leaned forward and peered into the blue and white striped canvas sack standing on the table top. I watched with a mixture of horror and fascination as the animal I recognized to be a turkey vulture, stuck his glossy beak into the bag and pulled out a piece of bread.
“Mom, do something,” my son urged.
Where are you, Little Blue? Little Blue Springs, often over-shadowed by it’s bigger, more beautiful sister, Gilchrist Blue, was in a world-apart. Here’s a look at Florida’s lost swimming hole.
Swarming bees, snakes, gators and legendary lost pirate gold. We started our day headed to the beach, and one turn in the road led us on an accidental adventure into Florida’s wilder side.
We try our best as parents, but never know if we are getting this parent-thing right. And we beat ourselves up all the time. Our kids are teens now and this is what we do know-the the top things we’ve done as parents when they were growing up that actually have made a difference in their lives (for the better). Check it out 🙂
Learn about animals in the ‘School of Croc’, build a rollercoaster (or whole theme park), take a virtual paddle into a gorge, jog through a national park, and more. Check out these cool things you and the kids can do while you’re stuck at home.
So, you find yourself at home with the kids. Your young kids may adore cuddling up for a story time, but as they grow older, those books are replaced by electronics. The only book you’ll ever see is one assigned from school, which you suspect will never emerge from their backpack to see the light of day. How on earth do you get your (older) kids to read- especially if you don’t have many or any books in the house?
Stop forcing the ‘reading is good mantra’ (kids can smell that a mile-away) and check out these five clever & creative ways to get your kids to read- (they may not even realize they’re reading!)
With the Florida beaches already teeming with college students, what is a family in Florida left to do? Sure you can fight the Frisbee games for your spot of sand, or join the throngs at a theme park for a 3 minute ride, but it’s no secret that we would rather be doing than waiting in a line. With that in mind, we came up with a list of alternative ways to spend your spring break in Florida.
Ditch those busy Florida beach destinations and rediscover the real side of Florida, where life is slower, ice cream parlors on the main street are the hot-spots, flip-flops are the main footwear and fishing poles are trendy. Here are the best Florida coastal towns your whole family will love.