Abode is where the Heart is

A week or so ago we were able to go visit my family. They live on the Gulf Coast of Florida & I always feel so at peace when I get to see them. The plane rides are a different story. When you find out the key to getting over that fear, pass it on over here, please! Well, this trip was filled with visiting with family, checking out all the changes they have going on, & helping my sister decorate her camper. You can see what we did with the camper on my post here!

We spent lots of time at the house relaxing, at the Marina & restaurants my family owns & we spent one day walking around our favorite island. For a change of pace, I thought I would give you a “day in the life” of our typical adventure when we head south! So here we go! Here are some photos of our favorite island, Anna Marie! Every trip we visit the Rod & Real pier, walk around the little shops, visit the parrots, & get the most delicious donuts! If you ever get a chance to visit, make sure you hit up some of these stops!

After the island, we went downtown & stopped at one of my favorites. This quaint little shop is home to the makers of these beautiful tables. They also make the cutest donuts that are oh so good. Moral of the story is that we need better donuts shops by us in Indiana. I love stores like this that make the most of the space & offer such a variety of things to enjoy. I mean check out that day bed! Can I get one of them in my sun room? Thank you!

Now for the special part. This is Fratellos. This is my family’s Chicago style pizza restaurant. For sure the best food in town & even better company. I love the vibe I get when I come here & I hope every guest feels that way too. This place is very special as we got to see my family dream about it & turn it into a reality. I can’t wait to see where they go from here, but they really nailed it on this pizza! So friends, if you are ever in Bradenton, FL, go to Fratellos & tell them Our Blue Abode sent you!

Lastly, my happy place. This is Regatta Pointe Marina. This is where I still feel my grandpa around, where I spent some time working, where I am so proud to bring friends & family. Whether it was the salon down the strip, a morning shift in the ship store, or seating tables at the restaurant, my short time living in Florida was filled here. There is nothing the sun on the water or a walk in the crisp air on the pier can’t fix. My family’s second restaurant, Riverhouse Reef & Grill, is here & let me tell you, I would pay to get their food shipped to my house if I could.

That is about it & I hope you enjoyed my favorite day when I go to visit my family. I spent a short time living here myself & there is something about the water & the sunshine that you cannot beat. I may be saying that because it is the beginning of winter in the Midwest, but this place will always feel like home. Between my family being here & so many memories I hold on to, visiting this place will never be frequent enough. After living in home after home, town after town, it does not take much to feel connected or held to an area. You meet people that are dear to you & you pass by places that trigger all sorts of feelings & memories. I am so thankful for every place I was able to call home, this one especially.