Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Long Weekend in Naples

When Todd went to Mexico a few weeks ago for a friend's wedding, I was originally pretty disappointed I wouldn't be joining him because we had planned last year that we were going to go together for a full week and enjoy our first real vacation with just the two of us in 3 years.  Once the Zika virus popped up and I knew I wasn't going to Mexico, my parents graciously offered to watch Lucy for a long weekend so we could still get away before baby girl #2 arrived.  So, we decided to head down to Naples, Florida for a few days to soak in the sun and enjoy some quality time together before life gets crazy.

*As always with vacation posts, there will be a LOT of pictures*

We left last Thursday evening, flew into Ft. Myers, and then drove 30 minutes south to our hotel in Naples.  We arrived around midnight to our hotel and were excited to get our vacation started the next day!

Todd has been away from Lucy for days/weeks at a time when traveling for work or other personal trips but this was the first time I'd been away from her for more than a night; to say we were excited to get some uninterrupted time together would be an understatement

Day 1 (Friday, June 10, 2016)

The weather was a little iffy on Friday with cloudy skies and a chance of some rain so we stayed close to our hotel and went to Clam Pass Beach (we also picked this beach because you could rent lounge chairs which I needed at 34 weeks pregnant); you could either take a tram to the beach or walk the half mile or so along the boardwalk from the parking lot so we opted for the walk which was beautiful among the mangroves

Our view when we made it to the end of the boardwalk

Looking down the beach to our right from where we were sitting...

and to our left

We took quite a few selfies on this trip thanks to my new selfie stick

Sun popped out for about an hour or so and there was a nice breeze so it wasn't too hot even though it was almost 90

Heading into the ocean to cool off

It started to rain after being at the beach for a few hours so we decided to drive over to Naples Pier to check it out

Walking down to the end of the pier

We were lucky enough to spot several dolphins but I was never fast enough with my camera; if you see that dark spot in the water in the middle of the picture, that would be a dolphin's fin

Hanging out at the end of the pier

After the pier, we went back to the hotel to shower and get ready for the evening; our first stop was to Naples Beach Brewery so Todd could sample some new (to him) beers

Taster tray

We knew we wanted to go out to a nice dinner when we were there so we made reservations at M Waterfront Grille and it was such a perfect evening!  For awhile, we were the only people sitting outside along the water (I think the hot weather deterred most people) with a gorgeous view and the food was exceptional; afterwards, we drove over to 5th Avenue South for some shopping and dessert before watching the Cavs game back at the hotel

Day 2 (Saturday, June 11, 2016)

The weather was supposed to be almost perfect on Saturday so we drove about 15-20 min north of Naples to Bonita Springs so we could go to Bonita Beach

A view of the beach as soon as our toes were in the sand

Unlike Clam Pass Beach where the sand was really soft, this beach had a TON of shells everywhere so while it was awesome to find some good shells, it was kind of a pain to walk on it without sandals

Our view of the ocean from our lounge chairs (again, we picked this beach because they had chair rentals; not many of the beaches did)

Ready to relax for the day

I was able to read 2 books while we were gone and start another one

We ate lunch at Doc's Beach House which was literally right on the beach; our toes were still in the sand while we ate!

Our view of the beach/ocean from our table at lunch

Yet another selfie

Todd got a local beer and then we split some conch fritters and a BLT

It was much hotter on Saturday than Friday so after about 3 hours of being in the sun, we were more than ready to head inside (which was good considering I ended up getting a sunburn on my belly) and drove a couple miles away to Momentum Brewhouse

Another taster tray

After getting ready at the hotel, we headed back out for a more casual dinner and settled on Olde Naples Pub for some fish sandwiches; we again ate outside but it was in a shaded courtyard

A view of the tables from the second floor

So happy to be spending time together

We walked around 3rd Street South for a bit, stopping to take some pictures since there were so many pretty fountains and flowers

Looking down the street; I loved all the palm trees especially once it got dark because they all had string lights wrapped around the trunks that were lit up

Another photo opp

We had an 8:00 AM flight out of Ft. Myers so we were up really early on Sunday to make it to the airport.  We flew to NYC, had a bit of a layover, and arrived back in Columbus around 3:00 PM ready to pick up Lucy and hear all about her fun weekend with Grandma & Grandpa.

One last selfie at the airport before heading home

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