It never ceases to amaze me. We can get on an aircraft, sip on juice, eat peanuts, read a chapter from a book, take a cat nap, get pictures of clouds and the landscape from a distant, bird's eye view and within 3 hours time be transported to an all together different climate, with contrasting plants, animals, trees and landscape. Seriously, I am in awe every time.
My husband, young girls and I just wrapped up our Florida adventure, where we covered more than half of the sunny state in an eight-day, whirlwind vacation. Our adventure began in Miami where my sister, Laura and bro-in-love, Brendan and their 3 beautiful children live and farm. We toured their 1.5 acre farm complete with a young fruiting orchard, thriving organically cultivated vegetable garden, 5ft diameter composting systems, out-buildings, tall grasses growing wild for privacy, flowers galore, and happy, healthy kiddos. They are in the process of building their dream home - designed to accommodate the natural landscape and climate as ecologically friendly as possible. This was our first visit to their farm, and we were pleasantly surprised at all the amazing work they've been diligently able to complete, considering they are raising 2 young 'uns, work full time, and at multiple side jobs, and manage their homestead. I am super thrilled for them and can't wait to visit again! Here's just a small taste of their plot of tropical heaven (over a 2 day time frame):
They have a trampoline for the kids to release some bouncy fun and energy and get a healthy workout in the process! I even got on it for a bit, and I was soon feeling muscles I didn't know existed! Great fun!! My oldest nephew stopped by for a visit since he lives about 15 minutes from the farm. Kai's dream has always been about skateboarding - as you will notice his stunts carry over onto the trampoline!!
While visiting with our family, we stayed at a local campground, Miami Everglades RV Resort, just around the corner from the Blue Horizon Farm. The camp, we noticed, was mostly a "snow birds" haven of quiet, clean, fun getaway. Kurt and I imagined ourselves in 20 years time loading up an RV and doing the "fly south for winter," snow-bird getaway!! Not a bad idea, whatsoever. We stayed in a cute little cabin for 4, ate our breakfasts out on the picnic table, watched for tiny lizards darting here and there, and enjoyed peaceful nights of slumber here. Great place to visit!!
Across the dirt lane from Laura & Brendan's farm stands towering this enormous Strangler Fig tree that caught my imagination and eye almost immediately. It's overall greatness and flow of the green foliage dancing in the wind made us think of the Studio Ghibli movie, My Neighbor Totoro, a delightful film that my girls have fallen head over heels in love with! Okay, I love it, too! If you have young children, they will adore this magical film. We sang the Totoro song all weekend long, and especially when visiting this magnificent being of a tree! See if you can spot my nephew, Junah among the tree's sprawling branches as he climbed high.
Emilia had the good fortune of planting baby tomatoes with her uncle Brendan and cousins. She's our nature girl who dreams of one day becoming a farmer. She has repeated this throughout her almost 8 years and I do believe she will achieve her goal.
We are looking forward to returning to Blue Horizon Farm and to our Florida family. It was so good to spend quality time together, even though it ended much too soon. Thank you, Laura & Brendan for your hospitality and love!! We had such a fun visit with you all! And Brendan, your vegan chili is the bees knees, my brother! Thank YOU, Sutton family! We love you.
I do have another stop to highlight from our Miami adventures and one positively cool, rocking story of a celebrity meeting to share with you all. Stay tuned for that coming up next! If I've shared the story with you already, please do not spoil the fun. Keep it on the down low until I publish it on the blog for all to read. :) Thank you!!