If I could describe this place in three words that come to mind I would go with magical, rustic, and paradise. I'll be honest, I went in thinking that this wasn't going to be my thing. I went in thinking this is all for Todd. You see, Todd loves to fish, bike, and do anything and everything outdoors. Me, not so much. But by the end of the first day, I had fallen in love. Words can not describe how peaceful and beautiful this place truly is. The people we met on this trip were some of the most amazing people I have met in my life. They were people from all walks of life, and eating every meal with them while listening to their stories was just one of the highlights of this trip. From attorneys, entrepreneurs, men in the army, and my favorite was actually the man that brought Capri Sun to the United States! You guys, he was a riot, and I could have listened to him talk all night. And to think I was a little hesitant about eating all of our meals family style with strangers?!? But you guys, when we left, I was truly sad that our next meal wasn't going to be spent beside them. Todd and I left with 17 new friends that enjoyed the island the way we did. Not to mention, the incredible staff that showed us all they could of this incredible place.
This is the cabin where we met up for all of our meals. That green bell you see to the right would ring for every meal, and it was loud enough where everyone on the island could hear. It was like a little herd of chickens when it was time time to eat ;) And the food was so good! Everything was farm to table and 90% of it was caught or grown on the island.
Every night after dinner Todd and I would sneak back to our room and change into our pajamas and come watch the sunset from this swing.
We experienced some of the coolest things on this trip. The staff and the naturalists were out of this world amazing! I felt like they were just part of our crew. And my personal favorite was finding a baby sea turtle. We were almost done excavating a nest, when the naturalist told us there was probably no chance of finding one alive. I kid you not, two seconds later she pulled out this adorable little guy. Everyone screamed and cheered...it was like something right out of a movie. And wanna know what made it even more special, there was a grandmother there with their grandchildren and this was part of her bucket list. Watching her face brought tears to my eyes. And speaking of her grandchildren, I have never see more mature (wise beyond their years to say the least), well mannered kids in my life. They were so awesome, and it made me so excited to think of bringing Carson back with us when he gets to be around their age (they were 11 and 13).
Todd and I kayaked one morning after breakfast. The weather was perfect! Our guide also made sure the tide was going with us so the paddling was pretty easy. The views y'all, oh my goodness, the views.
We biked on the two mile private beach.
We hung out by the pool with some truly stunning views of the marsh!
We took the coolest tour (in the back of a pickup truck) to the north end of the island. We saw some of the most beautiful birds, and learned all about the island's history. It was all so fascinating.
Todd had a private lesson fly fishing and he caught this beautiful redfish. He and Kirby (that was the guide) brought it back to the lodge and they fried it up for dinner. Todd said it was like fishing with an old buddy and it was something he would never forget. Todd actually caught two keepers so everyone got to enjoy some. And you guys, I don't eat fish at all, but everyone was raving over it so I took a bite. And I must admit, I now love a fried redfish :)
And on the last night we begged to go to the beach, and it ended up being the best night of all. We all piled into the back of a truck right before sunset, loaded up our wine, and headed out. They gave us all these huge spotlights and on the way we saw a gator, lots of armadillos, and something we are unsure of on a creek (there were eyes everywhere when we shined the lights across) :) We walked the beach for miles and laughed at all the guys trying to catch the ghost crabs. Then we all sat on our towels in one big circle and told stories while we listened to the waves. I can't remember the last time I have laughed so hard.
Todd woke up early every morning and watched these two little otters play together. He said they would jump into the little skiff boats, snoop around, and then jump up on the dock and start wrestling around. The last morning he decided to wake me up, and I got to witness these adorable little otters with him.
This was a vacation like no other. I left feeling so refreshed, and more connected with Todd than ever. Seeing him so happy and relaxed made my heart happy. And he told me last night before bed that this was the best trip of his life. So sometimes, it's the simple things in life that mean that most, and I know we made memories this weekend we will never ever forget.
** This trip was not sponsored in any way, shape, or form...it was, however, truly magical.