Naples!

When I first planned my trip to see my PIL, I had no idea that early September is pretty much the hottest time of year AND hurricane season!  The few days before I left I saw that Hurricane Erica was on it’s way and Hurricane Fred was right behind it.  Luckily it was perfect timing – we had great, yet hot, weather the whole time and on Monday when I was already home, my MIL texted me and told me that Hurricane Fred was there and the skies were all dark and they had lost power!

PicMonkey Collage - lunch

By the time we got to Naples from the airport it was around 4 pm and we were all hangry!  They took me to a local place they go to a lot – Zookie’s!  I ended up introducing my FIL to Shock Top beer and I had a black and blue spicy burger and stole all the jalapenos off of my MIL’s taco salad.  We watched a gorgeous sunset while sipping wine, munching on popcorn and just catching up.

My MIL made sure I had Chobani and this was my breakfast every morning.

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My MIL does exercises in the pool and Friday morning we spent an hour in the pool – wow, what a great way to start the day!  I never did use the hot tub, well, because it was hot outside, but it would be nice to use in the chilly season.  My motto for the weekend was #wycwyc – get in exercise when I could.

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My FIL fixed one of the bikes they had in their garage so I was able to bike around their neighborhood – I couldn’t get lost because it was just one giant loop!

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My MIL then went into town.  We had lunch on the water and then we did a “beef” tour because she wanted to learn about beef from when I was in Denver.  Love it! 

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I LOVE peel and eat shrimp!  These were so delicious.   And I loves me some horseradish – that whole container was gone by the time I left Open-mouthed smile

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We ended up going to Costco, Wynn Market and Publix and looked at all the different kinds of beef.  We settled on sirloin steaks at Publix for $9.99 a pound – each was 1/2 a pound so $5 a steak is a good price in my book.  I marinated the steaks in olive oil, 3 cloves of fresh chopped garlic and rosemary that was freshly cut from my MIL’s rosemary bush.  I never season my steaks with salt and pepper in the marinade, only doing that right before they get on the grill.  I also let my beef sit out for at least an hour before grilling – putting beef cold right onto a hot grill will make for a tough cut of meat.

PicMonkey Collage - beef

My PIL have an outdoor kitchen which was really nice!

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My MIL and I both thought that there would be plenty of leftovers to morph into a breakfast, but all the steak was eaten!  I made rosemary grilled potatoes on the side and a Caesar salad.  I don’t think they have had beef in over six months, so I was so happy they enjoyed it.

My FIL also bought me a heart shaped cake, even though my MIL said “she’s diabetic – she shouldn’t eat that!”  But it was with love that he gave it to me, so I had a small slice – insulin worthy!

Tony and I got married on Vanderbuilt beach on December 22, 2000.  The kids were so little – Hannah was 8 and Joe was 11.  The weather was perfect and after the ceremony we had a lovely dinner at the restaurant at LaPlaya Hotel and spend one night there before heading to Key West for our honeymoon.  My Mom and Tony’s parents watched the kids for a couple days and we were back in time to celebrate Christmas.

Carl and I went to walk the beach on Saturday morning early before the sun got too bad.  The grassy area on the middle on the bottom row was the area we got married at right at sunset. I am sure both his parents and my Mom were like “how did we get here so fast?!”  We had only known each other for six months before getting married.

PicMonkey Collage - beach

But we knew.  I actually feel my purpose on life up until this point was to take care of him.  Had he still been a bachelor I have no idea how he would have handled all of the illnesses and hold down a job and take care of a house, etc.  I remember one time Tony was in Chicago after his second knee replacement surgery and Tony was so tired, he’d lost so much blood and he kept saying “ice chips” and I’d gingerly put ice in his mouth.  Next door I could hear a doctor tell another patient that he had to be admitted and this man refused saying “who’s going to take care of my dog? my house?!”  The doctor said, “don’t you have any family or friends who can help you out?” and he said “No!”  It struck me right then and there, that my purpose was to take care of Tony, for however long he was going to be with me, and I hope he knows I did the best job that I knew how.

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After we went on the beach we stopped for some coffee.  I am loving a sugar free almond milk latte lately these days.  My MIL who loves all things pumpkin got a pumpkin latte, and my FIL got . . . coffee! 

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After that we went by their church.  They already have all of there end of life stuff planned out – including music to be played at their funerals.  They also bought a square near a statue on their church property in honor of Tony (well, Jeffrey Carlo!)

PicMonkey Collage - church

Since it was hot, most afternoons Bonnie and I just sat in the living room and talked.  It’s probably the longest one on one time we’ve had since we met!  Saturday night they ended up taking me out to dinner and it was delicious.  We went to “Old Downtown Naples” which I believe was 5th street.  Some amazing people watching there!  Naples has painted alligators all around town.

PicMonkey Collage - dinner

We first had a drink at the bar:

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PicMonkey Collage - dinner 2

We went back to the house, where Bonnie and I stayed up talking and it was really nice.  Sadly, my flight was early on Sunday morning so we had to leave the house by 6:30 a.m.  It was a whirlwind few days, but I loved every minute of it, and I know they enjoyed having me there.  I will be a regular visitor! 

I am actually home sick today – I think I caught something on the plane ride home.  I was up all night coughing so I think it’s moved onto bronchitis but I didn’t want to take the change of getting other people at my office sick.  I am leaving in 50 minutes to go to the doctor to hopefully get some relief from this damn cough.  Surprisingly, my airplane pillow made it easier to sleep last night – I still woke up about every 90 minutes to cough, but at least I got a bit of rest.

Hannah took care of me last night.  She texted me right before I left work and said “I have everything to make you chicken noodle soup!”  When I got home it smelled so good.  She ended up using a rotisserie chicken from Walmart – our favorite is the lemon pepper chicken – look for it the next time you go there.   She sautéed the carrots and celery to speed up the process (leaving out the onions!) and she bought me this Green Smoothie that had lots of antioxidants in it.  She also bought Clorox disinfecting wipes and kept wiping everything down – so sweet!

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She even took the picture for me for the blog.  Love!  I still didn’t have much of an appetite, but that soup was so good that I ate it all.  That’s probably all I’ll have today too.  Thanks Hannah – I love you!

I am off to shower and then headed to the doctors office.  Have a good day!

12 thoughts on “Naples!

  1. What a great post! It's wonderful that you have such a nice relationship with your in-laws. I wish mine were closer. That's a lovely tribute to Tony. I hope you feel better.
  2. So my first thought was how could you not know about hurricane season? Then I realized you really live in the midwest. But yeah, September is usually the most active month for hurricanes! What a super nice getaway. Also, I'm quite jealous of your grocery shopping trip to Publix. I've been in just about every grocery chain in the nation and Publix is my favorite! I see no mention of banana bread here - can't believe you didn't get Bonnie to make you a couple loaves to take home.
  3. Wow, sounds like a great visit. I love the picture of the three of you at the bar, guess we know where Tony got his photo poses from. :) Hope you are feeling better.
  4. Kym
    So sweet of Hannah to take care of you, She obviously had the nurturing gene passed on to her. I hope you don't have to get antibiotics and some good rest will fix you up. Sounds like you had a great time and happy to hear the weather was good in your little corner of Florida while you were here. I really love your MIL's pool it looks resort like. The photo of your FIL holding his steak up with that smile made me laugh. They both look like a lot of fun and good sports too.
  5. They should have named that hurricane Ethel instead of Erica... Your inlaws live in such a pretty area! Sounds like the entire visit was very special and you definitely should go back (although in January, to enjoy the FL weather when the rest of the country is snowed in). Hope you get some good meds and are on the road to recovery soon! Feel better.
  6. Love that you had a good visit with Tony's folks and it's nice to see their remembrance stone for him, too. Glad Hannah is taking care of you - feel better!
  7. Sounds like a wonderful trip. I think you really did a good job taking care of Tony. He couldn't have found someone that did half of what you did for him.
  8. Sherry Werth
    Posting late but just wanted to say I'm so glad you had a lovely visit with your inlaws. Love the pics. Making me really miss FL! Hannah is a sweetie! Feel better soon! :-D

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