A Heart Full of Sun

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Hello. My name is Allie and I’m breaking up with winter. I know I just blogged about how I love winter and that it’s perfect for my introverted self but I take it back. I’ve discovered that I hate shivering when I get out of the shower and I don’t particularly love the drafts coming through the cracks in my door when it’s -8 degrees. I never want to leave the house and I just eat french fries to ease the pain. I can be by myself in the warmth. A snowy, cold winter is amazing leading up to Christmas but nothing longer…

The photo above is me arriving in Florida and feeling the sun hit my face. Heart exploding.

Not pictured: we ate amazing Mexican, Cuban and Columbian food. St. Petersburg’s market and cereal milk ice cream.

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We spent most of our time visiting all the best spots for booze and food in Tampa with Adam’s sister and her husband (they live and work there). They also have two adorable boxer mixes named Pearl and Meg (short for Megatron). Dogs make everything better.

I also came to conclusion and the ability to declare that I hate drinking alcohol. Don’t get me wrong, I really love beer but I don’t drink beer anymore because I eat gluten-free. All other alcohol either tastes awful (to me) or makes me feel tipsy too quickly. I really don’t enjoy feeling it. I get sleepy, cranky and my stomach hurts. No, I don’t love cider (it’s not like beer, too sugary, shut up) so please don’t tell me that I should drink cider. Can you tell this happens to my every time I say that I miss beer, but hate all other alcoholic drinks?

So instead of boozin’ it up with everyone else, I drank a lot of root beer on tap, coffee and water. It was delicious.

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Adam found a fabulous coffee shop in Ybor (Blind Tiger) and loved seeing the co-working space next door. Great espresso is just necessary. You know it’s going to be good when they ask if you understand that you’re ordering a traditional macchiato. Damn you, Starbucks.

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We spent the last day at Siesta Key Beach. It was overcast (although the sun came out towards the end) and practically deserted. My hair grew twice as thick from the humidity and the sand was so white it looked like snow. I grew up going to that beach and it felt great to return.

To be honest, this trip really sparked our interest in moving somewhere warmer in the next 2-3 years. It will take some planning, but it will happen. Where should we go?!

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  • I always thought I loved the cold until my husband and I moved from Athens, OH to NC (he’s military). While we do have some cold days, it’s generally much warmer here (it will be 62 this Sunday, and we had a 77 degree day on December). Hard to complain when we walk around outside and the inside of our noses doesn’t free like it did in Ohio!

      • HAHA! I’m cracking up. I read your comment before I had coffee so I didn’t even notice. Where in NC do you live? My friend from college is stationed there!

        • Haha so embarrassing! I swear I’m not usually so terrible at typing (though now I say that and will probably really mess up what I’m trying to say now…). Glad you read it before you had coffee, too, haha. Maybe that’s key! I’m just north of Fort Bragg, about an hour from Raleigh. Where is your friend living? We love it down here! Definitely miss Ohio and visit quite a bit (my family is in Athens and my sister is in Cbus), but NC feels like home now! Also, absolutely LOVE your blog. Is it weird if I’ve been slowly creeping through all your posts for a couple weeks now and I’m back to 2012…? Don’t answer that.

          • Oh awesome! That’s where my friend from college is! I should connect you two. And no..not creepy. Just promise to ignore any lame posts you find :)

  • “You know it’s going to be good when they ask if you understand that you’re ordering a traditional macchiato. Damn you, Starbucks.”

    My thoughts exactly.

    • They’re the worrrssst. Even though I drank a cup of Starbucks coffee at the airport today. I saw they’re starting to “educate” people on what a macchiato now. Comical.

  • One of my sweet friends recently got diagnosed with Celiac Disease, so she had no choice but to go gluten free stat. She enjoys a cold glass of beer every now and again, and was really excited to find a gluten free beer that she said was fantastic. Maybe that’s would work for you?

  • I’m yet to visit Florida. It just looks lovely there. I was supposed last August, but didn’t happen. Now, after seeing these photos, I’m decided to go there this Summer! :)

  • Oh man, this trip sounds like food for the soul. I’m looking forward to one I have planned in April to Mexico (for the first time!) for a wedding.

    I’m with you on the cold. If I don’t move somewhere warm, I’ve vowed to myself to do a trip every year in the middle of winter to get the Vitamin D flowing. It makes a huge difference, right? I have also considered going tanning which sounds really awful but winter is worse.

    Also, the booze. Ok, this is a really hard one for me to address. I love wine, I love the taste of it, but since becoming rather active about a year ago and improving my eating habits, I basically get drunk after 1.5 drinks. But I always feel like I’m letting people down if I don’t have a drink, or a second. How do you deal with that? I get this nagging feeling from the inside that makes it difficult to say no (“just this once” turns into 3x / week, basically). I’d much rather rise early and share a good espresso. If that makes me a grandma, so be it!

    • I used to tan during the winter occasionally so I could feel warm on my skin and not look so pasty but I stopped because I don’t want as many wrinkles and I get tan REALLY quickly so it looked weird haha. We also decided to go somewhere warm while we still live in cold climates. Like, every 6 weeks!

      And girl – I feel ya! I finally just stopped caring about letting people down. They get a better version of me if I don’t drink and they have some issues if it affects THEIR fun time. Right? Grandmas unite!

  • I’m so glad to read this. I’m road testing the not drinking thing at a party tomorrow night and was feeling nervous about it. I’m not the only non-drinking non-teetotaler! I love the taste of boozy drinks, but I just get so sleepy when I drink. A sleepy introvert at a bar/party is not a very social creature. Champagne magically doesn’t make me sleepy, but I don’t want to be the girl at a party who’s like, “Oh you don’t have champagne? I’ll just have water then.” I’m all about boozy drinks at home though. It’s hot toddy season!

    I think I feel about summer how you feel about winter. I love being in Maine in the summer where if you want to sleep with the window open, you’ll need a quilt. And a sweater. And it’s magically in the 70s during the day. I do love being out in warm weather, but only in vacation scenarios. Who cares if I’m hot and sweaty and sticky heading to the beach? That same scenario is a nightmare to me if I’m headed to a meeting. I can’t handle real life and hot weather at the same time.

    • You’ll have to let me know how the party goes. I’m the same with champagne. I feel like such a girly girl. The next time we hang out, I’ll order it with you. Who cares what those floozies think?

      Maine sounds amazing. I actually have always wanted to go to Maine my whole life. I honestly think I’d love it. Maybe we should move there. Hmmmm….

  • Hi Allie!! This is my first time reading your blog and I just gotta say I absolutely love it!!! In the few articles I’ve read (including this one) I feel like I’m reading my own thoughts ha!! Thanks for sharing and I’ll be reading :)!
    – Unique