The best thing about our Sanibel vacations is that we have been and done just about everything on the island at least once. So, it's not like other unfamiliar destinations where you just want to take it all in as fast as you can because time is running out. Those kinds of vacations, although exciting and adventurous, are the kinds of vacations that you need a week to recover from.
Here's a rough schedule of planned activities:
1. Seafood Feast! My dad always does a HUGE seafood feast the first or second night we are there. This consists of lobster tails, king crab legs, corn-on-the-cob, mac-n-cheese, salad, and watermelon.
2. I will run to the lighthouse most mornings. It isn't far, so this more of a fun, get up and greet the day kind of thing. It's nice to be out on the island when no one else is, except other runners and walkers. It's peaceful.
3. Then, when everyone is up and had a bite to eat, we all take a morning walk on the beach from the bayside, up around Lighthouse point. Here we engage in what is known as the Sanibel Stoop, bending over to pick up wonderful treasures laying in bounty at our feet. You never know what you'll find. We came across one guy one year who found a petrified, blackened shark's tooth that was a big as a bait bucket! For those of you who don't know what a bait bucket is, let's just say that is a Big Tooth! I still think about the creature that tooth came from.
4. We will play on the beach and build sand sculptures.
5. Swim in the warm and gentle Gulf waters, digging our toes into the sand underneath searching for bristly sand dollars. The live ones have sharp "hairs" around the edge and turn your hands yellow!
6. There is always a day to shop at the little island shops, owned by people you see year after year. One of my favorite places to check out is the Sanibel Island Goodwill. All I have to say is there's some "good pickins" there.
7. Eat! At all of our favorite places. Matzaluna for Italian, Courtney's where the restaurant is built around an old up-ended cedar tree, The Timbers for seafood, and of course, Jerry's, the little diner inside the grocery store that has the best grilled cheese sandwiches! We'll ride our bikes to the DQ for slushies and cones. And also the East End Deli for the healthy stuff like hummus sandwiches and black beans with green olives!
8. Play in the pool, play tennis, play shuffleboard with my parents, play, play, play. You get the idea!
9. I always bring the journal and watercolors. Something about this place, makes me want to do watercolors!
10. Read. Aaaahhhhh....read.
11. We might fit in a movie at the little old Bailey's movie house. Depends on what is playing.
Oh, and I almost forgot the Pina Coladas before dinner. (I'll make virgin ones for Leila and Evan). And that's pretty much it for the planned activities. Nice, huh?