It has been a little over a week since we returned from the Florida Keys. This has given me enough time to transition off of “island time” and properly reflect on our trip. In tonight’s recap post of our vacation, I wanted to rely more on photos than words.
We stayed at Hawks Cay, a resort on a secluded island called Duck Key. The accommodations were beautiful. Sidney, Sloan, and I shared a villa with my in-laws while my sister-in-law’s family of five stayed in the villa next door to us. The resort property boasted five pools, numerous restaurants, a kids complex, and a fitness center.
The gorgeous resort did more than provide us leisure; it served the main purpose for why we were there––the wedding of Sid’s sister (Courtney) and her now-husband.
Festivities started the day after we arrived. Courtney’s husband’s family hosted a welcome party for those already in the Keys for the wedding. The party took place at the resort at one of the pool areas. It was a nice opportunity to break the ice with the 70+ people who made the trip and celebrate Court and John one last time as an engaged couple.
The wedding followed the next night. The short ceremony took place in front of a picturesque backdrop of blue canal water that fed into the Atlantic Ocean. An island drum musician played during the cocktail hour and the dinner that followed was delicious (I had steak). Dancing followed as Sloan had no issue showing off her moves.
With the wedding completed, the following day was pretty laid back. We took advantage of the various resort pools and the options available to the kids. When we weren’t in the water, Sloan and I were playing on a jungle gym, hitting golf balls around the putt putt course, running on the soccer field, and climbing a pirate ship/water slide structure.
The next day, Sid’s dad rented a boat and we cruised the Atlantic Ocean and Gulf of Mexico. Although I battled a brief case of seasickness, we had a good time sailing the blue waters.
The day before we left, Sid, Sloan, and I took an afternoon/evening trip to Key West. We stood at the southernmost spot in the continental U.S., walked by Ernest Hemingway’s home, caught a sunset at Marion Square, and walked vibrant Duval Street. My only regret is that we didn’t have more time to spend there.
A highlight of the trip was eating with everyone at interesting restaurants. We would go to fun spots with thatch roofs, live music, and water views. I loved ordering island rice and black beans with my meals. We ate at so many great places but my favorite was a restaurant called the Island Fish Company. During that meal we ate outside on the longest day of the year as we watched the sun go down.
Our time in the Florida Keys was also made memorable by little things whether it be the iguanas that roamed the resort gounds freely, the white chocolate macadamia bread pudding we would order for dessert, or the cannon ball competitions at the pool. Personally, I enjoyed my workouts at the resort fitness center, attending mass at St. Pablo Parish, and catching up on some much needed rest.
Of course, in the end, it was just nice to spend time with family. Not only did I get to spend quality time with Sid and Sloan, but I got plenty of time to hang out with my in-laws, sisters-in-law, brothers-in-law (was singular before the wedding), nephews, and niece. Nothing can beat that.
I will always remember this trip fondly. It was a true family vacation that included one significant event and hundreds of priceless memories. Don’t Blink.