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A Family Beach House Vacation in Englewood Florida

Talking about happier times because despite the incredibly awful, life changing news we got about our beloved cat Tito, our shortened vacation to Englewood beach was loaded with family and food and you know I am all about that.

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Zack and I live far away from both of our parents. We grew up in upstate New York. Did I ever tell the story about how we met? Maybe another time! Anyways, we were both born and raised in upstate New York right between Lake George and Saratoga Springs.

It was a great town and it was only 15 minutes from the one of the most beautiful lakes in the country nestled in the Adirondack mountains. We grew up loving the outdoors, hiking so Denver was a natural spot for us to move.

His parents were also born and raised in New York and live there still. My parents? They are both from different areas. My dad is from Sicily. He emigrated from Sicily and met my Mom in Massachusetts. My mom grew up a marble’s throw away from Boston. What my parents had in common were a love for the ocean and sea and definitely raising a family.

I’m biased, but they were pretty freaking great at that part.

I’m the youngest of four siblings and my parents were pretty much ready for retirement when I was graduated college. I mean they had been parenting both kids and animal children for about 30 years so when I was just about on my own they moved to Florida. First Port Charlotte then Englewood which is where Zacks family, coincidentally enough, took family vacations when the kids were younger.

There are a lot of coincidences in my life and why I have a 'Coincidence" highlight on my Instagram.

So, fast forward and Zack and I live in Denver, celebrating 2 years on May 23rd 2018 and visiting our families is a top priority when we plan how to use our PTO.

May 23 2016

It’s kind of a pain having this triangular pattern of distance between us. Here we are in the West while his family and 2 of my siblings and their families are in the NorthEast while my parents and my other brother & sis in law to be are in Florida.

So when Zack's parents told us they booked a rental on Manasota Key in May we were over the moon thrilled. We were actually in Florida when we booked the flight using SouthWest credit card points. I remember driving to Tampa International Airport and Zack booked our flights in the car. Gotta love apps these days!

On Route to Florida we were in May 19th. Uber picked us up at 5:30 and we had only 1 little mishap.

After going through TSA Zack realized our boarding passes never loaded on the SW app! That was an unexpected bummer. But good news because we didn’t notice til we were basically at the ID & Boarding pass check, the airport employee gave us a get out of line free card (i made that name up). All we had to do was run to the kiosk to print our boarding passes and high tail it back this time to the North end of TSA.

Our flight was not delayed and other than some rainy weather we had a pretty perfect flight to Fort Myers Airport.

Heading back to the beach house I was a hungry hippo so we planned a pit stop at Publix, a grocery store chain in Southwest Florida.

We got our shop on and being as hungry as I was I got some ready to eat rotisserie chicken & salads to make myself a hearty bowl of veggies and protein. I also bought...

Unsweetened Silk Cashew Milk

Egg whites


Publix Brand Organic Coffee

Vanilla Macaron Tea

Grapefruit Polar Seltzer


Sweet potatoes

Baby carrots


Quaker Lightly Salted Rice Cakes

Frozen Mixed Berries

Frozen Vegetable Mix

Frozen Cauliflower

Oh yeah I only had a basket which are definitely smaller than usual. And I committed mad food waste I’m not proud of :(

I was standing picking out potatoes, a full basket in one arm and the other arm hold onto the produce, including a 3-head romaine lettuce pack. All of the sudden the Romaine heads pooped out of the bag onto the floor!

I was so bummed because not only did I just waste food but like the country was just in a “no romaine lettuce” and so to think that I wasted the now perfectly edible lettuce made me so bummed!

An associate came over to help and deliver me a clearly needed grocery cart !

Then I went on my merry way, cashed out and we drove to the beach house.

The property was a 3 bedroom 3 bathroom home right on the beach. Couldn’t be more perfect. Zack's mom , a foodie like me, had the kitchen stocked with delicious and nutritious eats!

Literally the counters were covered with food. I was like yeah! This is like camp. We had everything from kale and Ezekiel bread to nacho Doritos and frozen milky ways bars because #balance 🙌🏼

Zacks brother who I consider my brother at this point was also with us and the five of us took that night to just hang out and walk on the beach. We were afraid of the forecast since it was exclaiming rain and a side of rain but we for sure lucked it and watched the most beautiful sunset that night.

I was in touch with my mom that evening and we were making plans for Family Dinner on Sunday, literally my dream. The only thing that would have made Sunday Night Dinner Better was of my brother & sisters family could have been there too!

Food + Family that’s all I’m after in this life!

Sunday morning was your classic beach day. I did attempt a workout on the beach and did some body weight and resistance band workout, in the sand.

Know that working out in the sand is extra difficult and resistance bands, at least mine, got super sandy during transition. I was working out in this Athleta too and these swim shorts and they def held up to the active beach day test!

I didn’t time the full workout but at a certain point I was like yeah, I’m good and dove right into the waves.

Ahhh, sweet salty ocean cooling down my body was just what I needed.

I played in the waves for a bit then returned back to the casa and ate some grub.

Then it was bathing suit number 2 and I wore this little number because I was just so in love with the Yellow and oh yea , your girl needed to correct those tan lines from the swim shorts haha!

Our beach afternoon was saturated with sunshine until the little blip of a rain storm rolled on through. I didn’t mind it in the least because t was like high intensity interval beaching and I pretty much like to approach everything I do with a HII format:





So i went back inside, showered and got into Athleta Trekkies and a crop top i got from a thrift store. I threw on my Sicily shoes that I just call Sicily shoes because they look Sicilian but I actually bought them on Lulus !

Like families always do when they gather, we each conversed with a drink while we waited for the sauce to finish.

On the dinner menu was a spread that can please ALL crowds. Food is meant to bring people together after all.

We had:

Grilled chicken

Homemade Primavera Sauce


Big Ass Salad

And on the table we had dressings, olives, sun dried tomatoes, giardiniera , salt & peppah.

Everyone served themselves from the big bowls of food at the table. This is “family style” that’s actually a real term in foodservice .