For my 25th birthday, instead of a simple, traditional present, my mama decided to take me to the beach! She always has a way of taking something that could be just another ordinary day (or birthday, in my case) and making it extra special. This was no exception. So after figuring out how to cover a few shifts at work (thanks Danielle, Lisa, & Knapp!) we booked our tickets and prepped for the beach. My birthday was actually in February, but my mom’s spring break was this week, so we opted for that route.
We decided on St. Pete beach (right next to Clearwater and Treasure Island) in Florida. We stayed at the Sirata Beach Resort and it suited us just perfectly. Our trip was short and sweet but it was absolutely perfect and exactly what I needed to catch up on some sleep I had missed out on over the last few weeks. Not to mention it was ridiculously relaxing, and of course, so much fun to just be with my mama.
I took the definition of vacation to its core on this trip — sleep, coffee, eat, beach all day, shower, dinner, repeat. I did nothing productive besides reading (and loving!) 2 books and soaking up the Florida sunshine. Our weather was perfect — sunny and 80 each day. We rented chairs all 3 days so we could go in and out between sunshine and shade…because anyone who knows me knows I like to take risks at the beach and I end up burnt (I know, bad habit — I’m working on being better). I actually think I did pretty good at getting some sun without totally frying my body. Small victory!
Our days looked something like this: Wake up, get coffee, lather up with sunscreen, head to the beach (around 10 or 11), read, listen to music, etc. allllll day until 5 (a few beachy drinks thrown in there), come in, shower, get ready, go to dinner, come home, watch something, and go to sleep. IT WAS PURE BLISS, Y’ALL. I haven’t gotten a full 7 hours of sleep in I-can’t-tell-you-how-long, and on this trip I got that EVERY NIGHT. It was GLORIOUS.
While on the beach I read 2 books that I totally loved. I started with I Said Yes by Emily Maynard, and then read Sean Lowe’s book, For the Right Reasons. (If you know me you know I live and breathe the Bachelor/ette so I was LOVING both books). Don’t be turned off by the fact that they’re both previous Bachelor/Bachelorette contestants, either, because they were both amazing books about how their time on that show led them to know and pursue Jesus deeper. They were awesome. I also started The Lipstick Gospel by Stephanie May Wilson and I am LOVING it so far! I’m hoping to finish it on the trip home!
I honestly wasn’t interested in exploring the little town at all, but I can tell you where we went out to dinner each night. Other than that, I have no good suggestions on things to do while down there. (I told you, I took the word vacation suuuuper seriously! And I don’t regret it!) When we arrived Tuesday we went to dinner at the little beach bar and grill on our resort — Rum Runners. It was simple but still so yummy. Then I crashed at around 6pm (I didn’t sleep after working all night Monday) and woke up Wednedsay morning!Wednesday night we went to dinner at Jimmy B’s Beach Bar where we listened to live music and looked out over the beach. That is what I picture when I picture going out to dinner on vaca, so my little heart was just thrilled. Not to mention the food was great. On Thursday we did dinner at another little waterfront place, Woody’s. I wasn’t super impressed to be honest. The food was okay and the atmosphere was just slightly too crowded for me. Everything there was served on paper products (much like the Cabana on the River in Cincinnati) so that part of it made it feel like home a little bit. On Friday was my favorite dinner. We went to Spinner’s Rooftop Revolving Bistro. Think the Radisson in NKY except good food, prettier views, better wait staff, and everything else better. So basically the only similarity was that the restaurant revolves to give you 360 degree views. We were able to watch the sunset from our table and it was seriously dreeeeamy! (The pictures don’t do it justice AT ALL). Our meals were amazing here, too. We had crab stuffed shrimp for an appetizer, and then I had Chicken Oscar, a pan-seared chicken breast with crab meat and asparagus with delicious mashed potatoes. YUM FREAKIN TOWN. My mom had a filet with asparagus and mixed veggies. Also YUMZ. It was fancy and fun and something different. Definitely highly recommended by me and definitely my favorite meal of the trip.
This trip was one I will always cherish. I am so ridiculously lucky to have the life and the parents that I do. They go above and beyond to make me feel special, loved, and let’s be honest, kind of spoiled ;), and I do not take that for granted. The Lord gave me His very, very best when He gave me my mama (and my dad, too!). I am so not ready to come back to reality, but such is life!
And now here I am, sitting in Tampa’s airport crossing my fingers that we get out of here on time (weather isn’t looking too good) because this girl needs a nap before I go into work tonight! Here are some pictures from the week — I didn’t take very many — sorry! My snapchat game was pretty strong, however, so I threw a few of those in, too! And if you’re interested you can follow me there with username melissachaney!
You can get some of my outfit details here:
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