#FloridaForty Day 19 Pembroke Pines to Davie

We are loving the sunny days, especially when we see the weather reports back at home!

Even Kelly has loved the clear skies and warm temperatures.  We just have to watch out for the huge alligators! 🙂

26855611_10213455419512755_1994061117_n

Going from sleet, rainy, muddy, and dusty conditions, our SUV had gotten pretty filthy.   So, we found a self service car wash and let the kids earn their keep.

We were running out of reading material so we picked up a few books at the nearby library.

We picked up another collector’s coin at the last Harley in the Miami area that we still had to visit.

Here is to hoping that the weather cooperates when we get back to GA so that we can go out for a ride ourselves.

#FloridaForty Day 17 Islamorada to Miami Beach

Could we have asked for more perfect weather!?!?!

26731291_10213434970321538_7977996758081317449_n

Miami Beach is as beautiful as we thought it would be.  The beach was spacious, the water was cool, and the breeze was fantastic!

You can’t come to Miami and not have Cuban food.  So we stopped at Las Olas Cafe, which had good reviews (and a long line) and got a plate full!

On the way back to the campground, we found a Harley dealership and made yet another stop at Walmart.

26230019_10213434977121708_2831598543435575537_n

 

#FloridaForty Day 14 Dania Beach to Key West

These past few days have been slammed packed with fun and new sights!!

Driving down, through all the Keys, on the Seven Mile Bridge, to Key West was only half the fun.

Our first stop in Key West was the historic “The Southernmost Point” of the U.S.  Literally 90 miles behind this point is the county of Cuba.  Pretty surreal.

We decided to park here and just walk around the city.

Our first stop took us to the end of Highway U.S. 1, at mile marker 0.  It runs 2,369 miles from Kent. ME to Key West, FL.

Further down, and pretty obvious, are two giant kissers.

26733890_10213413246578458_813544606882081939_n

You have to get a picture of that.

Of course, after all this walking, in the sun, the kids were “dying” and needed some ice cream to re-energize their bodies.

Had to get the big kids something too, so we got some pralines at River Street Sweets Candy Kitchen.

We also got our fix at the Harley store!

Don’t think we are horrible parents, but we had ice cream and sweets before lunch. 🙂

And, we had the perfect spot to eat lunch…so, we just had to wait to get there before eating it!  Fort Taylor beach picnic area is awesome!

26195843_10213413252378603_630691387954589327_n

26219561_10213413251938592_2543964049476567505_n

We enjoyed Fort Taylor, too!

26231289_10213413254898666_214998983599473176_n

Kelly looked up two headstones in the Key West cemetery that had some humor in their death.  That’s the way I want to go when I do…at least they can laugh some too!

Somehow, after getting back to the RV park, the kids had enough energy to go to the pool…

…and still be able to do schoolwork (oh, yeah, we started back again).

26734230_10213414960781312_3779864726728026413_n

What a day!

#FloridaForty Day 13 Taylor Creek to Dania Beach

What a day!  We started the day and finished it by eating some great food!

“The Crack” (Cracker Barrel) in the morning….

And finished the day at a local bar and grill, The Florida Boy (William even had Fish Tacos).

In between those food endcaps, we saw some sights, went To The Moon, saw Santa, sat on the beach, met the elephant’s cousin, and visited another Harley Dealership.

After eating, we went to Manatee Lagoon.  It is a place where the manatee come to enjoy the warm water.  When Kelly took the picture of the kids listening to the manatee, we thought they were really into learning about them.  Come to find out, they were listening to the sound they make when they fart.  Should have known!

Picked up some cool souvenirs too!  Could you have guessed that the manatee is a cousin of the elephant based on this one in a stocking?

We stopped at the W. Palm Beach Harley and had some stares as we drove the RV around their tight parking lot…”don’t worry, we won’t hit your bikes!”

After seeing the Harleys that we like to ride, the little kids wanted to ride too.

So we took them to Sugar Sand Park in Boca Raton to ride a carousel.

Next, it was To The Moon, (http://tothemoonmarketplace.com/) a small novelty shop that has all the popular candies of the past two hundred years and from over 60 countries.

Of course the kids were in heaven…and so was Kelly, literally like a kid in a candy store.

Had to see Santa and this amazing Christmas Village at The Christmas Palace in Fort Lauderdale!

As the day got warmer, and the showers looked like they were going to miss us, we stopped at a great beach, with a lot of history.  Check out this link to read a little about it: Dr. Von D. Mizell-Eula Johnson State Park

We arrived at our campground just before dark, did necessary laundry, got the kids bathed, had a cup of coffee, and that was all she wrote.  We were worn out.

#FloridaForty Day 10 Groveland to Frostproof

We are 1/4 of the way through our trip.  And finally a day of sun, so we made the most of it!

With the all the cold we have had, each of the last few nights, we’ve gone through quite a bit of propane.  So, once again, we headed to Walmart, but this time we loaded up so it should keep us a few days from having to go back.

26551117_10213389732150612_1532252279_n

We stopped by the last Harley Davidson of Orlando to pick up another poker chip.

26551397_10213389732110611_1688002340_n

Driving through downtown Kissimmee, we stopped at a massive structure, called the “Monument to States” and discovered a beautiful memorial to veterans of Kissimmee, FL.

And how can you travel through Florida without tasting their orange juice? No better place than to get it than Florida’s Natural Orange Juice Visitor Center, right across from their plant.

#FloridaForty Day 8 Lady Lake to Clermont

Yet another day of cold, but it didn’t stop us from getting out and seeing the city of Clermont.

We stopped first for breakfast at the 24/7 Donut King, which did not disappoint!

Our adventures included another stop at Target and Walmart, as well as an impromptu stop at the library to get some books to read on the road.

We drove through the downtown area of Clermont on the way to their Harley Dealership, to collect another poker chip.

Finally, calling it a day, we finished up with some coffee and hot chocolate.  Gig-up was happy with that plan!

26165867_10213370017577760_8600836806784915855_n

#FloridaForty Day 6 Howey-in-the-Hills to Eatonville

What a day!  We stepped back in time and saw a piece of history, visited 3 Harley Davidson shops, saw Mackenzie’s face light up while at the same time shedding tears, had a picnic lunch by the lake, and William once again lost his wallet.

Yeah…what a day!

Though it was a little bit out of the way, there was no way we couldn’t stop in Eatonville.  Founded in 1887, Eatonville was the first all black city to be incorporated in America.  We love their city motto: “Progress through Understanding.”

While only a population of roughly 2400, the city is still about 90% black.  And you can tell that the culture has had a huge impact on the city. It was awesome seeing the churches’ parking lots full, as we drove through during service time.

24058904_10213350704014933_6577833622536364727_n

From Eatonville, we decided to see if we could “run into” Mackenzie’s favorite YouTubers (KKandBabyJ).  She literally knows everything about them.  She knew of two places that they often frequented, so of course we went to both.

First, we stopped at a Target and didn’t run into them (but did find some great deals on Christmas stuff).  So, we decided to head down to New Orleans Cajun Seafood in Orlando, where one of the YouTubers’ mother worked.

As soon as she walked in, she instantly noticed the sister of her favorite YouTuber.  Mackenzie, already melting down, said, “Jackie?!?!”

26114100_10213352088529545_7020673317133356537_n

Thankfully, Jackie was sweet enough to take a picture and FaceTime her brother (who was staying at home with his sick child).

William couldn’t understand all of it, but both he and Kelly loved how excited she was, as you can tell from the video.

Continuing down into Orlando, we visited another 3 Harley Davidson dealerships, adding to our already expansive collection of clothing, accessories, and collectibles.

Always on the lookout for the oldest, or largest, or craziest something, we stopped by the World’s Largest Entertainment McDonald’s.  It was huge.  It had an arcade, two stories, and you could order fresh pizza and pasta.  For real!!

Our day was full for sure.  Especially after getting back to the campground and realizing that William had lost his wallet.  Thankfully, it was lost while at the campground and someone had turned it in to the front office!