March 23, 2015
This year my family went to sunny St. Barths for spring break. It had been nearly 10 years since my first visit to the island so it was interesting to see how things had and hadn't changed. I already miss the daily dose of vitamin D and fear that my tan will fade too quickly. It is a really beautiful place with incredible, uncrowded beaches and chic French women who look like models but it is expensive and difficult to visit in a lot of ways. I saw plenty of Beyoncé-level yachts and people rich enough to graffiti their Birkin bags. So that was kind of bizarre.
Apologies for the bathroom photo. During daylight I was mostly in bathing suits and cover ups and the evenings were a bit too dark and windy to take outside ones. I will share a bit more about my favorite island spots when I have time.
Anthropologie dress (I forget the name of this one... But I think it is by Odille)
Also, today-March 29th, you can get 25% off almost everything at Bloomingdales.com with code: FRIENDS!
March 17, 2015
I wore this to campus before Spring Break but it was during the period when I misplaced my point and shoot so I apologize for the blurry in-office phone pic. Speaking of apologies, it might be obvious but I've been in over my head this semester with two new course preps and haven't had or made enough time to update my blog. I planned to try to do so on vacation but the wifi where we stayed was unreliable and .... I was on vacation. haha Still, I hope to get back on a schedule where I post at least twice a week (which I realize is not ambitious at all for a blog but feels a little ambitious in conjunction with my other spinning plates).
Marc by Marc Jacobs Mareika Dress
Sam Edelman Petty Boots
March 09, 2015
This time last year we were lucky enough to go to Anna Maria Island for spring break. I never really posted about it but because it is spring training now and the area is advertised as a travel destination to Pittsburghers (due to its proximity to Bradenton, where Pirates spring training camp is held annually) I thought I should share our experience.
Since we are big baseball fans, we decided to visit Pirates spring training camp and festivities for the first time last March. We settled on Anna Maria Island as our primary destination. It takes about a half hour to get to either Pirate City or McKechnie Field. My mother-in-law located a cute little beach house to rent about six houses away from the shore on a very quiet block. We flew into Tampa and drove from there which took a little over an hour. We had a great trip and if you go, we especially liked:
Star Fish Company
Anna Maria Donuts
Mixon's Citrus Farm (next to Pirate City)
Eat Here Restaurant
Mazzaros (in St. Petersburg, where we stopped on our trips from and to the airport in Tampa)
Ellenton Premium Outlets (It has an Off Fifth and a Kate Spade factory store)
Ginny's and Jane E's Bakery Cafe
Sandbar Restaurant (try to time it so you are there for the sunset!)
If you plan to stay in Anna Maria Island but also want to visit Pirates training camp or go to games, you will definitely need a car. I would recommend one regardless because although Anna Maria Island is walkable and has some cute little shops and restaurants, the broader area is not very walkable and didn't seem to be served by comprehensive public transit.
The Anna Maria Island beaches were clean, quiet, and uncrowded. We also visited Holmes Beach which was lovely but much busier, particularly in areas that offered large public parking lots and nice, well-kept playgrounds. I can't speak to the area's night life because I didn't explore it but I'm sure it's available. You won't find many tall hotels lining the coast though. The bulk of properties are single family homes of varying sizes. The pace of everything there was pretty relaxed and just about everyone we met was friendly and kind. When we'd walk up and down the shore, many people complimented Emilia's or Chris's Pirates gear and asked us if we were from Pittsburgh. We felt right at home!