Beach Day, Hooray!

After a long and stressful week at my OT Fieldwork (read: internship), there’s nothing that makes me happier than loading up my towel and flip flops, slathering on some SPF 30, and heading to the closest beach to lay in the sun. It’s the thing I’ve enjoyed most about living temporarily in Florida–I just can’t get enough. Beach bum at heart, for sure. The weather is starting to get warmer here, and in my last couple of weeks in Florida I’m trying to make the most of my time and sit in the sand as much as possible! Here are some photos I took at the beach last weekend:

Beach Day via Imperfect Chevron

Beach Day via Imperfect Chevron

Beach Day via Imperfect Chevron

Beach Day via Imperfect Chevron

 

A lot of people ask me, “you go to the beach alone?” While it’s probably more fun to go with friends or family, beach bumming is one activity I’m perfectly content doing by myself. All I need is some good music on my phone, and I can spend hours laying in the sun or wading in the waves.

IMG_2532.JPG

xo.

Advertisements

Florida Fun: Three Sisters Spring

I’ve been loving Florida so far, and while I’m very busy keeping up with Fieldwork during the week I try to get out and enjoy my time on the weekends. Most weekends, even if the weather’s cool, you’ll find me at the beach! But a few weeks back, I headed up to Three Sisters Spring in the Crystal River area to check out the boardwalk and hopefully (fingers crossed!) see some manatees.

Three Sisters Spring via Imperfect Chevron

You guys, Three Sisters Spring did not disappoint! The water, which is 72 degrees year round, is crystal clear–seriously, it’s beautiful. In the winter months, manatees flock to the springs for warmth and rest. You can kayak or take a dive tour in the river, but I chose to walk the boardwalk and view the manatees from land; it was $15 a person, but it was completely worth it! The day I visited the Spring, they counted over 200 manatee in the water, and it was amazing.

Three Sisters Spring via Imperfect Chevron

Look at all those manatees! They were beautiful. I watched them for at least 2 hours, I was so happy to see all of them. There were a bunch of littler ones, too, which was fun to see!

Three Sisters Spring via Imperfect Chevron

There’s a sweet mama and her babes. So cute!

I would definitely recommend a visit to Three Sisters Spring if you’re in the area in the winter. It’s amazing. I hope to kayak in the Crystal River before I leave Florida–something tells me I’d see loads of cool animals on the river.

xo.

My Beach Bag Essentials

It’s safe to say that I’ve been loving my time in Florida so far. Almost every weekend so far I’ve gone to the beach, sitting in the sand and enjoying the sunshine. Even if it’s cold, I’m pretty much always at the beach.

Beach Bag Essentials via Imperfect Chevron

Do you ever feel like you forget something when you go to the beach? I definitely have had my share of those moments–you get all the way there and realize you’ve left your towel at home. Face palm.

The last couple weeks, I’ve gotten better at packing all my essential beach day items. Today I’m sharing what’s in my beach bag:

Beach Bag Essentials via Imperfect Chevron

  1. Sunscreen – as much as I love sitting in the sun, I also know how important it is to protect my skin from burns and UV rays. SPF 30 works pretty well when I’m looking to get a little tan, and SPF 50 is what I reach for if I’m going to be out all day.
  2. Comfy flip-flops – I love Sanuk flip-flops. They’re so soft and comfy.
  3. Headphones – A perfect day at the beach includes listening to music. Right now I’m loving Cage the Elephant and Florence and the Machine (as always).
  4. Snacks – Even when I bring lunch, I like to pack a few snacks in my beach bag. I like granola bars because they keep me full, and the Oats N Honey crunchy type is my favorite.
  5. Chapstick – Baby Lips Dr. Rescue medicated chapstick in Coral Crave is the best.
  6. Sunglasses – These Urban Outfitters Emma sunglasses are everything. They have a great shape, and I love the oversized frames.

Beach Bag Essentials via Imperfect Chevron

So there you have it, my beach bag essentials! Not pictured, some other things I always bring with me: extra clothes for warmth, lots of water, and my phone for taking loads of pictures.

xo.

 

Road Trip

I hope you had a wonderful holiday, you guys. Happy 2016!

It’s been pretty busy around here with lots of exploring and driving and eating and driving (road trips, am I right?). My brother and dad helped me drive the 30-35 hour trip from Colorado to Florida last week, and yes, we hit all of those crazy storms along the way. It was a lot of fun, and I’m so thankful they were able to come along for the ride.

I want to share some photos from our trip in my little corner of the internet today:

new mexico

New Mexico looked gorgeous from the backseat…adding it to my travel to-do list!

dalhart 2

At a gas station in Dalhart, TX

houston tx

A neato statue in Houston, TX as we drove past

baton rouge, la 1

baton rouge, la, 2

This bridge in Baton Rouge, LA made me go all heart-eyed emoji

mississippi

This is a major photo fail…a combination of sitting in the backseat + being super scared because of the scariest storms we were driving through. Maybe my resolution should be to learn how to take better photos! lol

alabama

Alabama looked like a pretty cool place, except we were driving through tornado warnings the whole time. Not good.

panama city beach, fl 1

We stopped in Panama City Beach, FL for an afternoon on the way down. It was a beautiful beach!

po folks fl

PoFolks chicken + dumplings and cornbread. Amazing. Callaway, FL.

ellie schiller 2ellie schiller 4

ellie schiller 5

The Ellie Schiller Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park was a great way to spend an afternoon. Lots of amazing animals in very natural cages (the hippo was just in his eating area, don’t worry, he has a nice big pond and looked very happy). Fun for adults and kids!

pine island beach fl 4

My brother is the best (:

pine island beach fl 5

I love the beach!

pine island sunset

That sunset though…paradise.

xo.

Spring Break 2015

I’m back in Pittsburgh after an amazing week on a Florida beach, and I’m happy to say that it was the most relaxing spring break I’ve ever had. I thought I’d share a little bit about my trip with all of you (and myself, since I’m still crying that I had to leave that magical place!). Here’s the day-by-day of my Spring Break 2015.

Saturday

I met my parents in the Orlando airport after both our flights arrived within 20 minutes of each other (fist pump!). Lots of hugs and lunch in the airport. The weather was in the 60s and rainy/cloudy, and the beach was pretty cold. But it didn’t really matter since we spent pretty much the whole day traveling and settling in to the condo.

Sunday

Beautiful Beach

We woke up without alarm clocks (sooooooooo nice) and hit the beach for a long walk. We walked at least 3 miles down the beach and then 3 miles back. Sunburn city. But so worth it! After lunch we headed back to the beach for some quality time in the sunshine.

Monday

Blue Springs State Park blue springs 4

We decided to head inland to Blue Springs State Park, which was so cool! I love getting to see inland Florida parks; they are completely unique. We saw at least 10 manatee in the springs, a big alligator swimming, and lots of turtles. It was so fun to be able to see the manatee in the water, which was crystal clear. I would highly recommend checking out this park in the winter or early spring — they boast that in the winter, hundreds of manatee flock to the springs to escape the cold waters. The springs stay at around 70 degrees year round, which the manatee like during the winter. Then we drove back and spent the afternoon at the beach (yay!).

Tuesday

Kayaking

We headed out early to rent some kayaks and spent the morning on the river searching for dolphin and manatee. We didn’t see any manatee (this time of year is still a little bit early for manatee to come back to the river, apparently), but we saw a mama and baby dolphin, which was pretty much the sweetest thing ever. We also saw two dolphins fishing in a little cove; it’s pretty amazing to watch them swim in circles rounding the fish up and then swim through as fast as they can to catch them. The cove that the dolphins are (almost) always in is part of a little park that has a great boardwalk — we spent a lot of time daily on that boardwalk watching the dolphins. After we were finished kayaking, we spent the rest of the day at the beach, getting some much needed sun!

Wednesday

Meritt Island armadillo meritt island dock

I woke up with the same cold I’d just gotten over a couple of weeks ago (ugh), but I guess it just wouldn’t be a vacation if somebody didn’t get sick 😛 We decided to drive over to Meritt Island, which is a natural wildlife preserve and a pretty awesome place to visit. They have a couple of really good manatee spots, and we saw at least 20 manatee feeding in the river. I could have stayed there watching them all day long! Then we drove through the Wildlife drive, and spotted 9 alligators! I saw some baby alligators, too, with their mama lurking nearby. That was pretty special! If you go through the wildlife drive, just take your time and keep your eyes open. A lot of cars missed the alligators when we were driving through! But it is so worth it and so amazing to see them in the wild.

Thursday

hula hoop

I was so tired and feeling cruddy, so we decided to spend the whole day lounging at the beach (oh, darn, what a shame). We played with a hula hoop, built some sand creatures, and soaked up as much sun as we could. It was pretty great! In the early evening, we headed to the boardwalk to see the dolphins, and had a huge surprise: we saw 2 manatee in the river! It was exciting, because they hadn’t been back yet for the season. It was a sign that spring is on its way.

Friday

kayak 2 pelican snagglefin

We rented some more kayaks Friday morning and went searching for more dolphins. We spent some time up close and personal with the dolphin fishing in the little cove — it was kind of scary at times because you can’t see them, and they just shoot through the water randomly and they swim so fast. All of a sudden, they’ll just jump out of the water right next to you and it startles you! But they’re such beautiful, smart animals. Really fun to watch them in their natural habitat. We spent the rest of the day lounging at the beach, since it was our last day.

Saturday

We had to get up early to get to the airport. It was a truly amazing week, and I was so sad to leave. It’s been such a long, hard winter for me with no sun, and it felt so good to be on a beach, warm and happy for a week. Plus, I loved spending the week with my parents! It really was the best spring break I’ve ever had, and I feel so lucky to have been able to take the vacation this year.

sunrise

Now that I’m back in Pittsburgh, at least I have something to look forwards to. Spring (and Summer!) is on its way, and I know the days are going to get warmer and the weather is going to get nicer. We may even start to see the sunshine every now and then! And I can’t wait for that.

xo.