The lyrics from Jimmy Buffet could be heard in my head all last week as we felt the Gulf of Mexico breezes steadily blowing across our faces. No matter what, it just makes you smile.
We’ve been coming here for over ten years off and on, and it’s just one of many beach escapes you can find on both coasts of Florida. This trip was equally successful – our family always loves Anna Maria Island. One of the great things about it is the ever-changing landscape; from calm waters to violent surf, the winds of the Gulf can change on a moments notice. For the first time in my ten years coming here, we actually saw surfers riding the huge wind-chop (not a common sight!).
If you are a shell collector like we are, the sand bars are spectacular, one in particular on the north end of the island is loaded with sand dollars, it’s incredible to see them by the dozens in the wild, right next to your feet under a few inches of water - like finding treasure! The rest of the shell hunting on the island is amazing too – it’s remarkable that with all the shell hunters our there, nature seems to have increased production of shells to meet demand!
Table linens inspired by those very shells!
Anna Maria Island is a relaxed and carefree vibe, the waters are dotted with the requisite dolphins swimming back and forth, fearlessly confident to sometimes come right up to you, just enough to see that little smile they all have as they tilt sideways to say hello. I never tire of seeing them, somehow their presence each year reassures me that nothing has changed in this idyllic spot. Beyond just enjoying the ocean breeze, dolphins, and lovely shells - there are plenty of fun things to do as well; there are beach bikes to rent, the local mini-putt golf course (aptly named the Fish Hole!), cute shopping (the White Egret shop is great) and of course, our favorite place to eat, the Rod and Reel – located on the pier where you can watch the fisherman fish off the pier as you dine. After the Rod and Reel, head on over to “Two Scoops” for some homemade ice cream (sea salt caramel is my favorite, and yes, I get the two scoops!).
Kari and Lara (a dear friend) off to a great meal at Rod & Reel!
After a busy day doing all that, it’s wonderful to take a late afternoon walk and soak up the pastel colors of the little houses, feeling content. I was reminded of a lyric from Jimmy Buffet as I strolled along…
Nothing indeed remains quite the same, and on Anna Maria Island at least – that’s a good thing!
Kari and Lori
“Changes in Latitudes, Changes in Attitudes” By Jimmy Buffet, Copyright© 1977 By Jimmy Buffet.