Saturday, September 8, 2012

St. Petersburg, Florida

My favorite part of this house is the arched hallway upstairs.
I like to read on the bed with the balcony doors open so I can gaze into the jungle.
The Jays are always waiting for me to toss a few peanuts, shrieking madly until I do.
What's not to'd beautiful, pink and serves the best Hotel Breakfast in St. Petersburg...the Vinoy Hotel
View from the bike path on the way downtown.
The paddling beach on Tampa Bay, St. Pete. If you want miles of sand and waves you have to travel to the other side of the peninsula (about 15 minutes)
Bird of Paradise is in bloom...this is not my crazy yard, but that of my neighbor Joe who can;t wait until we tame our property.
We're back in St. Petersburg, Florida (St. Pete). It's been a year since we bought a home here, and we love it more each time we come. Of course, living in Toronto, we enjoy really hot summers, so it's not as appreciated weather-wise to come now and it is during our long cold, snowy Winters, however I LOVE it here. I love this City, how walking and bicycle friendly it is, and how every day there is something going on, from Yoga in the ancient Sunken Gardens, to walking tours, trolly tours of the park, and endless house gazing. There are so many old beautiful homes in so many styles. I am going to do some house shots soon to show you the gorgeous architecture.

We never felt the desire at home to MOVE ON UP from our little starter home back near Toronto, and have been there for 23 years, giving us the freedom to purchase this house in a very depressed Florida market and be fortunate enough to spend our time in a split between the two houses, although a 90/10 split, now that I am a Canadian citizen, I am allowed to spend 6 months a year in the USA. Which isn't likely to happen soon, as A), I'd miss my kids too much and B) we have jobs back home that need attending to. While we can work from here, we are needed on home soil for now. One day though, I do hope to say "I'm off to Florida for the Winters darlings....pop down to see me"

This week we are on foot. We've been trying to organize insurance on a vehicle here, but my slow as molasses Insurance dude back home, didn't get our records here in time so we cabbed it from the airport and go grocery shopping on our bikes. I left my comfy, walk for miles in them, Columbia sport sandals back home because I had left a new pair here. I arrived in dressy sandals from the plane and then did a days walking in the new sandals and my poor feet are so blistered, I can;t walk. So we are riding the bikes everywhere. To the beach on the Bay, Snell Isle, out to eat, and this morning downtown to the Vinoy for the best hotel breakfast in the world, to the Farmers Market and home to limp around inside for a while.

We also met with a Pool Company and plan to start the pool here in a couple of weeks. On Tuesday we have to pick coping and decking and hopefully a Mexican tile to edge the pool. While I am sad to lose the jungle of a garden we have, it is not conducive to lounging outside at all. We need space for chairs and a dining table. The pool will also make the house more rentable as a vacation home. Plus with a GRANDCHILD on the way, we hope there will be many family holidays here.

We're off to test a little Mexican joint down the street for supper tonight, arriving on our bicycles of course.....


  1. It sounds lovely! We haven't been to St Pete's yet but definitely want to. We're also on the lookout for some good Mexican food, coming from So Cal it was very easy to find and we really miss it!

    Your arched hallway is so gorgeous!

  2. What beautiful views!! I love Florida and would have been there years ago, but John wasn't willing. How nice to have your choice of both places. Get that place ready for that grandbaby. Your whole world will revolve around her/him!


  3. I would love to be somewhere that bicycles are easy and safe. Here , you have to have a death wish to ride a bike (although some people do but I am a sissy). I know you will miss all that green but gazing out at blue water won't be bad either .. I am so glad you were able to do this, I imagine the Canadian Winters must be very long. Have fun, C

  4. I am so thrilled about your grandchild, it's terribly exciting. I know you are happy. I would enjoy waking to that jungle but with our recent 15 inches of rain I nearly have my own jungle.

  5. I read 'grandchild' and then had to go back and catch up on the news! Congratulations to all - I'm sure you can't wait!

    When son #1 was in Earthquest the leaders suggested "moleskin" to avoid blisters and also to wear over blisters. You can find it in any drugstore in the foot care section and it works like a charm. If you're only there for a short time you need to be able to see and do - without sore feet :>)

  6. It sounds simply wonderful, your home in St. Pete's. Your home in Torobto doesn't sound bad either. Careful with those blisters. Good news that you have the bikes around so you can keep the feet free from a ton of walking pressure. Enjoy your pool planning . . .

  7. wow what a life! how wonderful that you guys are able to do this. to say i'm green with envy it putting it lightly. enjoy the beach and bikes!!!


  8. what a lovely patch of paradise. Enjoy.

  9. While we LOVE the gulf coast...I have not had the pleasure to visit St. Pete...I love to follow along on your trips there. Have fun.

  10. Hello Chania

    Enjoy every minute and I hope you feet are healed today.

    Helen xx

  11. I hope you have a wonderful visit...and I hope your feet feel better very soon!


  12. Oh Chania, as you know I am rather partial to St Pete's - my brother returned with his family in April after more than 20 years away! He took some video from the car window and I watched it and almost felt the heat rolling by. Literally made my heart ache! I really look forward to your posts from Florida as it proves to me that the place I love is still there, live and well. But also I like that you have a home there and that it is possible to get some lovely cottage and have a holiday home. Somehow this idea just makes me happy and hopeful - as my life at the moment is one long British school run! I love where I live but I long to be somewhere TROPICAL!! Lou x

  13. Looks wonderful Have a lovely time (and look after your poor feet)

  14. Oh, you've made me homesick, which I thought was impossible. Your house is so cool and relaxing to the brain and I can see why you love it. A pool and surrounding deck/stone/whatever, will be wonderful especially with the babies that are sure to be coming-well, let's start with the first one anyway. He/she will LOVE grandma's FL getaway. You DO know you will have to go to Disney at some point, right? It's just the way it is for FL grandparents.... Lovely. Ann

  15. Oh, and your feet! That sounds like something I would do and definitely have done. Hope they are better. Ann

  16. I'm envious to say the least! It sounds like a wonderful spot and 6 months would be dreamy wouldn't it? xo

  17. I remember being in St. Pete as a child. My mother has a place in Clearwater Beach and we spent a lot of time there in the day. Your place looks lovely Chania. I have to say that I hope you take another shot of that looks really gorgeous.


I love to read each and every comment and are thrilled that you take the time to send one. Thank you so much. Chania