The Emerald Coast of Florida

One of my truest and greatest joys is time spent on the Gulf of Mexico in the Panhandle of Florida.

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Unofficially called the Emerald Coast, the gorgeous, vibrant green waters and the sugar-white beaches stretch about a hundred miles through five counties.  Ever since my husband and I discovered this area nearly ten years ago, we have hastened to return again and again.  There is only one other place that pulls at my heart this way.

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Unlike Tampa’s and Orlando’s crowded theme parks or the frazzle that I imagine to be the city of Miami, the Emerald Coast suits us to a T – especially since we visit in mid-winter – before the Florida heat and throngs of Spring Breakers and summer tourists descend upon the area.  Except for the year-round residents and ‘snow birds’ (those lucky retirees that spend their winters there), a visit in the cooler months offers perfect beauty, seclusion, and peace and quiet.  Temperatures tend to average in the mid-upper 60’s at this time of year, but the warm 70’s are not uncommon and if you are lucky, you might even see 80!

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Magnificent sunrises and sunsets, abundant coastal wildlife (both of which I look forward to sharing with you later), skin-loving humidity (ok, hair not so much), deliciously fresh, salty sea breezes, and a surf that can be wild and moody or dead calm, are some of the reasons I’m so pulled to this place.  When I gaze into my “crystal ball”, I think I can see the faint outline of a future here.  Here’s hoping.

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The Emerald Coast is a treat for the senses and a balm for a weary soul.

This side of Heaven, it just doesn’t get much better.

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Weekly Photo Challenge: Variations On a Theme

A couple of years ago, I took a lovely trip with my sister to Pigeon Forge, TN.  We rented a cabin with a breathtaking view of The Great Smoky Mountains.  I was enthralled all week long with the way the light played on the mountains and by the ever-changing sky.

Submitted for The Daily Post’s Weekly Photo ChallengeVariations On a Theme (1/24/18)

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