life is always about the journey...

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Hello Again...

Hello Again.  After many years of managing my two blogs and multiple others for companies...this girl was burnt out.  It was good to get away and have a break.

So the news is basically...I've quit Facebook. It was a long time coming actually. From when I joined almost 10 years ago, to what it's become today is a FAR CRY from why I started using it. It did enhance my life in a lot of ways, it kept me in touch with friends and family around the world and I enjoyed checking in with everyone and watching silly videos.  

Unfortunately the past couple of years it became too much of a place of negativity and hate, pettiness and mean people hiding behind their keyboards because they never learned the old adage "if you have nothing nice to say, close your trap"...well that's my modern version of  it anyway ;) And just to be very one drove or chased me away. Social media is meant to be fun, inspiring, informative and is a is a form of entertainment. When you aren't entertained anymore, why stay? I made a choice to leave something that no longer fulfilled me. Staying to teach the 'haters' or 'unfriendlies' a lesson was never a fight I chose to be in, it was never my goal. If someone wants to have a respective conversation face-to-face, then I am always willing. I sure as heck didn't leave because I was afraid of interaction...I choose not to discuss a lot of things on social know, as is my right and is your right. I just chose to no longer participate in something that bred so much negativity. It is not the end of the life and your lives continue on.

However, I still wanted a way to keep in touch with everyone and not be submitted to the negativity of a social media site every time I logged on. I wanted a place to share my photos and adventures for those that don't use Instagram, Instastories, or Snapchat. I wanted a safe, fun, positive place to share my stories where I wasn't dealt an onslaught of crazy every day.  So that's where we are now.

I can't promise I will post everyday or even every single week. But I will try to post when I have photos to share, stories I want to tell or just sharing things I love.  So welcome back everybody....

And if you remember the old blog layout...yes, even that got a change. A fresh, clean starting over that reflects my new life here in Charleston, SC now.

James has been in town for the past week so we tried to take advantage of the beautiful weather.  Storms were moving in for the weekend and we like to be outside enjoying the area as much as we can. So we drove over to Kiawah Island with our bikes and spent the day biking trails, hiking and biking on the beach. It was fantastic...a good day spent feeding the soul with the beauty of nature.

One of my favorite shots from the day was this one. The lowcountry landscape is always changing and there is always something beautiful to shoot with my camera.  I was struck by the starkness of the tree, the barrenness of the spartina grasses and the movement of clouds in the sky. 

Can you smell the pluff mud...some people love it and some don't. I'm one of it's lovers because it reminds me I'm in South Carolina and near the makes me happy.

If you ever get to the Charleston area, Kiawah Island is about a 45-55 minute drive away. It is very secluded and treed which makes you feel like you are on an exclusive getaway.  A stop at Night Heron Park is a good place to start to get a map of the island and they have a small nature center as well.  There are bike/walking trails all around the island and there are a few lookout towers that you can bike and then hike to...they give you a good birds eye view of the beautiful views.  You can bike on the beach but only certain boardwalks allow bike entry ramps, so make sure to note those.  There are a few bike rental places on the island as well. Lots of wildlife on the island including birds, bobcats, alligators and deer.  So keep a look out for those while visiting. Parking is very limited in certain areas and there are guard-gates to get into certain parts of the island.  For most of the park areas and restaurants you just tell them where you are headed and they give you a pass for your vehicle.  If you love golf there are 2 private courses and 5 public courses.  They look lovely from my bike, but I'm not a golfer so I cannot help much with that info.

There are a few restaurants and some cute shops in the Freshfields Town Center. In the Town Center my favorite restaurant is Hege's and if you save room, stop by the old time pharmacy and have a yummy ice cream treat.  
If you want true luxury head to the Sanctuary Resort and Spa for top notch service. The Ocean Room is worth every penny for a special event...amazing food and views, but very pricey.  The Andell Inn sits within the Town Center to the side and is a nice alternative if you want something a little less expensive. It's lovely inside and has great views of the marsh areas along with a nice pool/deck area.  Condos & home rentals are available here too. 
For something less formal head to Seabrook Island (literally right next to Kiawah) and try out Lokal Seabar or Red's Ice House. Both sit on the Bohicket Creek and Marina and they offer spectacular sunsets and good seafood choices.

Heading off of Kiawah back towards Charleston you will drive by two of my favorite Johns Island restaurants. The Fat Hen is a farm-2-table place in a cute little cottage and the food is so leans towards the French style of cooking and dishes.  The menu is always changing with the seasons and they get all their meats/seafood/veggies/fruits from local farms.  The other is Wild Olive and they serve sinfully good Italian dishes. Their pappardelle pasta dish with parmesan, arugula and local Mepkin Abbey mushrooms (from the monastery) is the stuff my food dreams are made of.

So there's a wee bit of information for anyone interested in visiting Kiawah Island. It's a beautiful area and so much to see and do outside.  Definitely worth the drive.

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