Monday, January 9, 2012

End of the Year Catch-Up

Well, it's been a while since I've written a blog so, with the beginning of the new year, I thought I'd recap the last [undocumented] bit of 2011.

What hung me up, I think, was Fantasy Fest.  I was all psyched-up to share our experience and a bit of the debauchery and mayhem.  Fantasy Fest is the biggest event that happens around here.  Originally started to boast the tourist economy during a slow part of the year, the festival has earned a reputation and a following.  People come from all over to shed their inhibitions [and clothing] and party in the streets of Key West.
My problem is posting pictures of said debauchery and mayhem suitable for all who follow my blog.
But, it is MY blog...MY documentation of things that go on in MY life. goes...
Painting by Sherry Sweet T
We headed to Key West mid-afternoon on parade day the last weekend in October.  We had an appointment for us both to get body-painted by artist and fellow displaced Kentuckian, Sherry Sweet Tewell. The process was nerve-wracking, but after the initial "disrobing" I had the choice to remain tense and awkward about it or stand tall and enjoy myself.

All in all we had a really good time, running into different friends in various states of attire and making new friends as well.
Jeff's turn!

Having a much needed cocktail @ Capt. Tony's


We hung around Captain Tony's and did a bit of people watching prior to the parade.  If you'd like a glimpse at all of the strange and unusual, just follow this link:  Pics Fantasy Fest 2011

Soon the parade started and the beads started flying.  I had no problem landing myself a whole cache of baubles this year!

I'll just mention that my favorite float was the Lionfish - representing the venomous species that has recently invaded our reefs and with no known predators besides man, our local divers and fisherman have declared war!
-- and then we'll move on.

The next event on our calendar was Jeff's 46th birthday.  Since his birthday fell on a Tuesday, we celebrated twice.  The actual day of, we joined friends at the Hurricane for a fun night of carousing and playing pool which ended with take-out pizza and a late night BUZZ! trivia session.  On Saturday, we re-celebrated for his "weekend" birthday and caught a performance by one of our favorite local musicians, Howard Livingston, at the Sugarloaf KOA with friends Tabby and Tom.
A good time was had by all and we got to wear our special Howard hats!

Let's see...
Next was Thanksgiving which I enjoyed here in the balmy islands with the dog while Jeff flew to the frigid north to spend time with friends in Ohio.  I had a potluck feast at the tiki hut and made yummy dressing while Jeff had a bonfire and target practice.

And that brings us to December.
Jeff and the dog lit out on the 8th to travel once again to the frigid north...this time by car.  They made the long drive to Louisville in 20 hours and arrived to temps in the low 20's.  But one of Jeff's favorite pastimes is creating fire and that's exactly what he did in his mama's backyard so I didn't worry too much about him being cold.

What a crew!
Meanwhile back on the boat, temperatures remained in the 70's.  I had to work, so couldn't tag along on his sojourn to least not yet.

He had a police academy reunion to attend on the 10th, then after that, annual doctors appointments and catching up with friends was on the agenda...not to mention the burning of copious amounts of firewood!

Love my Girls!
I kept myself busy with work, movie night, the boat parade, and a spectacular girls night complete with 6 dozen raw oysters, baked brie, and dice!

I flew in to Louisville on the 21st and Jeff picked me up at the airport.  It wasn't too brisk on my arrival and that was a good thing.  After arriving at the house, I never left that first day - choosing to enjoy the company and just being there.  Jeff's mom, Denise made us a lovely dinner of steaks and baked potatoes and I turned in early after my full day of traveling.

Uncle Bill playing Jeff's newest guitar
Between visiting friends and relatives and the pursuit of certain foods that we don't have access to here in the keys...Skyline Chili, The Bristol's green chili wontons, Lotsa Pasta, White Castle...the time in Kentucky went by quickly.

It was Jeff's Aunt's one night, the 5th annual McDevitt Christmas party the next.  Then a bit of hopping around a bit to see who we could.

Christmas fire

Christmas arrived soon enough with, as you may have guessed - a Christmas fire and a house full of people.

We had a wonderful dinner and a lot of laughs and pleasant conversation...along with generous amounts of holiday cheer!

Family Portrait

Santa was pretty good to me.  I got a new Kindle, a made-just -for-me messenger bag from Timbuk2, a new red Marmot jacket, and a tamborine! Jeff raked in guitar accessories - a tuner, a slide, strings - to go with his latest guitar purchase, some fancy new pillows, and new work-out attire.

But Christmas wasn't quite over for me.  On Wednesday, I traveled to my Dad's and waited for my brother and his family to arrive from North Carolina.  After a long day in the car, my niece, Maddy, was the first in the door and raring to go!

We opened presents and the adults had a champagne toast, then it was time for bed.

I got to spend the entire next day with the 3-year old bundle of energy, and even though I was tricked into going to an antique mall [wth?], we had a really good family day.

Friday, I headed back to Louisville.  That morning, Jeff had a minor surgical procedure removing a cyst from his wrist.
While waiting for him, I loaded the car.
Sadly, it was time for us to make the long trek back to Marathon.

After a full 20 hours in the car, we arrived home on New Year's Eve.  We joined friend's Hilary and Charles on their new boat for welcome home bloody mary's and then we both needed a nap.

We weren't much on the festivities going on at the tiki that evening...just too darn we made a trip to the grocery for provisions and called it an early night.

I had just fallen asleep when the cannon fire told me it was midnight in Marathon!

So that should get everyone up to speed on Life on the S/V Exposure.

We hope everyone had a happy and safe holiday season and 
Happy New Year!