Tag Archives: florida

South Florida Living


If you have ever visited one of the many communities in South Florida, this will not surprise you. The level of detail is astounding.

You have to believe that this was not written in the spirit of prevention. I would like to know how many poor people got locked in there before this very detailed set of directions was drafted.

I keep envisioning the condo association from Seinfeld spending the better portion of a month drafting this sucker.

The scary thing about this is that I am surely the most likely person to get locked in there. In fact, this was the third time I had thrown out the garbage and the only reason I noticed the sign was because my dad told me to take my cell phone.


Filed under absurdities, carry a camera, family, humor, signage, travel, Uncategorized, vacation

The Real Reason I am Here Today

I am in Florida visiting with my parents. I am happy to say I am here, not because of emergency health issues, but on a planned visit to hang with the Rents for a few days.

As we were getting out of the car after dinner we noticed the beautiful full moon. For some reason we got on the topic of menstrual cycles coinciding with the moon and my dad shared with me that he had dated a woman before my mom who had a 14 day period. “That was never going to work out for me!”, he shared. Then he proceeded to tell me that he recently read her obit in the paper.

I stopped on the walk and said, “OMG, the whole reason I am here today is because of some dead woman’s freakishly long period?”

What? This is not the common conversation to have with one’s octogenarian parents? You didn’t actually think I came from a normal family did you?

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Filed under aging parents, humor


I could not resist this shot. I love these sweaters. As Gary used to say, it is one thing for someone to buy these, but who DESIGNS them thinking that they will be bought?

Actually, if you hit the restaurants in south Florida around the early bird hour I would imagine these are sort of a uniform.

‘Honey, you should buy this, the colors are so lively?’

Correct me if I am wrong, but I think these sweaters come with an age requirement.


Filed under absurdities, carry a camera, humor

Ultimate Kid Travel Meal

I admit it, I was incredibly indulgent with my kids when it came to food. If I had to do it again I would probably not have done that. (sorry kids)

It would appear this family took it to the next level. I snapped this pic on a flight (from hell) home from Florida.

Macaroni sandwich anyone?

Have to admit, this one was pretty creative.


Filed under absurdities, food, humor, travel

Retirement Camp

We used to visit my kids at camp in the summer.

Now we visit my in-laws at camp in the winter.

I am happy to report they are having a wonderful time and we are pretty sure we won’t have to send any care packages… Publix is right down the road.



Filed under carry a camera, family, travel

Time to Cry Tuesday – MY Mom is NOT on Facebook

With all the attention on facebook these days, what with the movie and this week’s hysterical SNL skit about Mom’s being on facebook; I thought now would be a good time to talk about what my mom and I discovered this weekend.

Mom had never seen facebook and was curious. I took her through the basics and then drifted down the path of not so basics. You know, the ins and outs of semi-not-really-but-if-you-are-being-honest-with-yourself… stalking. Photo albums of friends of friends. Searching for people from your past that maybe have no clue that facebook actually has privacy settings. You know, some innocent stuff like that.

I must say, she was rather appalled. Both at how easy it was to view these things and what people will actually post about themselves. Being a very social, but equally private person, my mom could not fathom this place we call social networking.

When you put it that way, neither can I. Being one to pick and choose the digital footprint I leave,  I am very sensitive to that.

But the real revelation that came out of this exercise was not about privacy, it was more about why people of her generation – for the most part – don’t feel all that compelled to join in. Sure part of it is the technology piece. Some who are more technically savvy try it out to keep up with the grandkids but soon find that is ‘so not OK, mom!’, to quote a certain college student I know. But I think more than that, it is the fact that their lives ran deep but not as wide.

Unlike my generation – where friends moved all over the country, and my kid’s generation – where they will most probably move all over the world; they lived most of their lives in the New York area. Except for a stint when dad was stationed in Panama and she joined him, they have been New Yorkers. They still have their dearest childhood friends in their lives. They went to college locally. Their friends all moved to the suburbs, mostly our side of the city. Their parents were local. They raised their kids here and stayed in my childhood home. Their real-life communities were, and still are, stronger than any online community could be for them.

The only shift has been that they all migrated either full or part time to the east coast of Florida. For some, they have reconnected down there with people from their past much like facebook. Would that be called reality imitating virtual? Hmmmm, think about it. Floridian closed-gate communities are like the facebook of the older generation.

But the most compelling reason my mom had for lack of interest in engaging in this space was this, “I want to remember the people from my past that I did not choose to keep in touch with the way they were. I want to keep them in my mind’s eye as we were then. And frankly, if I did not really connect enough with them to keep in touch in real life, why would I want to reconnect?”

Good point.

And THAT is why MY mom is NOT on facebook, and does not feel like she is missing one blessed thing by not being there. (thanks for the insight mom).


Filed under facebook, moms, New York, Time to Cry Tuesdays

Warning: Florida can cause manopause in teenage boys

Me: Danny, what’s wrong.

Danny: First it is so hot in this house, then it’s freezing. Then it’s hot again. I feel like a menopausal woman!

I love that boy!

Haven’t had enough of me yet? You can also read me at 50-Something Moms Blog. For photo enthusiasts, visit Leaving the zip code, photos from outside the comfort zone.

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Filed under conversations, danny

A Big Florida Welcome

Yes, I am back in the Sunshine State, and I use that term loosely this season.

This is a billboard as you get out of the airport towards I95. Nothing like making the tourists feel at home as soon as they arrive.

Stay tuned for more stories.

Haven’t had enough of me yet? You can also read me at 50-Something Moms Blog. For photo enthusiasts, visit Leaving the zip code, photos from outside the comfort zone.

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Filed under absurdities, carry a camera, humor, road signs, signage, travel

Time to Cry Tuesday – The Original 4

If you have been reading along these past few days you would know that I took a trip to Florida to see my parents with my brother. We left our spouses home. And our kids? Well, they aren’t kids anymore so they have their own lives and we can’t lure them places with pool noodles and water wings. Although the promise of a good ice cream sandwich and free drinks at happy hour might get them to join us.

This was a bit of a last minute trip for me and I am so glad I took it. I can count on my hand the times in the past 25 years that it has just been the 4 of us. And sadly I would have to say most of those times were not surrounding very pleasant circumstances. Don’t get me wrong, we adore having our spouses and families with us, as do our parents. But there is something very special about going back to the original family unit of your childhood for a short time. My husband did it earlier this season (well 4 of his original 5 made it) and he too, appreciated having that historical dynamic.

This was the first extended period of time that we were able to just hang out and enjoy each other’s company. For so many years our interactions centered around the kids. Our professional lives are very demanding and leave us little time to just be. Lost were the days that we could sit at a table uninterrupted and have a complete conversation. This weekend was a gift of healthy (well except for mom’s 24 hour bug) parents and time to enjoy them.

With the backdrop of South Florida’s planned communities as never ending fodder for humor we had a lot of laughs.

Funny, we sat in the back seat of my dad’s car in our childhood positions. Fortunately we did not bicker. Since my brother is 4 1/2 years older I never did stand a chance in a fight and always wound up crying or having a nose bleed (don’t ask).

Times like this are a breeding ground for childhood memories. We talked of things that were long forgotten. The simple thrill of going to work with my dad when we were kids; the smell of the subway, the pretzels on the street, the chestnuts, eating lunch at the Automat, going to Kresge’s Five and Dime to buy junk. My dad was the original Bring Your Child to Work Day guy. And not just my brother, he expected the same from me as he did from his son; no double standard in our house. We talked about my mom’s garden (and the gardener, G-d help that poor man) and how excited she is to get back to nurturing her plants.

We discussed family holidays when we were kids and how my grandmother used to bring Jordan Almonds, jellied fruit slices and Dunkin’ Donuts to our house. Beach days with the children when they were babies, and how they have all grown up to be such amazing young adults.

These are the little things that make up a life. Nothing truly monumental (although some would beg to differ about the Jordan Almonds), just the details that give us all history; lives made up not of days, but of moments.

Thanks Mom and Dad, not only for a lovely weekend, but for teaching us how to be parents. And giving us the gift of your time – whenever we have needed you.

Happy Passover (and pass me a tissue, please).

Oh and if you are all wondering, yes, that is my brother’s Bar Mitzvah picture. Cute wasn’t I? (in a mousey sort of way). Looks like something straight out of A Serious Man.

Haven’t had enough of me yet? You can also read me at 50-Something Moms Blog. For photo enthusiasts, visit Leaving the zip code, photos from outside the comfort zone.

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Filed under aging parents, family, parenting, Time to Cry Tuesdays, travel

Florida Soundbites

Florida: Day 4 and leaving.

I thought I would wrap this one up with some funny things that were said or seen over the weekend. But first I would like to give a big shout out WHAT THE HELL to the two women who just sat behind me in the Jet Blue terminal at PBI. I am an hour early for my flight because I love airports my brother’s flight was earlier and I am literally one of 4 people at the gate. These two blabbermouths had to sit in the seats directly behind me and yack away…

in a foreign language. SERIOUSLY!

Ok, so here are some of the funnier things from the weekend:

My Aunt: My mother told me that she loved my father more after he was dead.

My Cousin: While playing a game with all the grandmothers when they were still with us (this was the generation of my grandmother) in response to body parts that come in pairs my Aunt’s mother (from above) responded, “Penis” This could explain why she stayed with her husband for so many years, even if she loved him more after he was dead.

My Mom: (in response to my dad saying that I had a great sense of humor) Yeh, especially when it comes to poo. (ok, my brother and I discuss bodily functions maybe a little bit more than average siblings).

My Dad: You have to understand all our weather comes from the West. It comes in from the Gulf of Mexico. That means we get used weather.

For a nice little wrap up, here are three of my favorite signs:

1. This billboard sits outside the road leading to my parents’ community. I believe it is placed there just in case all the Northerners of ‘the tribe’ had any questions about His existence.

2. This Derm seems to cover it all. Permanant make-up? WTF? What if you want to change color. Is it like the mood ring material? And would you really trust someone with your skin cancer that does permanent makeup?  Just asking?

3. I will close with the creepy child mannequin and the miracle suit poster, just because this says so much.

In closing, I will quote a dear friend who said this about visiting Florida,  “just remember that you are watching a movie in which you will play the LEADING role some time in the future.”

My answer to that is, “I only pray I will be so lucky.”

Thanks Mom and Dad for a great visit. And Keith, no one makes me laugh quite like you.

Let the Matzoh begin!

Haven’t had enough of me yet? You can also read me at 50-Something Moms Blog. For photo enthusiasts, visit Leaving the zip code, photos from outside the comfort zone.

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Filed under aging parents, family, religion, road signs, things i've heard, travel