The summer heat has me on a smoothie kick and this morning began with an easy mix of frozen bananas, extra firm tofu (for texture) and some Almond milk. I love to keep chopped frozen bananas in the freezer. That way, they are always on hand when I need a quick smoothie.
I wanted to give you a recap of my past week at Marco Island in Florida. My Aunt and Uncle graciously invited me to join them and my cousins on the family trip this year, and I had an amazing time!
|Adam, Cousin Sauve', Cousin Jordan and his son Rylan, his wife L'Porshia and I in the lobby|
Let's start with the hotel! We stayed at the Marriott Marco Island Resort and it was absolutely beautiful! Upon arriving, the staff generously took our bags and told us what we could look forward to during our stay. From the two giant pools, to the lovely beach side, there was no way this week could disappoint.
|View from our room|
The view from our balcony was absolutely breathtaking. The beach stretched for miles and miles and if you looked to the far distance, you could see the Everglades. Marco Island is one of the last cities in Florida before you reach pure swamp lands. (And gators. and snakes. Eeek!)
We ate a lot of food at the resort. Quinns on the Beach was one of our favorite dinner destinations. I loved the Bleu Cheese Burger and crispy Sweet Potato fries. They also had a delicious hummus and olive tapenade snack plate that we ordered a few times and brought down to the beach. And don't let me get started on Quinn's Peanutbutter Cake....after dark, we would head down to the restaurant and order desserts. I tried the Brownie Sundae as well, but the layers of mousse, sweet chocolate ganache, and peanutbutter won me over.Quinn's also had live entertainment throughout the week around 6:30 in the evenings. We saw a fire dancer while dining and one night, they had a sand castle sculptor who builds his creations to music.
Another dining favorite was CJ's on the Bay. Although this restaurant wasn't located at the resort, it was definitely one of my favorite dinner outings. In addition to live music, a waterside sunset view, and a large variety of dinner choices, CJ's had delicious food choices that were fresh and unique. The waiter brought out a batch of fresh, hot rolls and butter before our orders were delivered. I tried the Veggie wrap with fresh fruit. And also I sampled Aunt Susu's lobster ravioli and my cousin Sauve's Angel hair pasta and shrimp.
|All the girlies outside at CJ's|
|Uncle Rog, Aunt Susu, Sauve', and baby Rylan|
|So many choices at CJ's|
Since CJ's is conveniently located right next door to Coldstone Creamery, we headed there for dessert afterwards. We went to Coldstone many times after our dinners. It is the perfect summer beach treat! I'm a sucker for Coldstone's Germanchokolatekake Signature ice-cream. It is the perfect fudgy combination of coconut, caramel, and pecans. It also came with brownie pieces, but I switched those for white chocolate chips. You NEED to try it.
|Coldstone Run at Sunset|
Other island eats included Joey's Pizza, Guy and Lisa's Philly Grille (get the sweet potato fries! Obviously I'm addicted), and Pazzi's Pizza (which is located on the resort).
At the Marriott, there is a lovely coffee shop located in the lobby that has a wide variety of pastries, coffee drinks, and snack choices. I absolutely LOVED the almond croissants and now I am on a mission to make my own.
|"Natalie" the dolphin|
|"Natalie" the dolphin made guest appearances in most of our beach pictures|
|Goofy Adam and "Natalie" the dolphin|
Each day we were at the beach, we rented a "Chickee hut" for rest and relaxation under the sun. The huts included 4 large beach loungers and 3 poolside chairs for sunning.
|Under the "Chickee" hut|
It was so nice to be able to stay under the "Chickee huts" or to run around on the beach or jump in the waves. And at noon time, golfcarts delivered fruit plates to our hut! You can't go wrong with a delicious fruit plate.
|"Chickee" huts at Sunset|
|Aunt Susu and I before a beach walk|
|Adam and Sauve' on the balcony|
|Cousin Jordan and his wife L'Porshia|
|Aunt Susu, Uncle Rog, and their grandson baby Rylan|
One of my favorite things to do on the beach was to listen to audiobooks on my phone while walking the shores. I loved getting lost in the books while walking alongside the beach. It is currently turtle hatching season at Marco Island and there were many blocked off spots where turtle nests reside. One night, my cousin Sauve' and her husband Adam were out walking the beach and they were able to see the baby turtles make their way to the sea!
|Marco Island Sunset|
There were a few giftshops in the lobby of the resort. Aunt Susu and Uncle Rog treated me to a beach souvenir t-shirt that I can't wait to wear! There were also jewelry shops and places to pick up necessities including sunscreen and towels.
I had a wonderful time at the Marriott Resort in Marco Island and I feel so blessed to be able to have gone on this trip with my family! I am so thankful for the delicious dinner choices, "Chickee" hut stays, and the wonderful idea of island time! The staff at the resort were so friendly and inviting and I am looking forward to visiting the island in the near future! (Hopefully much sooner than later!)