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Magnolia Gardens in Springtime

I never need an excuse to head out to Magnolia Plantation and Gardens. It's one of my favorite places in the Lowcountry. But a couple of weeks ago, I had an extra reason to be out there. In a week or so more, I'll have yet another. You see the the azaleas are blooming, and sometime soon, they'll be at their peak. In my opinion, there is simply no better time to visit Magnolia Plantation. It has an awe-inspiring beauty in the spring.

 

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Art and Animal Lovers Enjoy SEWE

When I was a kid, I lived about two hours outside of Orlando, which meant my family made a trip to Sea World occasionally. One of the big shows at the park starred Shamu, an orca, in the ocean tank. One quickly learned that there was a "splash zone" at this show, and if you didn't want to get wet, you stayed out of the first five rows. This weekend at the Southeastern Wildlife Expo (SEWE), I learned there is also a splash zone for Dock Dogs competitions.

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Eat Your Brussels Sprouts

At the end of 2013, I wrote a year in review blog. Traveling Ink had launched that year, so there were a lot of firsts, and I was happy to look back on what had been accomplished and, more importantly, learned in 2013. Now that 2014 has passed, and I find myself struggling to write a '15 instead of a '14 on my dated material, the thought of another end of year blog came to mind. This one would be a bigger challenge however. You see, I've had something of a case of writer's block for a number of months now.

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Whirlin' Waterpark Fun

Most Charlestonians know at this point that summer brings with it a little heat and humidity. If you are traveling to town, you probably came here hoping for warmth, so, no surprises there either. There are certain days within the summer months that the heat gives us a great excuse to go live in the water. Shoot, I'd be happy to live in the water with or without an excuse. Thankfully Charleston has some great options for that...the beach, the Intracoastal, the estuaries, and creeks.

If you are looking for some fun in the water that may be outside your normal box of thought, a Charleston waterpark is a mighty decent place to spend a day with friends or family. I recently had the opportunity to visit Whirlin' Waters with a close friend and her kids (my godchildren). During our time we lived it up in the wave pool, conquered some water sliding fears, noshed on some tasty pizza, and remembered that at any age, water slides can make you scream like a kid.

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I Surf Because...

 

I grew up in Florida about three blocks from the Atlantic. I loved going outside and standing in my driveway, so that I could feel the warm gravel underneath my bare feet, breathe in fresh air that smelled like salt water and orange blossoms, and most importantly, listen to the sound of the ocean. When I needed to make a big decision or think about something, I'd ride my bike down to the nearest beach access to sit on the boardwalk and ponder. There was something that was just so soothing about the ocean to me, like hitting the reset button on my life in a good way. For the longest time now, the water has been a comfort to me, and for the majority of my life, that time at the water has involved surfing.  

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Josh Garrels at the Music Farm

A while back, my friend Katelyn introduced me to the songs of her favorite musician, Josh Garrels. Saturday night I got to see her reaction as she saw him in concert for the first time, and it was awesome.

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