This past weekend Ray and I and our friends, David and Nina, spent the weekend in Treasure Island, FL. It was so relaxing, which was exactly what we were wanting. Saturday was pretty rainy and there was major flooding in the Tampa/St. Pete area, but Sunday we managed to make our way down to the Ocean. We also swam in the pool, lounged in the hot tub, watched Never Been Kissed, perfected mixing hurricanes, ate good food, and slept in. I was so nice getting away for the weekend!
You know how couples will have special songs or movies they claim as their own? Ray and I have a lake. Specifically, Lake Desoto in downtown Lake City.
I have a long history with that lake, but it didn’t become really special to me until I was in my twenties. As a child I remember my mom taking me to Lake Desoto to throw old bread at ducks and look for turtles. At the time there were several large victorian-style homes surrounding the lake and I remember wanted to live in one of them sooooo bad. Not that I didn’t love the house I grew up in, but living on a lake and being able to feed baby ducks stale bread all day is a 4 year old’s dream. When I was a teenager I would walk around the lake with my friends too late at night and talk about high school drama and boys.(a few photos from around our favorite lake way before we were born via florida memory)
Before we were married (or even dating) Ray moved into an apartment on our lake. Albeit a little run-down, it was perfect for him. 2 bedrooms, a decent size living room, and french doors that opened right onto the lake. We spent many evenings sitting outside, walking around the lake, searching for alligator gar, and watching the ducks… and as cheesy as it sounds, it was pretty magical. I mean, how can you beat that sunset?
Ray and I both have so many memories on that lake, both together and separately. It’s been the backdrop of our love story. Our first kiss was at Lake Desoto, we got engaged there, we spent time alone there just hours before our wedding, and we still visit almost daily to debrief after our work days. It’s our lake and we couldn’t be more in love with it.
Sometimes I feel like 75% of the people that grow up in Lake City (or other similar small towns) have only one goal, and that is to get out. And to be honest, I’ve definitely been there. Maybe it’s because I’ve gotten older or maybe I’ve just become more comfortable with where God has placed me, but I really love living here now. Ray and I live in the historic downtown area, which we love because there’s such charm and history. We live within walking distance to my work, our church, a couple of cute cafes, an antique mall, multiple thrift stores and our favorite lake. (Which was where we got engaged!) I’m really glad we’re here.