We planned this whirlwind weekend weeks in advance and counted the weeks, and then days, when we would see each other again after three years.  And whirlwind it was, starting with my brother and now fiancé announcing their surprise engagement, followed by a million different stories, sometimes all running together, and three days of perpetual motion.

Everyone had their ideas of what they wanted to do in this short time, mostly to do with playing a lot of golf for my brother, a few good meals, both at our home and a couple of restaurants on the Key and in Sarasota for us, and some shopping for cute clothes in cute shops which were so much better than at home, for his fiancé.

We did most of these things, but probably failed a little on the shopping side of things. But all in all, we all had a great time, were in constant motion and only took a couple of hours out to watch the US Open, in between conversation and stories.

They arrived on Friday around five, which worked extremely well as this gave us the opportunity to prepare a mini welcome celebration.  This started with my beloved Champaign on ice. We then moved to our terrace for a new selection of tapas that I had made the day before and assembled just before they arrived. Needless to say, the platters emptied over a couple of hours, as did a few refills of glasses with Fleurs de Prairie, a lovely light rose wine, and many more stories!

We saw the sun set and then moved indoors to have a light supper of Amalfi Coast Mussels with crunchy French baguette and lots of delicious spicy tomato sauce.

Arrival Dinner Menu


Open Faced Peach, Ricotta and Prosciutto Montaditos

Spanish Style Devilled Eggs, Rellenos de Atún

Banderillas, Small Bites on Small Skewers

Spicy Open Faced Crab Empanadas


Amalfi Coast Mussels in Spicy Tomato Sauce

French Baguette


Mocha Chocolate Ice Box Cake

The weekend happened so fast that it’s almost difficult to recall what all we did, but we did play a lot of golf, we did go out to a couple of our favorite restaurants, the Selva Grill and our favorite Italian on the circle, the Le Colonne Restaurant. And then it was time for one more round of golf, a quick homemade lunch of Italian sausage, peppers and potatoes with toasted garlic bread, that final glass of wine, packing and the ride back to the airport. This was Monday!

We came home to a quiet house, always sad when the whirlwind and conversation and activity stops. We need to plan the next get together soon!

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