I hope everyone who celebrated over the holiday weekend had a great one!  I know we did 🙂  Nothing beats a long weekend … family, good food and chillaxing.  Yesterday, JP and I headed south to the Loxahatchee National Wildlife Refuge.  JP gets to go here all the time for work – and I’m officially jealous.

The Refuge is a little bit of real Florida tucked just out of sight of any Targets, Walgreens or chain restaurants.  The Refuge was established in 1951 through an agreement between the South Florida Water Management District and the US Fish & Wildlife Service.  Today, the SFWMD (JP) manages several parts of this land, including water pump stations and a 57-mile levee.  The Refuge is the northernmost point of the Everglades, covering over 221 square miles.  Alligators, armadillos and tons of birds – bald eagles, ibis, turkey vultures, herons – call this place home, and boaters, bikers, hikers and canoers (is that a word?) can check it out.  We packed our bikes and hit the trail for some leisurely sightseeing, and the exercise didn’t hurt.  (My thighs are hating me.  I really need to work out more.  I’ll save that for 2010.)