Hitty Goes to the Farmer's Market

As part of my "Exploring My Neighborhood Series"  I took a trip to the River District of Fort Myers to get some fresh veggies at the farmer's market.

Farmer's Market Today!


The River District Farmers' Market is open every Thursday between 7 a.m. - 1 p.m. in the Centennial Park parking lot, under the U.S. 41 Caloosahatchee Bridge at the corner of Heitman and West First streets, just West of the U.S. Post Office.

This market has been a favorite of locals and tourists since 1994 and offers local produce, seafood, baked goods, honey, nuts, cheese, flowers, plants and much more.  The food trucks are a more recent addition to the market

Food Trucks at the Farmer's Market
Just some of the fresh food and flowers available on the day I went

Fresh Fruit

Fresh Vegetables

Flowers at the Farmer's Market

An added attraction is the beautiful River District of Fort Myers with it's brick streets, historic buildings, decorative metal sculptures, and of course, palm trees.  Fort Myers is called The City of Palms

Centennial Park

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In Which Hitty Visits a Thrift Store

Recently, while I was out and about with my adopted human, Shirley, we stopped at one of our favorite thrift shops, the Hope Chest Resale Store for Hope Hospice in North Ft Myers.  The Hope Hospice organization provides specialized care to people with challenging and life changing illnesses.  We are glad to support this needed service.

Hope Chest Resale North Ft Myers Fl

Furniture and Household
There are many, many thrift shops in the Ft Myers area but the Hope Chest stands out for it's uniqueness.  In addition to a room just for books and a room just for holiday items, there is a sewing and craft room.  It is a real treasure trove.

It's always Christmas at the Hope Chest

Holiday Room

Books were on sale today.

Checking the Shelves for "Hitty Her First Hundred Years"

The Craft Room

Sewing Machines Repaired and For Sale

I always find fabric I love

Today, we came home with some vintage sewing supplies and some small stones to send to Shirley's grandchildren.  Such a fun day

Our finds

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Labor Day Flag Raising Ceremony

Our New Flag

Raising the Flag
My little corner of the neighborhood got a new flag.  The residents of my building held a Flag Raising Ceremony to celebrate Labor Day.

After the Flag was raised, we sung "You're a Grand Old Flag" which was written in 1906 by George M Cohen for the stage musical, George Washington.  The spirited marching song holds the distinction of being the first song from a musical to sell a million copies of sheet music.

After the flag raising, we shared food on the patio.  Happy Labor Day America!

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Hitty Loves Ikea!

Ikea is the world's largest furniture retailer and is known for it's simplistic, ready to assemble, affordable designs.  It was founded in Sweden in 1943 by Ingvar Kamprad.  He was only 17 years old at the time. IKEA is an acronym of his initials, Ingvar Kamprad,  Elmtaryd, the farm where he grew up, and Agunnaryd, his hometown in Småland which is located in Southern Sweden.

The closest Ikea Store to us is located in Tampa Florida, about 2 1/2 hours away.

Ikea in Tampa Florida

It was a rainy day.  Our area of Southwest Florida is still getting some of the rain from Hurricane Hermine.  David and Shirley, my adopted humans decided this was a good day to make an "Ikea Run". I have never been, so I wanted to go along.

I must tell you that your first trip to Ikea can be overwhelming.  For one thing, it's huge. They are handicap accessible, but be prepared to do a lot of walking....just follow the arrows.  Everything you need to shop successfully is located at the front door, including carts, shopping bags, a store map and catalog, pencils and paper, a tape measure and strollers for the kids.

Ikea is a family-friendly store.  The Småland playroom is available for children who are potty-trained and 37-54" tall.

Photo Courtesy of Ikea.com
However, children are allowed to test the toys in the children's department.  If you need a short rest, feel free to sit down in one of the many room set-ups on the showroom floor.

A small bedroom set-up

Small Bedroom set-up

If you get hungry, you can get a full meal or a snack at the on-site restaurant. Try the cinnamon buns!  Yummy.

My favorite spot was the children's department where I found several things I liked including a wood doll house for $29.99.  The furniture wasn't included but could be purchased separately.

Hitty is not for sale!

This book looks interesting

Hitty loves this little house
When you get done browsing the showroom and the marketplace, your last stop before check-out is the warehouse where you will pick-up your ready-to assemble furniture.  Come with a vehicle large enough to haul your purchases home.

The Ikea Marketplace
The Ikea Warehouse
Shirley is glad she bought David a new cordless drill!  When we recently moved, he assembled her new office and sewing room furnishings. (see Hitty Moves to a Condominium) On this day, Shirley was supposed to get a new kitchen sink but the kitchen department was being re-stocked and re-organized and the sink she wanted was no longer available.  I see another trip to Ikea in my future!

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Hitty Visits Sun Harvest Citrus

As you may know, I recently moved so I thought I would do a series of posts on my new neighborhood.

As most locals and many Fort Myers tourists will tell you, a good day is one that includes a stop at Sun Harvest Citrus with it's iconic "Giant Orange"  (also a PokeStop as I recently discovered)

According to their website, SunHarvestCitrus.com, the store has a long-standing family tradition of providing delicious Indian River Florida Citrus to its valued customers.  It began in 1940 when Robert Edsall, Sr. planted his first citrus grove in Vero Beach.

Photo courtesy of SunHarvestCitrus.com
The Sun Harvest Citrus retail store and packinghouse opened in 1990 and offers the family’s delicious Indian River citrus, fresh-squeezed juices, gourmet foods, candies, gifts and more.  The Orange and Vanilla Swirl or Chocolate Key Lime Swirl ice cream cone is a MUST HAVE!

The Big Orange

Buy a Florida Souvenir!
Sun Harvest will ship their delicious Indian River Fruit to you and they serve up free samples daily.  Yummy!

Sun Harvest Ships to you

Juice Samples

More to come as I explore my new neighborhood!

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Sewing New Dresses on an Old Singer

When I was packing for my recent road trip, I decided I needed a new dress and asked Shirley to get busy sewing!

As you know, we recently moved.  (see Hitty Moves to a Condominium)

In our new place, Shirley's Singer Treadle is prominently located in the dining room.  Seemed like a good idea to give it some use.  We cleaned and oiled it and now it just hums along like it's brand new...but it isn't.

Singer Treadle Godzilla Finish Trestle Cabinet

A few years ago, a good friend gave Shirley this machine.  It was purchased new in the cabinet in 1947 for $95. The original receipt is still in a drawer along with the instruction booklet and the attachments.  The friend was the second owner of the machine.

This is a Singer model 66-14 oscillating hook sewing machine in a Trestle Model cabinet.  Some old Singer machines are beautifully decorated with decals and shiny black paint.  This one isn't.

Some call it the Godzilla machine because of its textured finish.  The clue to the finish is that it was manufactured during WWII when shiny black paint was hard to come by.

1952 Singer 401A Sewing Machine

Shirley also loves to sew on a Singer 401A Slant Model ZigZag machine which was given to her by the original owner who bought it in 1952 when she graduated from high school and got her first paycheck.  This friend worked at the court house in Alexandria Virginia from high school to retirement.

Getting Started

Now to add the finishing touches

Shirley sewed up a few extra dresses.  You can see them in her ebay store.

Click Here

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In Which I Encounter Pokémon

As I was riding in the car on my recent road trip, Shirley, my adopted human was reading Facebook on her iPhone.  She kept reading about a new game called Pokémon Go.  She downloaded the app to see what it was all about.

After we got home, we started looking for Pokémon "in the wild"

We found a Doduo in Walmart

An Eevee in our cart

We also found a Rattata and a Pidgeotto while on the golf course.

Rattata in the Golf Cart
A Pidgeotto on the fairway
Pokémon Go is an augmented reality game developed by Niantic and released in July 2016.  Your mobile device uses its GPS capability to play the game. You can learn how to play by following the quick start instructions, trial and error or by researching techniques online.  Essentially you must find and capture Pokémon using Pokéballs and other supplies you receive at a Pokéstop.  You train your Pokémon to compete at what is called a Gym.

One of the first things you must do is create your Avatar, an icon or a figure that represents you in the game.  Next you must capture your first "starter" Pokémon.  Perhaps the most recognizable and most popular Pokémon is Pikachu,  Each character has unique strengths and weaknesses.

Mr. Satoshi Tajiri, who grew up in Japan, first created the characters of the game in the  mid 1990's.  Mr. Satoshi Tajiri is on the high functioning end of the autism spectrum and recently confirmed that he has Asperger’s Syndrome.  As a child, he was fascinated with insects and this is reflected in the Pokémon characters. Other children called him "Dr Bug"

Since Shirley and I started Pokémon Go, we have learned that we are casual players not willing to spend money to buy Pokéballs.  However, it is reported that in the United States, over 1.5 million dollars a day is spent on "coins" used to buy supplies to enhance your success in playing the game.  Wow!

Pokémon Go has received praise for encouraging people to get out and walk.  It has also received criticism regarding privacy issues as well as safety for the players.

Some Pokéstops are located in cemeteries, memorials, museums, churches and other places considered to be places of reverence. This has become an issue for caretakers and law enforcement.   A warning screen regarding safety and respect for the property of others is shown when you open the app.

Play Safely

One thing we enjoy, is watching a Gym near our house.  While sitting on the couch, we can observe it changing colors as opposing teams capture it and try to maintain possession.

Team Mystic Blue

Team Valor Red

Team Instinct Yellow
We have some favorite Pokéstops near my house

Geico Mural

Stocking up on Supplies

The Giant Orange at Sun Harvest Citrus

The Tamiami Trail Marker

Plane at Page Field
Be safe as you play.  Use common sense.  Don't trespass.  Don't drive while playing.  Be respectful and mindful of your surroundings.

Have fun and "Catch 'em All"

For Pokémon gear  Click Here

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