Dean & Ginny's excellent adventures...

MD&DC 11/15· FL Pan. 09/15 ·World Cruise 01-04/15· North US 09/14·Alaska 05/14 ·Trout Lilies 02/14 ·Caribbean 11/13   
Vikings 7/13
Panama 10/12 · MD & NY 08/12 · World Cruise 01-04/12 · Texas 04/11 · Florida 02/11 · Cruise 01/11    
 SW US 12/09 · DC & WV 05/09 · Hawaii 01/09 · Antigua 09/08 · New England 05/08 · KeyWest 04/08 · Home Tour 03/08   
HI & MD 11/07 · The Keys 10/07 · NW 09/07 · Chihuly 05/07 · SW Desert 04/07 · The Galápagos 2/07  · Wedding 10/06
 Nova Scotia 08/06 ·Sicily & Spain 07/06 · Hawaii 05/06 · South FL 02/06 · Big Bend, TX 02/06 · Bahamas 11/05 
RV pickup 11/05 · Honduras 09/05 · Diving 04/05 · Snorkeling 03/05 · Florida House · Key West 12/03 · Guam 09/03

Globe bulletIt had been years since we'd spent Thanksgiving with Dana and his family, so we made the trek north. We took our bikes and spent some time in Washington, DC, too. Come with us on this short holiday excursion.

Globe bulletWe took a lovely mid-book tour* mini-adventure to Florida's Panhandle. Kayaking at sunrise was magical, so join us on this cool adventure to Wakulla County. (*Ginny's 3rd book, "The Art of Maintaining a Florida Native Landscape" was published in Aug. 2015 and the book tour included 35 events in 11 weeks!)

So come with us on our second grand world voyage

One of our best days was Easter in Katakolon, Greece where we shared food and wine with 2 generous families. >>

Globe bulletWe did it again. We took the 2015 World Cruise with Holland America! Only 12 of the scheduled ports were the same as the 2012 cruise and those were mostly great ports like Sydney, Singapore, and Athens where we were able to find lots of new things to do and see. Ultimately our route was changed in several places, but oh what a great trek this was.

Globe bulletSo it was September and it was time for a van trip to parts of the country we'd not experienced before. We worked our way to Chicago for the first planned stop, then we headed up the eastern coast of Lake Michigan, on up to the Upper Peninsula, worked our way along the shores of Lake Superior, finally over to the headwaters of the Mississippi River before we traveled down the charming river towns.  Join us on this fun road trip to the north/central US

<< A charming Lake Superior lighthouse was one of several we visited. 

This is part of the Mississippi that you haven't seen. Here a beaver dam blocks the mighty river. >> 

Globe bulletOoh, it was hard to pick out the stars of this 2-week cruise to Alaska. Was it the eagles, the ravens, the glaciers, the surprisingly good weather for Alaska this time of year, the amazing wildflowers, or the sea stars themselves? Probably all of these and more...

We flew to Seattle and boarded the Amsterdam, the same ship as our world cruise, so it was like coming home in a way. This was their first trip of the season, so join us in our country's largest and most rugged state. As usual, we found our own adventures and avoided most of our shipmates in the ports.

Globe bulletWe headed out on Valentine's Day to see an exceptional population of trout lilies in southern Georgia that had been saved from development and then we continued west to Falling Waters State Park in Florida's Panhandle. Join us on this short trek. 

<< Dimpled trout lilies (Erythronium umbilicatum) were spectacular. There were acres of them in bloom.

Florida's Falling Waters State Park has Florida's highest waterfall, which falls 70' into a rocky sinkhole. Plus this is the state's highest park with an elevation of 324'. >>

Globe bulletWe headed out to the Caribbean on a 21-day cruise starting in November 2013. Many of the ports-of-call would be new for us and the ones that we'd been to before, we managed to find new ways to enjoy them.  So join us on this eastern and southern Caribbean adventure

We found groups of really, really pink flamingos in the salt flats of Bonaire. Also note the windswept mangroves. >>

Globe bulletWe decided to go north for the summer on a Voyage of the Vikings with Holland America. The average high temperature in the summer for many of our destinations on this cruise is 55 degrees. No snorkeling gear was necessary.

We marveled at the interesting cultures with their unique architecture. We admired the ingenuity and the generous spirit of the descendents of the Vikings in these chilly climes. We did cross the Arctic Circle and experienced some really, really long days of summer. So come along with us on this summertime  cruise, Voyage of the Vikings!

Globe bulletSince we went through the Suez Canal on the Grande Voyage earlier this year, we decided we'd like to go through the other major shipping canal. 

Come with us on our cruise to exotic places to see exotic animals and vicariously experience our adventures  on our 28-day Panama Canal cruise

Globe bulletWeber was heading off to the University of Delaware and invited us to his going away party. While we were in town we took a tourist's tour of Annapolis, saw Olivia run her horse through a series of jumps during her lesson. After the party we headed up to Cayuga Lake in New York State. 

This was a short, but memorable trek, so come along on this road trip.

Globe bulletA 112-day cruise with Holland America around the world, literally. Who knew that we'd find a waterfront in Brazil that looked like Amsterdam? 

We walked both Ipanema and Copacabana beaches in Rio--does this mean that we are now tall and tanned and young and lovely? No. But do join us for this fantastic World Cruise!

An Indian shaman sculpture at Seminole CanyonGlobe bulletThis tour of the Texas state parks included biking, birding, hiking and the discovery of the fine craftsmanship done by the Civilian Conservation Corps in the 1930s.  So pack up your picnic and come along for this month-long Texas road trip. Yee-Haw!

<< Black swallowtail on a Texas thistle.

An Indian shaman sculpture at Seminole Canyon >>

Globe bullet It had been cold for a while. While here in north Florida, it's not terrible compared to northern states, we still decided to head south on a Florida road trip

We had a great time exploring The Disney Wilderness Preserve, A Nature Conservancy property; Lake Kissimmee State Park; Lignumvitae State Park; and our favorite--Key West. This is a great state with wonderful natural (and man-made) resources that we never tire of. We're on the road again...

<< At Lake Kissimmee State Park we reprised our "Dean & Ginny's Excellent Adventures" shadow.

Globe bulletIt had been more than a year since our last adventure, so it was time... We drove down to Cape Canaveral on New Year's Day and took a seven-day cruise to the Bahamas, St. Thomas, and Saint Maarten.

So come and stow away with us aboard the Norwegian Sun for this freestyle cruise to the eastern Caribbean IslandsYou'll see some parts of these islands that you haven't seen or noticed before, even if you've been there numerous times.

Globe bulletWe took the opportunity to drive across the southern tier states during Ginny's holiday break in her speaking tour to promote her book Sustainable Gardening for Florida, which has been an adventure of a different sort.

We knew the weather would be chilly in December, but we were prepared and really enjoyed the beauty and the fact that the parks were mostly empty.  Join us for this trip across our great country.

<< Snow on a Joshua tree in the high Mojave Desert.

The sun behind the Air Force Memorial in Washington, DCGlobe bulletWe drove to Maryland to visit with Dana and his family for a few days the week before Memorial Day.  On Thursday we drove into DC to take in some of our favorite places and new ones including the striking Air Force Memorial, (See photo to the right.) which overlooks The Pentagon.Seneca Rocks in WV

After our visit we headed out to Sugar Grove, WV.  From there we explored the territory including the nearby Seneca Rocks formation, (see left) which has attracted rock climbers for years.  We didn't come prepared for a technical climb on the rock face, but we did hike the trail to the top of the hill. 

We packed a lot into this short adventure.

Bluestripe snappers congregate.Globe bullet We took a military flight to Hawaii and thought we'd continue on to Guam or Singapore, but the weather was stormy in Guam and the flights to Singapore didn't work out, so we decided to spend some more time exploring the islands and booked a 7-day cruise.  Join us on this great Hawaiian adventure

We saw these bluestripe snappers when we went diving off the Kona Coast (western side) of the Big Island. >>

Tea time at the gazeboGlobe bullet We took a military flight from Melbourne, FL to Antigua.  The military travels there because of its satellite tracking station.  Antigua is located on the northern end of the Lesser Antilles and is more or less circular island that could fit inside the Washington beltway. 

There are many reminders of its days under British rule: driving on the left side of the street, Yorkshire pudding on the menu,  British-style phone booths, and tea time at 4pm each day--shown in this photo.  St. James Club Logo

Since its independence, Antigua has been transforming itself from a sugar plantation island to a tourist attraction.  We noticed quite a few Brits vacationing here.

We stayed at The St. James Club, one of many all-inclusive resorts.  We rented a car for our 9-day stay and toured many parts of the island.  Come along on this excellent adventure...

Ginny and Dean at Gay Head Lighthouse on Martha's Vineyard.Globe bullet Spring in New England beckoned, so we packed our long pants and windbreakers and headed north the third week of May.  We traveled up the eastern-most route across the Bay Bridge-Tunnel from Norfolk up to the Delmarva Peninsula, across the Lewes Ferry to Cape May NJ and then headed up to Massachusetts where we spent time in Scituate and on Martha's Vineyard.  Finally we headed over to West Point and Ithaca, NY and then down to spend some time with the grandkids in Maryland.  It heated up as we came south--it felt good to put on some shorts!

Globe bullet We heard that Key West celebrates its Independence Day for a whole week: it is The Conch Republic.  This was not a long trek, but we packed a lot into just a few days: A stop in Orlando for a stockholders' meeting, an afternoon of diving, a parade, some nice meals, and a butterfly Dean's head is a landing pad for a butterfly looking for salt.conservancy visit on Key West.   Join us for a vicarious trip to Key West.


<< It was a crazy parade!

This butterfly landed
on Dean's head to lap up some salt.  There was a large butterfly population in this enclosed space.  Beautiful!

Parrot Cove Home tourGlobe bullet While this was not a trek per se, it was an adventure.  We were volunteers for Dori & Aaron's home tour on March 2, 2008.  Their neighborhood in Lake Worth FL is called Parrot Cove because of the wild parrots that live there.  11 houses were on display to raise money to buy trees for the neighborhood.   

Bocci ball in the courtyardParrot signs greeted the folks on the tour.  >>

<< In the back courtyard there was food and wine.  Plus Aaron had artfully placed a few Bocce balls on the lawn area. 

A White-rumped Shama in Hawaii.Globe bullet Dean found a series of military flights that could take us to Guam.  The last leg of the trip from Hawaii to Guam was full, so spent a week in Hawaii.  Then we surprised the kids (and ourselves) by showing up for Thanksgiving in Maryland.  A "Space-A" adventure.

Olivia, Christa, Dean, & Weber freeze their butts off inext to the Tidal Basin in D.C.<< We revisited the Audubon Park in Hawaii where a white-rumped shama posed for us.  

The day after Thanksgiving we went into D.C. to tour some of the monuments.  It was cold and windy.  Dean and I froze our butts off because we'd packed for the tropics. >>

A Key West sunset.Globe bulletWe find ourselves being drawn to Florida's Keys for diving and ambiance.  Here are some photos from our October adventure.

Sunset on Mallory Square on Key west is a celebration most every day.  It makes us happy to be a part of it.  >>

We are here alone again on a beach.  This praririe dog seems to be saying, "you lookin' at me?"Globe bulletThe Great Northwest including US and Canada beckoned to us.  We left in August, so we would not miss out on the season for Glacier National Park (It closed 9/17.) and the best season for orca watching from the San Juan Islands in western Washington.  After those two adventures, we were on the road through most of September.  What a wonderful trip!Serious Coffee brewed in British Colombia, where serious coffee drinkers live.

We had a great time photographing the wildlife.  Isn't this prairie dog that we saw in Glacier National Park cute?  We also just loved all the beaches where we were the only humans.  There are many parts to this adventure, so take it one or two pages at a time, or grab yourself some "Serious Coffee" and go for the whole adventure in one sitting.  Here's more on this great adventure.

This large scupture greets you as you come into the garden.Globe bullet Fairchild Tropical Gardens near Miami hosted a display of Chihuly glass sculptures.  We made it down to see it just before they took it down in June, the beginning of hurricaneSmaller sculptures resembled botanical objects in the gardens.  season.  That seemed like a good idea.

From the large, imposing configurations like the one one the left to small, almost organic installations like the one to the right, it was fun to see how cleverly the glass was integrated into the gardens.

We'd never been to the garden before, but it's a lovely setting and we were frequently side-tracked from the glass by interesting displays of tropical plants.  More...

Globe bullet When we saw that Arizona and New Mexico had received an unusual amount of rain this spring, we decided to experience the flowering desert and further explore this part of the country.  We were on the road for almost three weeks--we packed in a lot of adventures.  

Sunrise over Carlsbad Cavern natural entrance.

Dean and Ginny's Excellent adventure.

From the heat of the desert to the surprisingly snowy passes, this was a trip of extreme weather.  Here's the link... 

Blue-footed boobies with two eggs.  Photo by Stibolt.Globe bullet Oh my gosh--what a trip this was.  We saw a program about The Galápagos on public TV and thought it might be fun.  The next week we were there!   

What an interesting collection of wildlife.   Who even knew about blue-footed boobies?  Fortunately, we resisted the urge to buy the t-shirt that said, "I love boobies!" Under the words were two blue feet.

We drove to Miami and flew into Quito, Ecuador to start this fabulous adventure: The Galápagos

After the weddingGlobe bulletWe didn't travel very far for this adventure--only two hours south of here in Mt. Dora, FL for daughter Dori's marriage to Aaron Storonas.  Very exciting.  Wonderful location and it was great to spend time with family and friends.  There are snapshots posted on the wedding website,  

Betty boop in Canada??Globe bullet Our trip to Nova Scotia started in Maryland to attend Dori's bridal shower on 8/19.  After spending the weekend there, we headed north.  First stop was Brooklyn Heights, NY to visit with cousin Micki and her husband Tim who've recently opened a restaurant there.  Marblehead and Gloucester north of Boston, MA were the next stops.  

The world's smallest drawbridge in Sandford , NSWe toured The Bay of Fundy Coast with its gigantic 50'  tides, which cause reversing waterfalls and huge mud flats in New Brunswick, Canada. Then we spent a week in Nova Scotia touring the province where we found the world's smallest drawbridge, moose, fabulous scenery, and roller-coaster hills.  

Instead of driving all the way back, we took the "Fast Cat" ferry from Yarmouth to Bar Harbor, ME.  We spent two days in Bar Harbor and fabulous Acadia National Park.  We stopped for the Labor Day weekend in Maryland before heading home.  This was a trip of great scenery and major contrasts.  Glad to be home for a while.

Globe bulletDean found a military flight from Jacksonville to Sicily:  it was an offer we couldn't refuse...  

Grisly statue adorning an elaborate arch in Catonia on Sicily. On the way over we overnighted on an Azores Island--part of Portugal.  We spent six adventure-filled days in Sicily, then on the way back we spent two days in Rota, an old coastal town All alleys lead to the beach in Rota, Spain in southern Spain.  It's not easy to describe this amazing trip with just a few words or to choose just a few photos to tell the story, but here we go... Trip to Sicily.

Grisly statue with its missing body parts adorns an elaborate arch in Catania, a city on Sicily's east coast. >>

<< All alleys lead to the beach in Rota, Spain.

You'll never guess what this flower is...Globe bulletIn May '06, we hopped a series of military flights Dean holds up a palm tree at "The Del" that carried us from JAX to San Diego, on to island of Oahu in Hawaii, and then back to San Diego again.  This was a "Space A" Adventure.

We spent three days in San Diego, eight days in Hawaii, and three days again in San Diego.  Plenty of time to have some great adventures.  

<< What tropical flower do think this is??

Dean holds up a palm at "The Del." >>

Anhinga Trail.Globe bulletIn late Feb. 06, we decided to take a trek to south Florida.  We stopped in Lake Worth to visit Dori and Aaron and took in Art Art in the Avenueon The Avenue.  Then went to Bahia Honda Key, Key West, and the Anhinga Trail in The Everglades National Park.  

We went diving twice on this trip: once at Pennekamp State Park on Key Largo, and later on Looe Key.


Big Bend National Park in west Texas borders the Rio GrandeGlobe bulletIn early Feb. 06 we took off  toward Big Bend National Park in west Texas.   We'd skipped by it last year when we went through the area with the new van.  We'd decided that we had to go back.  We heard that the birds would be worth seeing at this time of year.  

We had a great time, learned lots of interesting tidbits about this part of the country, and thoroughly enjoyed the fabulous scenery, including the birds.  

El Rio Grande provides a long serpentine oasis between Texas and Mexico. >>

Majesty of the Seas from the boarding gateGlobe bullet Friday after Thanksgiving we (along with daughter Dori & her fiancé, Aaron, plus 2,400 other people) boarded The Majesty of the Seas in Miami for a three-day cruise to the Bahamas.  

We snorkeled at Coco Cay, a small private island, Saturday morning and dove with about 20 (!) Caribbean Reef Sharks on Sunday morning.  That was exciting... Here are the photos.

Back in Miami on Monday morning, we drove from the tropics to home.  It was raining and cooler in northern Florida.

Arizona Sunset stop in our new vanGlobe bullet We ordered a Ford van which was converted to an RV (a class B motor home) by GTRV in British Columbia.  Our trip to the west coast included a detour to Hawaii, a drive from California to BC, and then a trek across the country in the van via a mostly southern route.  We had to hurry home for Thanksgiving with Dori & Aaron, but we'll go back to some of these areas for a more leisurely trip.   

Here we are  enjoying an Arizona
    sunset and a dinner in our new RV.  
(More photos of this trek.)  

Roatan, Honduras  on our way homeGlobe bullet At the end of August 2005, we drove to Charleston Air Force Base and took  the weekly run to Honduras.  

A great adventure.  We'll go back.  There's so much more to see.  More of our Honduran adventures here.

Ginny and Dean diving in Pennekamp State Park

Globe bullet In April 2005 Ginny and Dean went diving--certified in January this was the first big trip where the underwater camera worked well.   We started with a 3 dives on the dive boat Narcosis off Palm Beach and then we drove down to Key Largo and did four dives in two days in the beautiful coral reefs of Pennekamp State Park, an underwater park.  Seven dives in three days is a lot!  Then we stopped to visit Dori and Aaron on the way back home.   More pictures here.

Dana Stibolt swimming with an Anhinga
Dana Stibolt, swimming with an Anhinga, 
a fishing water bird aka The Snake-Bird.

Globe bullet Over Easter break, Dana, Christa, Weber & Olivia Stibolt came from Maryland to escape the chilly Maryland weather and we all went to Rainbow River near the Gulf coast of northern Florida.  

We rented canoes and paddled 1.5 miles up close the headwaters, a series of crystal clear springs.   Then we jumped in the water with our snorkel gear and floated back down the river to the put-in spot, K P Hole.  It was an adventure that could have been titled, "Swimming With Anhingas."


Globe bulletGinny and Dean's fabulous new house. A different type of adventure: Ginny and Dean moved to Florida in June 2004 just in time for all those hurricanes!  Here are photos of our new Florida house in Green Cove Springs!  

Ginny started writing a gardening column for the Florida Times Union's online paper and has a  website called, but now she keeps her gardening log over at

Ginny & Dean's 2004 Adventure

Globe bullet In late 2003, Dean and Ginny thought it would be fun to celebrate their first anniversary (Jan. 2) in Key West.  Taking the back roads and traveling along the Outer Banks of North Carolina, this was a slow trip south traveling in the minivan.  

So join us for the second big adventure.  This time it's New Years in Key West.

Reflection of Mt RanierGinny and Dean's Excellent Adventures.Globe bulletThe was the first of our big adventures and what a way to start!  We drove our minivan across to the NW to meet up with Dean's sister Judy and her family in Oregon.  

We stopped at McCord Air Force Base near Mt. Rainier in Washington after our visit and hopped on a military flight to Japan and took another one to Guam!!  

We flew back via Hawaii and then drove much more quickly across the country back to Maryland.  So here's the Saga of the Guam adventure

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