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Strawberry Heaven: Plant City, FL

parks dale farm market
I have moved 11 times in the past 10 years. It’s part of what makes me tick— I always enjoy a new home to decorate and a new town to explore. Yet something about this last move from Southern California to Florida was a little bit harder for me to swallow. I think it’s a combination of my husband starting a completely new job, acclimating to the humidity and giant bugs, and leaving our friends and family thousands of miles away.

I call it the Florida funk.

It has been an exciting time for our family, but it has also been an emotional roller coaster. When I had to trade in my California driver’s license last week for a Florida one, I seriously almost cried. When my dad was diagnosed with lymphoma last month, all I wanted to do was buy our family one-way tickets back to California. I miss my friends. I miss my sister. I miss my parents. I miss good garage sales and amazing finds on Craigslist. I miss our church. I miss our home that we renovated with our bare hands. I miss my neighbors. I miss it all…and some.

That’s what the Florida funk feels like.

There are moments when I break out of the funk and it feels so good. It tends to happen when I make a new friend, have a good laugh with my husband and kids, or discover a new part of town. I love learning about the personalty of a town and embracing it. Last week, we embraced the Florida strawberry heritage and took a drive down the road to Parkesdale Farm Market— a world famous strawberry farm market. Strawberry season is at its peak and I have been wanting to make freezer jam— so we decided to check it out.

parksdale farm

I honestly wasn’t aware that this place would have a line wrapped around it— everyone waiting to try the World Famous Strawberry Shortcake. We joined the line and treated ourselves to a little bite of heaven.

parksdale farm


There is even a map on the wall filled with pins from people around the world. We added one to Palmdale, CA— our former town that still makes us a little homesick. The majority of the pins were from the snowbirds along the east coast (aka: older folks who migrate down to Florida in the winter to get out of the snow).

parksdale farm

There was even a fun photo op— we could dress up as the Royal Strawberry Family and enjoy the ultimate strawberry shortcake. Touristy? Absolutely! But that is part of Florida life: snowbirds and tourists make Florida the top travel destination in the world. So embrace it we did!

parks dale farm strawberries

So, the next time I am at the supermarket and stumble past the strawberries, I will think back to Parkesdale— a wonderful market that got me out of the Florida funk.


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PS: This post is in conjunction with Design Mom’s Love the Place you Live. She inspired me to share my adventures around town and share them with others. To read about other people’s adventures, check out her blog.

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18 Responses to Strawberry Heaven: Plant City, FL

  1. Dee February 27, 2012 at 7:07 am #

    What a fun looking place! We have a local strawberry festival that I’ve been meaning to visit for years. Your photos are pushing me towards finally doing so. 🙂

  2. Kirsty@Bonjour February 27, 2012 at 7:12 am #

    Heaven, absolutely! I would love to do this, strawberries are my favourite and one of the few things all my kids go nuts for. Beautiful pics!

  3. xiomara February 27, 2012 at 11:24 am #

    Thank you for taking the time to write about us! Your pictures are beautiful. I’m glad you and your family enjoyed your time with us. That’s what we are all about! Enjoying time with friends and families while sharing fresh strawberries!

  4. Rachelley February 27, 2012 at 1:56 pm #

    Your family picture is so adorable!!!! I love that this place got you out of the FLorida Funk. I get the Florida Funk when im missing you!

  5. This Confetti Life February 27, 2012 at 1:58 pm #

    Love the pin board and hey! I’m from Lancaster, CA!

    • familysponge February 27, 2012 at 3:18 pm #

      Oh really? I grew up in Lancaster (went to Nancy Cory, Park View and then Quartz Hill). I tried to hunt down your real name on your blog, but I can’t find it. Do we know each other? How crazy would that be!

      • This Confetti Life February 28, 2012 at 11:17 am #

        I also went to Parkview and QHHS. How funny! My name was Janet Johnson then (now I’m a Wallace).

        • This Confetti Life February 28, 2012 at 11:19 am #

          Oh! Speaking of which, my husband also attended QHHS, before I did. He is Will Wallace.

  6. Jadah Sellner February 27, 2012 at 3:52 pm #

    I love the Royal Strawberry Family photo! This makes me smile. I love strawberries. I will have to see if there are any strawberry farms to visit in northern California. And that strawberry shortcake looks delicious. I think those simple family day trips definitely help you fall in love with where you are. This is a great way to motivate us all to find our local gems.

  7. Sandra February 27, 2012 at 5:23 pm #

    I hear you on the moving “funk”! I haven’t moved as often as you but we moved from Toronto to Vancouver (east coast to west coat) last summer and I miss my old home town. It’s beautiful here but but but….a lot slower and smaller.

    Like you, I find the small gems and appreciate it for what it is – laid back and outdoorsy and gorgeous scenery…

  8. Popo Joy February 27, 2012 at 5:52 pm #

    OMG! Those are the cutest bunch of fun and yummy photos! Thanks for sharing.

  9. Gabrielle - Design Mom February 28, 2012 at 5:13 am #

    Now I want to try a World Famous Strawberry Shortcake too!

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