Florida is a great place to have grown up, except at Christmas time. I can remember a time when the whole family went to the beach on Christmas Day, others when I could have mowed the lawn in a tank top. Hollywood and Hallmark has forged a picture of this season in as a snow covered small town wonderland that is unattainable here in the center of the sunshine state. Well, at least the snow part. I have discovered the small town of my youthful imagination, just 45 minutes north of Tampa. A town that defies the Florida odds, tucked away among rolling hills with friendly faces, tree-lined streets, a charming old downtown complete with an old courthouse clock that chimes on the hour. This is the town I now live in, and the one I welcome you and yours to discover.
Now that Thanksgiving is behind us, its time to look towards everything Christmas. Hopefully by now your tree is up, decorations have replaced family pictures on the fireplace, and your gift list is getting smaller by the day. As we all know, we can somehow let this magical time of year slip through our fingers as we stress ourselves out by trying to make the perfect holiday, while not taking the time to actually enjoy the season. This year, find some time to enjoy strolling along small town restaurants, antique stores and the historic Church Street, all lit up with the lights, singers and small town cheer. You may come for the small town Christmas cheer, but like me, you may even want to make Dade City your home.