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A Day for the Dogs

by Meghann on April 2, 2011

Hello, beautiful Davis Island!


Derek and I may have found our new favorite Tampa dog park. It’s in a beautiful location, has access to water, and is full of great puppies and owners. The perfect match!

We had a hunch it may be a good one, so we saved the park for when my family came to visit. We’re all a bit of dog park nerds and it was just to beautiful to keep us (or the pups!) inside.


I’m not sure I’ve ever seen Maddie so excited to be at a dog park. She was quite the big shot today – strutting around like she owned the place.


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The secret behind her bravery? Why, her Uncle Scooby was there to protect her, of course!

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Maddie loves her Uncle Scooby!




Like two peas in a pod, they were glued to each other’s sides the entire time. πŸ™‚









The dogs spent a good two hours wearing themselves out at the park. Eventually they began to tire and our tummies began to stir. We said good bye to my sister and brother as they headed back to Orlando and my parents, Derek and I headed to Yard of Ale, where I had a Groupon I wanted to cash in.   



Thankfully they were very accommodating to the puppies, bringing them some much needed water almost as soon as we sat.


They were some tired, thirsty pups!


And we were tired, thirsty humans!


I’m telling you, I’ve been on a big brown ale kick lately. The Brooklyn Brown Ale just seemed to fit in the trend.   


mmmm…. beer… and pretzels.


We ordered the pretzel appetizer to nibble on with our brews. The pretzels were hot and steamy and came with a yummy cheesey beer dip.



Derek had driven by an upscale barbeque restaurant called Smoke the other day and suggested we take my parents’ there when the visited.


I’m a true southern girl who loves some good bbq every once in a while and was more than happy to oblige.



We started with the veggie kabobs, which were beautifully presented on a a hanging kabob.


The veggies were grilled and dressed in a pesto/balsamic sauce. They were really tasty and I hoped were a sign for good things to come.


If I’m going to go to a BBQ place, I’m going to go all out. I ordered my favorite standby (the pulled pork sandwich) with a side old fashion french fries.


I always get really excited when I order a pulled pork sandwich, but end up regretting it as soon as finish it. It’s not that it doesn’t taste good (it did), it’s the way I feel when I finish. It’s as if my insides do not appreciate the rich, greasy meal. I guess that’s why I don’t eat bbq everyday.

Derek ordered the Smokehouse burger, which was topped with cheese, smoked bacon, and pulled pork.


It looked like something special when it arrived and i had to steal a bite. It was good, but I think there were too many big flavors competing against each other in the bite. My mouth wasn’t sure which one to concentrate on.

All and all I give Smoke a B. I liked the atmosphere and the grilled veggies were great. However, the actual meal was sub par and I’m not sure I would return any time soon.

After dinner I had a craving for ice cream. Not frozen yogurt, but REAL ice cream. I guess real ice cream places are few and far between now adays because we went on a wild goose chase looking for one. We found more than a dozen tart frozen yogurt, self serve frozen yogurt, and soft serve ice cream places, but nothing with real, from the bucket ice cream places.

Maybe we missed something. Is there anyone from Tampa that has any recommendations for a local Ice Cream place that serves real Ice Cream?

Eventually we gave up looking for anything local and instead found the nearest Cold Stone.

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I ordered the kids size cake batter with reeses mix in.


It wasn’t 100% what I was looking for, but it did the trick. πŸ™‚

The day has been long and my eyelids are struggling to stay open.

Must. Sleep. Now.

Good Night!

1 Sana April 2, 2011 at 11:47 pm

I love the presentation of the veggie kabobs. SOO true, I only see fro-yo these days!

2 breakingsilence @ Freshman -15 April 2, 2011 at 11:51 pm

Coldstoneeee! I love Coldstone.

As to Tampa ice cream places…hmm. There’s a couple I know of…the first one is more of a gelato place, but I believe they also serve ice cream. It’s at International Mall, out on BayStreet – Gelateria Del Duomo. There’s another place in South Tampa, but I don’t remember what it’s called off the top of my head…
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3 Christina April 2, 2011 at 11:51 pm

Tanya and Matt’s. It’s Northdale / Dale Mabry area. In the same plaza as Lifestyle and TJ Maxx. Been there forever. Great, REAL ice cream. Used to make working out in that plaza extra difficult.

4 Meghann April 4, 2011 at 9:49 am

Thanks! That’s somewhat near me, so I’ll have to check it out!

5 stacey April 2, 2011 at 11:54 pm

We have plenty of ice cream places in Michigan, but we are just starting to get self-serve frozen yogurt places:)

6 chelsey @ clean eating chelsey April 2, 2011 at 11:56 pm

What a fun day! I miss coldstone. Being someone who cannot tolerate dairy, that is one thing I really missed when I had to give it up!!
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7 Kacy April 3, 2011 at 12:04 am

Beer and pretzels is seriously one of the best things ever!
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8 Emma (Namaste Everyday) April 3, 2011 at 12:14 am

pesto AND balsamic?! that sounds like heaven! I’m pretty jealous, I think I need to take a trip down to the south soonish!
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9 Megan@Dirty Dishes Daily April 3, 2011 at 12:18 am

How fun! I love going to the dog park. All the dogs are so happy to run around and be crazy.

10 Jessica Cohen April 3, 2011 at 12:29 am

Every time I eat those hot pretzels, I get a tummyache. How’d it work out for you?

11 Meghann April 4, 2011 at 9:50 am

My tummy was fine. πŸ™‚

12 Jenny @ Fitness Health and Food April 3, 2011 at 12:30 am

I always do EXACTLY the same thing with pulled pork, soo good but yet soo heavy ugggh… hard to know when it’s worth the pork baby belly πŸ˜›
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13 Emily @ Savory and Savage April 3, 2011 at 12:55 am

My first dog was a boxer – and she was the sweetest thing on the planet.

She would chuff and snuffle over her dog friends. If any other dog had issue with her friends at the dog park she would stand in between the ‘new dog’ and her friend with the attitude, “Nothing is going to happen here. You should just move along.”

Yup, a great dog.

Pulled pork? The only choice at a BBQ place.
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14 Kate (What Kate is Cooking) April 3, 2011 at 1:06 am

Now that you mention, I can’t think of many ice cream places near me. It’s all frozen yogurt, but I actually prefer that πŸ™‚ The gym I work at used to be right next to a gelato place that closed. I miss it!
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15 Hannah @ Healthy Whip April 3, 2011 at 3:54 am

Wow I so want to go to New York again! We don’t have any frozen yogurt places near me- I keep meaning to try and make my own!

That falafel looks amazing! Good luck on your race πŸ™‚
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16 Hannah @ Healthy Whip April 3, 2011 at 3:56 am

Oops I commented on the wrong blog! Sorry!!

But the dog park looks amazing πŸ™‚

17 Angela April 3, 2011 at 7:36 am

The best ice cream in Tampa is in my hood! Bo’s on Florida ave. In seminole heights. Try a thick n chunky – yum!

18 Meghann April 4, 2011 at 9:50 am

Thanks! We’ll have to check it out.

19 Matt @ The Athlete's Plate April 3, 2011 at 8:20 am

I am a total sucker for pulled pork. Love that stuff.
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20 Emily @ Perfection Isn't Happy April 3, 2011 at 8:30 am

I think it’s funny that you couldn’t find an ice cream place, because here (in Indiana), it’s the exact opposite. I would have to drive 45 minutes if I wanted to find a fro yo place. That trend has not caught on here yet, haha.
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21 Lee April 3, 2011 at 8:33 am

That dog park looks great. I’ve never seen any dog parks with a beach or water. Perhaps because I live nowhere near the ocean!

22 Samantha Angela @ Bikini Birthday April 3, 2011 at 9:35 am

That looks so fun!
And I like your dress

23 michelle April 3, 2011 at 9:52 am

Gorgeous pics!
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24 Holly @ The Runny Egg April 3, 2011 at 9:59 am

Maddie looked so cute at the dog park! And Uncle Scooby is super adorable. What a sweet face!

I know what you mean about having a meal seem to greasy and sit wrong in your belly. Too bad about the pulled pork!
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25 Courtney April 3, 2011 at 10:19 am

I love Coldstone, I order the same thing as you! πŸ˜€
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26 katie April 3, 2011 at 10:33 am

ColdStone is the BEST! I always get a waffle cone with whatever amazing flavor Im feeling, last time I got mint ice cream with oreos!

The pic of you, your sis, and future sis in law , is beautiful! I love it!

Glad all of you had a great day! xoxo
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27 Melissa April 3, 2011 at 10:34 am

I just imagine the part in Marley and Me and the dog park where he goes to the bathroom in the water and gets kicked off of dog beach. hahaha! Looks like a fun day for humans and canines!
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28 Brittany April 3, 2011 at 12:11 pm

Yay that dog park looks like so fun! And i was so excited with the Abita beer cup πŸ™‚
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29 Stacey (The Home-Cooked Vegan) April 3, 2011 at 12:39 pm

Love the pics of the dogs πŸ˜€

And beer is awesome on a hot spring day, especially a nice, dark ale! Looks like a fun night with great food!

I live in N.C. and BBQ is a staple here. Everybody loves it.
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30 Amy April 3, 2011 at 1:07 pm

What a great picture of the 3 of you girls!

Now I want some ice cream …
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31 Amanda April 3, 2011 at 1:11 pm

Hey…I discovered your blog off someone else’s site and just wanted to say how much I love it! You have some great thoughts on running, food, and just enjoying life. It’s enjoyable to read πŸ™‚
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32 Hilary April 3, 2011 at 1:37 pm

Mmmmm….LOVE the Coldstone….and those pretzels look soooo yummy!
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33 Annette @ EnjoyYourHealthyLife April 3, 2011 at 3:05 pm

mmmmm ice creaaaammm πŸ™‚ I love pretzels sooo much too-love this post!!

34 Amy April 3, 2011 at 8:41 pm

Gah! Total opposite problem here in Boston and the surrounding area! I have yet to find a self-serve froyo place; let alone a good froyo place at all! It is ice cream everywhere! So if anyone in Boston knows of a self-serve froyo place (like the ones they have in FLORIDA) PLEASE FILL ME IN!!!!!!!

35 Karolina April 3, 2011 at 11:39 pm

Wow- that dog park looks amazing, and a great place for an afternoon:)
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