Angling Right: Inshore Fishing in Fort Myers, FL

I’ve just returned from vacation in Florida’s beautiful Gulf Coast–a region comprising Fort Myers, Naples, and Marcos Island. My family and I enjoyed some much-needed R&R and no shortage of outdoor fun. Of course, our trip included some world-class fishing too!

My dad and I were lucky to fish with the delightful Debbie Hanson of SheFishes2 and Take Me Fishing, along with her husband Greg Stamper of Stamp Snook Charters. (You should book a trip with Captain Greg!) We spent half of the day doing some inshore fishing and were fruitful in our catches. We caught upwards of 10 different fish species–mangrove snapper, common snook, red drum, permit, a shark, pompano, a stingray, saltwater catfish, and more.

Most of the fish we caught were caught on a catch-and-release basis for size and conservation purposes. (And that’s perfectly fine.) We were able to keep several fish for consumption, so that was a bonus.

I used circle hooks for the first time and they surely didn’t disappoint! In fact, both Debbie and Greg said these hooks are more effective for reeling in fish without incurring too much damage on the fish. (How about that for efficiency and conservation???) I think I’m going to have to incorporate them into my fishing repertoire  from now on–especially for fishing here in the Commonwealth of Virginia!

Below are some pictures of our catches:


Me holding the first catch of the day: a decent Jack Crevalle fish. It was released afterwards.


Me holding an undersized mangrove snapper before releasing it back to the water.


Here’s a picture of my dad holding a permit fish. Captain Greg told us that the permit fish, when they achieve full size, is a prized game fish.


I caught several undersized red drum fish, including this one pictured here. Isn’t it beautiful?


Another shot of the red drum I caught and then released. I love the spotted markings.


What a good little conservationist I am! See- we conservatives love nature without a radical agenda.


Pictured here is a Ladyfish. They’re only useful as bait, ad evidenced by the snook I caught.


I was hoping to land a snook while down in Florida, and I did. This is my most prized game fish catch ever!


When we arrived back to the harbor, we were greeted by some feathery friends. From left to right: Great Egret, then snowy egret eager to steal some of our fish


This Great egret wanted our fish. He/she wasn’t victorious.

The whole fishing crew: Dad, Captain Greg, Debbie, and me Credit: Debbie Hanson

The whole fishing crew: Dad, Captain Greg, Debbie, and me
Credit: Debbie Hanson

Prior to fishing, here are some tips to ensure you have a great trip:

  1. Get a good night’s sleep
  2. Wear sunscreen
  3. Arrive earlier
  4. Pack a light snack and some water
  5. Take Dramamine if prone to sea-sickness
  6. Have fun!

Planning on fishing in SW Florida soon? Make sure you book Captain Greg for your next fishing excursion.

Follow Snook Stamper Charters on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Follow She Fishes 2 on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.


Have you fished in Fort Myers, FL? Let me know if you had a great fishing experience below!

Southwest Florida is a Little Slice of Paradise

I’ve just returned from a week-long family vacation in Southwest Florida and feel more rejuvenated than ever! And we averted coming into close contact with Hurricane Joaquin. (Thank goodness.)

This was my third time to Florida and my first time to Florida’s  Gulf Coast. Previously, I’ve been to Daytona Beach/St. Augustine and Fort Lauderdale/Miami. How does the SW Gulf Coast differ from the SE Atlantic Coast? I learned that the Gulf Coast is quite shallow in comparison to the Atlantic Coast. There are more conservatives in Gulf Coast FL than leftists. And SW Florida is a far more affordable place to live in. However,  both Floridian coasts have a charm about them.

For those of you who’ve yet to venture to SW FL, the region comprises the Paradise Coast (Naples, Everglades, Marco Island) and Fort Myers. We mostly stayed in Naples.



Naples Beach and Pier after heavy rains

Naples reminded me of a more laid back, tropical La Jolla (my college town). It was serene, safe, affluent, and cozy–a quiet beachside town full of surprises. The place we frequented most was Naples Beach. (Sadly didn’t have time to check out Delnor-Wiggins State Beach and Vanderbilt Beach.) Naples’ beaches stretch seven miles long and are home to sandy, white shores.


Heavenly sunset draping the Gulf of Mexico


Blue skies and ultra-violet rays above Naples Beach and Pier

Naples boasts two points-of-interests tourists should be privy on checking out by foot. (In lieu of exercise, I recommend walking around town: great way to burn calories and stay active!) One is Fifth Avenue while the other is Tin City.  The former is adorned by cute shops and restaurants. At night, lights glisten and brighten the street by making this hot-spot more romantic and inviting. The latter was a tad more underwhelming but still worth visiting. It is largely comprised of fishing boats and seafood restaurants.


I wish I had more time to explore Fort Myers as it’s got a lot to offer. I did, however, go fishing in Estero Bay and will have a post about my fishing trip up shortly for you all to read about. Historically speaking, Ft. Myers is home to the winter homes belonging to Henry Ford (“The Mangoes”) and Thomas Edison (“Seminole Lodge”). Additionally, it boasts some very beautiful beaches and other great attractions. I hope to visit again and explore more of its hidden gems.


Mangroves in Estero Bay…Abound with tranquility and good fishing


I had read extensively about the islands of Sanibel and Captiva, and felt it was imperative to pay a visit. This particular inlet is renowned for its shelling, world-class fishing, turquoise waters, pristine beaches, wildlife, and  island life. We were crunched for time and without a car – we relied heavily on Uber- so we visited Sanibel Lighthouse Beach. In order to access this island, one must cross a toll bridge.


Historic Sanibel Lighthouse

While soaking in some rays, we saw several dolphins- including a mother and her baby- frolicking near shore. It was truly a wonderful sight!


Dolphins swimming around Sanibel Island

Had there not been the aforementioned constraints, we would have visited Bowman Beach and ventured north to Captiva Island.

All in all, I could see myself coming back to SW Florida in the near future. Great beaches, great food, nice people, and superb sport fishing–I couldn’t ask for a more relaxing vacation!

Learn more about SW Florida, check out Paradise Coast and Fort  Myers-Sanibel!

Want to connect with me? Follow me on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

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Pumpkin Mousse

Gabriella Hoffman:

My sister made this delicious pumpkin mousse. It is to-die for! Check out the recipe below.

Originally posted on A Taste of Patriarchy:

As the autumn season approaches us, pumpkin recipes are perfect to make for this time of the year. Looking for an easy, yet delicious, pumpkin dessert recipe, I came across this one and modified it slightly. I hope you try it in your kitchen and spoil your loved ones with some pumpkin deliciousness. This modified recipe is great for four people, as it yields four servings.


  • 1/2 can pumpkin puree (homemade is better)
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 3/8 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 3/4 tsp vanilla extract
  • mint leaves (2-3 per serving)

In a saucepan, combine pumpkin puree, 1/2 cup of heavy cream, brown sugar, and cinnamon and bring that mixture to a simmer, which will take about 5 minutes. Be careful not to simmer the mixture for too long, since it will burn. Place this mixture in a bowl, stir in vanilla extract, and place the bowl…

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Happy Constitution Day!

On this day in 1787, the U.S. Constitution was signed. (Still a momentous accomplishment!)

However, it’s becoming increasingly alarming how few people truly cherish the freedoms and rights guaranteed to them by this sacred document. Too many people, especially fellow Millennials, complain about “privilege” and being “systematically disadvantaged” by scapegoating this founding document. They bemoan America for being evil, racist, and oppressive all the while ignoring countries actually mired by tyranny or countries that have recovered from tyranny. For example, what other country allows its citizens free speech or the right to keep and bear arms? The right to privacy? The former USSR didn’t. Cuba doesn’t. North Korea doesn’t. Heck, most European countries’ constitutions don’t offer rights comparable to ours. Ours is incomparable to the rest of the world. Why else have so many people come here in search of a better life?

Yes, there are people currently in government who are defiling the Constitution–and sadly, they exist in both parties. Those who seek to control us by means of governmental control are foes, not friends, of liberty. (Be weary of any candidate who fails to discuss how important this document is.)

You hear me say or write this often, but I’m truly grateful and honored to have been the first person in my immediate family born in this country. I couldn’t imagine growing up with or being subjected to the USSR Constitution. Glad my parents afforded my sister and I the opportunity to not be subjected to it, but instead, be born and raised in a country genuinely vested in freedom.

Talk is cheap; let’s hope our political leaders start to respect and/or continue to reaffirm their dedication to this sacred document.

Happy Constitution Day!

Global Angel Wings Project: Be A Force for Good

Me posing in front of Colette Miller's set of Angel Wings in Dupont Circle in Washington, DC.

Me posing in front of Colette Miller’s set of Angel Wings in Dupont Circle in Washington, DC.

Living in and around the nation’s capital exposes one to many opportunities and cool things. Whether it’s the plethora of renowned museums, famous monuments, or new restaurants, Washington, D.C., has no shortage of things to do. If you’re looking for a great place to capture photos with your friends, head over to DuPont Circle to see one of two DC installations of Colette Miller’s angel wings.

I’m not one for graffiti or street art – though you’ll come to find I have a deep appreciation for paintings and art history –  but when I first learned about Colette Miller’s Global Angel Wings Project, I reconsidered. The purpose of the Global Angel Wings Project is to “remind humanity we are the angels of this earth.” Seems pretty positive, no? In a divisive time, it’s refreshing to see something positive out there to bring people together–even if for a brief moment in time.

There are two D.C. locations where these wings can be found at: one in DuPont Circle, the other in Adams Morgan. Don’t live in D.C.? Fear not–these murals can be found in other U.S. cities and even in cities abroad! I found these wings at the Embassy Row Hotel in DuPont Circle at 2015 Massachusetts Avenue.

While there are some questionable artistic undertones or messages at times, I have greatly enjoyed seeing these angel wings in my social feeds. If you come across a set of these wings, snap a pic and share with your followers. Not only are they pleasing to the eyes and boast a positive message, they are fun to pose in front of!

Follow Colette Miller’s work online, on Facebook, on Twitter, and on Instagram.

Update: The artist herself – Colette Miller – shared my blog post on her Facebook page. Pretty cool!

Tupelo Honey Cafe Brings Southern Flare to Northern Virginia

Gabriella Hoffman:

Check out my restaurant review of Tupelo Honey Cafe in Arlington, VA!

Originally posted on A Taste of Patriarchy:

It’s been a while since we’ve reviewed a restaurant, so today we are remedying that!

I paid a visit to Tupelo Honey Cafe in Arlington, Virginia, last week. This restaurant is an offshoot of the Tupelo Honey Cafe in Asheville, NC. It’s got modern flair with a Southern touch–a great ambiance all foodies will enjoy. The cafe is very inviting and the staff are quite friendly, so you know you’ve come to the right place.

There are currently 11 cafes spread across the entire Southeast.

With the tagline “New South Flavors. Scratch-Made Fun,” Tupelo Honey Cafe strives to blend traditional Southern cuisine with more global flair. Executive Chef Brian Sonoskus  says “his familial culinary influences – from Lithuanian to Polish to Pennsylvania Dutch – blended with his travels through Latin America and his education at Johnson and Wales in Rhode Island have all helped shape his palate and his gastronomic sensibilities.”

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