Hurricane season is here...Are you prepared.

Hurricane season is upon us. What is a hurricane? Well a hurricane can be up to 600 miles across and have strong winds at speeds of 75 to 200 mph. Each hurricane lasts for about a week, moving anywhere from 10 to 20 miles per hour over the open ocean. 

Hurricanes gather heat and energy from the contact with warm ocean waters. Evaporation from the ocean increases their power. Hurricanes rotate in a counter-clockwise direction around an "eye" in the Northern Hemisphere. The rotate in a clockwise direction in the Southern Hemisphere. The calmest part is the center of the storm referred to as the “eye of the storm”. When hurricane came upon land the heavy rain, strong winds and large waves can usually damages buildings, trees, cars, bridges and more. Hurricanes form over water that is 80°F or warmer. 

The Atlantic hurricane season starts June 1 and thankfully ends November 30, just in time to let us enjoy the holiday season. In the Eastern Pacific the hurricane season begins May 15 and ends November 30.

TROPICAL STORM WATCH are conditions with sustained winds from 39 -74 mph 

TROPICAL STORM WARNING means that Tropical Storm conditions are expected in your area within the next 24 hours.

HURRICANE WATCH means that Hurricane conditions with sustained winds of 74 mph or greater are possible in your area. this is when a family's disaster plan comes must be initiated.

HURRICANE WARNING means that Hurricane conditions are expected in your area within 24 hours and your family should be in the process of securing your home or possibly evacuating.

COASTAL FLOOD WATCH means there is the possibility flooding of land areas along the coast within the next 12 to 36 hours.

COASTAL FLOOD WARNING  means that land areas along the coast are expected to become, or have become flooded.

SMALL CRAFT ADVISORY means that  a warning issued by the National Weather Service, most frequently in coastal areas. Usually issued when winds are expected to reach within  the next 12 hours, a speed marginally less than that which is considered gale force, usually 25-38 mph.

Make sure to have a disaster plan and a pet plan ready before a storm threatens. For more information on the proper measures to take in case of a hurricane please visit  and make sure to follow their guidelines.
Hollywood Beach Florida, photo by Paula Santos
©2014 Paula Santos ( all photos and posts.

Getting Fit One Day at a time on the Beach...

There's nothing better than actually having someone to get fit with. So I decided to start a group (Hollywood Beach Fitbums). Sometimes motivation is no where to be found and it helps to have someone that encourages you to stick with a workout plan. (trust me i use to be an expert at making up excuses for not exercising: it's too hot, it's cold, it might rain, i didn't sleep well, i'm tired....blah blah blah) Bottom line is that by not getting off your bum and getting or staying fit you are only hurting yourself. It's not just about losing weight it's about being able to climb those stairs, having energy and feeling good. And with these views who can complain???

So if you live in the Hollywood beach area come and join us. So far I've lost about 20 pounds and have another 30 to go. I'm also using the exercising video Brazilian Butt Lift from Beachbody which you can get here. And this weekend me and my boys are starting the P90X Challenge also available on Beachbody.

Will post a few healthy recipes here tomorrow. 

Looking forward to looking good real soon.
Have a great day and don't forget to live, love and laugh.

©2013 PaulaSantos all photos and posts.

Photography Of South Florida

My photos will soon be available in my etsy shop. I can't wait to share them all with you and I hope you will enjoy them. I will also be turning some of my photos and paintings into art greeting cards. I'm very excited about these new items.

©2013 PaulaSantos all photos and posts.

Florida is an Oasis this time of year!

As I walked over the intracoastal and headed towards the beach I was thinking about my family and friends up north. As my feet came in contact with the sand and I looked out at the ocean and all the tourists I thanked my lucky stars to live in such a beautiful place. I looked on Facebook and all the post of my family and friends up in Montreal, Canada showed endless mountains of snow and from their descriptions it was bitter cold outside.
My view as I cross the intracoastal.

Love the feeling of sand between my toes and warm air on my skin. #solucky

Anyways if you're looking to come down and get away from the cold I recommend reading info on

Here are a list of some of my favorite places in south florida (and no I do not get paid anything from these businesses or people)

Hotels, Restaurants and Nightlife: 
Westin Diplomat (a little bias here since I use to work here many year ago)
The Clevelander in South Beach is the perfect place to party (I haven't stayed overnight at the hotel, but their bar is awesome). Outside bar with pool and various crazy contests going on or live music.

Good place to have brunch in south beach is The Front Porch at Penguin Hotel
Hotel website is:
No need for shirt or shoes this local hangout is primarily popular through word of mouth. The Front Porch serves a great breakfast and is a cozy art deco eatery. Ask for a table outside and people watch. It's worth the wait. Okay pricing.

Loews Miami Beach Hotel is a good family hotel
Hotel website:
Although South Beach is not the perfect place for kids this hotel offers spacious rooms and has a kids program.

If you want to stay at an art deco Hotel then The Tides is for you
Hotel website:
The Tides was built during the Depression and offers fabulous ocean views from it's suites. Great place to check out.

Miami Seaquarium
Covers 38 acres, boasts Lolita the Killer Whale and the Flipper, plus all the shows, see scores of tropical fish, sea creatures and scary sharks.

Villa Vizcaya
An Italian Renaissance-style villa built for industrialist James Deering in the early 1900s. This Home and huge gardens are designated a National Historic Landmark and are now open to the public. Visitors can tour the historic house museum plus more than 10 acres of formal gardens and a historic European landscape adapted to Miami's climate.

Best Shopping Outlets
Sawgrass Mills Mall is the largest Outlet and retail shopping mall in the United States. Make sure to put on some extremely comfortable shopping shoes because it will take you many hours to make the rounds of this mall.

Hot Tin Roof
Ocean Key Resort & Spa
Duval St.
Key West, FL 33040

The Dining Room at Little Palm Island
Little Palm Island Resort & Spa
28500 Overseas Hwy
Little Torch Key, FL 33042

Red Fish Grill
Matheson Hammocks State Park
9610 Old Cutler Rd.
Coral Gables, FL 33156
( RED FISH GRILL has open bay with a panoramic view unparalleled in the city)
Scarpetta (Contemporary Italian food is arguably some of the best in town)
Fontainebleau Miami Beach
4441 Collins Ave.
Miami Beach, FL 33140

Smith & Wollensky( my favorite)Reserve a window table or one in the outdoor café for the best view of cruise ships steaming by)
1 Washington Ave.
Miami Beach, FL 33139 
3030 Ocean (Enjoy seafood and ocean views at this restaurant)
Harbor Beach Marriott Resort & Spa
3030 Holiday Dr.
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33316

Best Nightclub: LIV at the Fontainebleau Miami Beach but it's difficult to get it so your best bet is to buy tickets which usually sell from $75 to $140 per person here at Want tickets
Another fun place with lots of choices as far as bars, restaurants and nightclubs is The Seminole Hard Rock and Casino in Hollywood.

©2013 PaulaSantos all photos and posts.