Howard Livingston: The Simple Pleasures

Banana Express

February 27, 2014

The Simple Pleasures

Today in the Florida Keys is pretty special. It’s 77 degrees and a bit overcast. Not a dull dark overcast but a very bright puffy cloud overcast. It rained just enough this morning to give the plants a drink and leave a wonderful fresh smell in the air. As I sit on our porch I realize how much our palm trees have grown. They pretty much have engulfed the porch with beautiful fronds going in all directions making it feel as if I were in a tree house. The ocean view would be more enhanced if I were to trim them back, but I just love the feel of being surrounded by these tropical beauties.

Cynderella and I do our own landscaping and it is one of my favorite activities, we both just love our trees and plants. I know this sounds crazy but there’s also something about seeing instant progress. After a thunderstorm our yard looks like a war zone with limbs and branches all over the place, but within an hour or so it is transformed into our private tropical resort again. The finishing touch is for me to strap on the backpack blower and wallah, it looks fresh and new again. I realize why I enjoy this so much. Very few things in life give that instant gratification; I can see incredible progress in an hour, where else do you get that? In my past life, projects took months and even years and you really could not see progress short term, it was there, but I just couldn’t see it.

I believe living on an island has helped me enjoy the simple pleasures, which for me have become the important ones. It seems odd that I am expounding on the benefits of picking up fallen palm fronds in my yard but it just feels good, as does writing this to you right now. I have two dogs curled around my feet, each vying to get closer than the other. I have banana bread cooking in the bread machine sending a sweet warm smell through the open door and I am sitting on an elevated porch staring at an ocean. For me this is about as good as it could be, well perhaps it might be a little better in a couple hours when I slice a warm piece of homemade bread and enjoy it with my gorgeous wife. Now that is truly something to be thankful for, simple pleasures.

Saturday, March 1st Key West Conch Fest at Bayview Park  7:00PM – 10:00 PM
Join us Saturday for a celebration of Conch Heritage at beautiful Bayview Park in historic Old Town Key West. The festivities start at 11:00 AM and run through 10:00 PM. The Mile Marker 24 Band and I are honored to headline this year’s event and take the stage at 7:00 PM. There will be tons of great food and beverages are for sale at very reasonable prices including conch fritters, conch salad, pork and other traditional fare. Also, there are children’s activities, music, Junkanoos and much more. Admission is free and open to the public, fundraiser for the Rotary Club of Key West College Scholarship Fund at Bayview Park  Truman Ave & Jose Marti Drive Key West

Saturday, March 8th Sugarloaf KOA Resort
It’s Pirate Night at the KOA! If you feel like it, dress up in your favorite pirate garb. I’m gonna be wearing mine. Join us at one of our favorite spots. This show is free and open to the public. Meet and Greet at 6:30. Showtime 7:00 PM. Come early and stay late! Also, come hungry cause they will have the grills fired up and serving food along with their full bar. Just plain fun! Hope to see you there! Sugarloaf KOA 251 State Road 939 Sugarloaf Key, FL

New Show Just Added! An Intimate Acoustic Evening With Howie at Boondocks
March 28th Meet and Greet 6:30 Showtime 7:00 PM. I am so excited about this show and hope you will join us. Imagine sitting in our living room or around a fire on the beach. Rick Cleaver and Alfonse join me for this special acoustic evening. We’ll be playing some tunes you have never heard, some we have not performed in quite some time along with your favorites. We will also have a special video presentation to go along with our show. As always, there’s never a cover charge at Boondocks, but you can reserve a Guaranteed Table for a fee at 
Boondocks 27205 US Hwy 1 Ramrod Key, FL

More exciting news:
The Doobie Brothers Live In Key West May 3rd at Keystock at Truman Waterfront Key West  Keystock funding Homes For Vets. We are honored to be opening for this incredible band. Tickets are limited, $45 general admission & $100 VIP.  Tickets will be available this Saturday at Conch Fest in Key West, then officially on keystix beginning March 2nd
and VIP tickets available by calling 305-745-1079.

Other Upcoming events:
**Sunday, March 9th Marathon Seafood Festival Noon-2:00pm
**Friday, March 14th Boondocks 6:30-10pm
Guaranteed Table.  
**Saturday, March 22nd Lazy Lakes Fest~Picnic Concert 4pm-7pm

I think it’s time to sign off and check on my bread. Until our paths cross again, may the sun shine upon you and the tide always pull you back.



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Meet Me In The Keys 2014 June 4th, 5th 6th 7th and 8th.
Registration is now open for Meet Me In The Keys 2014. The lineup for this year’s event is awesome and includes the best artists from across the country. Also, there are some very special additions to the activities. Saturday, June 7th The Mile Marker 24 Band and I will perform a private concert at the beautiful historic San Carlos Theater in Key West for event attendees. Also, there will be a special chartered boat taking us all out to “Sandy Key” where I will perform an on the water concert! This is going to be a hoot but seating is limited so sign up early if you plan on being part of this fun event. All this fun plus we’ll be raising money for Care Camps. How cool is that? For details visit

Support KOA Care Camps, thanks my friends for helping the kids with cancer and their siblings go to summer camp.