Saturday, August 06, 2011
Our beach vacation a few weeks ago truly was everything I'd hoped it would be. Josh's parents graciously took us to a lovely house in Seacrest Florida. I finally arrived there Sunday night fifteen hours after I left my mom's house in NJ. There were gorgeous beach homes, palm trees and bike cruisers everywhere. The next morning I couldn't wait to see the ocean. We wandered down straight out of bed. The beautiful blue and the warm ocean air on my face to greet the day. For some reason I always remember the first time I take my babies to the ocean. I loved dipping Harper's perfect pink toes into the great vastness. The kids, especially Juden were so excited to show him. That boy LOVES his brother. The whole time was an amazing blessing...such a break from everything ordinary and routine. It reminded me of a part of Shauna Niequist's book. She said of her families vacations,"It's all those things, and something else, the something that our family becomes when we are there. We're the best version of our family there, relaxed and connected and without agenda or schedule. We have conversations that unfold lazily and resolve over days instead of minutes. We tell stories that everyone's heard, and it doesn't bother us, because we have nothing else to do and no where else else to be. We're irresponsible, and we make up plans as we go...
We sleep hard because the roar of the waves keeps us sleeping like babies, and we wake up early, each finding our own spots to read and write and drink coffee before the mildness of the morning burns into the blaze of the day."
I love the way she puts that, and I have to agree about how meaningful this time can be in a family. With five kids and a baby in one house, mild isn't always the word I would choose to describe the mornings. Despite moments of chaos it was wonderful to be together. Here are a few of my highlights from our beach trip:
* the way our families meld and everyone just takes care of and loves everyone else's kids. I love that.
* the nightly skits by Juden and his "Grand- Artie"
* showing my baby the ocean
* listening to Juden read his grand- dad Little Bear before he went to sleep
* porch sitting, and my sis-in-law making us frozen daiquiris, and just being with her. She is just rad.
* sneaking in a late night date with my love on the bike cruisers
* making drippy castles
* flying kites on the beach
* making great big breakfasts and having them made for me:)
* the bookshop and chai breaks with the girls
* walking barefoot on the still-warm sidewalk with a restless Harper, singing him to sleep while watching the moonlight-drenched palm trees sway
* the way Mimi makes everything special, turning a rainy day into tea parties and pedicures
* going for an early morning date with Juden, riding bikes to the doughnut shop. When I smiled at him while riding he said, "Mommy, this is my rose today."
* walking down to the beach every evening when everything feels peaceful and the sky glows orange and pink... shell searching...castle building
* watching our little girls, so proud, learning to swim
* having a chance to look at this family God has built me into and how precious they are