Monday, July 23, 2012

A Stone's Throw From Heaven

 The perilous picnic began with the idea on Friday to eat our dinner down by the river.  I had never been before, but I convinced Dailey that it was a serene little place where we could sprawl on rocks in the setting sun and eat with the sounds of rushing water in our ears.  She agreed to the adventure, and we packed our basket and were off.

The plan, however, was thrown a little off kilter when we arrived at the river and saw a man with a gun.
Crank the engine back on, pull on to the road, and get the heck out of there.   
Tout de suite. 

Next, we decided to maybe find a nice little (gun-free) field off the highway instead of the river.  After a few wrong turns and a really long dirt road that didn't have enough room to turn around on, we found the most beautiful field I have ever seen.

It was set against a radiant sunset, stretching as far left and right as we could see.  We hopped a fence, ran straight to the center of that sea of grass, stretched out a sheet, turned on some swing-era jazz.

 On the menu: mediterranean pressed picnic sandwiches, apples, and chocolate-dipped strawberries.

The pictures absolutely do not do the setting justice, and I had the sweetest friend imaginable with me. 

After all, what is more quintessentially summer than a picnic in the fading light?

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Beyond the Sea

Two weeks back from that big, blue ocean and already the week has melded itself into a collective memory of every summer trip taken there.  All of my stays seem to mingle together and one year becomes impossible to separate from another.  It's sweet, though, and comforting. 

This year was exactly as I pictured it would be, and I enjoyed it more than you'd think something so familiar could be enjoyed.  Some slight variations made the trip exciting, however, and perhaps some new traditions were established.  A few moments-

Dad, being the avid walker that he is, inspired us all to walk several miles first thing in the morning. We were all happy for the company and cool morning air, and the coffee upon our return was all the more appreciated.    

The first of many days spent entirely on the beachThis year had to hold the record for the clearest water; seaweed was nowhere to be found.  Clear water has an absurd amount of influence on my happiness level on the gulf.

To celebrate the fourth, we made our way to the very base of the pier to watch the fireworks (rather than watching the show from two miles away on our stretch of beach, as per usual).  We sat in the sand right underneath the dazzling lights- the closest I've ever watched such a brilliant show.  The sounds of each burst echoed off of the highrises behind us, every firework appeared twice as lustrous reflected in the ocean below.  

Pool games this evening were energetic and fun - who knew how exciting it is to find a toothpick floating to the surface of the water?  New and old friends, late night camaraderie, staying quiet so we aren't told to leave the pool after hours.

I unfortunately took only one picture the entire week (very typical, actually), and it really had nothing to do with the beach.  It was of a couple of racoons hanging on a tree outside our door.

And it was a fuzzy one at that.

Just have to take my word on the endless blue skies, white hot sand, and rolling ocean waves.  It was beautiful.

Friday, June 29, 2012

Notable Moments

Filtered photos of happenings lately-

Mini muffins for breakfast (with piles of strawberries)

Dress-like-a-hippy day.  (No?  Oh well.)

Baby or bear?

The hazy sunlight

Sassy Sammie

Big Sister

Laundry Day

Crepe Myrtle is the perfect welcome home.

Mom loves my lipstick.

Happy (almost) Birthday, Little Sister!

And one unfiltered glimpse of complete radiance-

Sunday Morning

On the way home from church, a quick stop for a walk on the railroad tracks-

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Beach Week: Prelim

The week that signals summer in my world is finally upon us- the annual Fourth of July Beach Week.

My family goes every year to the same complex at the same beach with the same people.  We eat the same food, spend the days the same way, and watch the same Fourth Fireworks show.  Every year.  And I love it.

So here's to spending this blasé Wednesday morning anticipating all of the things I love about beach week-

[Trail mix] Peanuts, raisins, m&ms.  Don't pick out all of the m&ms.  ...drives me crazy.

[Vegetable lunch at Ms Betty's] The best southern-cooked vegetables you've ever had.

[Rinsing off in the pool instead of the shower]  Quickest way to get rid of all that sand and sunscreen.  Whoops... I must have missed the sign that said to shower before entering the pool.

[The broken jacuzzi]  Seriously, it hasn't worked in six years.  Get on that.

[Barbeque on the Fourth]  Managing to shower and find a sundress, but not quite getting to the hair and makeup.  Also, so many side dishes. 

[After Sun Lotion]  We go through bottles of this stuff.  Bottles.  They should sponsor us.

[Pier Park]  Do a little shopping, eat dinner, see a movie, get ice cream.  Lather, rinse, repeat.

[Redneck Rivera]  The condo across the street from ours.  I have never seen so many confederate flag towels in my life.  Gracious - the war is over, people.

[Laying on the beach all. day. long.] Walking across the street after breakfast with an overstuffed beach bag and cooler in tow, setting up a fortress of canopies, tents, chairs, and blankets, eating lunch with sand in the sandwiches, waiting under the umbrellas for the afternoon thunderstorms to roll by, taking a few sun-soaked naps, floating for hours out past where the waves break so the raft doesn't tip, plodding back at the end of the day with salty hair, sandy skin, and pink on the bridges of our noses.

Three more days!