I'm back here on the blog, although I'll admit, somewhat hesitantly. As you know I took a little break. Not as a fad break, or something to draw a crowd. I mean I truly, truly wanted/needed a break from social media. Can I admit I loved it? Like a lot. In fact I debated not coming back to the blog or IG at all. I won't say I'm going to do that, but I will say my posting/life-story sharing is sure to look different in the coming days. There was something about the quiet and space and privateness of the rest of the world not needing to know what I was doing constantly that felt like heaven on earth. That's another post for another time. I will say, when trying to decide whether this whole "post your life online" thing was worth it or not I did have this thought-to come back for the beautiful.
Meaning social media in general seems like a breeding ground for hate, ugly words, and bad news. People picking sides. I think of the verse to "not be overcome with evil, but overcome evil with good". So I'm here. I feel like it matters somehow to come back for the beautiful. To put my idea of beauty and God's love out into the world, no matter what format or frequency it comes in. Because our world needs Jesus and maybe they're more likely to find Him in a sunset photograph than an online, pick-your-side, rant.
This beach vacation was definitely "the beautiful."
We were in Fort Morgan, Alabama. One of the prettiest beaches I've ever seen. The crowd was almost entirely families. Big and small groups of people trudging through the sand together, beach chairs and beach toys spilling over with sand. Country music could occasionally be heard wafting through the shore, and laughter was plenty.
Later this week I'll share some of the practical thoughts I had about traveling 11 hours in the car and a week at the beach with two little ones. But for today, here are a few of my favorite memories.
The girls first view of the beach. They ran around in the sand in circles shouting with excitement before we'd even made it down to the water.
Anna's love of the water and Betsy's love of searching for seashells. Anna wanted in the deep part of the ocean with her daddy the entire time. If a wave crashed over her she simply came up sputtering, ready for more. (they wore life jackets)
Seafood!! I had in mind I didn't like shrimp before the trip but the guys (Brett and Jack) cooked it for us several times and it was so good! I also had gumbo and crab. And plenty of po-boys. The food was fantastic on this trip!
Audio books, movies, music, and having Brett by my side in the car.
The colors of the waves, water, and the sky. Almost an ombre' look at times....dark, rich blues fading into dreamy aqua.
Being at the condo together. We loved where we stayed and comfortably fit 5 adults and 3 kids inside.
Naps under my vintage quilt I brought from home.
The space, the quiet, the phone put away.
Reading Bread and Wine....again.
Eating at the Hangout and realizing we'd walked into a whole Pirates and Princess themed breakfast, complete with a treasure hunt.
Visiting the air museum in Pensacola and all of us seeing the plane (a Corsair) my father-in-law flew in WWII.
Playing with the girls and my nephew!
Being hot, hot, hot and the smell of sunscreen and getting a good tan.
Doing whatever we wanted, whenever.
Sitting on the balcony, looking out at the colorful beach houses and the ocean.
Going on a walk alone with my camera and finding one tiny, perfect sand dollar.
Taking the girls to Souvenir City, the same shark mouth store I've stood in as a kid.
The best part of the entire trip?
Being together. We went with some other family members and it was so fun to have us all under the same roof for a week. Together is truly my favorite place to be.
Travel, no matter how big or small, is worth it. In fact, it's up there on my list of "loves" along with coffee and musicals. Sometimes I wish I had the "stay-put" personality. The one that never wanted to go anywhere, but reside comfortably at home all the time. It sure sounds safer, easier, and cheaper. But that's not me. I'll probably always have one foot in the door at home, and another somewhere else. Dreaming, remembering, or visiting someplace new and exciting. Our world is big and great and there are adventure to say "hello" to right outside our front doors. But step a little further and an entire other world is waiting.
So, where to next?