Sunday, April 15, 2012

R & R

Sand in my suitcase and a little pink skin can only mean one thing: we've been to the beach! When we were assessing the benefits of our move to South Carolina, being within a day's drive of Jeff's parents was high on our "pro" list. For the first time - and decidedly not the last - we took advantage of our proximity to them and escaped for a little spring break fun. Luckily, Wyatt's break was a week later than much of the South's; apparently we missed massive crowds by a matter of days. It was pretty much a perfect trip!

{Sidenote: I think I've glossed over a little life fact on the blog, and that is that we caved and bought a minivan shortly after arriving here in South Carolina. Yes, it's true, the Camry is no longer in the family. But trust me, as I was cruising down the interstate with two kids happily watching their movie using wireless headphones while I listened to my own stuff on the radio and Millie dozed in the third row, I was pretty glad to be a minivan captain! She earned her place in our family by providing ample room, easy access for all our cargo, excess cupholders and road trip peace. That's my "go, minivan!" spiel for today.}

Wanting to stay here for Easter, we headed out on Monday morning, less bright and early than we hoped, but still made it to the beach just a little after dinner time. After enduring hours of "are we still in South Carolina/Georgia/Florida?" and "how much longer until we get to Grandpa and Grandma's, mommyyy?" and "can we watch another movie/have another snack/play another round of I spy?", I was delighted when Wyatt recognized the Publix in Seagrove. At that point I already had the windows down and the sunroof open (a holdover from my youth and wanting to 'smell the beach' before we could see it) and when Wyatt saw that grocery store, he completely went berserk. It's a miracle he didn't scare pedestrians or break his car seat with all the excited kicking and thrashing and shouting, "I recognize this! I recognize this! We are so close! Oh my gosh I'm so excited! We are so close!" Natalie quickly jumped on board, saying she recognized it, too, and promptly held her baby up to "yook out the window, baby! It's the beach! Do you see it? That's it, right over there!" So of course I had to get a picture of that.

We spent the remainder of the week enjoying absolutely perfect beach weather and completely relaxing. There was a lot of sand play, water play, pool play and spoiling of two young people and their mommy by a certain set of grandparents.

I bribed them for this picture by promising that I wouldn't make them do it again
as long as they'd sit still for two minutes. They lasted approximately 30 seconds.

My mermaid. She LOVES the water!

Wyatt, feeling pretty cool.
Wyatt, learning to row because Grandpa made him pull his own weight.
Natalie and Grandpa returning from their voyage; she didn't have to row.
She was, in fact, completely kicked back and enjoying her cruise until she saw me taking pictures,
at which point she whipped out her pageant wave for the camera.

a boy, a shovel and a beach full of sand...

…equal hours of fun. My boy loves the beach as much as I do!
serious sandcastle business

note the action: Grandpa mid-shovel, Natalie mid-pour, Wyatt getting more water

It had a moat and everything. It was all hands on deck by the end - mine included - to make the moat work.
Instead, we had the opportunity to teach about erosion.

Our only group outing during the week was to eat at The Red Bar, because no visit is complete without it (Dear blackened grouper over cheddar bacon grits, you never, ever, ever disappoint me!). Natalie was especially looking forward to it since that's where she earned her "Papa's dancing queen" nickname last fall. She started shimmying as soon as we walked in and continued in her chair through much of dinner, though got a little stage fright when we went and sat down in front of the band afterwards. Wyatt was in a lovey mood that night and I enjoyed every minute of his cuddles since he rarely slows down for prolonged periods of snuggling anymore.

practicing their Cuban 8's with Wyatt's airplanes

Papa and his Dancing Queen
Wyatt love
me and my babes

Trips to the beach always make me wish I were a photographer. The natural beauty is just amazing to me and I want desperately to capture it. With both magnolias and blue lupine in bloom, Grandma and I thought a little photo session would be fun but I hadn't packed anything for it, so we did what anyone else would do and went shopping! We found a cute little white dress for Natalie and she was all for having her picture taken until she dug her foot into an ant hill (I don't blame her - her foot had a bunch of little welts on it and I'm guessing it really hurt!). After a little recovery time, she thought she wanted to go back out, but between our fear of it happening again and my need for a photography class, I didn't get anything fabulous. I did, however, end up with nice documentation of her love for baby and a couple other perfectly Natalie pictures.
it started well with a beautiful magnolia but that proved to be distracting
immediately pre-ant hill…notice that foot burrowing down
recovery time with baby back at the house

Kid creed: if there's sand, I must play

this is what you get when you tell a three-year old there's a clown in the lens.

As we left yesterday and made the initial turn away from the water, Wyatt said, "bye, beach! I love you!" and Natalie started crying. I told her we'd be back in June and that made her tears disappear. Without me prompting, Wyatt said, "Mom, that vacation was awesome! I am so glad we came." Of course Natalie jumped on that bandwagon, too. I asked what they liked best and Wyatt loved it all while Natalie said she "yuvved building sand castles with Papa." I just love that my kids are building great memories with people who love them so much and in a place that means so much to us. Thanks, Grandparents Rock, for a great spring break!


Mom said...

Sounds fabulous! Wyatt and Natalie are changing every day, and did get some good photos despite the ants.

kristen said...

Love it and the Mini Van story :) MMM the Red Bar...when we went in the Fall some random guy took Bryce up to dance and that was pretty darn funny...we tried to get pictures but it was too dark. Love the beach...give kisses to our beach buddies.

Susan said...

That's my favorite beach of all time and I love how its connections to us have become all mixed up and intermingled. So glad you had a great week.

Seeing these pictures reminds me of how very deeply we're missing you, Jeff and your kids.

Darling's said...

Great pictures! Glad to see you survived a road trip by yourself and the kids!! I know I will have to suck up and do that one day, but I will take all the help I can while I can :)