Friday, April 3, 2015

Spring Break 2015

Spring Break 2015 has come and gone, but it ended up being a wonderful week of fun in the sun!  Mom, the kids and I headed down to Gulf Shores for a few days, while poor Bobby stayed behind to work.  (Someone had to do it.)  We stayed in Laguna Bella townhomes where -- interesting fact -- my mom and stepdad used to be owners.  Sadly they sold our place shortly before Rob was born.  It's such a nice, quaint little area way down on west beach.  In the image below, you can see a huge eyesore condominium tower to the right that was built after Hurricane Ivan cleared some land in 2004.  Nevertheless, this area still qualifies as "low density".  It's right across the street from the beach, and backs up to the lagoon, complete with a fishing pier.  Heaven!

image source
We arrived late Sunday afternoon and, ironically enough, the sky looked a lot like the picture above.  It was cloudy, windy, and cool, but that did not deter us from getting straight into our swimsuits and heading to the sand.

While Caroline and Will wasted no time playing in the sand, Rob started snorkeling.  I should mention here that the water temperature could not have been more thank 65 degrees.  It was frigid! But you'd never know it by the way Rob went right in and got to work!

The next day, Monday, we headed out bright and early to the beach.  We had a blast playing, sunbathing, and kite flying.  I set up a canopy/tent and lathered the kids down with SPF 50, but still they got a little too much sun.  Actually, I did, too.  Oops.
Rob and his new buddy also named William flew a kite for a long time.  Sadly they accidentally let go and the wind took it straight into the powerlines across the street.  Bye bye kite!
So on Tuesday morning, we skipped the beach for a few hours and headed to the Gulf Coast Zoo.
We love to go to a zoo, watch the animals play, explore their habitats, etc.  But this zoo is, well, it's a little on the small-side.  It's almost like the little-zoo-that-could.  The majority of the time we spent feeding deer, goats, and a donkey.  Yep, there's a donkey.

When we got back to the condo Will took a nap and the rest of us went to explore the Lagoon.  That quickly gave us the idea that we could play and splash around in its warm shallow waters much more comfortably than the freezing gulf.  (Well, I should say Caroline and I played.  Rob wanted no part of the first) That's when we discovered that the lagoon is home to 1000's of hermit crabs.  We even saw one hermit crab that appeared to have been someone's discarded souvenir pet crab! We ended up going back to the lagoon a couple more times this week.  We even got Rob in on the action.  He, too, was fascinated by all of the crabs and set up a crab race!

We ate out several times, and I have to brag on my children's behavior.  They were so wonderful -- not perfect, but well above expectations for over sunned, under rested young people.  In fact, they were so good, that the last evening they warranted some reward-style fun activities.  First up...go carts!

After we left "The Track" we thought we would try Lulu's for dinner, knowing there would be a lot of entertainment for the kids while we waited for a table.  Let me fast forward and say we never did eat at Lulu's because the wait was 2+ hours.  Anyway, while we attempted the wait, naively thinking it would not be quite as long as the quoted time, Rob got a wild hair and wanted to do this:
image source
It's this climbing obstacle course on which you are harnessed and attached to a guide track overhead. There are several different paths to take, all of which involve narrow balance beams, wooden ladders, tight ropes, and a plank at the very top -- three stories high.
Funny story:  Rob was harnessed in and climbed the staircase to the first level.  He crossed his first wooden bridge to a platform, looked around, and started heading back to the staircase.  From the ground mom and I called out to him "Where are you going now?"  He looked at us with a "duh" expression and said "I'm coming back down!"  I was partly heartbroken for him and partly relieved that he sensed his life was in danger (it wasn't, actually).  Somehow, though, he stood there for a moment and you could see this determination cross his mind.  He turned back, and ended up scaling all three levels.  He was on the course for well over an hour!  (There is no time limit).  I was so proud of him for conquering his fear!

That, friends, is my firstborn walking the plank!

We came home on Thursday.  It was a short trip, but just what we needed to finish this spring strong!  Next up is Easter and then summer!  We have no less than 2 more beach trips planned.  Can you believe it?  I'm so excited.  It's safe to say the beach is my "happy place" and I am so thankfully blessed to have the opportunity to instill this love into my kids.  

Until next time, here is what happy looks like:

Stay sunny, friends!

No comments:

Post a Comment