Monday, July 18, 2016

Second Week Vacation

Whew, coming back from vacation to a whirlwind. This week is the last summer playdate already, my last math/reading clubs were today.  I presented a program at the Master Gardner's Kid's Garden this morning, and working day after day trying to get my classroom moved back in.  Goodness, I dislike that job so.
Some sad partings on the wee farm.  Some of our chickens are quite elderly now ( seven years old) and a black australorp just laid down and didn't get up this week.  Though it is always sad, I'm glad she was able to get up and go, until she wasn't.  We lost a tiny silkie bantam, likely to a hawk, while we were on vacation,  and then our Mr. Merry went to sleep in his house Pap made him and didn't wake up. He was Pap's sweet, spoiled boy.

So, vacation-week two.  Ceece and the kids left Saturday morning as Handy Man, Rae and her menfolk were heading in my direction.  Big shift to wee folk who rise as early as I do.
It was a full, fun, hotter than you know what week.  I knew Handy Man would be needing a good meal after a couple days on the road. I had gone to the farmer's market there in Flagler and fixed a big supper with fried squash, tomatoes, cucumber onion salad, and corn on the cob.  They were ready to eat when they arrived in the afternoon and then we headed to the beach.  I was excited to see how the boys would respond to the ocean. You know it is kind of big and wild and noisy.  Mr. Smiley took one look and exclaimed, " That is dangerous."  Giddy-Up was willing to get up close as long as his Papa stayed near.  We sat in the sand with the baby and played and watched big brother. We then began to bring Mr. Smiley buckets of water and it wasn't long until he was willing to venture out a bit, though holding tight.

Giddy-Up was in heaven.  He loved everything about that beach and would play and play until you dragged him home.  I loved watching him imagine, create endlessly and with so much enthusiasm.   

This little mister found a tiny pool more to his liking.

 This kid is just so cute, and funny and smart.  I put on my big sunglasses one day and he informed me that I looked venomous. He is only still when he is asleep and is faster than greased lighting.  He sings all the time and sang, "Get out the way, here comes Willy," all the way to the beach I'm told.
 We'd go out early to the beach, come in for lunch and rest and Pappy wrestling.
 Soon it was time for another swim with the dolphins.  It just doesn't get old. Those animals simply astound me.

 On the way out,  the boy spied an Eastern Looper and needed to take a closer look. He has no fear of insects. I don't know how many he caught during our week.
 When the waves would knock him down, he would say, "That was awesome, but I don't think I'll do it again."
 One day we went to the Alligator Farm in St. Augustine.  I really like that park.  The boys were fascinated with the Komodo trying to find its food.
 And the Rookery was just unreal, there was a bird nesting everywhere you turned.

The boardwalk over the swamp FULL UP with gators was, umm interesting.

 A state park anchors both ends of Flagler and this time we visited both. Interesting that both straddle A1A and have a beach side and a wooded river side.  This park had a butterfly garden and a short trail, perfect for short legs and chubby ol' grandma's.  I talked to the boys about how people had to use their resources, no stores.  We wove a mat from a palmetto branch.

 The park on the opposite side had a river shore full of hermit crabs and various other crabs. So fun.

I don't know how many of these we picked up, trying to find one without a critter in it. We found exactly two with no inhabitants. See those gray spots where he is looking?  Everyone a hermit crab.

 Wow, creation impresses me mightily.
 The beach on the other side is the last beach where you can find this volume of coquina rock.
 We came back here  for sunrise and breakfast on the beach, and to check out the neat rock made of so very many shells.

 Having a little something, something.

 And finally, the mole crab, aka sand flea, I told Giddy-Up about. Finally, he caught one and we peeked at her orange eggs before returning her to the sand.
He was sad to leave the beach.  I was sad for him, he loved it so. 
I'm so very thankful to make these memories with them. To hold these smiles in my heart. 
 Bless the Lord oh my soul. Bless His holy name.


  1. What an amazing vacation! I can't believe how much Mr. Smiley has grown! He is no longer a baby, he is a little boy! The ocean and beach there is so different from here where the surf is always high. Amara would just love gathering all those hermit crabs. What wonderful memories you are making for them and for you! Happy Summer!

    1. He has grown. He is so tall and talks like he is three. The abundance of those crabs was astounding. Happy Summer to you to. I think you still have a bit left. Hope your girls loves her new school.