Months of anticipation and planning.
Weeks of counting down.
Days of preparing.
Hours of driving.
Every second worth it because of the first few minutes on the beach.
First ever glimpse of the “real, actual ocean!” Wave jumping. Castle building. Sand burying. Shell collecting.
Sun-kissed cheeks. Sandy toes. Wonder-filled eyes. Splashing hands.
Mini-golfing for the first time. Ball in the woods. Ball over the fence. Hole in seven. Hole in one.
Cruising for dolphins. First time on a boat. Sun on their faces and wind in their hair. Searching the horizon. “I see one!” “There! There are three!” “Best vacation ever!”
Hunting for gators. Marveling at them. Hearing them bellow. Feeding them. Holding them.
Walking to the pier. Two miles one way. Splashing in the tide all the way there. Hunting sand crabs all the way back.
A few more hours at the beach. Pack up, load up, start heading north. Burn off some energy in the hotel pool.
Last day. Rocket museum. Rockets and helicopters and rides and playgrounds. Little boys staring in awe. Little girl reading every word. “We’re really learning a lot!”
And home again. To live this blessed life. With the man crazy enough to love this life with me. Imagining with him what the ocean will be like once Christ redeems it. Talking with him about our dreams for the future. Planning our next road trip and other great adventures. I am humbly amazed at God’s goodness in giving me this man, these children, this family, and this incredible week together.
So, so grateful.