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Monday, August 27, 2012

My kind of peace

This week's GBE2 prompt is "Peace".  As usual, the topic is very apropos since I just spent a beautiful, peaceful weekend at the beach.  (If I need to go back & link to all the instances where I mention the calming effect the ocean has on me, we'll be here all day.  Just take my word for it.)

Headed down to the beach
Our little fam likes to make at least one trip to the coast each summer.  Most of those trips have been spent with my husband's immediate family.  Unfortunately, those days are over b/c both my parents in law and my sister-in-law have gotten divorced in the last year.  In both cases, the split was something that needed to happen, but it doesn't make it any less sad to see our big family trips come to an end.  Never-the-less, we had a very nice weekend, just the 4 of us.  (Our little trio plus my mother in law.)

We drove over to Crescent City early Saturday morning.  For some folks, the beach is a sunny, warm place where people frolic in the ocean & lounge around in very little clothing.  In our neck of the woods, however, the opposite is true.  At home, it was over 100 degrees & we were stripping down to our undies at every opportunity.  On the coast, we were wearing sweat pants & hoodies.  Though that may seem like a bad thing to most people, to me, it's perfect.  I love the overcast skies, the biting chill in the wind, and the cooler temperatures.  If it were hot & sunny, I'd probably not enjoy the beach as much b/c I'd be too busy struggling w/ my poor body image to have any fun.  When it's nippy & I'm huddled in a huge sweatshirt, I feel right at home.  I'm protected and comfortable.

A perfect Saturday night
Immediately upon pulling into town, we checked into our hotel then headed down to where some seals were lounging on the docks.  After that, we walked down to the beach and casually strolled along the shore while Trinity splashed around in the freezing cold water.  We spent an hour and a half or so just walking in the sand before heading up to the hotel room for some lunch, followed by a quick trip to a lighthouse & tide pools, and a local park.  We had dinner at a restaurant near our hotel, then made a bonfire on the beach, where we watched the sun set and roasted s'mores.  By far, the bonfire on the beach was my favorite part of the whole trip.  Just sitting there in our chairs, the driftwood crackling in the fire, the waves whooshing up on the shore...it was close to nirvana.

Sunday morning, we were up and at 'em early, ate breakfast, loaded up the car, then spent a couple more hours walking on the beach, collecting shells and checking out the starfish that had washed up in pools on the sand.  At one point, Trin, who is obsessed with zombies right now, went into flesh-eating mode & started chasing us adults around the beach.   It was a significant change of pace from our leisurely stroll. Afterward, we decided to do the typical touristy thing & hit up Ocean World.  The last time we were at Ocean World was when Trin was 4 or 5 years old.  The whole time we were walking through, I kept seeing spots where I had taken pictures of Trin when she was little.  The nostalgia was overwhelming at times.  Before heading for home, we stopped at the park we had visited the day before and had a nice picnic lunch.  (By the way, I fully intend to find the pictures from a few years ago & put them side-by-side w/ some of the ones from this trip to illustrate just how much my baby has grown.  When I do that, I'll probably update this post to include them.)

Zombie-Trin chasing me!
Trin & I slept almost the entire 2 hour drive home.  We packed a lot into our 2 day vacation, but I still feel like I got the full soothing benefit of the ocean.  I needed that.  I don't want to put words into her mouth, but it seemed as if my mother-in-law needed it, too.  She was much more relaxed by the end of our trip and even mentioned that it was nice to spend a whole weekend without anyone getting into a fight.  (I'm pretty sure I've posted once or twice about the funny family dysfunction we typically experience on holidays/vacations.)

The new week has started & I definitely feel more balanced & ready for whatever challenges I'll face.  I can't explain why the ocean has that effect on me, but it does.  And thankfully, it usually lasts quite awhile.  This is the last week before school starts.  After a busy summer, we're going to take advantage of the 3 day weekend to get our house back in order.  This would normally be the point where I feel overwhelmed & want to hide under the covers & wish the clutter will magically disappear.  Instead, I'm calm, focused, and ready to plow through the cleaning/organizing/project-finishing extravaganza that is ahead of us.  Thank you, Pacific Ocean.

Our little trio on the beach

***UPDATED***
Here are the then/now pictures I mentioned.  I literally cried when I put them together.  My baby is growing up too fast!!!!





14 comments:

  1. It sounds like you had a good time. I can just imagine how peaceful the beach would be!!

    Kathy
    http://gigglingtruckerswife.blogspot.com

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    1. We had such a great time! There is nothing like being at the ocean!

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  2. WOW Nirvana? this must have been a glorious time. Love your blog, the format and ESPECIALLY the very last picture in your note. TFS!

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  3. Wonderfully wonderful time! Thank you so much for sharing with us.

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    1. I'm always happy to share. Thanks for reading. :)

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  4. I feel ALMOST as if I could smell the ocean. What a nice retreat you shared with us! And the fam pic is perfect. ♥

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    1. Thanks, Jo! :) We had such an awesome time!!

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  5. Thank you for this virtual journey to the ocean side. The pictures say it all. Lovely read.

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    1. I'm glad you enjoyed it. Thanks for reading! :)

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  6. Just getting away to somewhere else brings great peace. You and your family sound like a great bunch and I loved the photos.

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    1. It's amazing how much it helps just to get out of town for a day or two! Thanks for reading; I'm glad you enjoyed it!

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  7. Was vacationing at a beach last week, the ocean has that effect on me too, its a great stress buster.

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    1. I read somewhere that the ocean's effect on us has something to do w/ the amount of water in the human body. I don't know the science around it b/c *yawn*, but whatever the reason, it's amazing how calming it is! I'm glad you got some beach time, too! :)

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