On Monday morning, my Mom called me just to chat. She was on vacation with my Dad in Georgia. My husband Rich was home with me for the week and had already offered to send me away someplace if I so desired. (For every busy mom needs a getaway now and then.) I hadn’t given it much serious thought until Mom said, “You should come down here with us!” We both laughed about it, but after I hung up the phone, I still didn’t give it much thought. That is, until my Dad called me right back to also give some encouragement to join them on Jekyll Island. It made me so happy to know they wanted me to go. I found my husband drinking his coffee outside by the pond, we talked it over, and he made the travel arrangements for me. I was on the plane that afternoon at 3:30, arriving at Mom and Dad’s hotel at about 9:30, pinching myself every now and then, wondering if it was all a dream.
There were two main joys of this trip. The first being the island itself. Jekyll was quiet, and with little commercialism there was no choice but to slow down and enjoy the simple attractions that the island offers. There was a historical aspect and stunning nature to explore. (Perfect for my personality) The ocean was waving, the bike trails were long and plenteous, the quaint shops so full of unique treasures, and the only “chain” restaurant was a Dairy Queen, which we visited each and every day.
The second, and most important joy, was the chance to spend quality time with my parents. I naturally felt (as aways) comfortable, young, and safe with them. We made a perfect “parents and grown daughter” combination, made strong because of our thirty seven year bond of friendship/family love. I found myself imagining Rich and I taking similar trips in the future, with a cherished grown up child or two able to travel with us. My parents raised a family of five children, and I think there must be a beauty in having grown children, as it enables the parents to rest in knowing the very busy parenting years are over, and yet still nurture family bonds, only this time with adults, and with the absence of the other siblings (something very rare in the growing up years). My parents love to spend quality time with each grown child and their families, and they have very special relationships with all of us.
So yes, it was especially dear to have a turn with Mom and Dad.
Mom and Dad have been to Jekyll Island many times and I have never been at all, so they had the joy of showing me their favorite spots, and I had the joy of seeing so many new and exciting sights. We were together all the time.
I loved seeing all the colorful flowers and green grass.
I loved seeing and hearing the ocean.
My beautiful mother……….
Pictures of dear Dad and Mom. . . . . . . . . .
My very favorite memory of the trip was the night “Duck Dynasty” came on over and over. We were in our hotel, happily tired out, and I got on the bed with Mom in the middle and Dad next to her. The three of us sat there together leaning against the pillows with our legs out on the bed, Dad watching his favorite show, and Mom and I reading. It was all so cozy, and we talked only when we felt like it, for well over an hour. I just loved it so much. I kinda sorta felt three years old again.
At the Dairy Queen, for our nightly ice cream treats.
Dad always always gets chocolate.
P I N K N E S S
I got on a bike for the first time in probably 20 years. We each rented one and spent a morning riding all over the place (about 13 miles total).
Dad and I at breakfast the first morning.
A view of bamboo through an old red window (in the museum), I was thinking of my 10 year old son, who is fascinated by bamboo and wants to grow some.
Yeah, I took a picture of a dead jellyfish. Mom and I found it washed up on the shore and thought it had a beautiful design.
The peaceful sand dunes. Turtles lay their eggs here every year.
We spend time by (and in) the heated pool at the hotel.
I thought of Grace as I took this picture of a pink horse. He was still pink from being colored on Easter Sunday.
“A naturalist, whose heart held a love for nature in all its varied forms.” I loved the wording on this plaque in one of the cottage gardens. Cecily must have been a kindred spirit.
One last picture before I had to leave on Friday morning.
Today was my first full day home. After all that vacationing, I had no qualms about jumping right into the swing of things once again. I ran errands with Rich, I’ve done four loads of laundry, gone grocery shopping, made a huge dinner using all new recipes from a cookbook I bought on Jekyll, completely cleaned out the fridge with Grace’s help, and most importantly, did a lot of loving on all my attention-starved children. Rich took great care of the family while I was gone but of course I was missed a good deal because of my own very charming personality and pleasant ways.
It is now almost 10:00pm and I suppose I will go to bed soon. As I drift off to sleep I will think about the happy days I spent on Jekyll Island. I will remember the precious faces of my parents and will probably even hear in my mind the sounds of the ocean, Dad’s drumming, Mom’s laughter, and the quacking of that funny duck we heard.
It was a wonderful vacation in so many ways, and for it especially I am, at this moment, thankful.