quick trip to Jekyll

fullsizeoutput_61c3

Good morning, so sorry for my absence here, it felt long to me!  I haven’t posted in over a week!  Because………

……..last week at this time I was flying to Georgia with my husband for a very quick visit to Jekyll Island.  What can I say about it?  It was a whirlwind, I was tired beyond words because we had to get up at 3:30 in the morning to make our flight, and it was freezing cold.  However, on the positive side, I didn’t have to worry about my children with good ol’ Michael in charge here at home, I was able to relax and look at some beautiful magazines on the plane and start a good book, I ate good food, and I was able to see some lovely sights and visit my brother!!

57583439157__89558F3D-5BD2-4A5D-B4FC-C3B7D186DB6C

We stayed at the Jekyll Island Club resort where it is beautiful all over and there are huge old trees draped in spanish moss.

57583495238__6D29CCC4-EF20-43F7-89C0-0F41017FFDC6

The little coffee shop at the resort.  (love the floors!)

57583499465__0F40C5A7-BF28-40AD-B49A-A1D25D11A39B

This is what I wore on the plane and I’m smiling because I have my coffee in hand and there are pink flowering shrubs behind me.

IMG_9315

The trees, the trees, the glorious trees.  It was a treat to feast my eyes on the green and the flowers.

IMG_9316

Rich had to work in the hotel room so I was off on my own for several hours and managed to get cold and wet in the rain, although quite happily.

IMG_9321

driving

IMG_9323

A little place we found.

57584778350__B0805D14-0EAC-4FF8-AACC-16E8841C2725

visiting

57584777427__2FC05136-3E88-4241-A644-38BE0884D02D

view out the back of the cottage

57584785983__5DBBC7EF-E60E-4DD3-BAC6-2D9A6A575698

57584840734__F5F39ECA-814F-44F2-9A54-1C01A0ABB360

It was raining hard, with lots of wind……

IMG_9352

The next morning it had cleared some, but it was still chilly so I wore the black leggings again plus a long skirt, a black shirt, and a sweater.

IMG_9354

We had an appointment that morning and then went shopping.

fullsizeoutput_61c4

The shops were next to the ocean so I ran down to put my feet in.

IMG_9374

The clouds and the sea.

C4B84879-8671-4BCA-94E5-98CEA8207EE6

And then, guess what?  By God’s providence we were down on Jekyll Island the very day David and his girlfriend arrived for vacation!!!  I was able to meet dear Ann and it was an instant friendship.  The four of us met for a nice seafood lunch.

IMG_9387

fullsizeoutput_61c5

With a beautiful view out the window.

fullsizeoutput_61cd

fullsizeoutput_61ca

My very first best friend, and we are still the best of friends these 40 years later.

I love you Dave!!!!

IMG_9410

One last walk on the beach (Tuesday evening) by my lonesome, Rich was out running.

IMG_9423

I sat by the window and Rich sat on the aisle, with an empty seat between us.  I thought my thoughts and read my book and even dozed now and then.  It’s always a little bit of a relief when the plane lands for the final time (we had a connecting flight) and you realize you survived yet another trip (I’m a slightly anxious traveler)…….I was happy to get home (Wednesday afternoon) and see the children again although the house was pretty messy.  It didn’t take too long to get it back into order (the kids did most of it).

Happy Monday!

dave gets hugged

IMG_1908

This is another blog post dedicated to our vacation to Jekyll Island, Georgia.

These photos were all taken with my phone.

I had bought Crackerbarrel gift cards for Christmas presents for last Christmas…but never gave them out…so we used them ourselves for a nice breakfast.  I do feel kind of bad about that.

There was a tiny baby at the Crackerbarrel sitting at the next table over.  She was so little I wondered how she was going to sit with out falling forward and bumping the table.  But she was strong and did great and was sooooooo cute.  I watched her as she kept her eyes on the spoon her Dad was feeding her with.  I ended up holding my own very big baby on my lap by the end of breakfast.

IMG_1910

This is Caleb doing artwork and eating oreos during the trip.

IMG_1913

Taking naps during the trip.

IMG_1928

We finally arrived!  Sarah was just so thrilled to be “in Georgia”.

IMG_1934

This is me and my sister, with our girls Abbie and Grace.

IMG_1929

Food at the Pier was amazing.  It’s my favorite place to eat on Jekyll.  I had the boiled shrimp and this is the plate of seafood that Jacob and David shared.

IMG_1941

One morning I left the Sans Souci with just my little Seth (6 years old).  We were the only ones awake out of my family.  We snuck outdoors, holding hands, and went over to the main Jekyll Clubhouse to get my complimentary cup of coffee.  On the way back we met Isaac and Cassandra about to go on a bike ride.

IMG_1944

While all the men in our family went golfing, I took Caleb, Seth, and Sarah to the little shops by the Clubhouse.  Seth quickly chose this dog puppet.  He named it Jekyll.  At the next shop, I had him sit on the bench outside and play my phone so I didn’t have to keep track of three small kids.  Later I discovered that he had taken this picture of his new friend.

IMG_1945

If you bought a soda you got free refills with your cup all day long.  The kids all LOVED the Shirly Temples.  We got them over and over.  There is nothing like an ice cold soda on a hot day.

IMG_2016

Amanda took this one of my mom and me walking with Cassandra and Maria.

IMG_1949

Rich took Caleb, Seth, and Sarah biking.

IMG_1952

Mom took Ethan and me to Brunswick to do a little shopping at some antique stores.

IMG_1954

IMG_1955

I took this picture for my son David because he collects Coke bottles.  This purple one was purple, heavy and cost 40 dollars.

IMG_1956

In Brunswick there was a park square every few blocks.  Each one was named and had nice places to sit and relax next to flowers and fountains.

IMG_1969

I took Grace to the shops.  This is one of my favorite pictures.  We were missing our own cats back at home and were happy to find and make friends with this nice big one outside of the bookstore.

IMG_1970

My favorite stationary….curly girl design.

IMG_1971

IMG_1972

Grace lost her necklace on vacation.  It was her favorite one, too.  (she’s wearing it in the picture).

I lost my new kindle fire.  (!!!!!!!!!!!) makes me ill.

IMG_1976

On Friday night we played beach volleyball.

IMG_1979

IMG_1981

IMG_1983

IMG_1985

It’s amazing to have a family big enough to have a game, and it was so much fun.

When we hit it out of bounds someone would say “Look out for the alligators!” or, “Look out for the rattle snakes!”

IMG_1988

I was supposed to be playing my position but still managed to get some good photos!

IMG_1989

Sunset making the road look like it was on fire…….

IMG_2003

On Saturday morning it was time to say our goodbyes and travel back home.  I love this sister-pic of Maria, Cassandra, Melissa, Amanda, and Shanda (yours truly).  I love how all our names end in “a”, the “uh” sound.  I especially loved visiting with Maria and Melissa because I don’t get to see them as much as I would like.  I’m so blessed to have the best sisters.

IMG_2005

Aunt Amanda, Uncle Jason, Grandma, and Grandpa leaned into the van to say goodbye to the children.

But one was missing!

It was Dave.

He had ran over to the pool to try to find his flip-flops (another thing lost..ugh)

So Rich and I hopped in the van, ready to leave, and watched as the family gave Dave lots of hugs.  And he’s the type that gets shy with too much public attention!  It was the best little moment……

IMG_2007

IMG_2008

IMG_2009

IMG_2010

He’s in there!  Surrounded by his adoring family.

IMG_2011

Look at that face!

IMG_2015

goodbye, goodbye!

God be with you ’til we meet again.

“You can kiss your family and friends goodbye and put miles between you, but at the same time you carry them with you in your heart, your mind, your stomach, because you do not just live in a world but a world lives in you.”  Frederick Buechner

lunch at the club

DSC_0322

DSC_0326

DSC_0342

DSC_0348

DSC_0343

DSC_0350

DSC_0353

DSC_0355

DSC_0356

DSC_0357

DSC_0359

DSC_0360

DSC_0363

DSC_0365

DSC_0367

DSC_0369

DSC_0381

DSC_0383

DSC_0387

DSC_0391

 

 

DSC_0396

DSC_0401

 

DSC_0405

DSC_0407

DSC_0420

DSC_0421

DSC_0415

DSC_0411

DSC_0412

DSC_0417

Another full day has come and gone.  At this very moment, I am sitting on a wooden balcony of the big beautiful Sans Souci Cottage in a rocking chair with my tanned bare feet up on a small white table.  The evening sky is a multitude of blues, marbled with gray clouds and one small streak of orange sunset.  Amazingly loud cicadas are filling the air with their sounds.  Mom and Dad walked by on the paved sidewalk underneath me and we said hello, then Amanda and her family, then Rich and the children.  They are all returning from an evening swim at the pool which I was too tired to participate in.  As I sit and look at the photos we took today, my heart is filled with gratitude for this State, this Island, the land of our vacation of dreams.

Most importantly, the family–my family–is continuing to grow and bond through loving hearts, words, play, laughter, food, prayers, small gifts, and joy — making memories underneath a big Georgia sky.

 

greetings from jekyll island

I changed the theme to the blog in order to post vacation photos nice and big!

DSC_0124

We had a long drive from Connecticut to Georgia.  This picture was taken at one of our many rest stops along the way.

DSC_0127

Grace picked me some wild flowers.

DSC_0129

DSC_0138

I rode up front with Rich but switched seats with Jacob now and then so Seth could be with me.  He lost his first tooth!

DSC_0147

DSC_0156

We ate at a frozen yogurt place.

DSC_0158

DSC_0169

And then we all made it to the Island.  We arrived on Sunday afternoon…my parents, my siblings, and all their families.  The pool has been the main attraction so far.  It’s so special to see all the cousins together.

DSC_0170

DSC_0173

Ethan showed his Grandma (my mom) a picture of the girl he likes.

DSC_0177

DSC_0179

DSC_0183

The kids all loved hanging off Uncle Nate.

DSC_0185

Yesterday evening we had a fantastic dinner at the restaurant at the pier.

DSC_0197

DSC_0205

My brother Nate.

DSC_0207

DSC_0210

My sister Amanda.

DSC_0213

We have rooms at the San Souci, a big beautiful old building.

DSC_0222

The beach was stunning last night.

DSC_0224

My son Ethan.

DSC_0228

Me and Sarah

DSC_0238

DSC_0242

Caleb had his light sabers taken away shortly after this photo because Seth was hit very hard in the mouth with one.   Thankfully he was fine and today he just has a slightly swollen upper lip.  But it was a bad moment and we left soon afterwards because it was starting to get dark.  Seth had taken his jersey off, when I asked him where it was he said he had buried it!  After wandering for a while Rich found it.

DSC_0245

DSC_0247

DSC_0249

brother Dave

DSC_0251

DSC_0260

push ups!

DSC_0265

This morning we went to some of the little shops in the historical section of the island.

DSC_0267

“the day was quite warm and we walked along leisurely……”

We went through the museum and watched a video about the Island.

DSC_0268

They were playing with an old telephone.

DSC_0272

Seth, my Dad, my Mom, and Caleb

DSC_0275

DSC_0278

Seth and Gregory in one of the gift shops.

DSC_0280

DSC_0282

Caleb with his Grandma

DSC_0284

My brother Isaac and brother in law Jason coincidentally wore the same clothes today.

DSC_0285

We met a little dog named Lady at the shopping center.

DSC_0288

Grace read books in the Jekyll Island lending library.

DSC_0295

David was determined to catch one!  When he caught it, it was brown, then it turned green in his hand.

DSC_0301

We were all hanging out at the pool and I caught this sweet moment when David came back over to join us he went straight to his brother and patted him on the head.

DSC_0305

We are currently on the balcony off my sister’s room.  Mom french braided Naomi’s hair, and then Makayla’s.

DSC_0309

And the little ones played a game with their little toes.

We are talking about what to do for dinner.  I had fried shrimp and sweet potato fries for lunch and am not very hungry, but all the boys need some food.

day 5: driftwood beach

DSC_0878

 

Last day on Jekyll.

Driftwood beach.

Mom, Dad, and I drove around and parked at one of the trails for a nice, long walk.  Cameras and binoculors ’round our necks.

DSC_0882

ripples of clouds in the sky

DSC_0927

ripples of sand under our toes

DSC_0894

old trees left standing the way the wind blew as they grew

DSC_0898

 

DSC_0895

along the beach are huge fallen trees, like a nature playground

the roots upended and weathered by salt water and time

DSC_0897

DSC_0907

at times it seemed we could go no further, but there was always a way (under, around, through, over)

DSC_0917

glittering ocean foam

DSC_0926

drips and drops leaving perfect circles

 

DSC_0919

 message in the sand; thinking of my love

 

DSC_0922

parents

 

DSC_0915

 

*****

DSC_0931

 

path to the shops

I endeavored to find a little something for each child; a tiny harmonica, shark tooth necklace, books, little tokens, for them to know “Mama thought of you.”

DSC_0937

DSC_0932

baby palms

DSC_0933

bamboo

DSC_0939

lovely pottery shop

DSC_0941

so much beauty in green and brown and pink

 

DSC_0943

 

hanging spanish moss

IMG_2866

last meal together before I had to go to the airport ~ with my dear Dad ~

IMG_2869

the lovebirds

****

I am home-sweet-home again and Jekyll was last week’s memory.  I had such a refreshing vacation; I came back moving and thinking much slower, a good indication to me that the trip away was needed for my well-being.   It was my second visit to this place, and I understand, now, why my parents keep going back.  If you go once, more than likely you will feel the need to return, and I miss it today.  There is a lot to do on Jekyll for activities, but it’s also a good place to relax in nature, too.  I hope to go with my family someday, I know they will love it, too.

click here for more information on JEKYLL ISLAND

****

thought for today:

“This is my person, now indwell by the living Spirit of the living God.  I shall not permit it to be cramped and contaminated by exposing it to such dusty trivia as newspaper propaganda, pornography, cheap debasing literature, hours of low caliber television programs, or rubbish from the mass media.  Instead, God’s Spirit will lead me to expose myself to the finest art, literature, and music.  He will put me in situations where my mind can be improved and my soul stimulated with that which is beautiful and noble and lofty.  I can and will become a person of broad interests, noble aspirations, and enormous enthusiasm because I belong to Him and He wishes to put me out into wide fields of fruitful and useful endeavor ….”

“I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.”  John 10:10

what day are we on now? Day 4

DSC_0839

 

Nothing is worth more than this day. ~Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

 

We are at the end of day four and this is my last night here on Jekyll Island so I am a tiny bit sad.

I am a little sad, but mostly content, though, because we three are having such a great time….today was manicure and pedicure day for Mom and me.

Dad dropped us off at the Jekyll Island club and we walked around a little before we went to our appointment at the spa there.

DSC_0845

There were tall stemmed poppies in bloom, bright orange and white ones, a feast for the eyes.

DSC_0847

Mother in the poppies, looking like a poppy in her yellow sweater.

DSC_0842

Spanish moss is so fascinating and pretty to look at~

DSC_0854

DSC_0855

three little birds

DSC_0858

a quick little snack before our pampering–

DSC_0861

Mom got a french mani and pedi and I got a regular mani and a polish change on the toes.  There was only one nail professional working so we sat through each other’s treatments.  It was quiet and nice and no one else was around but the owner and she was fun and easy to talk to.  The woman doing our nails was only 22, and calm and capable.  My polish was OPI’s “Miami Beet”  (such a fun name!)

DSC_0863

After our nails dried and we met back up with Dad, we went to the Rah Bar on a pier by the water.  We had the most wonderful shrimp, I had a half pound of them with some red potatoes, and ice sweet tea.

DSC_0866

DSC_0867

Then we headed back to the club for dessert at the cafe.  They had Dad’s favorite black bottom muffins and because he had given us gifts, (as you will see in a moment) Mom and I bought him two muffins.  I had one, as well (a dense chocolate muffin with a little scoop of cheesecake topping and chocolate chips in the cake) and Mother had a big oatmeal cookie with dried cranberries.

DSC_0868

 

See my pretty nails?

IMG_2851

Mom and Dad swam in the hotel pool while I read my book and then the three of us got into the hot tub.

IMG_2856

My handsome Dad wearing his new hat that he got for himself.

IMG_2857

IMG_2858

So when Dad met up with us at the spa he was carrying a bag.  He had gone shopping and of course we wanted to know right away what he had.  But he wouldn’t show us and told us to stop snooping and trying to know his business.  Once we got to the Rah Bar for our shrimp we were still curious and he said, “Oh all right, I’ll show you what I have.” and he pulled out a gift for each of us; a canvas bag with a soy candle inside.  He had chosen each thing carefully.

IMG_2860

My bag is the one with the books and CS Lewis quote, and my candle is “Celtic Moonspice”.  I wonder if I’ll ever burn it.  Dad gave it to me!

I am currently watching American Idol, on the bed with Mom, while Dad is in the other room learning new drumming techniques on his computer.