And, huge bonus, we got to take Grandma and Grandpa with us! Woot!
We piled all seven of us into the car.
Along with the necessities to stay at the beach for a week.
And all of the necessary beach gear.
(And we didn't even use the luggage rack!)
That was a hefty amount of weight on the poor old van's shocks.
We would make an awful sound every time we hit a bump.
And the bumpy bridge on the way to the Outer Banks(OBX) was hilarious.
The cars that would pass us were laughing AT us (with us?) while we drove.
Every year, we can't wait to change into swimsuits before heading down for a quick glimpse at the beach.
AND every year the kids get SOAKED.
When will we learn our lesson?
The next day was practically perfect in every way.
All of our normal fun beach stuff.
AND we saw dolphins swim by!
There were beautiful sunsets over the sound side of the island.
I talked the fam into going with me.
Andrew and I celebrated our 17th wedding anniversary while we were there!
We kept it low key, but it was so memorable and wonderful for me.
We took a blanket and sat on the beach, talking and looking at the stars.
You can actually SEE the stars there.
And satellites! So gorgeous.
And this is not a great photo of it, but we saw a spectacular red moon, too.
On Sunday, we drove 45 minutes up the island to church.
Except there was no church that day.
It must have been stake conference or something.
I hope we get blessings for trying.
While the girls were all dressed up, I convinced them to
let me do a little photo shoot.
Oh how I love girls in dresses at the beach!
If you look closely, you can see that C lost her front tooth!
It had been flopping around for the past couple of days, but
she refused to actually pull it out. (Or let us pull it out.)
She woke up Sunday morning and it was sitting in her mouth!
The other triple bonus about this trip is that Ang and Forr and their family
were also in the OBX, about 20 miles south of where we were staying.
On Sunday we headed up to their place and played together.
We came home in time for dinner because it was Father's Day!
And that means one of the two days a year when Andrew
gets to eat steak at home!
We cooked up a yummy feast and enjoyed every bite of it.
So fun to spend the holiday with Andrew's dad, too.
B took Grandma boogie boarding.
She caught a wave or two.
Our beach was interesting because it has a pretty sharp drop-off right when you get in the water, but then there's a sand bar about 20 feet out and you can stand in water up to your knees again.
It was the perfect place to play my favorite bobber game.
Caroline made a little friend from Raleigh one day.
Six year old girls are super cute.
One morning C and I went for a walk on the beach.
This is the little path we take.
People have decorated all the trees with shells.
It feels a little magical. I loved it.
One afternoon we headed down to Avon Pier.
On our way out to the car, we chatted with a marine biologist
who was taking a DNA sample of this hammerhead shark.
Not something you see every day.
We also visited the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse.
Then we stopped at a little art shop where we could do projects.
Grandma and B worked on a dragonfly together.
The girls decorated a dolphin.
Afterward, we met Ang and Forrest and their kids for dinner.
Wyatt, C, and W
On the way home there was another cool sunset.
My family is so kind to humor my picture-taken escapades.
These were kiteboarders out at sunset.
When we got home, we decided to go out crabbing.
It was just for fun.
They were ghost crabs, apparently not good for eating.
We had a fun time chasing them around, though.
You should have heard me screaming when it was my turn.
I didn't realize how creepy it would be.
The next morning, I talked Brandon into going BACK to
Cape Hatteras with me to climb the stairs to the top.
The view from the top.
We made it!
We met Ang and 4 again at one of my favorite places in the world--Jockey Ridge sand dunes.
Look at all that sand!
Then we spent one more fun day at the beach before heading home.
So many great memories.