Florida always does the trick.
a year ago, we had to load our luggage up in the side-by-side for the first leg of our journey to Florida. we had already endured the most epic season imaginable. The thought of sweating in the sun was a beacon for many dark winter days and nights.
in contrast, this season is about the mildest winter imaginable. (although, Wyoming Wind did not get the memo on that.) the snow falls in drips and drabs. enough to accumulate and blow into drifts, and to require tidying up laps with the plow. enough to ski the roads with the dogs. but not enough to ski allthehills.
i was certainly looking forward to Florida…but i wasn’t DYING to get a break from the winter.
we have now officially crossed a new threshold. we’ve been marching toward it for quite some time, and now we are through. we are no longer just traveling-with-kids, we now go-on-vacation.
airport travel was easy peasy. all the transitions were smooth. our mornings were unrushed our schedules unfull. we spend our days outside in the heat and exposed ourselves to new experiences all day long. Crit became a swimmer last week. and One Gold Debloom (that’s what Devlin would like to be called right now) grew confident on the razor scooter. Crit, who has a natural fear of animals, fed a giraffe, rode a camel, and held an alligator. and when her fear rose up while holding the alligator, she played it cool. she said suavely “it’s moving toward me” and she handed it back to the fella. i think i watched her grow right up in that instant. her pride kept her bouyant all day.
She ran with me on the crushed sea shell cart path, and gobbled up alltheseafood. OGD floated around the pool in his puffs. he woke up first and made the coffee every morning. he picked out decorations for Nanny’s birthday and made cards for their neighbors. he took afternoon rests and played with allthetoys. he got soaked by the waves and collected his sea shell. he laughed a lot and gave hugs and kisses all day and night long.
i took a couple of runs and one day-off. the homies went to the zoo. i rode Nan’s rusty Huffy to the beach. i set myself up a little nest and parked it on the shore of the Gulf. i brought no book. no snacks. no music. just water and sunscreen and a beach mat and towel and the mid day sun. i took a full-on sun bath.
my face was covered with my shirt. i could feel the heat of the sunbeams be received my sunscreened flesh. the seabreeze was more like hot breath compared to Chinook Winds i typically brace against. it left small piles of fine white sand as an outline of my body on the towel. i spent the week acting as if all my cells had the capacity to store solar energy. i tried my best to fill them all up to the brim.
i could hear all the sounds of a moderately crowded beach. the squawks of the gulls, the lapping of the mini-gulf waves. the vibrant laughter of the french speaking group of ladies behind me. the quieter whispers of disagreement coming from the couple setting up the umbrella above me. the giggles of children getting in the unseasonably cold water.
i spent those hours simply receiving. the warm sun, the cold water, the sand and shells beneath my feet. after i was completely saturated with UV, i mounted the bike and pedaled on home. after stopping to treat myself to sushi first. ’cause it was my day of receiving. i dined inside and took out my journal. i ordered a lunch platter of sorts. it was AMAZING. i savored each bite and drank oodles of water. everyone was out in the pool once i returned home. i cracked open a cold beer, put it in a couzee, and joined them.
there was a time that i took advantage of every moment of time away from those yahoos while we were in Florida. now, a few hours at the beach and plate of sushi will do. i love vacationing with them in Florida. i love hanging out with them and experiencing new things. it makes me all the more certain that road schooling will be right up our alley!!!
Florida was once again great for us.