Sunday, July 18, 2010

What summer activities inspire your imagination? I'm having the bestest summer!!!! Part 1

What inspires your imagination on summer vacation?

OK, I've had 3 young children in my life for 8 years now. It's great, it's wonderful. I love being a mom. But it can also mean no time for breaks. Vacations and holidays are more work than usual. Full time moms don't get vacations. They just get more work. At least when they kids are in school, I can have a few hours to get things done around the house. When they're home . . . that just means more messes are being made for me to clean up. I can't keep up. I love being a mom. I hate the whirlwind housekeeping. I love spending time with the kids, but I hate how responsibility to do what I'm "supposed to do," gets in the way of enjoying of motherhood.

So, in the past years, summer vacation wasn't exactly a vacation for good ol' worn-out mom.

HOWEVER! This year is so much different. The kids are more independent, not as whiny, which means we can go more places and actually enjoy them (mostly) tantrum free!!!!!

So far, this has been the most enjoyable summer that I've had in a long, long while. I must add, since this is a writing blog, writing IS related to my bestest summer in a long long time. You see, I find that my creativity is spurred by new experiences along with being able to mentally digest them. I've been able to do that this summer. whoooo hoooooo! New things! Time to think! *insert happy giggles here*

There's stories, stories everywhere! I've done and seen several things this summer that have inspired my imagination. I'm sharing them here because I know my dear, sweet blogger friends will understand. You guys are great!!!!

Here we go! But this is just one summer-fun-thing. More is to come.

The lighthouse in the background is on Cape Look Out, NC. My oldest daughter learned about the lighthouses in NC ( our home state) in school this past year, so we surprised her by taking her to see her favorite. (she hugged us when she realized where we were! Good parent points acquired.) It's a remote island. Hardly anything is there. Just a light house, keepers quarters that doubles as a museum and walkways to allow visitors to walk among the island w/o disturbing it's natural surroundings. There are no restaurants, no shops. Only park rangers and visitors who come by boat. Guests are told to collect their own trash, since there is no trash pick up. Boaters anchor on the sound side of the island. There were at least a dozen private boats idle on the waters when we arrived.

Our ferry captain instructed us to remove our shoes in order to disembark in the 5 inches of water to get to shore. It depends on who you are. Maybe that sounds like a nightmare to some. To me . . . it was awesome!!!! I love getting away from the tourism, the cookie cutter money pits. Something more natural. Give me sand in my toes, even in my hair! Let me not care if I have make up on! yippeeeeee! FREEEEEEEEDOM!!!!!!!

Anyway . . . the picture above is my youngest daughter holding a conch shell that I found while swimming off the coast of Cape Lookout. I've never found a complete shell of this size anywhere! EVER! I was so excited! Once I found it, it was like a drug. I was determined to go back in the water and find at least 2 others (so each kid could have one) Unfortunately, after thinking I found another shell, only to have it pinch me on my little toe (it was really a crab) Owie! I kept searching. But when the rip tide started to pull me in, plus time for the ferry back to the mainland grew closer . . . I had to concede. One shell was all I could have (for now) But I was happy. Mark this as a highlight of my trip. But one day I'm going back to Cape Lookout, just so I can find more conch shells. :0) No kidding. You have no idea how many shells I collected as a kid. None even close to the size of this mack-daddy! I want (need) to go back. Large shells will be mine! Mine I say! Mwa-haaaa-haaaa-haaa-haaa!

This is my family standing in front of the "ferry" that we took to Cape Lookout. Can a 13 passenger boat really be called a ferry? I'm thinking it should really be called a "cash cow"

See the horses in the background? Those are wild horses on Shackleford Island. Those are Spanish horses whose ancestors were shipwrecked in the 1500's and have survived on the island ever since. Our Ferry captain, Captain Calico Jack, made sure to drive us close to the horses before taking us to shore on Cape Lookout. Thank You Calico Jack. Thank you for not just being concerned about time and schedules. Thank you for diverting from your route so we could have a memory! I've never seen wild horses in their element before. What a story! Surviving remnants from a shipwreck in the 1500's. How have the horses been able to survive? What happened to the people who were transporting them? Stories . . . stories . . . everywhere. I want to know! I guess I'll have to go back for research sometime too. Not just conch shells.

There's been so much, this summer. But it's too much to share in one blog.

Thanks for reading about one of my great summer memories. Now let me hear about yours.

I want to know. What summer activities have inspired your imagination? Past or present.


Kelly said...

Love the pictures, Christy! Your family is so cute! I love how your daughter hugged you when she realized which lighthouse you were at! Family vacations definitely do get less stressful and more fun when the kids get older. We just returned from a 2 week RV trip to South Dakota and Wyoming. I had never camped before! So it was a great new adventure for all of us!

Vijaya said...

Hey Christie, thanks for stopping by and letting me know about Critter. I've read your blog off and on ... Boy, you guys pack a lot in your summers. Fun, fun, fun. Summers give us downtime ... and I love it because it is essential for creativity. No schedules per se except our morning and evening chores, and we manage to take a couple of camping trips.

C.R. Evers said...

Hi Kelly! Glad your camping trip went well. How fun!!! :0)

Hi Vijaya. Thanks for stopping by! :0)