The second week that we were in South Carolina, we loaded up our 12 passenger van and we drove to Wild Dunes on the Isle of Palms.
This time that we spent at the beach, was our first true family vacation.
Sure, we've gone away before ... we've traveled back and forth across the country almost 10 times, and we've been camping and spent many a night in a fancy hotel.
But this trip was different.
There was nothing to do but just rest and relax.
And play ...
And then, play some more.
And if you were with Henry ... DUCK.
(Or, at least - wear goggles.)
We weren't rushing around to see people.
We weren't taking long day trips to various parks and attractions.
We weren't busy entertaining groups of people.
Our days were spent playing at the beautiful beach that was just at the end of our street.
After splashing in the waves for the better part of the day, we would go swimming in a fresh pool and watch the sunset.
At night, we would have wonderful dinners ... like Frogmore Stew ...
Once the children were in bed - we would sit in matching rocking chairs and have a cocktail on the porch. And then, we'd play cards.
During our vacation, I read two books, that I had discovered in the beach house library. Late at night, early in the morning - and while reclining in a chaise lounge at the beach - I read. People, I cannot tell you the last time that I read two books, in a week.
Dr. Seuss not included.
Our vacation at the beach was amazing.
It was heavenly.
It was everything that a vacation should be - and then some.
And because we were there with mom and Jim who have both had significant health challenges this past year ... our trip was very special.
I would like to interject here that Jim was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer less than three months ago. He suffered a massive stroke less than two months ago. He was in the hospital for almost a month and is still completing his recovery process, at home.
Here's Jim. Diving, head first, in to the waves of the Atlantic Ocean.
Every day that we would go to the beach, Jim would dive head first in to the waves, at least twice.
So not only was this vacation wonderful and revitalizing for us ...
I think it was healing for both Mom and Jim.
(That one leg that Mom is balancing on, just so happens to be the leg with the knee she had replaced eight weeks ago.)