Fun In the Florida Sun 2

  If you are just tuning in, I am back from my mini blog break, and sharing our family vacation with you all! It was such a special time, more fun than ever, maybe because we were all being very intentional with our time.  Losing Papa Don was one of the hardest things we have gone through as a family, and I think it just made us all savor each moment with my dad, who is also fighting cancer.

I think the BEST thing about vacation, is the escape from real life part.  No distractions, no phone to answer, to blogs to make, no photos to edit….just family time.  We spent a rainy morning or two, just playing and crafting with the kids.  Reading and hanging out. It was wonderful!  road trip 23road trip 25drea 2

The tent you see above, is where the kids slept, so we could get the other guest room ready for Chad & Lauren and the boys.  It worked PERFECT!road trip 24
  Thursday night, Papa and Drea took us to their favorite Seafood restaurant. Oh man, do I ever love sea food!  We can’t get the good stuff here in the midwest, so we EAT UP while we are there.

  Well, I do.  Dale is allergic to shellfish.  Oh well, guess that means MORE FOR MEEEEEEEEEEEE!road trip 26road trip 28road trip 29

We were going to go walk around the jetty at sunset, but as you can see, yet ANOTHER rain storm came blowing in.  I guess that is very typical for Florida, rain in the morning, then bright sunshine all day, big storms in the evening, then back to sunshine like it never happened by morning.road trip 30road trip 31

  Papa and Drea had a doctor’s appointment the next day, so we hit the beach, just the Ferguson’s.  We stayed for HOURS and had a lovely time.  A sweet lady came up to us before we left, and told us how wonderful it was to see a family interact and play together so nicely.

What an amazing compliment! 🙂 

  And a great reminder, that the World is always watching us, and as Believers, we are to be a shining example of God’s grace and love.

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  The waves that day were just HUGE!  Like 4 foot swells, that means when floating in the water, it goes up over your head if you don’t jump in time.  Both Ty and I lost our sunglasses to BIG crash over your head waves, and poor Pax took a tumble like a shirt in the dryer. Every time he got up, another wave pounded him back down. Praise God he was fine, it scared the living tar out of me! Those were the longest seconds of my life!  I could see him under there on the shore line, under the water, but couldn’t get him up.  road trip 33

We decided playing on the shore would be safer, so we headed up to make a sand castle.  We built a home with an underground tunnel to a private pool  Paxton decided the private pool was just his size!road trip 34

  On the way home, we stopped for the best Ice Cream from the Groves.  Fresh oranges grown right there at their orchard, then made into the most amazing ice cream EVERRRRRRRR!!!  I have tried all the flavors, and Orange Pineapple is by far my fav.  road trip 35

  Papa and Drea were waiting for us when we got home, so we showered, got on jammies and just played games and laid low the rest of the night.  The next day, Chad and Lauren were going to drive down to hang out with us for Father’s Day Weekend!

I have to show you this GORGEOUS breakfast Drea had me try.  You know I am a foodie, so I have to show you this…..Smoked Salmon with a drizzle of honey mustard and dill sauce, under that, a sliced and salted hard-boiled egg, under that is cream cheese on a whole wheat bagel.  OH MY STINKIN HECK, I want some more RIGHT NOW!road trip 37

That night, Chad and Lauren and the boys came.  We brought some good grass-fed beef from our house and made homemade Burgers and Onion Straws for everyone. Mmm mm Good! If you haven’t tried that one yet, you need to!  Click on the pic to grab the recipe.

Burgers-and-Onion-Straws.jpg

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6 adults and 6 kids {and another on the way} makes for a fun, full and loud house! Loved every second of it!

  Tradition states that every time we go to Florida, we go to the Der Dutchman for breakfast.  They have the best Amish inspired, home cooking, you have ever tasted.  Even the cream filled long johns are made from scratch each day. You all, I wait ALL YEAR for a long john….mmmm!

road trip 39road trip 40

  I don’t know if Der Dutchman’s stairs are getting smaller every year, or maybe our families are just getting bigger, but our yearly pic on the stairs, seemed a bit tighter than usual!  road trip 41

We hung out at the pool and relaxed the rest of the day.
Black lined photos, courtesy of Dreadrea 3drea 4

The next morning, we hit the beach. Yup, all 12 of us. 

Have you ever wondered what it looks like, for 12 people to go to the beach?

LOOK NO FURTHER……

Now THAT is a lot of gear!  Totally worth it for a day of fun in the sun with cousins!road trip 42road trip 43

drea 5
That’s it for today, more to come next week!

~T

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2 thoughts on “Fun In the Florida Sun 2

  1. That’s pretty amazing all right…to have 12 people invading the beach at once!! =D HOW.FUN!! Gorgeous photos…that salmon breakfast looks outta this world too. I must visit Drea! ;-} Thanks for sharing this precious and blessed time together. So very sweet! It truly is a blessing to even think of watching a family interact in this day and age. Sure do love you all. XOXOXOXOXOXO

  2. I hope your dad beats his cancer! I just lost my mom to it – very very hard!!! miss her everyday…But, it helps believing God has her and she isn’t suffering…all the best to you, your family and your dad…..I enjoyed your post on your florida trip – especially since I live in Sarasota…..you are a great photographer…..

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