Sunshine State

To celebrate my dad’s 80th birthday, the family met up at his favorite place: Siesta Key, Florida.  Phil and Noni flew in from Houston, Uncle Tim and Aunt Cindy came down from DC, and Kit, me, and the girls flew in on on our first family flight since last summer to the two Washintgon’s.

What you’ll find below is lots of pictures of this great but brief family gathering.  We all stayed in a cozy off-the-beach house together.  We had only one full day all together, and a couple of nights, but it was really amazing to have everyone together, especially for an occasion like my dad’s big birthday.  His official birthday meal was a “taco bash”, which meant a huge volume of taco meat, shells, and fixings delivered to enjoy on the sunny patio, truly Phil-style.

A few quick notes, and then on to the pictures…

  • Claire was fanatical about swimming on the beach.  She was brought almost to the point of tears when we had to leave each night.
  • Molly was fanatical about the beach toys that came with the rental house.  Her favorite was her little plastic beach wagon, which is featured prominently in the pictures.  There was also a little plastic dinosaur, which Molly named Rexi.  Molly built entire sand castles for Rexi and carefully took him around everywhere.  Tragically, at some point Molly lost Rexi to the sea.  She handled it pretty well, and we hoped that a mermaid might adopt it.
  • Molly also had a project make the ocean “less deep” by dumping one tiny shovel-full of sand at a time into the ocean.  She got her little scoop of sand from a spot about 20 years inland and carefully carried each scoop to the sea, making sure not to spill any until she actually got to the water.  She did this for nearly two hours.
  • Besides Rexi, we also lost two pairs of goggles (mine and Claire’s) during the trip, plus Molly’s at home just before the trip.  When Claire lost her goggles to the sea, she was in a near state of panic because it meant lost ocean swimming time.  After some negotiation, Molly kindly agreed to share her replacement goggles with Claire.

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