We just returned from our family vacation to Destin. We usually go on vacation in September but this year Carter starts Kindergarten in the fall and Ella Ann will start Pre-K so we moved our vacation to May. It was so nice to start the summer out with a week at the beach! We left for vacation right after Carter’s last baseball game. We were so fortunate that Dad, Mom, and Craig took Ethan with them. He is good in the car, but 7 hours is definitely pushing it for him. The ride down was pretty easy with the two older boys. Seth did require several pit stops, but other than that, they played with their bags of toys that we packed. Our DVD player pretty much stopped working on the way down, so they were forced to entertain themselves. It was a big bummer, but they did good.
The weather was perfect all week. I think it rained one time for about 5 minutes and the rest of the time was great. It was hotter than we are used to since we usually go in the fall, but not too bad. We were also blessed not to be swimming in oil. The water was clear and beautiful the entire week.
Carter, Seth, and Ella Ann slept in one room together on the first floor with Nana and Papa on one side of them and Uncle Craig on the other. I think there were a few rough nights and many, many EARLY mornings! Spencer, Katie, and Rane were upstairs on the third floor, as were Zach, Ethan, and I. The babies did pretty good, although there were several mornings that we were all up by 6:15 and dowstairs in the kitchen. That can make for some long days!
We usually went to the beach in the morning. Carter LOVED the beach, but Seth, Ella Ann, Rane, and Ethan were not too fond of the sand and definitely did not like the ocean. By the 4th day, Ella Ann and Seth would get their toes in the water if an adult was holding their hand. 🙂 Carter spent the entire time at the beach searching for hermit crabs, fish, sandfleas, and shells. He had a net in his hand the entire time! He also used his new fishing pole two days. He didn’t catch anything, but also didn’t leave it in there long enough for something to bite. He would throw it out and reel it right back in. That’s the fun part, right?!
We came back to the house around 11:30, made lunch, let the kids play in the house for a while, put the babies down for a nap, and then went back out to the pool. We were so blessed to have a pool at our house. While the babies slept, the big kids would play in the pool. The kids made BIG progress in the pool this year! Carter, Seth, and Ella Ann all played in the pool with their water wings on!! HUGE progress from last year when they mostly played on the steps. They were three little fish this year and loved playing in the pool with all the guys. Uncle Craig, Uncle Spencer, Papa, and Daddy were big hits! It was so much fun to see them learn to love the water!
Most nights we went out to eat, but we stayed in a couple of nights too. Going out to eat with 5 children, 2 of them only 1, can be challenging, but they were actually pretty good. We had some great meals this year, probably our best year to eat out in Destin.
We were sad to leave Saturday morning. We’ll miss all of our extended family and the fun times we had at the beach and pool, but we are lucky that we had this week to get away! Enjoy all the pictures!