Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Picture-Perfect Vacation

A picture's worth a thousand words, right?

If you kept an eye on my Instagram this weekend, you witnessed copious amounts of beachfront posts. The wispy clouds framed Owen standing patiently by the shore. You saw Nora, pink sunglasses in place, at bliss inches from the gorgeous sand. There were no signs of jellyfish sting remedy vigorously rubbed on thighs nor a single midnight meltdown. Pictures paint a thousand words, and while I have plenty of beautiful Gulf Shores photos to share... I'm here to trade out some of those words.

Last weekend the Bauer Bunch {plus two grandparents} braved the eight-hour trek to southern Alabama to dip our toes before school starts. Once the kids were properly separated and Nora was handed a Capri Sun in the fashion she requested, it wasn't too bad of a drive.

We stayed in a condo right on the beach, which helped in the act of transporting two boogie boards, two beach mats, 47 towels, a bag of snacks and drinks, a bag of sand toys, first aid, sunscreen, flip flops, and three kids. It was especially nice the morning we made the return trip a mere 15 minutes after arrival. This was not the case on the first day, however. The Bauer Boys sprinted into the water, collecting dozens of shells and chasing seagulls. There was even a shallow river that somehow formed between the shore and our chairs. Naturally, Owen used it to master surfing.

This was the day Nora June decided to tolerate the beach. She even let her Daddy bury her wiggly toes. For the remainder of our stay, however, she denounced all surf and sand. She spent hours splashing in the condo pool. And if this was what it took to make her happy, I was splashing right beside her. {insert completely authentic grin}

Adventures that did not involve swim diapers included a dolphin cruise and exploration of local cuisine. The latter included a collection of mama-sized margaritas, obviously. The final night we ducked into Bahama Bob's, a small joint just a block or two from our condo. It ended up being the best! We chowed down on fried alligator, delicious scallops, and you know I had a round of crab legs.

The afternoons in the condo were incredible. Most members of our party were either snoozing or electronically occupied, and it was quiet. It was insanely quiet. I watched the waves lap onto the sand over and over, and I tried to let loose of the late-summer-the-kids-are-driving-me-insane tension. Unfortunately, it returned at bedtime in an unfamiliar location, but we managed.

We got home late Monday night, satisfied that we were no longer trapped like road trip rats and thankful for clean bathrooms. Family vacations aren't always just what you see in the wide-grinned photos. We had a lot of fun, we had a lot of stress, and I'm thankful for the memories made {props to my parents for putting up with us}.

The ocean air was nice for a weekend, but I am happy to be home and ready for new routines. Now I will flip through these wonderful images as I count down the seconds until school starts.

Happy Hump Day, y'all!

 photo signature_zpsf6106f25.png


Unknown said...

You really have to try Doc's in Orange Beach. I don't think I've ever seen crab legs on the menu, but you cannot beat their shrimp, gumbo and crawfish tails. We've been going to the area for years and years---we usually begin and end our stays at Doc's. Love that you guys were able to get away and enjoy the beach.

Jessica Bauer said...

Thanks for reading, Debbie! Our dolphin cruise actually left from right beside Doc's in Orange Beach, but we didn't get the chance to try it this time around. If we ever venture back to the area, it will definitely be on the list. I love a good gumbo!

Janine said...

The beach looks bea-yoo-tiful.