Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Destin Vacation - Part 1 8/9/14-8/12/14

Towards the end of July, Wade was sweet to ask me what I wanted for my birthday.  I casually replied, "I just want to go to the beach..."  That wonderful guy went straight to his office and started researching a last minute vacation to Destin.  He continues to make my dreams come true after all of these years.  :)

As luck would have it, the rates in San Destin dropped the week of my birthday, so we were able to get a killer deal in our favorite part of the resort (the Bungalos).  We were all super excited to squeeze every last drop of fun out of Summer 2014!

We left on Saturday, August 9th, and drove most of the way.  The boys loved stopping in Nachadoches for meat pies (Clayton was a big fan!).  We spent the night in Hattiesburg, MI.  We woke up on Sunday morning and went to tour the USS Mississippi.  The boys thought that it was great fun!  I loved watching them explore and trying to imagine what it would be like to live for months on the boat.

After exploring the battle ship, we made our way to Destin.  We checked out our cute house, unloaded our bags, and went to the grocery store.  We called it a day and went to bed pretty early.  There was tons o' fun to be had throughout the week!

Before we left, the boys and I made a "Beach Bucket List."  There were lots of activities that we wanted to repeat, and a few new ones.  By the end of the week, we did every single thing except for the water trampolines (they didn't have those at the docks this year - boo!).
On Monday, we booked a Snorkel trip through Destin Snorkel.  It was so much fun!  The boat took us out to the jetties to snorkel and then took us to "Hermit Crab Island."

This beach baby kills me...
 Love him!

 None of our boys had snorkeled before, but they did pretty well.  Clayton took to it like a fish to water (haha- I crack myself up...).  Drew took a bit to figure it out, but he was all in once he got the hang of it.  And Owen just wanted to ride on my back.  ;)
 Two thumbs up from the Drewster!

We saw some pretty cool fish and shells at the jetties.  A good time was had by all!  One the way from the jetties to Hermit Crab Island, the captain was able to get us right by a pod of dolphins that were putting on a show.  It was amazing to see them jump and play in their natural habitat.  Such a treat!
 We found gobs and gobs of hermit crabs at Hermit Crab Island.  The boys were bummed that they couldn't bring the crabs onto the boat.  Wade and I were not disappointed at all.  When it comes to pet hermit crabs, we've been there, done that.  ;)

 After lunch and naps, we went for an evening round of mini golf.  :)

Tuesday was my birthday!  My guys always make me feel so special on my birthday!  They let me choose exactly how we would spend the day.  I got to pick my dream agenda:  a day at the beach, dinner at the wharf, watching the fireworks over the bay, and then key lime pie (even better than birthday cake!).  I was in one of my favorite places on Earth, with my favorite guys on Earth, doing my favorite things on Earth - it was a perfect birthday!

My man is good at most everything, but he is reeeeaaaalllllyyyy good at vacations!  He makes every trip so much fun!  He bought us a canopy and a free standing hammock, hauled it all to the beach, and set it all up.  It was AH-mazing!  Best set up on the beach, by far!

This kid was made for the beach too!  It didn't take him long to get into vacation mode!
There is no better view for this birthday girl!

"Mama, will you build a sandcastle with me?"  How could I refuse?  :)
He was pretty proud of the end result.
After our successful guided snorkel trip, we decided to buy 5 snorkels to see what we could see on our own.  Clayton found all kinds of sea creatures.

 Drew was way into boogie boarding.  He did a great job paddling out and riding the waves in.  Cute little blond surfer dude.  ;)

 We had the. best. time at the beach!  It made it slightly easier to pack up for the day knowing that we would be back several more times throughout the week.  :)  We got showered and cleaned up for dinner.  Then off to Hammerheads to eat a Seafood Steamer Basket with a lobster.  Oh my goodness - it was divine.  So, so good.
The band had all kinds of instruments and encouraged the kids to come up and dance.  The Carpenter boys were all over that!  Yes, that would be Drew break dancing.  Apparently, the beach brings him out of his shell.  Haha! 
I'd like to say that they shot fireworks just for my birthday, but that would be a fib.  It was just a lucky coincidence.  They shoot off fireworks at the pier every Tuesday night.  ;)
The boys wanted to go to the arcade down at the wharf.  They had been such troopers doing exactly what I wanted to do all day long - it seemed only fair.  Clayton was the big winner scoring 250 tickets.  He was stoked!
Our house came with a golf cart.  It was so handy to pile in and take to to the wharf each day!
We ended the day with key lime pie, baths, and bed.  What a wonderful birthday I had!  Thanks to all four of my sweeties!


Lone Star Family said...

Fun!! I remember as a kid we would always stop and visit the USS Mississippi on our way to Florida.Great memories.