This place is my happy place…you know when you’re at the dentist and their cleaning your teeth or drilling that cavity? I picture my happy place: Laying on the beach at Four Winds in Longboat Key, Florida with sounds of my family having fun, laughing and talking in the background.
We’ve been going on this family vacation for 12 years now. And when I say family vacation, I don’t mean just my immediate family, I’m talking extended family: aunts, uncles, cousins, second cousins, third cousins, great aunts, great uncles… you get the picture. We all have time shares within Four Winds and this year we had around 45 family members.
Ben and I flew down on the fourth of July to find our family already all spread out over Four Winds.
My mom gave me one of my birthday gifts early, a kite! It wasn’t windy enough to fly it, but we attempted! And that’s Jacob making “sand angels”.
Nathan was telling us that the fireworks went BOOM!
Even grownup boys turn into little boys when fireworks are around.
I just couldn’t help myself, I love playing with shutter speed 🙂
I love the awe of a child.
For a week your biggest decision is whether to go to the beach or the pool. If you go to the pool, you may have to fight for a spot on the steps since you can’t use the rest of the pool 😉
Practicing their “Dirty Dancing” lift.
Nights were spent on the beach.
The sunsets are AHHH-mazing! The colors are wonderful and so intense.
We usually eat dinner with all of my Mom’s immediate family (my Aunt Karen is a wonderful cook who makes sure we’re fed dinner all week). But this year my immediate family washed off the salt water and suntan lotion and went out to dinner one night.
Sisterly love 🙂
We also went mini golfing, but it was more like micro golfing.
Such a pretty course.
We went back to the beach for sunset and took a couple more pictures. Ben thinks I’m just testing the light, but instead I get the “model face”.
Seriously, that sky!
The clouds are beautiful, it looks like the heavens opened up.
The wildlife were really out this year! Dolphins were spotted almost every day, a manatee made an appearance, there was a huge school of minnows on the left that looked like a big dark cloud. I stepped on something that decided to scrape up my foot, we think it was either a sting ray or a crab.
The highlight of the vacation was a Mama sea turtle came up on the beach to lay her eggs one evening.
She would put her head down in the sand and use it to plow herself in the sand.
She stayed on the beach for about an hour and a half and laid her eggs and then buried them. She had quite the audience.
Then she headed back into the ocean and left all her little babies. The next day a biologist came and inspected the nest to make sure there were eggs and to rope it off.
It’s so cool to see all the storms out in the ocean.
I needed a break from the ocean after my foot was attacked so of course I made Cinderella’s Castle 🙂
Sometimes I can get Ben to wear pink for me 🙂
I’m spoiled and get to celebrate my birthday at the beach!
We finally did get some wind on my birthday to fly a kite.
My dad has quite the collections of kite and as a kid we used to always fly them on our beach vacations. Well I asked him to bring one of his kites this year so we could fly kites together on my birthday.
Glow sticks in the pool make night time swimming even more fun.
The boys in the family are quite the volleyball players.
Last sunset picture I promise 🙂
I got a Fujifilm Instax Mini camera for my birthday, I had some fun with it before we left Florida.
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