A little over two years ago, we celebrated Nana's 80th birthday. Nana spent many years living near the beach & talked often about missing the ocean, so as her 80th birthday gift, my extended in-laws told her that all of us would get together for a beach vacation. Last week, we finally got to make that happen!
Last Saturday, Laker's immediate family met up in Shawnee early in the morning to start our drive. Late that evening, we finally made it to Florida!
Sunday was our first full day in Destin. To start the day, we walked down the street to a little coffee shop called Camille's, where I grabbed a vanilla latte, then walked across the street to the beach. We spent the majority of the day at the beach, with a break for lunch. Laker & I walked around searching for Pokemon on Pokemon Go. We found a Squirtle (among others), & also some real turtles, or at least a sea turtle nest. Then we decided to break out my new underwater camera, & had a good time playing with that. In the evening, a bunch of us went to Dewey Destin's for New Orleans-style snowballs. This was probably the best snow cone I've ever had! I got the creamy coconut flavor, & it didn't taste artificial at all, yet had so much flavor.
On Monday, we decided to give our beginning sunburns a break & spent the first part of the day at the rental house. Laker & I took a break from our relaxation to chase down the ice cream truck (which came by our neighborhood every day!). We also wore our family t-shirts that day. In the evening, we went to HarborWalk Village, which is down by the docks. Laker, Halli, Alex, & I got pizza at a restaurant called Crust, then did some exploring. Halli & I fed the fish, & also got slushes made inside of pineapples. Mine was pina colada, & hers was strawberry daquiri (both virgin!). We all got photos with the sunset, then headed out to grab pie at The Donut Hole. I got key lime pie, & it was honestly the best key lime pie I've ever had. Two "best ever" desserts in one week - Good job, Destin! Then we headed back to the beach for a nighttime walk.
Tuesday started with another stop at Camille's on the way to the beach, this time for a coconut latte. We spotted the ice cream boat out by the water, which I thought was really fun! In the evening, I shot family photos for everyone. I love how they turned out - We were blessed with great lighting & great weather! Alex was kind enough to document the photography process as well. haha After photos were finished, we had a shrimp boil for dinner, made by the guys. This was a new experience for me, but the food was great! This was my first time having to de-shell my own shrimp though (is that the proper terminology?) & you can basically see from my face in the picture below how I felt about that. Payton had to teach me how. I was not good at it, so it was way too much work for that little amount of food. We also celebrated Andrew's birthday that evening with cookie cake & cheesecake!
Wednesday, of course, started with a walk to Camille's (for a chai latte - perfectly spicy & sweet), followed by a walk to the beach. We went to Dewey Destin's for lunch. I had a salad & got some seafood gumbo to try as well. Then Halli & I made a quick run back down to the HarborWalk Village to check out a bath shop we had missed when we were there before. We stocked up on bath bombs, & also took advantage of a giant chair photo op! When we got back to the house, I took some photos of the lime tree in the backyard (How cool is that?), spotted a lizard, found some pretty flowers, & then we headed back to the beach for a bit. That evening, most of the cousins went mini golfing with Uncle Jon. I was pretty proud of myself for staying within about 4 points of the top score! I also got a hole-in-one at one point!
Our last day in Destin was on Thursday. Laker, Alex, Halli, & I went to the Destin Commons for lunch at Chipotle. We explored a few of the shops, grabbed macarons at Whole Foods, & Halli & I got photos with a giant chalkboard. That evening, Laker & I headed home with Paul & Sybil. We caught the sunset on our way out!
Christ. Laker. Lily. Padfoot. Puns. Polar Bears. Travel. Tea. Tattoos. Tigers. Books. Belle. Buffaloes. Wonderland. Creativity.