We did it. Yesterday we took a much needed break from the farm and spent a day with the kids.
We hit the beach around 10:30. It was glorious!
Believe it or not, we came to Florida out of necessity, not desire. Bob and I both knew we needed to be here - the call to be with family when his mom was diagnosed with Alzheimers was unmistakable.
We had been living in the middle of nowhere, Virginia, looking for a farm to raise our children on, and we had been having absolutely no luck finding one. We had looked at 40 or so homes with acreage that were for sale, and made a couple of stupid offers - offers which, we know now, had the buyers accepted, would have seriously been a bad deal for us. We would not have been able to make good on our financial promises, and ultimately, would have lost everything.
Moving to Florida was out of the question. I had been there and was unwilling to raise my family there. Period. So we continued to look at properties for sale in VA. One morning, while having coffee with my husband, out of my mouth came the words, "What about Florida?" I have no idea where that came from as adamant as I was that we would NEVER live in Florida, but the moment the words were spoken we both knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that Florida was where we were supposed to be. That we would never find our perfect farm in Virgina because we were not meant to be there. It was as clear as day, and we had immediate, absolute peace about the decision.
We've been here 12 years now.
With a large, shallow swimming area sectioned off from the shipping channel by rock jetties that open out to the Gulf of Mexico, yet with fresh sea water flushing in continually keeping it clean, it is the perfect place for kids to swim and to snorkel. Six to 8 feet deep at the deepest part of the "kiddie pool" inside the rocks, but if you cross over the jetties it immediately drops to a depth of 30+ feet, and either side hosts large numbers of colorful, diverse, tropical fish. Yesterday the tide was right and visibility was fairly good, so my husband, daughter and I went to see what was there.
Here's what we saw from down under:
We didn't stay long - maybe an hour or so, but it was perfect! Afterwards we went back to the house to swim and BBQ and eventually back to the Homestead. Except for coming home to find the AC compressor had frozen while we were gone and the air was not working, it was a much needed break from the farm. I checked off a few things from my summer manifesto list (Read more about that HERE ) specifically, beach, snorkeling, corn on the cob (YUM!), enjoy the swimming pool... - believe it or not, it was the first time I'd ever been in the new swimming pool Bob built in town just before we moved to the farm almost three years ago!
In a short time my husband fixed the air conditioner and we were in cool comfort again in no time, planning our next beach adventure!