Sunday, September 22, 2013

Beach Trip 2013

We just got back from a FANTASTIC week at the beach. We go down to Delaware every year on the off-season, just after summer, and rent a beach house for a week. The weather is nice; it's not far; we get great deals on a beach house; the dog gets to go on the beach all day; it's not crowded; the local restaurants have great deals to entice the locals back; it's a great way to relax before getting into more school/fall/winter stuff . . . there are so many reasons. It is one of the great benefits of homeschooling. :)

Our schedule is pretty much this: sleep in until whenever; have a leisurely morning eating breakfast and relaxing; go to the beach daily - read, relax, play, sit, eat on the beach; get cleaned up and go out for some delicious food (usually seafood); leisurely walk around the boardwalk shops (candy stores, book store, ice cream shops, etc.); get back to the beach house and relax while watching funny stuff on DVD; go to bed. Lather, rinse, repeat. 

This year, to make our tradition even sweeter, we were joined by our dear friends, the Johnsons (because they live here now). We had a GREAT time.

Day 1

Mark worked in the morning and was on call all day. We all made sure to be packed up and ready to go by about lunch time and then caravanned down. We make sure to stop at the Trader Joe's on the state line, on the way in and on the way out, to pick up good, yummy food for breakfast, lunches, and snacks. Always a treat! We got to the beach house, explored it, unloaded the cars, and then headed out for some delicious food and fun.

Checking out the fun shops. So happy!

Grotto's Pizza!

Grotto's Pizza!

We were so full, but we managed to find room for dessert, so we stopped at an ice cream shop that has been featured on the Food Network and the Today Show - we tried all kinds of delicious ice cream flavors including Crack, Mountain Dew, Zombie, Better-Than-Sex, Bacon, This Ish is Off the Hook, Samoa, Cake Batter, and more. YUMMY.

We then walked down to the beach and got a picture of the kids on the beach.

Here is a picture of Christie putting her feet in the water. Not kidding.

Thing 1 accidentally snapped this picture. 
No idea what Christie and I are saying or doing in this picture, 
but it's hilarious, so I'm posting it.

Here's the boardwalk picture we were going for!

Day 2

Day 2 was our first official day on the beach and it was CHILLY. Here we are with the Unabomber.

He was cold, too.
These two kept warm by role playing and wrestling on the beach:

The rest of us bundled up:

She's so snuggly!
Because he wasn't bundled up enough . . .

I love this face!!

We got back to the beach house and cleaned up (and warmed up):

Then we headed back to town for some browsing and good eats:

And good laughs

These little shops are the cutest!

At the bookstore . . . :)

Preparing to FEAST at Claw's - an annual tradition

Behold the seafood!
I so wish this picture weren't fuzzy, but you can tell we're SUPER happy. Who wouldn't be? Did you SEE the table of food?!?

Fuzzy, but happy :)

This girl LOVES lobster!

"I don't even care!"
They were IN. THE. ZONE. It was a sight to behold. FABULOUS night of eating!!

The great sheller of crabs!

Me and my soft-shell crabs - YUM! Thing 1 and I shared. :)
Seeing Dave enjoy this food was a definite highlight of this vacation! He barely stopped himself from sitting at someone else's table and helping himself to more crabs when we were all done.

Love Rich's face in this picture - Caption this!
So, after stuffing our faces with seafood, we visited Coldstone Creamery for dessert:

I cannot remember why we're laughing so hard, but clearly we're having a great time!

As are they. "It's Guy Love . . . "
Back to the beach house for the evening - Blitzy and Scout (Blitzy trying to play with Scout and Scout trying to get away from Blitzy):

Scout and Blitz
Day 3

Why do vacations always go by so fast?!? It was much warmer and sooooooo very nice to be at the beach.

Tuckered out

She loves the sand!

How the heck is that my little girl?!? She's getting SO grown up!

Cute kids!

Love these kids!

It got a little chillier as the sun set . . .
Back to the beach house to clean up and back to the downtown to EAT. This time, we ate at Jake's - we tried this place for the first time this past year and I've been dreaming of their seafood bisque ever since. I so hoped my memory was right - that this place was as fantastic as I remembered. Based on EVERYONE'S reactions, it turns out? I was right. DE-LI-CIOUS.

Tuna Poké - DELICIOUS!

VERY happy diners. A little sunburned, but happy.
Jake's was a huge hit. I believe Dave's exact words were, "Can I go back in the kitchen and just stick my face in the soup pot?" We also all said we'd drive down there just to eat this food for dinner.

Chillin' at the beach house
Day 4

I'm telling you. It FLIES. BY.

Loading up for another great day at the beach

Our beautiful olive-skinned girl!

She wants NO part of the water. Sand only, please.
Our cute son!

There were some tugboats in the ocean that morning:

Daddy-daughter body surfing

Mark teaching Rich to ride the waves


Reading on the beach . . .

. . . while eating? Also happiness.

More happiness! I LOVE THE BEACH!

It got a bit chilly as the day went on.

Me and my girl

I love the sand.

Looking gangsta-tough on the beach (really, he's using his hat to block the sun)

Our family

The Johnsons
I am only allowed to show that picture, because Blitzy is covering Christie's face. Why? Because of a scrape on her head. Why? Because while she attempted to body surf, a wave slammed her down. And then another. And then another. So her face met with the ocean floor. Who knew that that scrape would be NOTHING compared to the bruising and swelling that would develop by the next day. Think Klingon forehead, burned/scraped skin, two PURPLE, half-shut eyes, a fractured nose, and a concussion. When Christie does something, she personally ensures she's done it well. Even though it's become a legendary story from the trip, I do promise that the week was GREAT and she keeps saying they're excited for next year! (I don't think she'll be attempting body surfing again).

The whole Folson clan - Beach Trip 2013
After getting cleaned up at the beach house, we headed out for the traditional candy shop stops:

Gorgeous Harvest Moon

Delicious Fusion Food at The Cultured Pearl - I am sunburned, by the way.

And delicious chocolates for dessert back at the beach house

Day 5 

Sniff. Sniff. Goodbye, beach house. Goodbye, beach. Thank you. We always stop at the beach to breathe it in and say thank you. See you next year!
Kids on spiral staircase
Three waves crashing down on Christie and royally bruising her face notwithstanding, it was a fantastic vacation. We all had a great time. We did not get sick of one another. We're all up for doing it again. The kids got along famously. The dogs tolerated each other pretty well. The adults laughed like crazy. The beach house was great. We all ate incredible food. We all relaxed at the beach. Love, love, loved it. WE LOVE THE BEACH! Thanks, Johnsons, for joining us and enjoying the week with us!


Dr. Mark said...

I want to go (back) to there! What a great week! Great food. Great weather. Great friends. Great fun.

Three hours. 14 blue crabs. Limitless fun. And Dave, don't forget, just get the knife in there and pop off the lid. Easy, right?

Guy love? ". . . there's nothing gay about it in our eyes."

What a great bunch of kids! They are all incredibly awesome. I feel really lucky to have two great kids and to get to hang out with two other great kids.

And happiness is right. I love hanging out on the beach with you. This is a wonderful review of a fantastic vacation!

J Fo said...

WOW!!!!! That looks fabulous! I love that much of your vacationing revolves around great places to eat...because that's exactly how I am!

LMW said...

Yes, that sounds like it was a great vacation. Going on vacation with great friends and focusing on eating great food sounds like my kind of vacation for sure. In fact, when Bill and I go anywhere out of town, we have a rule that we don't eat anywhere that exists in our own no chain restaurants. Unfortunately, if we're with others, most of our friends like to eat at the "safe" chains, because they don't tend to be adventurous eaters.

The Magic Violinist said...

I had so much fun! :D We need to do this again (but with a house with more bathrooms).

Dr. Mark said...

Yes, food is the first priority. All other activities will be fit in and around meals. And we like the "no restaurants you can get at home" rule. We tend to be the same way.

And yes, MV, more showers next time. Maybe 4? ;)

Emily Foley said...

Oh man, poor Christie! That sounds awful. I love the beach too, even if it's cold. Really it's better if it's cold because then I don't have to feel guilty for not getting in the ocean. That looks like a fantastic trip. Seriously amazing!

Jagged Rocks said...

I haven't been to a beach in about six years, so I am a little envious.

Boquinha said...

I know, right? It's like they went to the beach with friends from the east and west coast - of COURSE their friends would teach them how to open crabs when they started eating and not on, say, the final crab.

I love hanging out on the beach with you, too - so relaxing. Why don't we live there?

LMW, it sounds like you guys eat like we do! We're all very adventuresome with eating and that's something we love about the Johnsons - they are, too. (Plus, they get all our Friends references and make them, too). People who stick to chains and fast food make me crazy! We were just talking about that with Dave's parents. It's such a pain to be with picky friends while traveling. We love trying regional foods, too. When in Rome . . . Thing 1 and I both tried sea urchin for the first time while in DE. Delicious! Okay, so add eating together to the list of things to do together someday!

TMV, agreed!

Emily, I love the beach in ALL seasons. There's something so wonderful about being by the ocean.

Kim, come visit. We can hit the beach. :)

Jimmy said...

Whoa! Christie. That sounds like it could have been scary.

And still you managed to have so much fun! All the pictures are great.

LMW said...


Boquinha said...

:) Awesome!

Jimmy, she ended up fracturing her nose, getting 2 black (purple) eyes, and a concussion!

Dave Johnson said...

So, it's taken me forever to actually read all the way through this because things have been so nuts since we got back.

Seriously the most fun I can remember having on vacation. The food was ridiculously good, the company was fantastic, the beach relaxing. It was also really nice that you guys have been there enough that you should show us the ropes. Saves us the trouble of finding all the bad food and crowded beaches.

We're doing this again, right?

Boquinha said...

Oh, we're so doing this again . . . but how about this time, Christie doesn't get a concussion, mm-kay?