A week on the Outer Banks

We’ve been with Steve’s family in Corolla, North Carolina on the Outer Banks all week, and I’ve finally had a chance to catch up on some sleep. I’ve also been able to paint and write again, both of which have fallen by the wayside in the past few, overly busy weeks. Taking time for myself this week has given me a chance to think about my schedule and my priorities. It’s been too easy to let my schedule just happen, rather than managing what goes on my calendar. I’m planning to be more careful with that when I get back home.

Wonderful Family Time

There have been eighteen of us here in the house, and it’s been a great time together. We’re all different in many ways, but everyone respects each other and is genuinely interested in what’s going on in each others’ lives. We’ve had good conversation, both one-on-one and in groups, and we’ve played some fun games.

I’ve played Scrabble and Boggle, and I’ve laughed while watching others play Wii Sports. I’d never heard of the Wii before, and I have to say, it was pretty amusing to watch two people box against each other or play tennis through their little figures on the TV.

Poor Rowan was very confused by the Wii tennis. He could see Steve and Cara swinging at the ball, he could hear the racquets hit the ball and the ball bounce on the court, he could even see the ball on the TV, but there was no ball where he was poised to intercept it. Finally he just stood between them and the TV and barked uncontrollably. Apparently even a smart dog can’t figure out interactive TV games.
It’s also been great to have our family together. Because of Jonathan’s work schedule, he might not get home again until Christmas, so this was a special time to connect as a family. Our kids are so grown up now!
Seeing through fresh eyes

We brought Rowan with us, and it’s his first time at the beach. He LOVES it, and having him here has made this so much more of a vacation for me. I love his constant company and his gentle presence with me. He also makes walking on the beach so much fun. Everything is new and exciting for him and, in a way, it’s like when we used to walk on the beach with the children when they were young. Having a curious young child or dog opens my eyes to see so much more, as I see their delight in investigating everything new or in any way different.

Crabs are especially interesting. They pop without warning out of holes in the sand, then skitter backwards while one follows them closely. Unfortunately, they also pinch! On Rowan’s tender pink nose! That sends him leaping backwards in the air, but he’s back a moment later, closely following the crab as it backs away.

He hasn’t shown any urge to hurt a crab; it’s more like an intense curiosity, even when they retreat into the water. Rowan’s first introduction to crabs occured when he dug up a crab hole until the occupant suddenly darted out past his face.

Every crab, every jellyfish that has washed ashore, every horseshoe crab shell is fascinating and worthy of notice and can be a source of fun and delight. Thank you, Rowan!