Thursday, July 5, 2012

Walking on sunshine

One more thing to cross off the summer bucket list. We finally made it to the beach. It just doesn't seem right to live so close to so many beaches and not enjoy them during the summer. We visited one I remember going to as a kid with friends of my parents who had a daughter a year old than me. I remember how much fun it is. I also remember falling asleep on a beach towel and getting the worst sunburn ever on that trip!

Anyway, I had been out that way for a writing assignment a couple months ago on an unusually warm spring day and had brought my 10-year-old along. We stopped by the beach for a little while and I took some pictures. I vowed I'd return when it warmed up. And warm up it did. The temp Tuesday was about 100 degrees. For the 4th of July it was 102 and 103 is predicted for today and another 102 day tomorrow.

So Tuesday, we packed up all the kids and all the gear for a visit to the beach. I just bought a new beach umbrella. We brought lots of buckets and sand toys. And towels. And water. And I brought a book. And my camera. And we brought all the kids, except my oldest. He turned 18 in May and chose not to go along. Sometimes it stings a little, but I've got to get used to doing things without him. It just doesn't feel the same to have a family day with a member of the family missing, but off we went...

Our spot was the Indiana Dunes State Park in Chesterton. It's such a large beach that even on such a busy day, there was plenty of spare sand to spread out on. My feet burned as we made our way to the water. Then we got into the water and it was instant relief. I can't understand how it can be so hot outside and the water still be so cold!

After a few minutes, I retreated to the blanket under the umbrella. I really wanted to read. Somehow I couldn't. I grabbed a towel to use as a pillow. I laid back. I took off my glasses. I closed my eyes. I loved the feel of the sun on my face and how even with my eyes closed, I could see the brightness. Between the heat and my allergies, I've just been tired lately and at that moment I was just drained. I couldn't actually sleep, but wanted to rest my eyes, if that makes sense. My dad used to always lean his head back and close his eyes. He'd always say he was merely resting his eyes, not sleeping. We never believed him. We insisted he was napping. Maybe he wasn't?

So, there I was peacefully laying on a blanket on the beach. Every once in a while I'd open my eyes to see my husband and my sons splashing in the water or digging in the sand. They were smiling. They were happy. My husband moved around the water chasing the boys or giving piggy back rides. They were the kind of moments you want to frame in time. The kind that just make your heart swell, overwhelmed with gratitude. I just watched from a little distance, them not aware that I was watching. "Wow!" I said to myself. "They are mine. How lucky am I?"

After a little bit I sat up and read a few pages. Then went back to cool off. Then later came out and laid down again to not sleep, but rest my eyes on the blanket under the blistering sun. After a few minutes, I thought that the only thing missing was some tunes. And just then, as the musical stage was being set up for the fireworks celebration that evening, music started to play. The song was "Walking on Sunshine." And I was.


Brooke Arellano said...

I'm jealous! I WISH I lived closer to a beach( 6 hours is the closest beach fro me:/) Stopping by from the blog hop! Am now a new follower:) Would love if you could follow me back!

Carrie said...

Thanks, heading over to check out your blog.

Tulip TrueAim said...

Looks so amazing. I wish we had a beach in Idaho :) Stopping by from finding new friends. I am a new follower. Hope to see you at True Aim.