Wading in a pool near a waterfall at Ridge Haven. This was a first for both of them. There were lots of tiny snails making trails in the sand. It was fun to visit this old haunt of mommy's and daddy's from summer camp days.
Then it was off to the beach with Grandaddy and Grandmama (and later Uncle Averett) and off to inland again as hurricane Earl approached and a "mandatory" evacuation was ordered for our beach. We complied (no running water and a possible hit to a beach front house didn't sound cool). Before leaving, we checked out the surfers and the pier. Notice how our kids could have fallen right through the space between the rails behind us. Scary!!! The waves were huge too although it looks so mild in this picture!
On our way out we stopped by the Fireman's Museum in New Bern. We also got to see lots of fighter jets flying over the highway because of the Marine air base near there. On our last day, a rescue helicopter flew right by our house with a scuba guy hanging down by a rope. He looked hilarious, but our kids thought it was SO awesome. I wondered if it wasn't some kind of Marine initiation thing. (I know, they DO rescue people like that, but why would you fly down the beach hanging out like that? I thought you got to your destination, then dropped?).
More climbing and sitting.
HUGE fish tanks and fish.
Alden loved these rakes. I'm not quite sure why.
The 2nd most surprising thing to me was that the kids wanted to spend the entire time floating in the water. Way out in the water! We had expected being free to lounge around on the beach or swim when we wanted, but not so without a battle.
Checking out Grandaddy's fishing pole.
Skimmer boarding. Daddy got a new board and tore it up...and himself.
I said second most surprising thing, b/c the first most surprising thing was that with all of the conch shells that washed in close to the shore, Grandaddy and Grandmama found 2 octopi hiding out in them. Here's one in a bucket. I grew up at the beach and have never seen this!!! We also saw dolphins, someone catch a stingray, and plenty of birds. Alden loved chasing the birds.
Daddy made great swimming holes.
Lounging, just this once.
Icecream at the beach. So special.
We've been memorizing Psalm 139. One verse per week. It's been great b/c it's full of imagery that you can make hand signs for the kids to do. They've done amazingly and can say verses 1-5 now! Here they are saying verses 1-4. We did it at almost every meal at the beach, which was special to do as a bigger family.
It really warms my heart to hear them say this. We'll see how far we can go. Originally, I was only going to have them say one verse at a time, but Alden ALWAYS started with verse 1 and just wanted to say the entire thing, and we discovered they can do it!!!
Back at home, we have a new addition to our aquarium. Fred the snail. I couldn't keep up with cleaning the aquarium, but he can. He is fascinating! He can float when he wants to and drop like an anchor to the bottom when he wants to and he cleans up all of the algae and muck and extra food. I LOVE him and so do the kids. You can see his mouth slurping on the glass here.
If you are wondering about baby names, we are no closer to anything. Rhianwen said tonight, "Let's call him Hallelujah, because it's good to praise God!". Today I was holding Alden after naps and looking out his window at our front flower bed where some butterflies were feasting. He said, "God made the butterfly!" Little comments like that give me hope amidst some difficult child rearing times.