Monday, March 28, 2011

Perfect Moments from an Imperfect Adventure!

 The kids caught fish this weekend! Lots and lots of fish. Snook, Redfish, more Redfish, Trout, more Trout!
"Captain Daddy" (my husband Mark) is a proud father and it is truly a dream come true for him to be out on the water fishing with his very own crew of excited little anglers!

The sky was gorgeous ...... for awhile ......

So, I took advantage of the perfect moment and got a shot of the it while I lay on the beach & rested. Quiet time is a valuable thing for a mother of three boys!

Another beautiful moment; enjoying my 100 year old dog as he swam & rolled in the sand like a puppy!

 Hanging out by the camp site, picking up a sea shell here & there; it was almost easy to pretend that I was feeling well enough to be there. That probably should have been our first clue that trouble was brewing.....


Back to the fishing- 5 yr. old S. is practically a pro - he is never happier than when he has a fishing pole in his hand & if it has a big Red on the other end, well, that's just an added bonus! 

He shared his moment of glory with a close family friend. My husband's long time friend Davey brought his family down to visit for an eventful weekend! (eventful = keyword)

 Captain Daddy with all the boys and a very large Snook!  P. (our oldest boy of 9 yrs.) caught the prized fish, and then responsibly let him go back into the warm Gulf waters to live to fight another day. (It's not currently Snook season- but still a great catch).
This beautiful big Redfish though, made for a lovely dinner by the camp fire..... for those who were able to stick it out and (attempt to) stay for the 2nd night of wilderness camping.
Again, for the hubs- and his buddy Davey - it is awesome to share this kind of adventure with their boys after all the years of fishing together as young men. It's always nice to be with friends who are there through thick and thin. Of course, had we known that "thin" was just about to rear its ugly head- we would have made a couple of different choices....... particularly one.

Another fun and perfect moment captured here - as the children explored the shallow clear waters around our currently peaceful little camp. Our 6 yr. old - W. loves to snorkel & look for creatures!
We aren't sure- but we think this was his attempt to mate a large "Whelk" with a smaller "Banded Tulip" shell
There is never a shortage of creatures to meet and greet in the great outdoors! S. found a pretty big Whelk of his own. We observe & release of course just a little outdoor science class learning about God's creatures who live in the Gulf.
Speaking of creatures; On night #1 I fell asleep while listening to the Bull Sharks busting on the fish near the shoreline. It was a little unsettling knowing that it was right in our very own swimming hole, but it was also kind of cool for a  nature girl at heart. A shark's gotta eat after all.
 It was just my motherly instinct feeling a bit uneasy knowing that they were feeding in the precise spot where my children like to swim and snorkel. There again, it was the middle of the night.  We don't swim during prime feeding time!

The mamas got to relax the next day -  while the daddy's took the boys off to catch those beautiful fish pictured above. They had such a good time.  Unfortunately, Davey's wife,  my good friend- Alecia, was getting sicker by the minute. She was a real trooper and stuck it out as long as possible- but she'd had no idea from the start of our little adventure how sick she would actually get.

My bones hurt. Big clue, well- it should have been a big clue- had we been paying close attention. For some reason, we were paying more attention to the fish, and the kids, and everything..... but the weather.

Alecia and I finally gave up and threw in the towel. The guys dropped us off at the dock around 5 p.m. so that we could head home to get a hot shower, a soft bed, and lament our weaknesses. We are pretty tough little mamas and really hated to give up on a family adventure; especially one that we had worked so hard to plan. But, since Alecia almost ended up in the emergency room - it was definitely the right call.

The men and the kids cooked up their fish around a roaring camp fire later that evening and hit the sack- or the sleeping bags...... until around 3 a.m. when the thunder started to roll !

 I woke up at the house with the first couple of rumbles and turned on the television to get a look at the radar. I did not like what I saw, not one bit. I started trying to get the hubs on the phone to let him know they needed to make a run for it, and ..... quick.

I was unsuccessful. So, I prayed.

At almost 4 a.m.- they pulled into the driveway. Wet, shaken, exhausted, and very, very brave little boys  told me all about their rough ride across the harbor. Six year old W. explained excitedly, "We're a very brave family, mama"!

 Brave isn't the only word that came to my mind at the moment- yet I am very thankful that God brought my babies home safely. I'm also very thankful that the hubs woke up with that thunder and came to the correct conclusion to abandon the camp and get the crew to safety.

The campsite was a mess. Our lovely tents are now destroyed. Yet, we live to fish and find adventure in another day! We made a mistake in not checking in on the looming weather pattern. We were expecting it to hit much later in the day and without such violence. We were wrong.

 Thank you God for my brave family! Thank you that even when things don't go the way we planned; we can still appreciate the perfect moments in an imperfect adventure!


Jill said...

Amen! So thankful you and your family are safe and sound. Sorry about your tents. I hope they can be replaced so you can have many more adventures with your family.

ThaiHoa said...

I am so grateful your family is okay, and I hope your friend is going to get better!

Kayla said...

Oh, so happy you are all safe! Just think of the stories your boys will tell about this trip over the years! Hope Alecia is feeling better now too! Again, years from now I am sure you will be laughing about this! Right?

Young Adventures... said...

I am so glad that your family was safe Kelli! I'm sure you were very worried. I'm so glad that you all had a fun time catching fish and relaxing before the storm hit. I love how you guys get outdoors so much and create such special memories.

Kristi said...

So glad that your family got home safe! Quiet time??? What's that??? LOL! said...

Thank you ladies- It really was a fun adventure despite the "little
hiccups"! Now if I can find replacement tent poles for our favorite tent- We'll be in great shape and ready for the next adventure!

AmyD said...

Wow -- amazing story. Your family is brave! I would have completely freaked out. I love that God held his protective hands over your family and provided you with comfort and calm during a turbulent sea (in more ways than one).