Since we wouldn’t be spending Christmas day with our kids and grands (although there are only 5 more sleeps till we’ll be there, hugging their necks!) we decided to plan something special for the day. We packed up our favorite picnic goodies, loaded up the folding chairs and headed to the beach! Fortunately, there IS one only about a hour and a half away!
South Padre Island – here we come!
The weather was a bit on the cool side (though compared to Minnesota, I guess it would seem quite tropical at 65!) and the sky was more overcast than sunny, but still we had a lovely day!
Did you know that all public beaches in Texas are also considered public roads? Yes, for a small fee ($5.00), you can drive right down the beach. Crazy, isn’t it!?
While we were looking for the perfect picnic spot, we did spot some hardy folks taking their Christmas swim –
but I confess there was never even a moment that I wanted to join them. They were very young. Or very crazy!
We passed lots of fishermen, including these guys who definitely weren’t in the very young department,
so they must have been in the very crazy group. Brrrrr…. (and put a shirt on for goodness sake!!)
It was really neat to just drive down the beach
and we finally came to the spot that Gary deemed the perfect truck-bed picnic spot.
It was early for lunch, so Gary got all settled in with a book and I set off with my camera to try and capture the day. First I headed back toward the dunes –
Sand is so incredibly fluid, isn’t it? Does that make any sense?
After a bit of dune exploring, it was back to the waves for me!
(Just as a side note – this is a such beautiful area it was distressing to see so much trash peeking up through the sand or mixed in with the shells. Grrrrrrr.)
And another young/crazy person in the water. Christmas tradition, maybe?
Although I love the big picture shots
I also love getting up close and personal with some of the interesting things along the shore –
There were lots of the beautifully colored Portuguese Man O Wars washed up (another reason why staying out of the water (in my mind) was a good idea!)and the little shells stuck to the branch had something moving inside of them. Every now and again an “arm” would stick out!
As I was headed back to the truck
the trusty phone rang and we got to do some Face Time with T&T and the Ohio grands.
Ah sweet technology!
After that came lunch! And with lunch came the neighborhood seagulls!
Whatcha got? Huh, huh, anything for us??????
Such fun company!
As the clouds thickened,
it seemed time to get things packed up and head back to the paved road.
I did have to make it very clear that regardless of who CAN park on this beach, we were NOT going to bring Lizzie with us next time. No sirree, that isn’t going to happen on my watch!
We decided to drive to the end of the road (going north), but we were glad there wasn’t too much traffic –
since there wasn’t too much road available!
It was a really fun day! Just enough 4-wheel-driving to make it interesting, but not too much risk of needing a tow! Lots of fun with the camera (and practice with my new 50mm lens I got for Christmas :)) and perfect timing with the weather –
Add in calls from all the kids and then home in time for a quick nap before we indulged in leftover picnic goodies for dinner (i.e. I didn’t have to cook!) and it can be firmly stated that it was a fine day. Not a traditional Christmas in any sense of the word, but one that we are very thankful for nonetheless! Hoping that yours was filled with joy also!
(I won’t even confess to the number of pictures that were taken today, but along with the ones in this post there are just a couple (;)) more HERE! I really pared it down, honest!)