So on Saturday, our day started with breakfast at Cracker Barrel in Fayetteville, North Carolina, french toast, eggs, the peg game, and lemonade. This is one of my favorite days of the year, the day we arrive at Kiawah. The kids are always excited for this trip.
I really love these large trees. Some of them are huge, hundreds of years old and yet they seem to be so welcoming. Some of their branches hang so low to the ground as if to say, "Come, climb my branches, sit in my shade, I am here for you to protect you from the heat of the day." Today, that shade was definitely welcomed. As I sat in the car, checking the weather on my phone, and seeing facebook updates from friends at home, the highest reading I saw was 107 degrees in Ashburn. But the further south we got, and the closer to the beach we got, the cooler our temperature got. Don't get me wrong, it was hot and there is that southern humidity when we got out of the car when we finally arrived, but it was not 107.
We got to Kiawah about 2:00. Our house was not ready yet so we walked around the town square and took lots of pictures with instagram.
I love these frogs. There are a number of these whimsical frog statues around the shopping center at Kiawah. I told Molly that I think these frogs were reading Frog and Toad.
Here, I was trying to take a picture of Molly in the ice cream shop through the window. Can you see her on the bottom left of the window? But I mostly got a picture of my own reflection.
After we were done with our ice cream, the kids were standing outside the shop and I took another shot of the window with their reflection.
The rental agency was having trouble getting there units ready for the new week. We had our ice cream, we did some shopping in the tourist shops, and then did our food shopping and finally our house was ready.
After we finally got to our house, unloaded the car, unpacked, and put the groceries away, we made it down to the beach. Chris and I sat and watched the kids in the water until Chris went to pick up some pizza for dinner. So I was sitting in my chair alone, with only the blowing ocean breeze and the crashing waves at my ear. I watched the kids in their own world of happiness jumping in the waves after being in the car for two days. I sat as I watched my kids and thought about the frog statues we had just seen in the shopping center and then I thought of one of the Frog and Toad stories. I loved the Frog and Toad books as a kid. When I was young, I struggled as a reader but the Frog and Toad books made me feel like I was reading a chapter book because they had a few stories in each book. So as I was sitting in my chair at the edge of the water, I thought of this one particular story from Days With Frog and Toad. Toad had gone to Frog's house but all he found was a note on the door that said he wanted to be alone. Toad was very concerned. Had he done something wrong? Does Frog still want to be Toad's friend? Toad searches for his friend Frog and finally finds him sitting on a rock in the river, sitting alone. Toad thinks that his friend is sad, so he decides to pack a picnic basket to cheer him up. He asks a turtle to carry him out to Frog but before he gets to him, Toad slips into the water, along with his picnic basket and all he had left was wet sandwiches. Frog pulls Toad from the water and Toad tells him that he had made the lunch for them because he wanted Frog to be happy.
Frog replies, "But Toad, I am happy. I am very happy. This morning when I woke up I felt good because the sun was shining. I felt good because I was a frog. And I felt good because I have you as a friend. I wanted to be alone. I wanted to think about how fine everything is."
As I sat in my chair, watching the water like Frog did in the story, I felt very much like him. After 6 hours in the car with the kids the night before and another four hours that morning, sometimes as a Mom, you just need to be alone "to think about how fine everything is." At that moment in the chair, I felt good because the sun was shining. I felt good because I was a mom and I felt good because I have four amazing kids that are mine.
My quiet, alone moment did not last long before the kids started to come running back from the water but sometimes all you need is a small moment to rejuvenate yourself and be reminded to be thankful for the things that you have.
It is going to be a great week.