By Lisa Huddleston
Last week was our annual family trip to the beach–or at least with as many of the family as could make it. This year the trip included our daughter, Sarah, her husband, John, and our younger son, Nick. Older son, Chad, and his wife, Heather, couldn’t join us this time, but hopefully we’ll rope them back in next year. (Missed you, Chad and Heather!)
Another happy addition to this year’s trip was the long-awaited return of the Karl Huddleston family plus one, Anna’s boyfriend. It has been roughly ten years since we were all at the beach together, and it was lovely to see how easily we slipped back into the daily routine meeting every morning on the beach (anytime before noon counts as morning, right?) and then regrouping either for dinner or dessert most evenings. Afternoons were spent biking, walking, napping, reading or shopping. Lazy doesn’t even begin to describe it.
And now it’s over. Sad doesn’t even begin to describe that. What is it about time, and it’s flying faster and faster the older one gets? Oy. I guess the only good part about that phenomenon is that next year’s trip will probably be here before I know it, and I can already start counting the days.
Who knows what next year will bring? With all that was the same about this year’s vacation, I couldn’t help being struck by the differences that have occurred since we had been at the beach with Karl, Sandra and their girls.
One obvious change, all of us have gotten much older–even the kiddoes!
In their case, I really think that change was for the better (no offense, guys). No longer did we have six children running hither and yon or whining at dinner or crying when all we wanted was to take a simple photograph. It was such a joy to be with young adults who were just happy to be out of college or out of the office and sitting on the beach. What a blessing!
Regarding us older folks, well, the ten years showed on us, too, but not quite in the same positive light as it did on the younger generation. However, graying or thinning hair, spotty skin, widening waistlines, and roadmap wrinkles are only shallow judges of true beauty. Pshaw! I truly think the four of us are better for the wear and tear when we consider the wisdom we have gained–and hope to use in the next few years when we bundle grandchildren off to the beach. (Hint, hint)
Who cares if someone cries in a photo or spills blue ice cream down his or her Salty Dog t-shirt? We know now to savor each moment, because it really is “all good.”
They say you can’t step into the same river twice, and I know that is true of the beach as well. But, I am thankful for sweet traditions and memories that last week and the many, many weeks before that have built.
Now–only 354 days to go!