Our Summer Vacation 2011

We really did have a great time on vacation in Florida. We stayed with my husband's grandparents.

His mom went as well and drove separately. We got there early Tuesday morning and went straight to sleep (though I had trouble sleeping the entire trip). We spent the day with the family Tuesday and had a big dinner. Played some games and just relaxed and watched TV. It did feel a little strange to not be in our own home of course, but I am proud of how well behaved the girls were.

Wednesday, we headed to a beach on the Gulf just an hour west of their house. I researched it all online before we even left home, and found a youtube video of the drive to it and the guy walking around the place. So I knew what to expect and decided it was exactly what we were looking for.

By the time were halfway there I realized I'd forgotten our camera but we used my husband's phone and got a few shots.  They're not very good ones.

Thursday we spent again with family and just relaxed. We played Apples to Apples that evening and had a great time.  They really liked that game.
Then Friday morning, we had a mini birthday party for Zoe so we could give her present to her early.  We figured it would help on the 12 hour ride ahead of us. Rhiannon had ridden down with her grandma, but was coming back with us, so the Explorer was going to be much more packed - which can be a not-good thing on a long trip...  so we went out early and got her a cookie cake and her new DSiXL which she seemed to be super-glued to all day.

We all sat and visited one last time before leaving.

Then we were on our way. We had decided that we'd take US 17 (the Coastal Highway) up through GA and SC and see if we could find a historic site to stop at.
Coming up to the suspension bridge in Brunswick GA

I love this shot and was so glad it turned out this nicely. The bridge is gorgeous. 

Well, fortunately, I took a wrong turn just outside Brunswick GA and got onto the causeway out to St Simons Island.
Marina in Brunswick GA

That's where we found Fort Frederica. It's the site of an entire English village built there on purpose and supplied with everything from a candlemaker to a doctor and had a big fort and the barracks, streets of houses and shops and everything.  All nestled in oak trees dripping with Spanish moss and palm trees. I couldn't help but think of Pirates of the Caribbean.

The white stuff around this tower is the remains of the tabby walls. All that's left are the oyster shells. The whole village was made from this material, and we noticed most new buildings are still made from it. 

Used to be a bustling village.

Christopher and the girls at Fort Frederica

Ruins of another house.

The trees and Spanish moss were especially gorgeous on the island.


Me and Christopher at Fort Frederica

My girls and me at Fort Frederica. - See Zoe and the DSi  LOL

The King George flag (it has different colors than the Union flag)

Used to be a busy intersection.

Ruins of a large house. 

After driving around the island and spending an hour at the fort, we were hungry and I told Christopher we could stop for dinner anywhere he wanted.  We'd not eaten out the entire trip because we wanted to splurge on one good meal and a local restaurant on the backroads.  I think he picked the best place ever. B&J's Steaks and Seafood in Darien GA. It's like a mile from the shrimp boats and serves fresh wild caught shrimp, as well as buckets of oysters, prime rib sandwiches and all sorts.  They had a huge seafood bar as well, but we decided to try to keep it to a decent dollar amount. Rhiannon and Faelyn split ONE order of the wild shrimp and it fed them both with some left over.  The basket had 33 shrimp in it and they were HUGE. Zoe and Christopher shared a basket of fried oysters, and I had the best hamburger steak ever. (I don't eat seafood - yeah yeah I know, crazy.)  We apparently got there just in time cause we were the only ones waiting on a table at first.  By the time we left, they were milling about in the parking lot and lined up around the side of the building! You've got to know it's good if the locals do that!

After an hour at the fort and an hour stuffing ourselves, I figured it was best to just get back on I-95 and head on home. I would love to take a vacation and just explore all of US 17 and the little towns as well as Savannah, Beaufort and Charleston.  Hopefully for our 20th anniversary in October.  It'll all depend on money of course.

We got home around 2:30am Friday night/Saturday morning, then got up at 10am and got packed again and headed off to Rogersville for their 4th of July celebration at the park. The Band Perry had a free concert and the place was PACKED!  I've never seen so many people in my hometown. I really hope it helped the local economy!  They banned coolers this year which sucked, but even though I was told to take my cooler back to the car, our little camp was completely surrounded by people with coolers.  Guess I was just unlucky.  Some good friends of ours got there at the same time we did and had a grill and a cooler full of food to cook, so he set it up like he was tailgating and cooked it in the parkinglot.  I guess that's better than hauling everything from the truck to the campspot. Well, it's not really a camp spot, but you do kind of have to stake out your spot so people don't take it first.  We've been getting the same spot for years, but I think next year we may try to go earlier and pick a new spot.  It was hard to see the fireworks cause the trees have grown so large.  I didn't get any new photos from this year's shindig. I guess I was too tired and just wanted to sit and relax.  Yeah next year I think choosing a spot where we can pull the Explorer up under a tree and set up in the shade with the car would be a good plan.  Us old folks just sit and do nothing anyway haha!

Well, I hope y'all had a great week and holiday!  I'm off to do more laundry and get supper started.