Monday, September 22, 2014

On the Lake

We are very fortunate in that we have several friends who either live on a lake, near a lake, or at least own a boat. We are also lucky that they invite us to enjoy in the lake life.  This isn't a post about a specific day or event, but just a recap of some of our summer lake days. :)

One of our first times on the lake this summer. The guys getting the boat set up for some wake boarding. 

This is from the 4th of July out on Lake Bowen with Simon's boss. 

The sunset was so nice that night.  Simon even got to try out our friend's jet ski. 

Sparklers. It is the 4th after all...

Ping pong by the grill. 

Testing out the couch raft. I like it for lounging, not for tubing.

Simon and Sebastian on the couch tube. 

Our friend Patrick got the "big boat" from the company for a weekend and took a group of us out on Lake Jocassee. 

Group shot :) minus Gerhard. 

Simon mastering wake surfing! 
One of the lake waterfalls on Lake Jocassee. 

This is a pretty good example of what many of our summer weekends have looked like.  We have improved both our wake boarding and sunning skills. :)  Despite all of the fun in the sun activities we have been able to take part in this summer, I am more than ready for fall to make its way in!! The South Carolina Autumn is so beautiful!  Bring on yellow leaves and all things pumpkin!! 

25th Birthday

Before anyone gets on my case about the bad luck associated with celebrating birthdays before birthdays, I know.  I know because I was told plenty of times.  I decided to risk it.  This year my birthday fell on a Tuesday.  A Tuesday on which I was living in Greenville with the kids I Nanny.  I moved in from last Saturday until this Saturday.  So, with this in mind, I decided to have a little get together the weekend before.  
Our friend Aloise let us use his awesome out door space for a grill out.  It was nothing too fancy, but it was a fun evening.  I was worried about the weather, because there was a looming chance of rain.  It turned out fine though.  A couple of times it started to sprinkle, but everyone grabbed something to bring in and we all took cover in the indoor pool area right next to the terrace while it passed.  Much better than the downpour I was fearing.  I was thankful to get to celebrate with so many of our friends.  Here are a few pictures from the party.  

Cutest guy at the party!

Our Grillmeister for the evening

chowing down

Here we are hiding out while the rain passes.  

We are all waiting and about to play a game similar to hot potato.  

Patrick was feeling left out 

It was a fun night.  Aloise and Karin were so great to let us use their space.  Thanks to everyone for their gifts, the time they spent celebrating with me, and making the evening a special one.  It didn't feel unlucky at all.  :)

Friday, September 5, 2014

Folly Beach Trip

This summer has been a crazy one!!  I feel as though every weekend there has been something or another keeping us on the go.  Don't get me wrong, it has been an awesome summer, but definitely busy, and definitely caused me to get behind on blogging.  I'm sure many were anxiously awaiting my return, so fret no more, the time is here.  

Our first annual beach trip. 
If I call it that, we are more likely to go every year right?? 
We may be newbies to beach vacation planning, but I have to say the whole thing turned out pretty great. I found the cutest little rental in an upstairs apartment right on the Marsh in Folly Beach. 

This is a cloudy view of the marsh right off the deck. 
I am always a little nervous to arrive when I have booked everything online, because you just never know. But thankfully, it was exactly how we pictured it and what we wanted!!

How cute is this!!  I could have moved in!!  Perfect space for 1.  Simon could probably find something close by I'm sure. 

Even the mismatched dishes were fun. :)

And... A yellow bathroom. 
So, a sunnier picture. This is the marsh and the back porch to the main house. (We were around the corner up the stairs, so our view looked out over this area). 
After we arrived we drove the few miles down to the beach and scouted out the best places to park, and we took a stroll down the shore. 

Day 1: Beach! Woohoo!  We got really lucky with both parking and beach spots. Despite getting there early afternoon, we still had no trouble finding a nice big area to set up shop. There were murmurings and predictions of some rainy weather and I think that kept a lot of people away.  Good news for us! The weather was great. Not too sunny, (but still enough to get a sunburn) and no rain! 

Naturally, we gathered sea shells. 

Friday night (the night of our first full day) we decided to venture into Charleston for  dinner.  It's about 30 minutes away from the marsh area.
  This was where we got caught in some major rain.  We were both really hungry after our day in the sun. The internet had not been much help in finding a dinner spot ahead of time. So as we squirreled our way from awning to awning trying to progress down the street without getting drenched, we peeked into the restaurants we passed. 
I was indecisive. 
I did not want to be drenched in rain. 
I tripped, because I always trip, and busted my toe on a curb. 
Basically, I was a grump. 
Finally, after blood, rain, and tears, literally, we settled on a hole in the wall Asian place that was fantastic. 

Food works wonders y'all. 

We both were singing happier tunes and ready to face the now less-drastically falling rain. 
We even managed to find a delicious looking ice cream shop that sold, luckily, delicious tasting ice cream. 
We are really good at finding ice cream.  It's a gift. 
After the rain stopped (hurray) and we had meandered through enough stores to suit our fancy, we decided to go back to Folly for the sun set. 
I had read an article online that said this was THE BEST spot to watch a sunset. However, I think they meant sunrise because we could not see the sunset at all. Fail. BUT, we did have a nice walk on the pier together and enjoyed the warm, evening air. 

Day 2: Beach again! We got here earlier on the second day because we wanted to head back a little early.  We had ordered kayaks to be delivered and they were to arrive around 3:00. 

Because of our early shoreside arrival, we got to see dolphins!! And lots of birds diving for, what I can only assume to be, elevensies because it was too late for breakfast. :)

We built asand castle. My first one ever. We didn't build it close enough to the water though, so the tide didn't reach to fill up our moat.
Saturday was much sunnier, and we were able to pitch the umbrella tent we had brought. I was quite excited about our tent, so I welcomed the sunnier skies. 
This is Simon's "Really, we are taking a picture? We aren't even doing anything" face. But now everyone knows what our umbrella tent looks like, so aren't you glad we did!!! You're welcome. 

We packed up early afternoon and went back to the apartment bacause we had rented kayaks!!!!! I love kayaking. I have only done it twice (now four times, I am basically a pro) but I love it, and I'm currently trying to convince Simon how direly we need a kayak of our own. No luck so far, I'll let you know. 

We learned from the boat rental place that, in a marsh, you have to wait until the tide is almost finished coming in to go kayaking; Otherwise you will bottom out. So we tried to time it to where we could kayak when we came back from the beach. We were too early :(
Here you can see the difference between the tides.  Simon is at low tide and I am on the dock at high tide on a different day.  It is the same view though.
So, we spent some time by the dock and then watched a movie to pass the time. 
Then, we could kayak. Yay! There was not a defined area for getting into and setting sail in a kayak, so it was a rather squishy, muddy process but we made it. We weaved our way all through the marsh and our into the more open waters some. It was wonderful! 

Day 3: Sunrise kayaking!!!  We rented the kayak for 24 hours, and naturally we wanted to get our money's worth from this rather expensive kayak.  Our solution: sunrise kayaking of couse!! 

If we thought finding our way into the water in daylight was hard, you should have seen us botching the whole process in the dark. Actually, I'm glad you didn't. It was not graceful. 
But we made it in! And we kayaked out into the open space, past some early-rising wildlife, just in time to see the sunrise. :)  

After we had soaked in our morning fill of nature, reality hit us and we realized it was way to early to be awake.  So, we went back to sleep for a little while.  Ha
We had a slow morning of packing up our things.  We wanted to get back home to watch the World Cup Final with some friends.  Over all, our beach trip was a success.  Lots of fun memories made, a handful of new experiences had, and our first annual beach trip was one for the books.