Monday, August 26, 2013

The Growing Days Nature Camp.

My friend sent me a Facebook message. She said she had the strangest dream.

She dreamt that I opened a nature camp.

Honestly, I don't know why she would dream such a thing.

We've enjoyed our normal, lazy summer.

A little sailing, a little exploring...


The kids made some new friends.



We shared some first time adventures, too.


A wild boar sauntered across our path. (He turned into that tiny speck on the left by the time I fumbled my phone out for the photo--but trust me. He was gigantic.)

Peter captained our thrill-seeking adventure, which I fondly refer to as "the boat ride of terror." It began peacefully enough. A little cruising, a little snorkeling...and then a shark sighting where we planned to drop anchor for more snorkeling.

(By the way, sharks don't really announce themselves with a "fin-up" warning, like in Jaws. This bad boy swam along the ocean floor--in about four feet of water. We just happened to spot him as I started to drop anchor.) thank you.

Then, two storm cells formed, with lightning in the distance and choppy waves, chasing us across the bay...and I was a very unhappy boat baby. (The kids and Peter didn't seem bothered by the waves and slamming of the boat--but that's because they're brave. I'm a wuss.)

We lived.

We played with bioluminescent plankton.  We laid on the beach and watched the Perseid meteor shower. We counted 29 meteors.

We stalked turtle nests, trying to gauge hatch dates.

And we missed the hatch! I knew I should have slept in a beach chair by the nest. So disappointing.

When I grow up, I'm going to be a turtle lady and live on the beach. 

Deer spotting. Completely blasé about the tourist paparazzi.

The kids met many new friends, some a bit deadly.  

Pufferfish might be considered a delicacy in Japan, but they also contain enough poison to kill 30 adults. No matter how expertly trained the chef may be, I don't think it's worth potential death. Just my opinion. 

Some of the new friends were a bit crabby.

A few new friends looked a bit tattered and tired.

But our summer bliss is over. We're back to reality. School's begun, the gardens are begging for attention, and it's time to start planning the fall garden.

Still, a summer nature camp...hmmm...

Maybe my friend is onto something. It sounds like a perfect career move. 

If only we lived at the beach.

What did you do on your summer vacation?




  1. Beautiful photos, fantastic time:) Greetings

    1. Thank you! It was such a lovely trip. I wish I was there right now. :-)

  2. Do you mind me being nosey and asking where your family vacationed? It looks so pristine and the exact kind of beach vacation our family loves to take. With a 5 year old granddaughter, I would love to show her these kinds of things as well. Sounds like it was a perfect family vacation!

    1. Anita, we stayed on St. George Island, FL, but most of the photos are from the state park on Port St. Joe--about 40 minutes away. Both places were incredibly beautiful. St. George is very non-commercial--exactly what we like, and there were more than 230 turtle nests on the island. I had never seen so many! The kids really wanted to snorkel, though, and the water was too murky in St. George, so we spent most of the time in St. Joe. The bay was crystal clear, then we just walked across the street to the beach--which was deserted. I think your granddaughter would love it!

  3. I agree with Anita, this looks like so much fun! I have a 3 yeard and 18 month old, this would be great for a family vacay, where did you go?

    1. Courtney, we stayed on St. George Island, FL but spent most of our time in Port St. Joe at the state park. Both places were just gorgeous and filled with wildlife. If you have little ones, I think you'd live the state park. On the bay side, the water is shallow and completely calm, which is great for plopping babies in without them getting knocked over by waves! (Been there!) That's where we saw all of the ocean life. The only thing is--there are sea urchins, so make sure your babies have water shoes if they go out very far. Then, if you want to play in the waves, you just walk across the street and over a boardwalk a few steps to the Gulf. It was deserted. Often, we were the only people there. I can't recommend it enough--and I wish I was there right now! If you go, please let me know! We might venture back for spring break. :-)