Monday, July 5, 2010

July 4th and the Island

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"You have to love a nation that celebrates its independence every July 4, not with a parade of guns, tanks, and soldiers who file by the White House in a show of strength and muscle, but with family picnics where kids throw Frisbees, the potato salad gets iffy, and the flies die from happiness. You may think you have overeaten, but it is patriotism."

~Erma Bombeck

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For our Fourth of the July weekend we had, at the last minute, some exciting change of plans. For weeks we had tossed around the idea of heading to Corpus Christi for the 4th, but finally just decided to spend the weekend in town. Therefore, in lieu of Corpus, the plan was to hang out at our casa and relax this weekend, go to the McAllen parade on Saturday, grill out possibly and watch the firework show. But, surprisingly on Friday afternoon, a good friend and client of my husband's called to say that one of her condos at Padre Island was available for the weekend. She wanted to know if we were interested in having it for the weekend. She said she already had it fully stocked and prepped and we wouldn't have to worry about bringing anything except clothes and essentials. Now what a great treat this was for us and even more exciting because it was so unexpected. Needless to say, after getting the hubby's text about the condo, within the hour, I had us completely packed and we were on the road headed to the Island. Our Friday evening started off with a ***BANG!!** with the island's great firework show. Little man absolutley LOVED it. He called it the "Bang-Bang show". We watched the entire show from the balcony of our condo. So nice...and during the midst of all the fireworks, the hubby and I were talking about how happy we are to be living back in the Valley again. I think I took it for granted when we lived here five years ago.

Actually I don't think...I know. I moved here five years ago with the wrong attitude. I wasn't open to the beauty of this area. I allowed myself to feel like an outsider given the fact that it is predominately Hispanic in this part of Texas. Professionally, I was intimidated in the workplace because I was a non-Spanish speaker and I was one of only a few Caucasians at my workplace. For the first time in my life I was the minority. A very awkward and new feeling for me to experience. But, as I've learned so many times in my life thus far, life has a way of humbling us and as a result, our perspective changes. Since that time, I have learned that some of the sweetest, most loving, hard working and genuinely Christ-like people I know I have met while living in the Rio Grande Valley. This time around, I have a much healthier perspective and deeper appreciation for all that Valley life has to offer. It feels amazingly good to be living here. It feels right for our family. And well, having a beach so close to enjoy is just one of the many perks!

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It was especially nice to be able to have some leisure time to watch movies and take naps.
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Saturday morning we had a late breakfast at The Grapevine was so good! We were actually surprised at how dead the island was for a holiday weekend. The hurricane by all acounts appeared to impact the Island's tourism, but by Sunday morning, the stream of cars began to flow across the causeway with festive fourth of July crowds ready to have fun and relax.

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Noah at beach
The condo where we stayed didn't have a pool, so we had to go undercover and sneak into a pool at one of the hotels. Since the crowds were so small at many of the hotels on Saturday, we didn't feel as bad about it.

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Aside from the fireworks, Little Man's second favorite activity was when we went to the Sea Turtle rescue center.
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It really was neat to see all these beautiful sea turtles being cared for and prepped to be placed back into their natural habitat.

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They warned us to keep hands and arms away from the sea turtle pools...the have a very strong bite!! Of course, this was very difficult for Little Man to not put his hands in and try and pet a turtle. His Daddy and I followed him around like a band of hawks the entire time!!

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The picture doesn't really do it justice, but this sea turtle above is massive...the largest one I have ever seen.

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The Sea Turtle rescue center is a really cool place to visit.
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Little Man found him a souvenir at the Sea Turtle gift shop. He named him "Terry". We have no idea where he came up with this name. Pretty funny though. Terry and Little Man were inseparable the entire weekend.

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I was actually a nervous wreck in this picture being out on the pier with my very rambuctious son. He kept walking so close to the edge...ugh!!! I just knew I was going to have to dive in and get him. Thankfully we avoided that potentially disastrous event...
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Noah at Rudy's
We wrapped up our 4th of July holiday with a trip to Rudy's for some great Texas barbeque. Yum...yum...and Little Man created quite a spread for himself. A little heavy on the pickles!!

What a wonderful 4th of July weekend.

We feel so blessed to live in this great nation where we enjoy so many freedoms!

And lastly, thank you very much for sharing your beautiful condo with us this weekend.

1 comment:

  1. I love the look on his face watching the fireworks! I wish I could have kept mine up late enough to do fireworks, but my strictly enforced bedtime has finally taken hold in my kids and the demanded to go to bed instead.


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