Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Back From the Beach

We had a wonderful time on the Outer Banks of North Carolina!! We returned home last Friday and I am just getting around to finishing this post about our trip!! This was our first visit to the Outer Banks and we really enjoyed it. It is a lot closer to us than the Best Beach on Earth ( Cape Cod and Nauset Beach) and we found a "cottage" that we could afford , so off we went. It was a lot hotter on the beach- we were heading south, but the water temp was much more pleasing!! We arrived on the heels of Hurricane Bill and left on the incoming Tropical Storm Danny. All in all our timing was great!! We could not go in the water on the first two days as Red Flag Warnings were flying all up and down the coast, but the sea was something to SEE!!

(you may click on any photo to enlarge!!)
I love watching the sea on stormy days the power is amazing! The beach was rumbling beneath our feet and the roar was deafening!! Becca was not amused! She wanted in to the waves!!!! Patience is a virtue that my kids are short on, however she got her chance!!

Becca was thoroughly delighted when we all joined her in the surf. The water was full of little round jelly fish ( non- stinging, thank goodness). Once they got over the nervousness aboutt ouching the poor dead creatures, the Jelly Fish Wars were on!!!! What is it about teenage boys?????? Between Jelly Fish and Zoombie attacks, the kids were in hysterics!! I do so love the sound of my kid's laughter!!
Not sure what is going on here????? I have never been able to underline text before???????!!!

I can't tell you how amny times I bent down to pick up sea glass only to find that I was reaching for a fragment of Jelly Fish!!

Becca and Dad were in the water for hours!!!
With all of the strorms churning up the sea, there were all knids of interesting bits washed up on the sand. these mermaids purses had been down there for quite awhile- I have never seen them covered with barnacles.

Here are a few shots that I took during several of my daily evening beach walks!

This little girl was with her family for a family photo op, but she wandered off and played in the waves.

I took lots of pictures of all the different varieties of Sand pipers! I could have spent hours just watching them foraging.

I was amazed by the Bayberry Bushes that we found! They were 6-7 feet high and absolutely loaded with large plump wax covered berries. I thought that these plants were only on Cape Cod- wrong again!!
I also discovered this beautiful vining plant all over the ground. I think that it might be related to the Morning Glory as each blossom opened in the cool of the day and closed in the afternoon. I adore the color of the flowers! I am sure that it is a nuisance as it was climbing everywhere!!

These are the Peach Pails that we found at a local fruit stand, as opposed to Beach Pails!! VERY CLEVER!! Love the colors!!!

We traveled down to Cape Hatteras to see what we could see. Matthew is a history buff and we all wanted to visit the new museum that is under construction concerning all of the ship wrecks that have happened off the NC coastline. There have been hundreds of them!!

The museum of The Graveyard Of the Atlantic is a wonderful spot and they are in the process of enlarging the exhibits and putting many more items on display.

They have cleverly designed the outside of the building to look like the ribs of a ship.
Inside we found an original Lighthouse Light and the Fresnel Lens used to magnify that light so ships at sea could see it across miles of ocean. Quite fascinating. The lens structure is a beautiful piece of very functional art!!

The Hatteras Lighthouse has just recently been moved and we set off for a visit. This is the tallest lighthouse in the world and was open for climbing, but as the line was very long and the temp was 89 degrees , we passed and visited the Lighhouse Keepers Home instead. What an incredible life that must have been!!

If you ever find yourself on the Outer Banks, you must highlight your trip with a visit or two to Duck Donuts!! Now I am NOT a donut fan . When I have eaten a donut in the past, I feel ill and it feels like I have a huge boulder in my stomach. My kids and husband love donuts, so we had to see what all of the excitement was about concerning Duck Donuts! I now consider my self a fan of Duck Donuts- SIGH!!!! When one enters the store in Kill Devil Hills, you are met with an amazing smell. You can watch the donut batter being dropped into the hot oil and watch their progression thru the cooking process. Then the donuts are whisked into the topping of your choice and the warm box is handed over. The donuts are made to order and are the most amazingly wonderful light texture- similar to warm and airy sponge cake- Simply Divine!! Our favorite flavors were Cinnamon Sugar and Chocolate Glazed. The shop in the town of Duck was within walking distance of where we were staying but the line to order was always about an hour long!!!! Now that tells you something!!! We went to the shops that have opened just a few miles down the road, a bit of a drive but no lines!! Each morning, as I was enjoying my coffee on our deck, I could see folks walking up the hill with the boxes of fresh donuts- a morning ritual for many. Matthew exclaimed that these donuts alone , were reason enough to come back to the Outer Banks!! I thought that the sinage thatt hey had develoed was wonderful as well!!

All in all we had a wonderful week, and we will be returning, I am sure. It won't just be to get a box of donuts, but that will entice Matthew to join us!!!! :)


Beena said...

Logging in more beach time, huh? Nothing wrong with that! Looks like you had an amazing time!

Michelle said...

Glad you had an amazing time! The mermaid's purse is a skate egg case (sort of like a Ray) - I have never seen one with barnacles either! Thanks for sharing your pics!

Judy said...

I'll bet you could get a job with the local Chamber of Commerce after that lovely post!
Do you remember Beach Plums and Beach Plum Jelly from your years on the Cape? I never had the opportunity to pick them, but my Aunt would make the most amazing jelly with them....and she would always send a jar or two home with me! YUMMMM!
Great pics Elizabeth, and I'm so glad you ALL had a good time!



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