sticky sandy salty smelly

where can you go about your day sticky, sandy, salty, and smelly, because everyone else is in such a state? why, the ocean of course!

we took nearly 500 pictures, and unless a particular one is especially out-of-focus or of, say, someone’s butt, i will not delete a single one. i’d like to relive every second capture on film [cough, memory card] thank you very much. every experience river had during his first trip to the ocean. every sandy toe. every salt-water grimace. every taste, every breeze, every mesmerized stare and joyful smile.

our day started at 7:15 in the morning. it was very foggy as we turned left onto the highway and under a sign that told us we were headed to corpus christi [yay!], but within thirty minutes, the air had cleared and the morning sun sparkled on the asphalt. the drive to corpus is long and straight, but i like it. i love the farmland, the rows of corn that zigzag as you pass going 60, and the occasional side-of-the-road stands with peaches and tomatoes for sale. i love how miles and miles from the beach, seagulls can be spotted, and you know you are that much closer to stepping in the warm ocean water and gazing into endless ocean horizons.

whenever i arrive in corpus, my initial thought is, "oh! we are driving on a bridge over the ocean! take a picture!" but what does one get when they take a picture of the ocean while driving on a bridge? most likely blurry shots with the tail-ends of SUVs in the corner of the shot, or a passing pole directly in the middle. sometimes you might catch a clear image, but then, what is there really to see? gray-blue sky on gray-blue sea. not much to look at. alas, the tourist in me still wants a bridge-over-the-ocean shot. because guess what -- you're finally there! and nothing says that better than a bridge-over-ocean photo. am i right?! while most of them didn't turn out, a select few aren't too bad.

we first stopped at a corpus beach, and it was beautiful and sea weed-free. we left the camera in the car, offering our undivided attention to our water baby, watching him timidly approach the sea, hug my knees when a wave came, and squeal when he finally reached the conclusion that this was actually pretty freaking amazing [his thoughts exactly, i know it].

after corpus beach, we all piled in the van again [such drama every time -- rinse off in the ocean. try not to kick up sand on your legs as you walk back to the car. go back and rinse off some more. decided wearing flip flops isn't the best idea. take them off. run to the car because the ground is hot; meanwhile, kicking sand on your legs. try to hit the sand off your shoes using the side of the car. figure out what to do with our wet clothes. try to keep things generally clean. impossible. take off river's soggy diaper. oh, hello, river wants to nurse. now. naked. nurse. new diaper. attempt to buckle a mad, squirmy baby in the carseat. fail at the attempt to get the dog in the car while tracking as little sand as possible on the seat. by the way, what's worse than wet sand? wet sand and dog hair.] and made our way to starbucks. yes, starbucks. just to chill, you know? by the way, guys, this is really all you need to survive:

after some down time drinking a green-tea lemonade and reading a bit of jodi piccoult's song of the humpback whale [fitting, no?], we decided to go to port aransas. and you know what you have to do to get to port aransas...

ride the ferry!

my "we're on a boat" face.

colby's "we're on a boat" face. john said we have the same expression.

river didn't have a boat face.

and on the boat ... we saw a boat.

in port aransas, we stopped at this little shop called shell world. apparently, they are texas' shell supplier [as stated in painted letters on their building]. there you go, ladies and gents. if you ever wondered if there was a shell shop that sells any kind of shell you could possibly want [including $1,800 giant clams], here it is, tucked away on tiny port aransas. 

oh, but they not only sell shells that come from the sea. they also sell sea shit, aka, anything that comes from the sea. anything. this place has old bottles and buoys, as well as duct tape, picture frames, tires, cups -- you name it. if it was found in the ocean, bring it to shell world. not. even. joking. i love it.

after shell world, we went to a restaurant called kody's. holy crap. this place is amazing. besides the fact that we waited nearly 45 minutes for our food, it was almostsortakinda worth it. because i'm pretty sure this is the best place i've gone to for seafood in the corpus christi/port aransas area. then we cruised for a bit and came across the most bizarre little beachy neighborhood. with perfectly cut green lawns and houses every tacky beach color you can imagine. i felt like i'd stepped into the truman show. 

and then...we went back to the beach. this time, with the camera in tow. possibly, the most important part of the entire trip. i present to you photo vomit. i just couldn't stop. prepare yourself.

"hey, what is this cuhrazy stuff?"

"i wonder how it tastes."

apparently, pretty good. since he kept going back for more.

convincing river that splashing is a blast. "kick! splash splash! LOOK, IT'S SO FUN!"

colby liked the water.

until a wave came. 

wtf, colby? when i saw this picture, i laughed for like five minutes.

oh yeah, of course river wanted to nurse. while in the ocean.

so what's a mama to do? well, duh. nurse of course!

gotta get some dramatic "seagulls soaring through the sun-streaked sky" shots.

and last, but certainly not least ... who can go to a beach with a baby and not get a sandy baby butt picture?

ahh! don't you just want to pinch it?! maybe not. maybe that's just me.

we finished the trip off with some more seafood and a sink bath [for river].

we were going to get up to see the sunrise, because that is a must when you visit the ocean, but we had alarm clock complications. so we had an exciting hotel breakfast [i seriously love hotel breakfasts. i love that i can make my own waffle and mix apple and orange juice if i want and stuff a muffin in my purse for later. they make me really happy.] and then headed home.

thanks for the memories, beach. we should hang more often. i like like you.

:end ntoe: OHMYGAH. this is the longest post i have ever written.


  1. What an awesome post, I loved all the pictures!

  2. my family used to go to port a almost every summer. it's very quiet and quaint there. unless you go during spring break. LOL.
    i want to take ethan but im worried about a- ethan being deathly afraid of the ocean (he HATES baths now)
    and b- all the oil in the water.

  3. I agree with Tabor...AWESOME, Whitney! And yes, I could just pinch those little chubby cheeks and thighs! I also love the nursing photo. Beautiful photos, beautiful thoughts, beautiful memories.

  4. Ditto!

    You made me want to jump in the car and go before the sun rises... what hotel did you stay at? i so want to replicate your trip. thanks for the inspiration!

  5. So cute! I remember our first trip to Port A :)



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