Category Archives: Crystal Beach
Okay, so I’m a day late, but the night ran late with our 4th of July fun… It was really nice having a day off in the middle of the week. It messed with my brain though, and I kept thinking it was the weekend. Anyone else have that problem?
Hubby and I decided to go over to the Seminole Hard Rock Casino in Tampa and throw away a little of our money for a few hours. We invited my mom along for the fun. It was a fun couple of hours. Good news is, we came home with money, only leaving about $20 there. I’m so glad my honey has will power there and doesn’t keep feeding the machines. Yay honey!
After the casino, we headed home for a few hours and then went out to dinner. We originally wanted to go to The Ozona Pig, since after all it was the 4th and my dad was on our minds and we were celebrating him as well as Independence Day. Unfortunately, they were closed for the holiday, so we went to Sonny’s BBQ instead. Still a great dinner… My SIL Jenna and my niece Autumn met my mom, hubby and I up there. It was a very nice dinner. It’s a shame my brother Nick was working in Miami and he didn’t get to join us.
After some silliness in the parking lot with hubby and Autumn, hubby went home so Blue and Ozzie wouldn’t be home alone freaking out from the fireworks. They do not like loud noises. How sweet is hubby to stay home with them?
My mom, Jenna, Autumn, and I went up to Crystal Beach for sunset and fireworks. Autumn melts my heart when she refers to it as Pop Pop’s Beach. She knows that was my dad’s favorite place to watch the sunset and talks about him while we are there.
Autumn had so much fun playing in the sand, walking in the water (which was out REALLY far!) and then doing sparklers and watching fireworks. They didn’t have an actual fireworks show, but many people brought there own. It was a lot of fun and there were so many people there. My dad would have loved seeing everyone enjoy themselves.
And we actually got lucky and any rain in the area passed through before sunset. This was our 19th sunset we’ve seen at Crystal Beach since my dad’s crossing and not one single one has been rained out. I know my dad has something to do with that.
Here are some more of my favorite pictures from yesterday. As usual, I can’t get enough of my adorable niece Autumn and can never have too many photos!
What did you do to celebrate the 4th of July?
I’d also like to wish my Nick and Jenna a very Happy Anniversary! Today is their 9th anniversary! Love you guys!
18 months has passed since I said goodbye to you, since I held your hand, since I kissed your cheek, and since I gave you a hug…
But not a day has passed that I haven’t missed you, thought about you, or wished that I could have just one more day with you…
I can’t believe that it has been 18 months since we said goodbye to you. How is that possible? The first several months were a blur, I was numb. The one-year mark seemed to arrive much too quickly. And now here we are, a year and a half later.
I still remember ever single day of the month that you spent in the hospital, as well as your last day. The sights, the sounds, the emotions, and everything in between are all still very vivid. I am lucky to still be able to hear your voice in my mind, and I feel very strongly that you are with me often.
You were taken from us much too soon and I miss you so much. I will be at Crystal Beach tonight, as I am on the 4th of every month, to watch what is sure to be a glorious sunset.
I love you, Daddy, and I miss you every single day.
Dear Daddy, today you would be 79 years old. I can’t believe we have celebrated two of your birthdays without you.
So much has happened since we said goodbye. We’ve had some amazing family days, that I know you watched and were with us in spirit.
Mike and I adopted another Aussie last April, his name is Ozzie. He is your kind of dog – he is happiest at our side, being loved. Blue is still the wild and crazy dog you knew!
Autumn is getting so big. She is enjoying dance class and talking up a storm. She knows you are in heaven and she misses you, as we all do.
BJ and Darlene came out last summer for a week-long visit. As you can imagine, there was a lot of Scrabble playing and enjoying each other’s company.
In October, Jenna walked 60 miles over 3 days for breast cancer. You would have gotten such a kick out of it, all the people walking all those miles. Jenna did a great job, you would have been as proud of her as we all were.
Mommy and Mike and I went to California last Thanksgiving and we had a great time seeing all of Mommy’s family. We also drove through Long Beach and saw two of the old restaurant locations. I’m sure it’s nothing like you remember. But it was also a bittersweet trip. We visited Pop Pops grave. I know how much you missed him and wanted to see him again. I know you are with him now and I can only imagine the trouble you are getting into.
You would be so proud of me, I ran my first half-marathon in February! 13.1 miles! It was SOOOO cold and windy out that day. I kept thinking how you would have been all bundled up in your scarf, but even that would not have been enough to keep you warm.
Gene and Bea just left after being here since January 3. I know they miss you too.
We go to Crystal Beach on the 4th of every month for sunset. You have given us some amazing sunsets. Each one is different and just as beautiful. There are always quite a few dogs there, running and playing. It’s no wonder you enjoyed going there so much.
This weekend, we will get together as a family at Jenni’s house to celebrate both her birthday and yours. Just because you are not here, does not mean we don’t celebrate your birthday anymore. Your birthday is as special as ever.
I love you and I miss you every single day, Daddy. I don’t know that it’s any easier since we said goodbye, but remembering all the wonderful things from over the years certainly helps to keep your memory alive.
Happy Birthday Daddy. I hope you celebrate up in heaven – we will certainly be celebrating you down here.
Love you always…
How does the time pass so quickly? How is it that every month offers a new and glorious sunset to remember Daddy by?
The 4th of every month is spent at Crystal Beach in Palm Harbor, a favorite place of Daddy’s. He loved to go and watch the sunsets, the people, and the many dogs who visited the beach. It’s a small beach in a small community, no surprise he enjoyed it so.
14 months ago, on Dec. 4, 2010, our family gathered at Crystal Beach and watched the sunset hours after he passed away. Never before had a beautiful sunset held as much meaning as that day. And every month that we go up there and see another sunset, it is another reminder that Daddy is with us in many ways. Amazingly, it has not rained one single time on the 4th of each month that we have gone up there. Daddy is making sure of that.
Sunsets are so beautiful that they almost seem as if we were looking through the gates of Heaven. ~John Lubbock
I am embarrassed at the time that has past since my last post, which was on October 23rd. I got crazy busy with work and everything else took a backseat. EVERYTHING. Working out, eating right, and trying to keep myself at the top of my never-ending list of things to do.
With 2011 coming to an end, I have realized that I have to make myself a priority, regardless of anything else that is happening.
My last post was about Jenna’s last training walk for the 3-Day. She did a fabulous job walking 60 miles over 3 days, camping out in the cold and wind. I saw her off at the opening ceremony, cheered her on on day 2 at one of the many cheering stations, and congratulated her at closing ceremony. I was, and am still, so proud of her for what she accomplished. I am also thankful to her for including me in her training as I met some amazing women. We have all gotten together once since the 3-Day for a short 5-mile walk and breakfast. I hope, hope, hope that we can all get together again soon after the holidays.
In November, my hubby and I went to California with my mom for Thanksgiving. My mom had not been out there in 17 years. My last time out was about 13 years ago. It was a FANTASTIC trip, full of catching up with family we had not seen in years and visiting places from our past. I was born there and while I had been back several times over the years, this was my first time back in a long time with my mom and to see her enjoy her time there so much was great. I am so glad hubby got to meet more of my family (we have a huge family!) and see where I was born. We also visited one of hubby’s cousins who he had not seen in close to 20 years and who I had never met. It was also a bittersweet trip, visiting my grandfather’s grave. My dad never got back to see visit his grave since he passed and we took some of my dad’s ashes out there to reunite them. It seemed very fitting and there was a sense of closure, knowing how close they were and how they are together again.
December 4th brought us to the one-year mark of my dad’s passing. This year was a total blur, mostly because I was numb for most of it. I’m still not sure how it passed so quickly. I have a year’s worth of sunset pictures from Crystal Beach where we spend the 4th of every month. It is a tradition my mom and I have kept to this whole year and I plan to continue it. Every thought, feeling, and emotion of the time my dad spent in the hospital, and then his passing is still very fresh in my mind. I think of him every single day and treasure the endless memories we made over the years. I had a very special tattoo done on the 4th, designed by Jenna. Daddy will always be with me and looking over my shoulder now. I am so glad I had it done. That same day, we all got together at Crystal Beach for yet another beautiful sunset in his memory and then dinner at one of his favorite restaurants.
Christmas Day was celebrated at our house after hubby and Mommy and I went to put flowers at the cemetery for Daddy. My mom made her fabulous turkey dinner (thank you Mommy!!). Nick, Jenna, and Autumn came over. Autumn’s laughter filled the house most of the day, there is nothing like it. They also brought their pup Scarlett, who played endlessly with Blue. Ozzie was content just being around everyone. Jenni, Nile, Nathan, and Cheryl came over, as well as Larry, Vicki, and Mary Ann. It was so nice to have a house full of family on such a special day. We are thankful to have a home to invite everyone to, and thankful that everyone joined us and had a grand time.
I am anxious to get back into a routine, the routine that is necessary for me to be the best person I can be. I have got to get back into healthier habits and it is my goal to do just that. The new year brings with it a new start. I AM READY!
The past couple days, we have had the pleasure of having Autumn stay over with us while her mom and dad are in Sarasota for their anniversary. She came over Sunday morning and she’ll go home today. She is so comfortable in our house and while she does miss Mommy and Daddy, she has fun while she is with us.
On Monday, we went to Grandmommy’s house for a 4th of July cookout. That evening we went to Crystal Beach for sunset and fireworks. There were a few dogs there, she made the rounds to pet them. She LOVES dogs! She loves to play in the water and run through the sand. We saw some of the fireworks and she loved them, too – especially the pink ones.
|At the beach!|
Yesterday I didn’t take her to school, I kept her with me. I worked for a bit and then Grandmommy and I took her to Dunedin Sprayground. She had TOO much fun there. It was a hot day so it was the perfect outdoor activity for her. She met a boy who was probably 9(??) and they laughed and played and had fun. It was adorable watching him keep an eye out for her and go down the slide together. He tried to get her to go down on her tummy and every time she said she would but never did. There was a lot of laughing and giggling. When we were leaving, she saw him running around the sprayground and she said “that’s my boy!”. She also said that he’s going to be her boyfriend.
|Autumn and her boy|
Last night we watched Barbie movies. Mike had to run out for a bit and she kept asking if he was going to come back. When he did get back, she sat next to him and watched the end of her movie with him. So sweet…
|Watching Swan Lake with Uncle Mike|
My favorite times would have to be in the mornings when she first wakes up. She comes out of the room with the cutest smile on her face and just talks and talks. She loves to help with Scarlett and Blue and Ozzie. She is quite the little helper.
I adore Autumn and I am so glad she has so much fun when she is with us. And I am so thankful that Nick and Jenna are so comfortable leaving her with us. It makes me feel really good.