October 10, 2015-The Long Way to and from Disney (Day 11)

A day at the beach plus a visit to St. Augustine!

You would think after seven busy days at Disney, my kiddos would have slept in a little bit...maybe even a minute or two past 7.  But not at all, we heard Graham whispering to Keaton that if they looked outside they could see the ocean.  Then they both sat up and started peering through the window.

By 7, everyone was standing on the balcony watching the waves crash onto the beach.  A few years ago we left Disney and went to a beach in South Carolina.  That day was slept until 10 in the morning-of course the kids were smaller and it might have had something to do with Robby hanging a blanket over the window.  But this morning was not a sleep in morning, it was a beach morning!

The motel had a light continental breakfast but it was adequate and we all left full.  Then we were just steps from the beach and along with being steps from the beach, the motel had an umbrella, beach chair, boogie boards and sand toys that we could borrow.  This put our beach morning into the pretty awesome category.

The boys immediately started building a pool for Keaton and Whitman.  At first those two were a bit timid of the water but after a bit they were running around like the others.  My Whitman would get knocked down by a wave (in about 6 inch deep water) and I swear it looked like he was swimming his way out. 

Reagan and Anderson loved using the boogie boards and would inch closer and closer out into the water.  We had to be standing on guard saying “don’t go any further” over and over. The waves were pretty big (I guess) and made for a fun boogie board ride (I might have taken one or two myself.)

Campbell and Graham enjoyed the boogie boards but they also spent time in the sand.  They were my two that would dig and play with the buckets and hung for seashells. 

It was a good morning on the beach-even Robby and I enjoyed it.  After we had had enough beach time, I took Whitman upstairs and Robby took the kids to the pool for a bit.  By the time Whitman and I were ready, the others were back and they quickly threw on their clothes.

It was a bit after noon when we pulled out of the hotel to make our drive down to St. Augustine.  We drove along the ocean and Campbell said “when does the Atlantic ocean stop?”  We tried to explain that it didn’t stop until Canada but I don’t think she got it.

The drive was beautiful and our first stop was at 7-11 for icees for the kid.  Since it we had not had lunch we gave them a snack and an icee to hold them over a bit longer.  The goal was to find a restaurant and have a late lunch/early supper but that never happened (more on that later)

Fort Matanza National Monument was our next stop.  It was a Spanish Fort made to guard the back entrance of the city of St. Augustine.  It was across the inlet so after watching the film we had some peanut butter crackers and then rode the ferry across to the fort.

The ferry ride was short but who doesn’t love a boat ride on a pretty day (it is warm in the sun but other than that perfect weather.)  The fort was small but the highlight for my crew was climbing up a tall ladder to explore the top of the fort.  Imagine taking your family into your attic via folding stairs that were created hundred of years ago-that was us having to haul Whitman and Keaton up that ladder.  The kids will never forget all of that.

Then we rode the boat back over to the mainland and started towards St. Augustine.  Reagan jumped out at the lighthouse to take a picture and then we went over a drawbridge to enter the city.

We circled the parking lot a few times at the Castillo de San Marcos to find a parking spot but once we did, it was a perfect spot.  Then we toured the fort-this one was a big one with lots of cannons and hardly any railing on the second floor.  We all survived and walked towards our supper destination.

We could tell that St. Augustine was a pretty happening city but had no idea until we stumbled upon the pedestrian area.  There were shops and restaurants everywhere-it was like a family friendly Key West.

Robby read a few menus from a few different shops but it didn’t take long for us to find an appetizer and thus began the Dennie Food Tour of St. Augustine.  Our first sample was at a French Fry Heaven.  We wanted to order the sweet potato funnel cake tasting fries but they were out.  So we ended up with cheeseburger fries (ketchup, mustard, cheese) and garlic, parmesan cheese fries.  We sat on a bench and devoured those as the crowd passed us by.

After a sampling of popcorn on the street, the second official Dennie Food Tour stop was Pizza Time which was voted the second best pizza in the US by Trip Adviser.  Robby found us seats inside and we ate our garlic knots, grandma’s pizza slice and lasagna pizza slice.

While eating, Graham said “this is a big night” and then Anderson inquired “Daddy, is this in the budget?”  The answer to Anderson’s question was no but sure is fun!  The food tour continued with popcorn-we picked up 3 different flavors: white chocolate and pretzel, rice krispy treat and plain ole movie popcorn for the little girls.

The popcorn was good and by this time we were all pretty stuffed despite not having an official supper.  But the Dennie Food Tour of St. Augustine could not stop there since the first scrumptious dessert that we had seen was a waffle.

We opted for the plain waffle with powdered sugar on top along with a Key Lime shake for our final stop on the food tour.  We were all incredibly stuffed for the ride back to the motel.

Once back we cheered on the hogs, did some straightening then it was bedtime for these Dennies.

No comments: