We hope you all had a wonderful weekend! We just got home from a fun-filled week in Debordieu, S.C. with Mom’s whole side of the family — all 22 of us! Grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins… It’s a chaotic, crazy week with all of us under one roof, but it’s so much fun. 
We love Debordieu’s beautiful wildlife and nature preserves. It’s a very peaceful, sleepy place to go with little to do but relax and reconnect with loved ones. It’s a nice change of pace from the holiday gatherings that are always too short.
We get too much sun, stay up too late, laugh a little too loudly. I’m always amazed because it seems like we’re constantly fixing someone’s lunch or making dinner reservations or going up from the beach to get the sunscreen that someone forgot. But then, right in the middle of it all, I realize that, incongruously, I feel so relaxed! It’s nice to leave the world behind every now and again.
There are two camps in my family: the side that does all their laundry on vacation and the one that does no laundry on vacation. The ones that did all of their laundry are leisurely placing stacks of clean, folded garments into their drawers right now. I, on the other hand, am literally drowning in dirty clothes, up to my knee caps in the stuff. On the bright side, I got to enjoy all of this beautiful natural scenery without pouring one ounce of laundry detergent. Don’t worry, though, my sweet husband helped. There is now red fade all over white baby sunsuits and pilling bikinis where velcro bibs stuck to them in the washer… I’m trying not to be suspicious that somehow none of his clothes were in this unsorted hodgepodge when disaster struck…
Anyway, I don’t think the house we rent every year is in this picture, but the sparkling sand looks just like this. It really is a perfect place.
Sitting on a porch watching the waves crash is Grandaddy’s favorite beach week pastime. I think being surrounded by all his daughters, grandchildren and great-grandchildren is a pretty close second! 
It makes me so happy that Will will get to know his great-grandparents on these trips each year. At nine months old (yesterday!) he might not remember this one, but I think Mom, Dad, Will and I will always remember this as the animal year… Mom and Dad taught him what the monkey, bear and duck say on this trip and I actually think he now says “oooh oooh oooh” more than “ma-ma.” We’re going to have to quit calling him “monkey” if we want any peace!
Speaking of animals — ones that don’t make noise! — turtles abound at Debordieu and there is a “lights out” policy at night so the little turtles don’t get confused and come to the decks instead of the ocean. We found a box turtle but no little sea babies. Something to look forward to next year, I guess!
We hope you are all spending your summer making sweet memories. Here’s to a happy Monday, getting back into the swing, and, of course, Spray ‘n Wash! 

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