Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Making Memories

This is a continuation of the thoughts from "Living in the Moment", the idea being that there are some activities that can be an important part of the present as well as the future.

Linda and I spent last week in Florida at a wonderful family beach vacation spot called Anna Maria Island just west of Bradenton.  The occasion was the celebration of our older son's 40th (yikes!) birthday.  It seemed appropriate to return to Florida for this event since he was born in Gainesville, FL.  We rented two houses with pools to house our group of 24 (both sons, wives, six grandchildren, friends of the "birthday boy" and their families, and a couple assorted grandma's to help with the kids).  A wonderful white sandy beach was only a short walk away.  We were faced daily with some very difficult decisions, like should we go in the pool first or go to the beach where our 10 children (including the friend's kids) were alternately building sand castles or floating on the turquoise water of the gulf in groups.  There was a break for lunch around noon (nobody was wearing a watch), a few naps (including me), then either a return trip to the beach or an afternoon in one (or both) of our pools.  On Wednesday, we took a break for the guys to go deep-sea fishing (one of Kev's friends caught a 135 pound tarpon!) while some of the mom's and kids went on a dolphin-watching tour.

Linda & Carina on dolphin-watching tour

The last afternoon we all walked out to a sand bar at low tide and collected conch shells (most still had conchs in them-one housed a hermit crab) for quite a while before walking (some of us carrying little ones) back to shore.  That evening we gathered at the beach to watch the glorious sunset (Linda and I did this multiple times) and then created a sand memorial to our trip (AMI 2012 was written in seaweed on the beach) and assorted pictures of various groupings were taken.  Of course, we did this to remind us of the good times we had there.  Further in the future, some of the folks in the picture will no longer be around (at least not in the conventional sense).  I am sure our children and grandchildren will look at these pictures and smile.  I think we can all agree on that being a good thing.

Grandkids and friends at Amelia Island 
Sunset at the beach on Amelia Island

I have been particularly mindful of my "window of opportunity" to create special memories for my family for a few years now.  I wrote a memoir for my boys in 2009 to share memories of my childhood, meeting and falling in love with Linda, family vacations and more.  Whenever possible, we get together to celebrate birthdays and holidays.  Linda and I have taken trips to Phoenix, Costa Rica, Moab, Alaska, and now Florida.  We will be spending a week in Canmore (close to Banff) in September and are investigating possible destinations for either November of early next year.  We are determined to "make hay while the sun shines".

My hope for everyone, including PWP's and care partners, is that we will resolve to do the best we can to enjoy and appreciate each day whether we are taking a walk in our neighborhood or on a remote sandy beach.  Remember to set aside some time to plan special activities you enjoy with those you love and create memories that will last a lifetime and beyond.

No comments:

Post a Comment