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My Beach Vacation in Texas

I've had quite the adventures over the past few days. My family and I have been on a vacation to Crystal Beach in Texas. We haven't taken a family vacation since my step kids were teens. When the opportunity arose to take a trip with not only our kids, but our grandchildren as well, I jumped at the chance.

Unfortunately, I had a conflict this weekend and missed one of the best writers' conferences of the year, but I wasn't going to miss quality time with my kids and grandkids. To my writer friends, I hope you had an amazing time, and I missed you.

My adventure began Thursday morning when I attempted to pick up my full-size rental car. I walked into the rental place and was informed by the guy behind the counter that he had tried to call me earlier that morning. I had no missed calls, but I didn't dwell on that. He told me that the person who ran that office had quit - as in got mad and walked out, and they had no cars on the lot when he got to work that day. It was his first day in that store, and circumstances were stressful for him, so I didn't fuss. Thankfully, two cars had been returned by the time I arrived, so I had options.

To my chagrin, neither car was full-size. I had my choice between a Kia Soul or a Toyota Corolla. My husband and I examined both vehicles and opted to take the Soul because we thought it had more cargo room. We didn't want to take our chances of trying to find another rental car at the last minute.

Friday morning, we loaded up our rented Kia and left Joplin around 5:30 a.m. My night-working husband slept a good portion of the morning while I drove the first leg of our journey. After a few pitstops, we finally arrived at our beach house around 6:00 p.m. that evening.

Our rental house was on stilts, so there 25 steps to get up to the front door. This was a new experience for me. The room my husband and I stayed in had four little windows up by the ceiling. When the sun rose, the light beaming through the widows shown on the opposite wall confusing the heck out of me on my first morning because it looked for all the world like another set of windows.

The first day was a beach day. I'm not much of a beach person, but I had promised my grandchildren we'd build a sandcastle. And so we did. Sort of. I bought them each a little sandcastle bucket, which each child used. I helped, but they were really more interested in playing in the water. Who can blame them?

The second night in our beach house, a huge thunderstorm rolled through. I could feel the house sway in the wind, but I wasn't worried. I found it soothing. My stepdaughter, who was sleeping on the top floor with her family, didn't share my comfort in the rocking motion. She had a sleepless night.

Our second day, we took the ferry over to Galveston for part of the day. I loved the ferry. I stood at the side and enjoyed the ocean breeze on my face the entire way to the island. I was a bit let down by Galveston, but I was able to see my first cruise ship up close. That was amazing. I've decided I would like to take a cruise. That ship was like a huge, beautiful floating city.

I had leg and foot issues on the ferry ride back, so I stayed in the car. Of course, the trip back was when the dolphins made an appearance. My hubby enjoyed them while I sat in the car massaging my leg. My darned leg and foot cost me what could have been a wonderful part of my vacation.

The highlight of my vacation was metal detecting with my stepson, my boy. My stepson is an avid metal detecting enthusiast, and he brought his spare detector for me to use. I had a ball! I only searched the beach for a couple of hours before my alabaster skin started to glow red, despite my SPF 100 sunscreen. I found a penny and some sort of metal rod. They're my treasures, and I had a great time bonding with my boy. My boy is 26 in case you were wondering.

I had a great time with my family, and I'm tickled half to death that we were able to take this trip together. However, I will not miss all of the stairs that were on almost every building we entered. I hate stairs, and my leg hates me every time I climb a set. From the house to the ice cream shop to Dollar General, almost everyplace had huge staircases leading to their front doors.

I watched my grandkids frolic in the Gulf of Mexico, metal detected, rode a ferry, and rode out a thunderstorm in a house on stilts. I feel like it was a pretty good family vacation.

Episodes 1 through 22 of Sally's Secret Legacy, my paranormal romantic suspense is available on Kindle Vella. Moonbeams and Ashes, my short story collection is available on Amazon in both Kindle and paperback. The paperback is also available in paperback at Always Buying Books in Joplin, Missouri.

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