Every summer for the last few years, we've spend a few days with friends at the beach in Italy. It's always a wonderful time away.... away from the phones, the t.v., the internet, facebook, office work, house work, laundry... and it's just about a 4 hr. drive for us. It's just us and time with friends.
We've been told there are much nicer places to go, but it's a further drive and in this stage with our family the shorter the trip, the better. We also like going with friends. Once the kids are tucked into bed (they sleep fast after being worn out by the sun/swimming), we all take our baby monitors and sit outside (there's a tiny cafe downstairs) and just sit and chat. There are a lot of heart-related issues discussed, a lot of jokes, and just learning more about each other.
All 3 of my kids have experienced the sea (Adriatic) for the first time in their lives at this beach in Italy. I find that very special.... I grew up in Asia and to be able to say most of my life experiences were in another country is awesome.
The place we stay at is a family owned, small hotel (3 floors about 30 rooms, I think). It's a 5 minute or less walk to the ocean. It's also one of the only places that has air-conditioning and that is a HUGE plus in my book! In case you are wondering.... Air-conditioning is not common- whatsoever- in Europe. Our summers are not scorching hot like Texas, but when you don't have a place to cool down and inside/outside is the same temperature.... you really miss the A/C (and add that you are at the beach where is it SUPPOSED to be hot!)
Anyway, we get 3 meals a day (This is nice! There is no deciding/arguing what to eat each meal or having to shop for food every day), a room for our family of 5 (nothing special, but it serves it's purpose), a saved spot on the beach, and a place for our car to park for a reasonable price. Our friends have been going here since Andreas (the hubby/dad) was a little boy. They are the friends that make us feel like family. We celebrate all birthdays and holidays together.... why not vacation together as well?
God's hand has always been on this friendship and we are thankful.
I will post this now, but will be changing the date later to put it "in order"... I'm still trying to catch up on blogging!!