Well, I wish I were going back to the beaches. How about back to the topic of the beaches.
One of the few "musts" on our list for the Seattle trip was a visit to a Puget Sound beach. We didn't care which beach, just wanted to walk in some sand. Even though it was July, we knew that there was a real possibility that we'd be visiting the beach in jeans and a jacket. That turned out to be far from reality.
Our first beach was Alki Beach. We first stopped at the local fish & chips establishment to grab our picnic.
Then, we headed down to the beach. Something we would later learn was a trend was that these two (plus Erick) were always the first to hit the water. In this case, it was low tide, so we began exploring in tide pools and on the islands created by the ebbing water.
Once the tide started to come in, there were plenty of low waves to jump.
Sophia insisted on staying on one of the tiny islands until it disappeared under her feet - or rather, under her entire body.
Before we left Alki, I snapped a shot that captured Sophia's sheer pleasure at being in a few waves.
So we learned the hard way that the kids needed swimsuits (it took one more lesson to learn that Erick needed his, too). And we hit our second beach, Golden Gardens. It's a very cool beach, too. A longer stretch of sandy beach for strolling and playing. More beach activities. I was mesmerized by the competitive antics of young Seattlites playing sand volleyball for quite a while. The tension between relationship and winning was entertaining when it came to one young couple. Anywho...
As I mentioned, lots of sand. There were many uses for it, it turns out. Burying feet.
Or entire kids.
Is there any better beach activity than collecting stuff? I know I enjoyed it. So did Sophia.
Our stint at Golden Gardens also allowed us to witness the comings and goings of cruise ships, cargo ships and this. Lots of people and it went slowly. But this gives you an idea of the views that one can have while lying in the sand. A little surreal, but absolutely breathtaking.
Our last beach was unique, as well. I was surprised in a couple of ways by the beaches on the sound. First, that they were so largely affected by the tides. I guess it's simple enough, it's still part of the ocean. I just thought that since the sound is so far inland that the tide wouldn't rise and fall at such extremes. I was also surprised at how different each of these beaches was. One almost entirely sand, another rocky, another covered in driftwood. So interesting! Our last beach was Carkeek, which is connected to a very beautiful park with walking trails through hills and thick forest. I'd love to explore that another time. The beach itself was covered in rocks that were covered in barnacles.
A very unexpected treat was to watch a bald eagle flying low over the beach while we were there - apparently being chased from somewhere by this crow.
Carkeek was on our last full day together. There were plenty of bittersweet moments. The kids just soaked up their time together. I love that about them.
They were all bravest on this last Creach trip out. So Erick and all three kids headed out as far as advisable while the tide came into the beach. It was so much fun to watch them and listen to the squeals of excitement.
When we had stayed as long as possible, all three of us had a tinge of sadness to say goodbye to the beach, knowing it will be a while till one finds itself between our toes again. It was, most definitely, hardest for Erick. Who knew? The guy's an ocean rat? Or is it waveaholic? Whatever it is, that's him.