…and just like that…

they came.
all thirty-seven of ’em.
gathered at the beach with us to bid farewell to yet another sun.

and it all started with a whim.
at two o’clock.
a whim and a text message.

big crew meeting for sunset tonight. vanderbilt beach. 6:30.

of course, i lied. there was never a big crew. it was just us. but i didn’t think just us was enticing enough to lure the party i wanted, and lord knows no one wants to miss a party. so i lied. i lied and said big crew.

and they fell for it.
every one of ’em.
the masses came in droves.
dragging strollers and picnic baskets. smoothing beach blankets and plopping babies into heaps of sugary sand while little friends ran to welcome them. trails of cooler wheels zig-zagged across paths to lead to one big, beautiful circle of beach chairs and towels, pails and shovels, a healthy smattering of babies and a whole lotta mamas and dads i love dearly. thirty-seven bodies. thirty-seven sun-kissed smiling faces. thirty-seven blessed friends that find the beauty in sponteneity. in friends. in drinking in the fact that we live four miles from a coast where families save all year just to be able to spend one little week enjoying these kinds of nights.

and i know enjoying the small things has featured all sorts of sunsets. but this one? this one was special. everyone was there. and as that big pink ball o’ love we all share slipped slowly past the horizon while kids buried each other in the sand and us folks drank it all in, i couldn’t help but think…this here? this here is a moment i won’t forget. and yes, i kissed the universe. made out with it, in fact.

we stayed until after nine…well after the sun set. we danced in the hotel spotlights…

we welcomed the replacement to our pink sunny sky and found equal beauty in the magical darkness with its entrancing constellations and silvery moonlight.

we laughed.
a lot.

oh, to be blessed. to dance on the beach under a sea of stars, holding this amazing little, surrounded by souls you love.

i hope the high-on-life thing isn’t annoying. because i am not oblivious to the fact that life isn’t roses. it’s just that when the good comes along, it is so good. so delicious. and recognizing it and drinking it in…all those little, beautiful moments…is so fueling for the soul.

so it is that a sunset with friends filled any near-dry spots in my never ending quest for the most fabulous life possible.

i am happy. fulfilled. inspired. …just like that.


Leave a Comment
  1. oh what a fun day and night !!! i couldn’t agree more, days with family and friends are truly priceless and what makes the world a happier place.
    i love your swimsuit and the pics with the dolls and the bud light!!!!

  2. usually … i read in my google reader … and then click over. this time … that first sentence had me CAPTURED. i had to click over … i didn’t even wait for all the pictures to load.
    i LOVE that you did what you did. a simple text like that would have me attempting to make it to the beach by sunset. from mn.
    (it may just be possible.)
    please. keep enjoying those moments. your reminders to keep searching for that best life possible … help me remember to do the same in my world. so keep it up baby. keep making out with the universe. it’s so inspiring.

  3. So fun beauitful night, beautiful friends. Loved it can’t wait for next weeks get together! Love enjoying the beauty of where we live:)

  4. Don’t you DARE apologize for being high on life!! :) I think it’s great!

  5. It was a great night…

    and I love that before we went, Jordan resisted, slammed his door, and screamed “fine I’ll go, but I WON’T HAVE ANY FUN”…but was smiling from ear to ear by the moment his toes hit the sand.

    The Barbies and beer makes me laugh…every…single…time…I look at it.

    Thanks for organizing an amazing night!!

    Memories made…check. :)

  6. so happy for you and so sad sitting here freezing my ass off typing this message b/c … we’re the family that saves all year just to be able to spend one little week enjoying these kinds of nights.

    and even though it was one little week, we had a helluva time (and a helluva trip home yesterday, but that’s another story.)

    anxious, so very anxious to see the rest of our pics!!

  7. awww april…wish you and your family could have been there!!!

    kelle…these pictures are amazing!

    you cracked me up last night between being torn to take pictures of the friends showing up on the beach or embracing them in a welcoming hug and grabbing their baby for a squeeze!!!

    sooooo much fun last. love the last minute-ness of it, made it more fun somehow. so many times last night i stopped and thought about how lucky we are to call this our own ‘backyard!’ love you and every person in these photos to bits!

  8. We had a blast! Baylee loves the picture of her girls. Thanks for getting everyone together!

  9. Awe beautiful you all are. And, what I just adore about you if your high-on-lifeness. So, keep it up sister. Those pics of you and your dad in the spot light have me cracking up. What a good day. And, little love in her navy suit and pigtails? She is such a kid…And, your family photo that is looming behind this comment box as I type makes me smile.

  10. Um, and how can I forget to mention that photo with the dolls and beer?! Pretty please make me a postcard of that.

  11. ahhh sunset beach nights…..nothing better. thanks for getting us all there. the last minute part worked! loved watching all the babies and kids together. your happiness radiates! gotta get to the beach more often, thats for sure. xo

  12. Text it and they will come! Even the doll came with a beer in her hand! That makes me laugh! She looks life size! Think she wanted in on the fun!! What a great group! The energy rocked!!

  13. Ok, that’s it! I’m moving to Florida. Someday. Really!

  14. The spontaneity is what it was all about, and the fact that anyone not with us I’m sure was intimidated by the amount of space we took up. An amazing night with amazing friends. xoxo

  15. you rock kelle! incredible fun. incredible women. incredible kids. ONE incredible night! loved it and look forward to many more.

  16. Brit Girl says:

    OK, we’re emigrating to Florida!

  17. Ok, I’m with April on this one. I was so sad to see this post, wishing we were still there to party with you, and meet little Lainey and everyone else! It was 38 degrees at Chicago Midway when I flight landed on Saturday night!!! It was sad to end our vacation, it was great for sure. The beach, the pool, the warm weather. And, oh yeah, the family. Brings me to tears to think about it. Can’t wait to do it again!

  18. thanks for letting us “enjoy” the sunset and party with you, albeit a bit after the actual event. love the pics of ll and baylee.

    is it bad that i can name some of your friends and their littles? I noticed that peyton wasn’t in the group shot and was momentarily panicked when I saw kelly, but no lily until i saw her sister. yes, pathetic. lol, i feel like a stalker. i am going to stop commenting now.

  19. Anonymous says:

    I absolutely love following your blog and looking at your photographs. I myself have a passion for photograph, just like an itch that’s never been scratch.

    And I’m so ready to scratch it.

    I’ve been looking into getting a Digital SLR Camera for quite some time, and it seems that I’m deciding between Canon (I’ve heard the Rebel XS is great!) and Nikon (I’m looking at both the D90 and D60), do you have any advice on camera purchasing?

    I wish I could live in Florida and gather with friends to watch the sunset; it looks completely precious!

  20. LOL! You are truely amazing! Oh, we would be such good friends! I LOVE it!

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