Friday, August 8, 2014

We Celebrate to Remember

Twenty-five years. That's a long time.
We went to a beach not far from here, twenty-five years ago, on our honeymoon. We barely knew each other. We fussed and fought, but stayed very much in love. We've always been very in love, and chosen to love each other.
This time, we chose a simple little family motel. No fuss, no frills, no breakfast, no pool.
And although it was a bit like staying at an old family camp in the '70s with linoleum floors and archaic plumbing, I didn't have the constant stress of knowing I was paying-out-the-nose for a room. That stress-relief is worth something. Adam chose a nifty place 25 years ago, and he chose a nifty place this time too.
They have a lovely patio area to sit and use their wifi.
But my favorite part by far was going to the beach. From our motel, a dim, winding path meanders through a tunnel of arching live oak trees. Gnarled arms reach overhead. A spongy mass of decayed leaves pad the ground.

At the crest of the hill, the vista opens onto grassy dunes and a strong beach breeze.
This stretch of beach is unincorporated, so no parking lots, high-rises, crowds of bikinis, boardwalks or anything else marred our visit. (Our honeymoon beach was also a wildlife preserve, and was much the same.)
I went to the beach seven times in three days.


Looking north, only a few house roofs dot the dune line.
To the south, the first big hotel is a quarter mile away.
Braving the wind, I tried painting on the beach and loved it. I collected salt water in a large shell to dip my brushes in. Delightful! Well, it was difficult, actually. Rather like filling a communion cup from a waterfall. Rather like filling my impoverished soul at the fountain of Jesus's love.
This little card will go to a friend. I painted several, not all of them any good.
Adam knows the beach means a lot to me, so he chose this place. He's been thinking of me, loving me, sacrificing for me -- choosing me over himself -- for 25 years. Our three days are just another expression of us both knowing that.
We also ate some fun food, and again, we didn't break the bank to do it. With careful use of TripAdvisor, we avoided restaurants that take your money plus an appendage.
Here is a shrimp burger from El's Drive-In.
And the BEST hush puppies from Clam Diggers Inn Restaurant.
We enjoyed the Village Market in Emerald Isle twice -- healthy, delicious fare. Here's my chicken/veggie wrap.
And a thoroughly delicious peach/mango smoothie ~
At Flipperz, Adam ordered fried green beans as an appetizer. What a treat! Great idea -- onion ring batter, but so much easier to eat. New rule for everyone: Always Use Ranch Dip!
Flipperz also sells homemade fudge. We bought a block of this.
Adam ordered seafood bisque and we shared it.
Being happy together after this many years requires a conscience decision to do many things: 1) love, always love, 2) sacrifice for your spouse, and do it happily, 3) forgive when needed, 4) nourish your marriage -- feed it with affection, time, conversation, laughter, touch, expressions of thoughtfulness. The more you do this, the healthier your marriage will be.
We'll both look back on this celebration of marriage, which is in itself a looking back, as a stepping-off point for the next quarter century.

9 comments:

  1. I cannot tell you how much this post means to me! Thank you for it! I am encouraged beyond measure! You know that we have friends who separated just months before their 25th anniversary. This beauty of yours makes me smile x

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  2. That does look like a lovely spot! I would like being able to walk to the beach. Congratulations on 25 years! Glory to God!

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  3. Many congratulations- which date was yours on? Ours is tomorrow- our 1st anniversary! My husband is going off to cycle in a 82 mile ride! Ahrgh! Then we might have a celebration meal in the evening or we might until we are in Croatia next week because I don't want our father-in-law to be alone. x
    Phwoar,look at that food!!!

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  4. What a great anniversary trip! Gorgeous beach! I wonder if salt water makes watercolors behave differently. Hmmm. Love the card! Oh yeah, Ranch Dip on EVERYTHING, man! :) Glad you had such a great time.

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  5. What a cute picture of the two of you. Lovely beach get-away and very good advice.

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  6. What a beautiful post, in thoughts on marriage and being together for so long and in the photos. Your little wc is sweet!

    Love and hugs to the both of you and may you be blessed with many more years of loving.

    FlowerLady

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  7. Oh, what a lovely celebration! How blessed y'all are! I too am a lover of the simple beaches; if there's an outlet mall, franchise restaurant, or anything else like that, I don't want it. Salter Path is perfect!

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  8. Sounds like a wonderful getaway! So happy that you had a good time, and more importantly, that you have each other. Happy anniversary.

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  9. What a beautiful anniversary post. Your time away sounded quite nice.
    Congratulations to you both and may the Lord grace you with many more years together.
    Your post on your daughter was quite eventful, to say the least. Bless her heart.
    Have a beautiful week.
    Debbie

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