We’ve been on Vacation

UPDATE (Tues 8/19) – We’re still on vacation, 2nd time around. We’re at the beach and we’re having a great time. So relaxing! I had planned to blog about our trip, and show you what we did each day, but I forgot my camera cord for downloads so I’ll recap when we get home later in the week. Be back soon!

Thurs 8/14 – We’ve been on vacation! I ran out of time to blog the big news before we left and we had limited internet so now I get to tell you all about it with a few photos.

Last Saturday we drove eight hours south to central Florida to see JJ’s parents who live in “The Villages” in Lady Lake. It’s beautiful, relaxing and there are tons of fun things to do!

We were “village people” for a few days and it was quite the life of leisure! We played miniature golf while JJ took Joshua to the driving range for his first time.

Andrew and I got a hole in one! That’s us posing on the green.

Grandpa also taught us all how to play pickle ball ( a combo of tennis, whiffle ball and table tennis) in the rain!

Grandma set up Dominoes on the dining room table so we could play it whenever we wanted to. Our favorite game is Mexican Train and Josh proved to be the champion by winning every time!

Village people live in a golf-cart community so we drove golf carts everywhere. JJ’s parents even rented a four-seater just for us. It’s one of the boys favorite things about where grandma and grandpa live.

This is Grandpa Swope’s newest pride and joy, and it’s electric!

On Sunday JJ and I slept late, went for a morning run, and then went to church at noon with everyone. We all ate lunch out and then we went home. After which, I read a book ALL DAY! I had checked out James Patterson’s newest novel “Sundays at Tiffany’s” from the library last week. It’s a sweet love story and I read the whole thing in a day. Now that has never happened before, but I’m hoping it can become my new pastime :-).

JJ played table tennis with his dad on Monday and then we all went out for lunch and ice cream. They played golf with his dad friends on Tuesday while the boys played bocchi ball and bocchi golf with grandma and I took a nap after watching two episodes of “What Not to Wear” – another something I never get to do. What a treat!

Every night we gathered in the family/tv room to watch the Olympics for hours and then went to bed oh so late!

We left the Villages yesterday and drove home all day. Let me tell ya, it was hard to leave! The livin’ is easy down there.

Well, one of us got to enjoy it a little longer. Joshua is still there for a few days all by himself ( a first for him), with his grandparents. They are driving him back home on Saturday.

We’re not really ready yet for real life with the stress and strains of having a schedule, homework and projects for all of us at work and school, so we’ve decided to take a spontaneous beach trip this weekend just the four of us. It will be our last summer vacation as a foursome since we plan to add more kiddos by next summer!

We’re going to meet Joshua and the grands halfway between here and there (in SC) and stay through next Weds on Hilton Head Island. I can’t wait to stretch summer out just a little more before school and speaking season starts in just a little over a week. I’m going to wiggle my toes in the sand, listen to the ocean breeze and maybe lose myself in another book! I’ll keep you posted.

I hope you are enjoying your last days of summer – stretchin’ them out as long as you can!!!

About Renee

Renee Swope is a Word-lover, story-teller, heart-encourager and grace-needer. She's also a wife, mom, friend, daughter and author of A Confident Heart, a Retailers Choice Award winning book that became a best-seller and has been published in six languages, with over 150,000 copies sold. Renee is speaks around the country at women's events and and serves on the writing team for DaySpring’s inCourage blog. For twenty years, Renee served in leadership at Proverbs 31 Ministries and as former co-host of the ministry's radio program, “Everyday Life with Lysa & Renee.

Comments

  1. Lynn Cowell says:

    Don’t you just LOVE summer! We had a vacation like your’s in the mountains on Lake Glenville. I sure hated to leave the 70 degree days on the beautiful lake!
    Glad to hear you and JJ are running together. Greg and I get to run together a couple of times a week and enjoy it. We got signed up for the 1/2 so I guess we are committed. Greg has had 3 knee surgeries, so he has one that gives him problems sometimes. He is going to head back to the treadmill for a while and see if that helps.

    Enjoy your beach time!
    Lynn

  2. tiggerdaisy says:

    Sounds heavenly!!! Enjoy yourself and your family. And read a book for me!

    Prayers and blessings,
    Rebecca

  3. Hope you have a ball in Hilton Head! I love your blog.

  4. RefreshMom says:

    Sounds fabulous! We could go for some easy livin’ around here!
    I was planning to blog about this very thing over the weekend.

    I’m missing the old days of school starting after Labor Day. I’m NOT ready to have to have a kid at school at 8 am every day (he went at 12:30 last year). And in my book, we should still have 3 weeks of summer left. There are so many pre-first day activities in the next week that it’s as though summer is done already!

    Our summer has pretty much been a washout; you can bet we’ll have some “real” summer planned next time around though!

    Enjoy your weekend!

  5. elaine @ peace for the journey says:

    Enjoy your time! I know that you are. Schedule and busy will come in full measure all too soon. I’m living it this week.

    peace~elaine

  6. Running My Race says:

    Rene,
    Welcome home, sounds like you all had a blast. Love you girl!!!!

    Cris

  7. Ok…now it's my turn to be envious of you. Our vacation didn't happen due to unforseen circumstances, but the Lord is providing strength for today and hope for tomorrow.

    Sounds like you had a wonderful time. Rejoicing with you. Hope this weekend is relaxing and fun too.

    Love & prayers,
    Joy

  8. Enjoy summer for me too ok? We are already almost done with week three of school here in AZ. My son is turning in his first high school English project tomorrow. My middle son is trying desperately to keep his three-inch binder all organized for all his brand-new junior high classes. My baby, Jake, is really struggling with the transition to little boy 2nd grade to big boy 3rd grade. This school works their tails off in 3rd grade! You can breathe a little prayer for him if you think of it.

    Glad you had a great vacation! Enjoy the beach, Lee

  9. Karen Ehman-The Keep it Simple Woman says:

    Renee-
    SOOOOOO good to chat with you yesterday. Will call to finish when I get back to MI and don’t have to use the cell. Your family is beautiful…just like you!!!
    Love ya!
    Karen

  10. Looks like so much fun! I am strectching the days as long as I can!

  11. Runner Mom says:

    One more time at the beach!! Enjoy it! Glad that y’all had fun in Florida! Loved the pictures.

    The reading that you did reminded me of the books that I read at the beach this summer (we go the first week school lets out, so it’s been quite a while!!) I read the Redemption Series last summer by Karen Kingsbury and the sequel to that series this year (of course, my mind is drawing a blank at the moment!!)It was wonderful! My goal is to try to read more during the school year and not just wait until summer–but it’s not easy!

    Enjoy Hilton Head–don’t forget to have JJ stop at the outlets for a “few” minutes!
    Love ya,
    Susan

  12. Wrinkled Shirt Ministries says:

    Renee,
    My grandmother lives in Ocala which is right near where you guys were. My hubby and I have been to the Villages many times. They have some great little shops and restaurants there. I'm glad you guys had a great time. Enjoy your weekend soaking up the sun/Son!
    Paula G. <><

  13. Woohoo! Beach breezes for me too. We leave Sunday morning for Daytona Beach, FL. This is the first vacation with DH in eleven years and I am over-the-moon excited.

  14. Wow Renee..you had a wonderful time..so relaxing! I wish we could go more often. But its just a couple times during the summer. I could live at the beach during the summer..oh well, maybe retirement!
    If you want to go to the beach for cheaper, and even more relaxation w/ out all the commercialism or resort likeness of Hilton Head..go a little bit furter to Tybee Island, GA, which is Savannah’s beach. Its not far from Hilton Head and its the best. That is our vacation spot every year and we love it because its so relaxing and not “built up”. Anyway.. just a plug in for my fav. place.
    Oh..James Patterson book..I will have to get that. Isn’t he amazing..that he can write such great love stories, and then he goes and writes these wild thrillers!
    Enjoy the last of your summer..

  15. Jami @ livelaughlove5 says:

    We were just on vacation too. Isn’t it glorious?! 🙂

    Glad you had a great time!

  16. Bonnelle Pagel says:

    Vacations are absolutely FABULOUS and I also believe very spiritual. God encourages us to rest for a reason!

    Question though… new kiddos? What exactly does that mean? =)

    I love reading your posts and sometimes I can still hear your cute little accent while I'm reading. It's wonderful! Thank you for all you say & do.

    Bonnelle

  17. Pamela (MrsJoeB) says:

    I would love to be a Hilton Head …we just started school and I wasn’t ready yet!! I hope you are toatlly refreshed!!

    In His Graces~Pamela

  18. Julie Gillies says:

    Hi Renee,

    I know The Villages well. My mother-in-law lived there several years…and loved it!

    We enjoyed the horse and carriage rides near the town square. I was pleasantly surprised by how GOOD the restaurants are!

    So glad you had some relaxing family time. And I Hope you are quite recovered from our icky Florida humidity.

    Enjoy your beach time!

  19. Joy in The Truth (Sharon Sloan) says:

    Aaahhhh….I felt relaxed just looking at your pictures! Just loved seeing them! 🙂 So glad you had that special time as a family!

    We are just getting back from a week at the beach (Ocean City, NJ) and are in “re-entry” mode. Taking it slow and just enjoying the afterglow of a wonderful week at the beach. I want summer to linger a bit longer, too.

    Welcome home! And enjoy your next little trip! And read another book, too! 🙂

  20. MrsProverbs31 says:

    Oh, how I wish I was one of your children. I want to go to the beach and lay down in the sun (underneath the umbrella, that is).

    Okay, back to earth.

    Y’all have a great time. You deserve it.

  21. Amy L Brooke says:

    I’m glad you’re having a good vacation and all, but you can come back anytime now! I miss hearing from you!

  22. Renee,

    Sounds like so much fun. Our family LOVES Mexican train.

    Blessings, Joanne

  23. My parents almost moved to The Villages a few years ago. I’m kinda glad they didn’t. It is a little too far away for comfort for this Carolina girl. I want them close to me!
    Looks like you are having a wonderful time.
    Love and Blessings,
    Starr

  24. elaine @ peace for the journey says:

    Renee:
    When you get the chance, please hop over and read today’s blog posting (Sunday, 24th). I think you will be blessed with what you see, or rather, what you imagine you see.

    peace~elaine

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