We have an Aunt, Uncle and Cousin that live in Destin Florida. We have gone and visited them three times in the last four years. If you have not been, wow….the best beaches in the lower 48 for sure! Warm, clear water. Super wide white sand beaches. I mean it is paradise!
We planned to go to Destin once we got back from Alaska and enjoy spending two weeks with family and all that Destin has to offer. But, while we were in Alaska we learned that my cousin, who’s stationed at Eglin AFB in Destin, planned to get married two weeks after we were due to leave Destin. So our highly flexible current lifestyle came in handy again. We just ditched our return flight as the change fees were too high and ended up staying for six weeks.
For the first week we were there, my parents joined us from Phoenix. And my other cousin Anna, who teaches in Tempe, was there all summer earning some extra cash. We are so lucky to have such great relatives, that we love to spend time with, take really good care of us. We had an awesome place to stay, a truck to use, as well as kayaks, SUP boards, Uncle Ken has a sail boat, a waverunner, and the ability to walk five minutes to a private access beach that is never crowded. It truly is a perfect setup.
We spent time with all the family enjoying the beach and local restaurants. And we also worked at keeping the Denali level of fitness that we worked so hard to get. But we always have to ease into our running and outdoor workout programs there, as the high humidity and heat takes us a bit of time to get use to. The previous year we struggled to even run a mile at a time due heat index. This year we were able to run much easier, even getting in a seven mile run or two. The fitness level we achieved by training for Denali really paid dividends for us this time around.
Between the runs and workouts, hours spent enjoying the beach and water toys, our tans lines soon took form. We have gotten to know and enjoy many of the friends of our family. The social network that our family members have created down there is truly one of a kind….a great group of people.
After a couple of weeks we transitioned into wedding prep mode. We were helping our cousin Ali and her mom Mary get things ready for Ali’s pending wedding. It was a small wedding on the beach just before sunset, truly awesome. From food to flowers we pitched in wherever we could, Liz is a rock star at this kind of stuff. It was a whirlwind wedding as Ali had already committed to being in another state 2 days after her wedding and her fiancé only had three days to come home for the wedding as he is the first baseman for the Philadelphia Phillies and they were getting married during the All Star Break.
It was a fantastic six weeks, truly time well spent. The wedding went off perfectly, we spent a ton of time with family, got to hang and help take care of a couple of dogs (we really love dogs, or almost any animal) we were able to keep some fitness and have time to think and plan for more upcoming adventures. We did enjoy renting a convertible VW Bug for a few days as we needed to give the truck back due to so many family and friends in town for the wedding.
Destin is going to become an annual trip for us for sure. We absolutely love Destin, our family down there, their friends and all the watersports that come with it. We even considered spending some significant time there in the future, but have yet to be able to commit to any place for an extended period of time….a topic for another post.