Friday, June 18, 2010

Outer Banks, North Carolina - Memorial Day Weekend

There's nothing quite as nice as a four day weekend to unwind, relax, and enjoy some quality family time. That being said, we've quickly learned that "vacationing" with small children is rarely relaxing, but we still have to try - and of course we loved being together nonetheless!

It's just two hours from Norfolk to the Outer Banks and we're quite sorry that we didn't pick up on that earlier. The beaches are beautiful and there is a lot to see and do. We rented a little cottage in Manteo - on Roanoke Island - which was a perfect jumping off point for short day trips as well as a quaint little coastal town on its own.
On Saturday we traveled down through the National Seashore to the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse. We enjoyed a picnic on the beach and the kids played in the sand and splashed in their buckets (still a little unsure of the ocean at this point) to their hearts' content. The kids weren't quite big enough to climb the lighthouse (nor were they all that interested in it), so we just walked around the park and enjoyed the view. The occasional lizard or snake sighting added to their interest for sure!

Sunday we went to a little church in town and then came home for lunch and naps. In the evening we went to the Elizabethan Gardens (strangely disappointing when you're spoiled by wonderful botanical gardens at home) and then out to family friendly diner for dinner.

Monday was one of our favorite beach days of all time. We got all packed and loaded in the car and then headed back to the Cape Hatteras seashore to a huge sprawling stretch of beach with very calm water. After we convinced the kids that the dolphins and pelicans playing in the water were NOT going to attack us, we had a really fun time collecting shells, playing in the sand and actually splashing in the ocean. We stayed just long enough for Elise and Caleb to get perfectly tuckered out so we could all enjoy a quiet ride back home to Norfolk!

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