Lace

People use lots of different words to describe the ocean. She is sure that all of those words apply to the ocean in some way or other. She discovered that there’s very different kinds of ocean.

Her ocean happened to be wonderfully gray. Very cold. Murky. Soupy. Frothy. Sloppy. Wild. Beautiful. Intimidating in a friendly sort of way.

IMG_8867

IMG_8909

It reminded her a little bit of…

Lace.

Shifting, crazy, deceitfully delicate, living lace.

IMG_8943

She loved it.

IMG_88812

IMG_8939

IMG_8896

IMG_8908

This is Renee succumbing to the urge to run out of the foot-numbing ocean. Wendy, not being able to run very well these days, merely lifted up her good foot as well as the injured one, which left me and Kenton holding her up.
This is Renee succumbing to the urge to run out of the foot-numbing ocean. Wendy, not being able to run very well these days, merely lifted up her good foot as well as the injured one, which left me and Kenton holding her up.

IMG_8842IMG_8940

 

And Dad is like, "Bring it on, ocean."
And Dad is like, “Bring it on, ocean.”
Some of us were coordinated enough to match the ocean's surroundings.
Some of us were coordinated enough to match the ocean’s surroundings.

IMG_8932

IMG_8927

IMG_8928

A Big World

It’s a big, big world out there. Did you know?

I’ve been feeling small.

It’s wonderful.

20140703_144915

20140703_144256

20140703_191843

IMG_8355

IMG_8294

IMG_8199

IMG_8160

IMG_8139

IMG_8105

IMG_8065

IMG_7852

 

It has been a good trip.

The nicest part was having Ricky along for a few days.

IMG_7712
At the St. Louis Gateway Arch… harder and more frustrating to get to than you might expect.

20140625_175907

The worst part was saying goodbye to Ricky at the end of those days. Goodbye happened in Las Vegas. I like to think that I’m strong enough to not allow saying goodbye to Ricky to affect my view of life. But unfortunately, I had adjusted quite happily to being with him all of the time, and saying goodbye seemed harder this time than last time. It always strikes me as particularly sad that just when I get used to having him here… it’s time to say goodbye again. For the first little while after goodbye, I find that I am usually still a little bit giddy from the memories, and then reality sinks in and I realize that it will be awhile before we make new memories. But it’s okay. It sure was fun to play badminton (in and out of the van) with you, Ricky. And every time I see a Fed-Ex truck… I have to hold my arm down.

 

Miscellaneous Photos from The Trip Thus Far (just in case you are curious): 

A sweaty, slightly less than enthusiastic group of Shantz siblings was spotted at Hoover Dam. Renee Shantz came down with a case of the infamous "dam hiccups". The worst kind.
A sweaty, slightly less than enthusiastic group of Shantz siblings was spotted at Hoover Dam. Renee Shantz came down with a case of the infamous “dam hiccups”. The worst kind. But really… it was warm there. The temperature walking across the Memorial Bridge was apparently 120 degrees Fahrenheit. Incredibly, unrelentingly hot.
IMG_8285
This is the house that we stayed at for three days. It was perfect. A very welcome break from hotel rooms. “Always expect less than you expect.” Dad said that just this morning.

 

The house came with a pool, palm trees, and a chair that was perfect to curl up and read your Bible in.
The house came with a pool, palm trees, my very own bedroom, and a chair that was perfect to curl up and read your Bible in.
Much time was spent looking up. We looked down momentarily when we heard that there was a bear around. And guess what? There really was a bear around. It wasn't a very exciting bear though.
Much time was spent looking up. We looked down momentarily when we heard that there was a bear around. And guess what? There really was a bear around. It wasn’t a very exciting bear though.
#ihavethebestboysinmylife
#ihavethebestboysinmylife

 

Things I Have Learned Over the Past Week or So:

1) I thought that last summer, I learned that if you’re going to be gone for several weeks, don’t worry about packing lightly. Pack everything that you think you might need. Just pack it all. Well, anyways, this summer, either I need fewer things or else I just plain packed too much. Either way… I have too much stuff. Unfortunately, I am steadily accumulating more things. This brings us to point number 2.

2) If you are ever going on a trip with me, before we leave, you should be like, “Hey, Jasmine, did you leave space for the books that you’re going to buy?” And I will snort and be like, “Books? There’s not going to be any buying of books on this trip.” And that’s where you get to say, “There is always buying of books, Jasmine.” And I will realize that you’re right, and I will clear a space in my suitcase or bring another suitcase along to accommodate the books that I will undoubtedly purchase.

3) “I just love trees. I love trees and I love airports.” -Dad. I did not know that he felt that way about trees and airports.

4) If you are the type of person who always orders the same thing at restaurants (like I am!), then a road trip such as this might be tough on you. Because you get sick of eating the same things. There is disappointment when you realize that you are no longer craving the thing that you love. There is confusion as you look through the menu. There is apprehension and indecision and it’s not easy.

5) If you sleep on the side of the hotel bed that the air-conditioner is closest to, you should be prepared to freeze every time it runs, and be very warm every time it doesn’t run.

6) Target in the States is so much better than Target in Canada. I hardly even knew what to do with myself because there were so many things that I liked.

7) One morning I tried to do my devotions in the hotel room. The same hotel room that my mom and sisters were in. That is when I learned that it is close to impossible to have a meaningful “quiet” time when Sponge Bob is on TV in the background. Something about that sponge is just incredibly annoying.

8) It is impossible to not crave fresh fruit in California. There’s signs for it everywhere. There’s orchards and fields everywhere. I just want cherries. And oranges.

 

We’re in California now. It’s nice. Warm, but not too warm. (After being in Nevada, I have vowed to never complain about it being too hot again.) We have one more night at a hotel, and then we’re headed to Helendale, California, and we’re going to stay in the same place for several nights in a row. It will almost be like having a home.

Happy summering, everybody!