Jun 14, 2017

The Week of Shark Teeth and Engagements {Topsail 2017}

In the month of May we had three Urgent Care visits, one ER trip, and one Lyme disease scare, so a week at the beach Memorial Day week was a welcome respite to all of the sickness! We went to Topsail Island, North Carolina with my family- the water and the weather were on the cooler side at times but we had a great week together.
My sister and BIL drove up from Florida and brought some plumeria blooms from the trees she grows!
Pool time was a little tricky with Cora since the water was too cold for her and she wasn't a huge fan of hanging out in the baby pool by herself. Oh well. Every year is different!
Our family has been to Topsail twenty-something summers and never have we ever found shark teeth like we did this year. We've always found lots of tiny fossilized ones and even some that were sharp and not super worn down from the surf, however this year so many big ones turned up! It was addicting to comb the beach in search of them. My oldest nephew had fun identifying which kinds were from which sharks. 
Audrey was the proud finder of the one below. :)
I found the first two (Great Whites) in the picture below and one of my sisters found that huge one on our last day! One of my other sisters found a lot of large ones as well. We were very glad to be the ones finding the teeth and not the other way around...
I have to admit it's a little hard for me to let go of going to all the places we've always gone when we come here because, tradition! I made peace with the fact that vacation with four little kids looks different, and it's time to start new Topsail customs.
One morning all six of us went to the local bakery and the girls excitedly picked out treats to bring back. They also had fun visiting the "treasure store" with cousins and picking out something to take home (Heidi chose a little ball- bless her!). And we made it to the old school ice cream shop (for lunch only but still!) during the day which makes so much more sense than trying to scramble everyone into cars after dinner and running into a late, cranky bedtime...
SUCH delicious donuts (PS- there are no calories on vacation)
I loved this moment when Cora grabbed a bucket of shells and started fishing them out and putting them in her mouth. I handed her some Terra chips to try and dissuade her from her inedible snack; instead she just alternated chips and sandy shells, as you do at the beach.
A priest family friend spent the week with us and I think he was amused by my sister and brother-in-law's efforts to figure out the new priest assignments for our diocese which came out that week. You know you're Catholic when...
Cora discovered a new flavor of Cheez-It: White Cheddar Sand
Yum! Extra gritty.
I was walking on the beach with Cora in the Ergo just as this storm was rolling in. I kept delaying turning around when the thunder started, thinking it wasn't coming our way until- nope- it most definitely was! I so wished I had my camera out there because it was unreal watching all the different clouds moving out over the ocean. And it was crazy how fast the beach cleared out and how quickly the wind picked up.
It even hailed, then cleared out enough so that...
my brother was able to propose to his girlfriend on a beach walk later that evening!
None of us knew anything about it until a few minutes before they left, when my brother (all alone) nonchalantly dropped a hint to a few family members about a bottle of champagne that was chilling  in the fridge. On the spur of the moment, one of my BILs set off after them with his long-range camera lens and- keeping a good distance- captured the moment on camera.
The newly engaged were good sports about seeing a horde of people spying from the top deck with binoculars, waiting for their return. What else is a big family to do? :)

The next day Evie (who was asleep during the engagement) was kind enough to fill me in on the news:
 "MOM, were you there for the blessing after mass? Did you hear the word wedding? GUESS who's getting married??"

And then a few days later my youngest brother and his girlfriend got engaged! It's been an exciting, memorable time, and especially fun to witness the excitement of our girls and their cousins. It's also amusing having to remind the kids that the weddings won't be taking place next week or month. ;)

Previous Topsail posts: 2016 / 2015 / 2014 / 2013


  1. Beautiful pictures!! So glad you had a good week and congratulations on the engagements/growing family!!

    We usually do our ice cream runs at lunchtime in Maine; less cranky kids; easier to get everyone cleaned up after.

  2. Wow, what a memorable vacation, Lisa! And congrats to Bryan and Matt- so exciting. I have also struggled with adjusting my expectations for vacation, especially as more kids get added to the mix. I love the lunch time icecream run idea and am totally going to steal it!!

    love the updates. how did I miss this post?
    congrats to your brothers. i am expecting wedding pictures :)

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