Mountains, Beaches, and June.

June brings more birthdays and humid days where the weather map screams at us in reds and oranges and rolling thunder shakes us every afternoon. The kids beg to go outside and we drag out the plastic pool and spray ’em with the hose while battling thirsty mosquitoes and new sunburns.

Summer is a battle we rusty southerners know well.

But for us this one started with a road trip back to where I once had some roots. Good ol’ Georgia.

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My first best friend, the one thing I kept from my time in Georgia–aside from the accent–was getting married and that meant hauling the kids into the car and hitting the highway headed for the mountains or bust.

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It was a hell of a drive seeing as how we were that car with Florida plates driving up a gotdang mountain road, all of us clutching our doors and stomachs. We passed no signs of civilization and for a hot minute I worried where we were going to end up, but once we got to the cabin resort the very nice receptionist handed us a map and pointed out the grocery stories we “passed on the way in.” When we informed her that we in fact had not passed anything except a huge rocking chair and some worrying cliffs, her eyes got wide.

“Oh, so you guys came up the mountain.”

I hated Google maps so hard in that moment. But we learned a lesson. While in Florida a straight line on a map means a straight drive, in other places you need to account for things like elevation changes and weird crap like mountains.

BUT the wedding? Absolutely beautiful and so very her and it was a delight to be a part of it and to have my kids wanting to dance until the wee hours. To have Lucy trailing after Alicia in her big, poofy princess dress. Sometimes the circle of life comes right back around to the very same people and there’s magic in that.

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After that we piled back in the car and like the crazy and wild kids we are we drove all the way back to Florida but toward the gulf coast. After all the mountain air we wanted to round out the week with some sand, warm water and mama needed a margarita. This was our first road trip with Lucy and these kids are older now, no longer needing diaper bags and strollers, and just like that we looked in the backseat and saw older kids talking to each other and arguing over toys and knew we needed to grab this trip and cram it in our bags and drag it along with us. We needed to build some stories and memories. Also, sand castles.

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Here’s to all the adventure and lessons about maps. And to the tired bones and delightful sunburns we earned.

And to my margarita.

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You were everything to me.

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