One of the highlights of our beach trip is a visit to a really good local seafood restaurant, Nicks. It's a bit of a drive but everyone in our group agrees it is worth it.
Three years ago, we arrived at sunset. While ordering, I was looking out this big picture window and noticing the light and an weathered old boat. I asked the kids to come outside and pose for a picture. Somehow the girls had even ended up in similar colors and everything looked so "beachy" and perfect.
Last year we used the OTHER old weathered boat on the property and took a new set of pictures. Once again we got our table, placed our order, and then rushed outside to take some pictures with the kids before dinner arrived or that amazing light faded.
This year we worked the "family pics at Nicks" into our plan for the evening. We were also wise enough (or at least one person was) to call the small restaurant and make a reservation for our large group. Everyone got out of the car and went straight to the old boats for pictures.
This beach trip has been going on, with mostly the same families involved, since the oldest kid (now in college) was about the age that the youngest (Lydia) is now. There are so many moments when the grow ups enjoy noting that a younger kid is now able to do something that was once reserved for the older kids. I have only been a consistent member of the group for the last four trips, but I do love that we can look back and see the kid growing.
I'm also excited about seeing our own family growing. We made a point to take a picture of our little group in the old weathered boat. Next year, we will pose for a similar picture with a Kindergarden aged Lydia and an almost one year old Joshua.
I usually take a few candid shots of Lydia after the boat pictures. This was the first year that she really ventured out on her own. She kept saying that she wanted to find a "private boat" and I finally caught the reference to Where the Wild Things Are" (Max sails a private boat out of his room, through a week and over a year, to where the wild things are)
There is a final group shot for the trip, which is also new because usually we have ordered our dinner already and its just the kids posing. One final photographic change this year is that I left my "big camera" at home and relied solely on my iPhone camera. I usually spend hours on the computer photoshopping to enhance the color and play with the contrast. I can, and probably still will, download pictures to my computer at some point but for now I just used the free Adobe Photoshop app on my phone, during dinner. I'll have to play on the computer and see which I like better, but for a busy mom, I think the fast phone photos turned out pretty good!