Monday, June 20, 2022

2022 30A Summer Beach Trip - Days 1, 2, 3, & 4

We had another amazing week in one of our very favorite places, and today I’m going to start the recap.  In the past, it’s taken 3-4 posts to recap the whole trip, but I’m going to try to squeeze them into just two this time.  Since we go every year, we tend to do some of the same things over and over and I know it gets redundant, so I’m trying to keep things more concise.  We’ll see how that goes.  Y’all know “details” is my middle name.  Lol.  I did take fewer pictures this year, though, so there’s that.  ;o)

Saturday, June 4

We can’t ever check into our condo until 4 PM CST which is 5 PM our time, so we’re always able to take our time getting out of the house… no sense in getting there early since we can’t unpack the car!! 

Therefore, we spent the morning finishing up packing, getting the house in order, and getting the car loaded.  I also got in a workout, and then we had a light lunch at home.  Once our house sitter arrived, we hit the road!


Traffic isn’t usually an issue on the way there, but for some reason this year it was really awful on one stretch of highway… I blame Apple Maps for taking us a different way this time.  We usually take back country roads, but for some reason, Apple Maps routed us on a major highway and apparently everyone else went that way, too.  Apple Maps supposedly knows the fastest routes, though, so maybe there was an issue on our usual route?  Who knows!

Anyhoo, we made into town after condo check-in time, and this year, we opted to stop at Publix to grab groceries on the way in.  We usually go to the condo, unload the car, eat dinner, and then get groceries, but the traffic is always so awful on 30A on Saturday evenings that it takes forever to get down the strip, so we thought it made more sense to grab the groceries on the way in.

The only problem with that was that our SUV was packed to the gills with stuff, so we had to shove the groceries under the kids’ feet, under my feet, and in my lap.  Haha.  Gotta do what ya gotta do!

On the way to the condo, I ordered pizza from our usual Saturday arrival place – Angelina’s – and I told them to have it ready in 45 minutes (you can choose your pickup time).  That gave us just enough time to unload the car and get settled in before we had to be there.

We stayed in the same condo complex that we’ve stayed in three other times, and this time we were on the top floor, so the condo had a loft.  It looked really neat, but it seemed to be louder in there than any other condo we’ve stayed in at that complex… probably because everything was so open.  Also, the kids got a kick out of the fact that they folded our towels into crab shapes.  Haha.




Angelina’s is just down the street from our condo, so traffic isn’t much of an issue, and while B went out to grab that, I cracked open a beer and headed out to the balcony to take in that gorgeous view.  Just perfect. 


After our pizza and beers, we headed out to the beach!!  The kids could not WAIT to get out there, and I couldn’t either.  By then, it was already nearing sunset, so we took a long walk by the water, and we watched a HUGE storm roll in down the coast to our east.  We saw some really cool lightning strikes… it really looks much more impressive over the ocean.  And the storm also made for an incredible sunset.  I mean, seriously, look at these pictures. 









Thankfully, the storm stayed over Panama City Beach, and it never affected us, so we were able to continue with our walk and enjoy our evening fully until we were ready to go inside.  We ended up staying out there until dark and we were able to spot one little sand crab as a bonus.  The kids love finding them when they come out at dusk. 


When we headed inside, we watched an episode of Walk the Prank so the kids could wind down, and then we all headed to bed.  Unfortunately, there was something wrong with the icemaker in our condo and it made SO MUCH ICE all night long.  The ice bucket was overflowing so ice kept tumbling down the inside of the freezer and it was SO OBNOXIOUS.  Therefore, I did not sleep at all Saturday night.  It was misery.  The rest of the fam didn’t seem to have any problems, though.  Must be nice to be able to sleep through anything.  Haha.

Sunday, June 5

Sunday morning, B disconnected the icemaker so it would stop making ice and that solved our problem for the rest of the trip.  Whew.  He also notified the owners so they could send someone to fix it after we checked out… that way the next guests wouldn’t have to suffer through a loud night.

Once that was done, B headed out to grab donuts from The Donut Hole.  They have a Dutch Crumb donut that is probably my favorite donut of all-time, and it is always such a treat to have them since we can’t get them anywhere else.


After we all ate breakfast, we packed up and headed down to the beach!  This time, chairs were included with our condo, so we didn’t have to worry about bringing our own down, although, one day later in the week we opted to use ours since they didn’t set up our chairs right by the water. 

The weather was just stunning for our whole trip, and even though there was a good bit of seaweed on this trip, the water was gorgeous, too.  The kids spent the entire morning in the water, and then we walked for about a mile down the water line before heading to the condo for lunch.






The boys had leftover pizza for lunch, and Olivia and I had sandwiches and fruit, and then we went straight back down to the water where we stayed for a couple more hours. 

We always go into Panama City one evening on our trip to eat at Pineapple Willy’s, and even though it’s not far from 30A, the traffic is always awful, so it takes a long time to get there.  Since we wanted to arrive at Pineapple Willy’s at an off time (so as not to wait long), we got showered and left the condo mid-afternoon to arrive at Pineapple Willy’s around 4:30 CST.  That’s 5:30 our time, so it wasn’t so bad eating dinner that early. 

On the way there, it looked like it was about to storm a BIG one.  The sky to the north was pitch black and the radar showed heavy rain coming.  Miraculously, it all dissipated as it arrived in the PCB area, and it never rained a drop all evening.  I don’t know how we got so lucky to avoid that one.

Parking at P-Willy’s was awful as always, and we ended up parking down the street in one of their overflow lots, but we only had to wait about 15 minutes for a table so that was good!

We were seated outside on the pier (which is a must if you ever go) and B and I ordered our traditional Pineapple Willy cocktails along with their BLT for me.  It is seriously one of the best BLTs of all-time.  We also had an amazing waiter, who we’ve actually had once before there.  He told us he’s been working at Pineapple Willy’s off and on for over 26 years which is just mind-blowing to me!


Once dinner was over, we headed to our usual miniature golf place.  There are so many different ones in PCB, but we always go to the same one.  For starters, it’s right down the street from Pineapple Willy’s, and secondly, it’s SO CLEAN and very well kept-up.  We’ve been going there for years, and every year we go it always looks brand new.  Another reason we love it?  It’s never busy.  Ever.  Some of those places have loooong lines but somehow this one never does.  Panama City’s best kept miniature golf secret?  I think so!  But seriously, one of these days we’re going to have to try something new!


They do have two different courses there, so we switch it up each time we go, and this time the kids opted to go over the waterfall.  I’ll have y’all know, I ended up getting, not one, but TWO holes-in-one and I tied B for the win.  Brian always wins and I’ve never beaten him (that I remember), and I don’t think I’ve ever tied with him either, so it was a big deal.  Haha. 

And if we’re being technical, I actually should have beaten him by one stroke, but I got RIPPED OFF because my ball got stuck in a funnel that is supposed to take the ball straight down.  Everyone else’s balls went through smoothly like they were supposed to, but mine freakishly got stuck (in a funnel!!) so that was one extra stroke that I shouldn’t have had to do.  Boooo.  Haha.





After miniature golf, we headed straight to The Pink Pelican, an ice cream place that we just can’t quit.  Again, there are a bajillion places to get ice cream in PCB, but we always have to stop at The Pink Pelican because they have soooo many flavors.  Seriously, they must have at least 35-40 flavors, and they always have my beloved Banana Cream Pie that I can’t get anywhere else.  My oh my it is good!


By the time we were done getting ice cream it was late and we still had the long-ish drive back to the condo.  When we arrived at the condo, we were all wiped from too much fun in the sun and we all headed straight to bed.

Monday, June 6

Monday morning, we all ate leftover donuts for breakfast and then we headed straight to the beach.  It was another gorgeous weather day, and we planned to stay out there all day.  The kids invented some sort of body surfing game and that kept them busy all morning, so I had a chance to read for a bit.  We went for another mile-long beach walk just before lunch, and then we had sandwiches and fruit in the condo again.



We also received this picture of Maui... she was being well taken care of and was as happy as can be!


After lunch, you guessed it – it was back to the beach!!  The kids couldn’t get enough of it which is such a huge difference from when they were tiny.  Jacob used to be terrified of the ocean, but thankfully, he outgrew it when he was four?  Maybe five?  I can’t remember.  Now, he loves it and he and Olivia love for Brian to take them out really far.  I don’t even like going out that far in it, so I’m happy to let them have that be their thing that they do together. 




We decided to head into Seaside Monday evening for dinner, so we went to the condo mid-afternoon to get showered and ready.  We’d loved Great Southern Café so much last year when we went that we decided to go again.  The only problem is that it’s tough to get in there if you don’t have a reservation, and reservations are always gone a week in advance.  While we could make our reservation the week before we leave, we like to be more spontaneous on vacation and not be tied down to reservations.  I know, shocking, right?!  Vacation Lindsay is a very laid-back Lindsay… probably the only laid-back Lindsay.  Hahahaha.

We ended up getting to the restaurant at 4 PM CST (so 5 PM our time), and they tried to seat us out front which was partially in the sun.  I asked if there was any way we could just wait for a table to open up on the deck since it was in the shade (we had come prepared to wait anyway), and she ended up just seating us on the deck right away anyway as there were already several tables open.  Woo hoo!  In addition to that good luck, because we were so early, they were having happy hour which meant half-priced bar drinks! 

For the first round of drinks, I opted for a margarita – totally random for this particular resturant, but a lady sitting at the bar had one and it looked good – and B opted for an Old Fashioned.  I’ve recently taken a liking to bourbon (who am I?!) so I tried a sip of B’s to see if I liked it.  I ended up loving it, so I ended up ordering a second drink so I could have an Old Fashioned of my own.  I can’t think of a better Southern drink to go with all of my good Southern veggies – fried okra, gouda cheese grits, garlic green beans, and fried green tomatoes.  Oh. My. Word.  It was so freaking delicious. 




B and I were positively STUFFED by the time we left, so we walked around and did some shopping around Seaside afterward to walk our food off.  The kids made their annual stop at Duckie’s to pick out souvenirs, and then we headed to Town Square Shoes because we’d been told that they had tons and tons of Bogg Bags.



Y’all, it was Bogg Bagg heaven there!  They took up every single spare inch of space in that little store and they had them in loads of different colors, including pink!!  If you’re new to the Bogg Bagg world, they’re impossible to keep in stock anywhere – they fly off the shelves immediately, and you can’t find one anywhere.  I’ve been wanting a Baby Bogg for years, so I grabbed a light pink one as my souvenir.  I was so excited!  And I still can’t believe how many they had in stock. 


After the Bogg had been purchased, we stopped at It’s Heavenly – Ice Cream & Shortcakes to grab ice cream for Olivia, and then we walked down to Dawson’s Yogurt & Fudgeworks to grab ice cream for Jacob.  They offer totally different types of ice cream, so that’s why we took trips to both.  B and I were too stuffed for dessert, so he and I opted out.

We found a spot on the green where everyone was gathering for some sort of performance.  It ended up being a skit of some sort, but from where we were sitting, we couldn’t hear very well, so after the kids were done with their ice cream, we headed back to the car.





On the way back to the condo, we stopped at Publix again because we needed to find a sunscreen that would work better on the kids’ faces, and we also decided to grab boogie boards for the kids since they’d enjoyed body surfing so much.

When we got back to the condo, we headed straight to the beach to walk and watch the sun set, and we also looked for crabs.  We ended up seeing nine that evening which might be a record!


At dark, we went back inside, and we watched an episode of The Book of Boba Fett, and B and I each snuck a small bowl of Publix ice cream that we’d bought for the condo.  By the time we were done with all of that, it was bedtime for one and all!  So many late bedtimes for these kiddos on our vacation!

Tuesday, June 7

Tuesday morning, we got up and had eggs and cereal in the condo, and then we headed straight back to the beach for another beautiful day.  The kids were eager to try out their new boogie boards, and after a bit of a learning curve, they both excelled! 

Poor Olivia flipped off of hers right at the beginning, and she went underwater forcefully, so she came up screaming and coughing and she seemed totally traumatized.  I thought for sure that was going to be the end of boogie boarding for her, but nope, I should have known better.  She took a two-minute break to towel dry her eyes and sip some water and then she went straight back out there.  Her determination absolutely amazes me. 

She ended up busting it once more repeating the whole entire screaming and coughing thing again, but again, she headed straight back out there.  After that, she was golden other than having a few minor spills that didn’t bother her much. 






Jacob was a natural and he only had a couple of minor spills before he got used to it.  By lunchtime, they were both pros, and we had to drag them into the condo to scarf down some sandwiches and fruit before heading back out again.

The rest of the afternoon was spent sitting in our chairs, reading, and watching the kids have the time of their lives.  We also went on another beach walk.  By the time we went inside in the afternoon, they were exhausted… although, they were still begging to stay out there longer.  Haha.  There was no time to rest, though, because we had a fun dinner planned with some of our friends who moved to Panama City several years ago. 





We ended up opting for Pineapple Willy’s again because it was close to their house, and this time, we didn’t arrive until 6-ish CST since we had to wait for them to get off of work.  There was a super-long wait, but thankfully, Stephanie and Bobbie had already put our names on the list by the time we arrived, and we only had to wait about 30 minutes before we were seated... on the pier again, of course.  Since we were there later than usual, we were able to enjoy the sunset and the twinkle lights while we ate, too!  I used to go for spring break in college, so I’d eaten out there on the pier at night before, but it was a first for the kids!



We had a great time with Stephanie and Bobbie and the kids were excited to be reunited with them.  We hadn’t seen them since 2019… 2020 was Covid and then in 2021 they were sick, so it had been three whole years since we had seen them!  Sheesh.

By the time we got done there it was laaaate and we still had to make the drive back to our condo.  It was 11 PM our time when we got the kids in the bed, so they passed out right away and B and I were right behind them!

And that was the first four days of our trip!  I’ll be back next week to recap the last half!

Happy Monday, y’all! 


 

6 comments:

  1. I'm so glad that Olivia got to experience the vacation in the water this year! Also the condo / house you guys stayed at looked so great!

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  2. I love the sunset pictures! The boogie boards remind me of when I was a kid at the Jersey shore. So fun!

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  3. Oh how fun! Every picture is so beautiful and that water - that water! Soooo beautiful! Your condo looked lovely and I love how you're right on the beach - amazing! How awesome that Olivia just kept going for it on the boogie board. What a strong girl she is! You're making me want to go back sooooo bad. I can't wait for your second recap. Oh and congrats on the amazing Bogg Bagg - that color is absolutely perfect for you!!

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  4. What a great first half to your vacation!!!

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  5. Oh My Goodness! So much FUN! So glad y'all had great weather!!

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  6. It sounds like a perfect vacation!

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