panama hat on the beach - gulf shores alabama - meg biram

I really really miss living by the beach. After I graduated college and got married, my Mr. and I moved to Sarasota for a year. It was glorious. I worked four long days and had three days off each week. I knew living in Sarasota was somewhat temporary so I took full advantage of that year and went to the beach every chance I got. We lived in a tiny (as in 400-square-foot tiny) blue house in downtown Sarasota. It. Was. Awesome. An adventure.

The beach relaxes me. Gives me clarity. Helps me think. I can hyperfocus. Read pages and pages of books and magazines. Walk up and down it for hours. It’s a pretty endless source of entertainment for me.

After my brother’s wedding, me and 17 members of my mom’s side of the family graced the beaches of Gulf Shores, Alabama. After a jam-packed wedding weekend, it was perfect to just — do nothing. Be with family. I didn’t fully unplug because the wrath of that is more email than I can handle when I get home, so I did a little work here and there, but minimal.

I played in the ocean with my niece and nephew, drank some wine with the adults, and played Mexican Train Dominoes with my cousins. We rented a beach house (right on the beach) with a screened in porch and a open air deck. I didn’t leave it to go anywhere. Not the store, not out to eat. Nowhere. Just stayed in the beach house, and went to the beach.

Did I mention I miss living by the beach? I miss living by the beach. The waves are the most beautiful natural white noise. The water is beautiful and warm in the Gulf. The beaches are powdery. The breeze is constant…

family on the beach - gulf shores alabama - meg biram

My mom, her husband, and my nephew.

on the beach - gulf shores alabama - meg biram

On the beach with my niece.

blue angels - beach - gulf shores alabama - meg biram

When you think the beach doesn’t get any better, the Blue Angels do a few practice runs every morning. Yes, it was that cool.

run on the beach gulf shores alabama - meg biram

I brought my running shoes, but I wasn’t about to wear them in the sand, so I ran barefoot. That was, well, hard. Hard in general and hard on my feet. I only did that one morning.

on the beach - gulf shores alabama - meg biram

My nephew is the type of kid that hates to be still. He’s full of energy and is always on the go, moving, climbing everything in sight, running — it’s exhausting just watching him! I was able to steal him away from my sister after she woke him up from a nap while he was still willing to be held by anyone besides his mom or dad. Literally, when she walked out onto the patio with him in her arms I was like “GIVE HIM TO ME.” I knew the opportunity to do this is getting slimmer and slimmer considering I don’t live near them, so I held him every chance I got. He’s almost 2!

the great gatsby - read on the beach - gulf shores alabama - meg biram

While the kiddos were down for a nap I stole some quite time on the beach to reread The Great Gatsby. I wanted to read it again before I went to see the new movie. Good decision.

campbell in sunglasses - gulf shores alabama - meg biram

I’m not even 2 yet, but I sure am handsome…

bird on the beach - gulf shores alabama - meg biram

This guy was strolling along the beach all week like he owned it.

I’ve never been on a beach vacation like this before. 18 family members, a huge house instead of a hotel, fixing all the meals instead of eating out (okay I didn’t actually fix any of the meals, but I did help clean up). It was busy with people, but still relaxing. I could handle another week on the beach with my husband just reading and drinking and maybe some hiking or yoga though… meanwhile my brother just arrived in Hawai’i for his honeymoon for 10 days. I’m trying not to think about it.

What’s your favorite beach vacation?