TRAVEL TEXAS (South Padre Island)

We did it again!  Our annual beach trip to South Padre!

Lots of sand, sun, and sea.  Froyo every day.  A fun outing.  Lots of great food.  And not a single lick of sunburn.

How do I do it?  Careful planning, budgeting, packing, routine, and sunscreen!



Where do we stay?

Every year, it’s Seabreeze Beach Resort.  Love going back!  It’s an older complex, but….
It’s right on the beach!  The staff is very friendly.  The price is right, compared to other places that are also right on the water.  They have 2- and 3-bedroom condos available.  And each condo is individually owned, so you can sift through photos and find the perfect one for you!  I love choosing from floors 3-6, so we have an amazing view of the coastline and sunrise.  And I love finding the ones with updated bathrooms and cute decor.



What do our days look like?

We have a quick and easy breakfast each morning.  This is usually breakfast burgers or homemade muffins and sausage links, bacon.  And juice.  But one day, Ben (and Aunt Jemima) whipped up a huge stack of yummy pancakes!




Then we are on the beach by about 9:00.  Every morning, I set up our umbrella for shade.  I cover the boys in sunscreen.  And everyone is welcomed to enjoy the beach however they’d like for the next several hours.



By about 1:00, we’ve packed up and headed back to the condo.  Lunches are always lunchmeats, cheeses, and fruits.  Or we’ll choose to have leftovers from the dinners before.  Then we’ll head to Umix for frozen yogurt.  And yep, this is every day (this is one place that I choose to splurge).  Between the four days that we went, we had consumed strawberry, strawberry/kiwi, pink guava, pomegranate/raspberry, chocolate, vanilla, and watermelon (almost all of the flavors!).



Then we hang out in the condo until the heat of the day is over.

By about 5:00, we’re back on the beach.  Covered in sunscreen again, we enjoy our time in the sand and in the waves until sunset.




When we head back to the condo, I whip up a quick dinner (this year they were tortellini, brats, the bacon chicken, fajitas, and pot roast), everyone showers, and we’re off to bed.

Repeat.  😉

What do I pack?

All the normal clothes and bathroom items.

A rubbermaid filled with all of the shovels, buckets, boats, monster trucks, and other sand toys that we’ve collected over the years.  (These kept the teenager busy for countless hours, as he built a different sandcastle village each time we went down to the water.)



Boogie boards.  (I LOVE watching the boys enjoy this activity!)



Beach umbrella.  (Appreciate having some shade during the morning hours, as the day heats up.)

Sunscreen.  (I apply Banana Boat’s SunComfort constantly.  It smells good, feels great, and obviously works amazingly well, if Evan’s white legs don’t even get a little tanned.)  😉

Cameras.  (Our Olympus TG-5 is our magic camera.  Simple point-and-shoot that can fit into any pocket.  Waterproof, so it can be taken anywhere.  Photos have amazing color and quality.  My Nikon D3X also came along this time, since I was wanting family portraits.  With the automatic timer and a tripod, I got some great images of myself with the boys.)





Water.  (Wanting to keep us hydrated, and still wanting to do my part to save the Earth, I purchase the large jugs of water with the dispenser nozzles.  These sit in the fridge, staying cool.  And we can refill our Thermoses any time.  Guaranteed that no one gets dehydrated.)

Food.  (Using a menu and a tight budget, I grabbed all kinds of great fixings, fruits, and veggies from HEB.  This way, I always knew what was in our food and that we were eating well.)

What do we do?

I am constantly jumping waves.  (My one warning about South Padre is that there is always a strong current that is constantly pulling you North.  Be a good swimmer, stay close to your kiddos!)  Evan swam with me quite a bit.  He also spent plenty of time boogie boarding.  Ben was mostly building sandcastles.  I brought along a book to read during downtime.  We watched some TV.  And we had one outing.



One year, we went on a dolphin tour.  Last year we visited Sea Turtle, Inc (and even got to witness a turtle release!).  This year, we toured the SPI Dolphin Research & Sealife Nature Center.




The center is very small.  Things to see and do are limited.  But it’s only $3 a person!  And we can make fun out of most situations and outings.

We peeked into all of the tanks and read up on all the local/native sealife.  And the employee let me climb into their tortoise’s enclosure, for pictures.  Funny thing about this… by the time I was squatting down to take her picture, she had noticed me and the camera… and she was heading straight for me.  Once I had backed out of the enclosure (and she had followed me), it was clear to see that she owned the place and that she loved humans.  She climbed into my lap, she followed Evan around, she walked all over the building.  She was lovely!  <3



And our one amazing lunch, that is more expensive than any other meal that we have during the entire year?!

It’s King’s Inn (on our way back to Boerne, from South Padre).  It’s tradition.  It brings back wonderful memories of eating there as a kid with my sister, parents, grandparents, all the cousins.  It’s also delicious.  I always order the bombay salad (lettuce, tomatoes, and some kind of mouth-watering, thick, green, avocado-y dressing).  And we always get way too much fried shrimp (big, fresh, tender shrimp, lightly battered, and fried perfectly).  Then we proceed to see who can eat the most.  😉

It’s a wonderful, old, home-y establishment.  Family-style eating.  I assume they have menus, but I’m not sure I’ve ever seen one.  And I know people rave about the oysters and fried catfish.  But all we care about is that amazing shrimp.  Seriously, best I’ve had… anywhere!



And now I’m sitting here, starting a blog post (which I probably won’t finish until Sunday), sifting through all the photos and the great time had.  Belly is as full as my heart.  And I’m already thinking about next year’s trip!

If you take anything away from this, I hope I’ve inspired you to add a little more fun or structure to your next beach trip, led you to put Umix or King’s Inn on your to-do list, gotten you to check out our Olympus camera (so that you can capture your own precious memories).

If you have any questions for me, let me know!  If you have any suggestions for our next trip, give ’em to me!

Have a wonderful day!  And as always… have a blast when you TRAVEL TEXAS!!!

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