God is in the details.

When I was a kid in Cuba and lived in Havana, we never spent summers in the city. Never. We would leave the heat and humidity behind and head out for Varadero Beach.

Ahh, Varadero. Home of pristine white sand, warm water and some of the best family-summer memories of my life.

Varadero is where we "did summer." And we did it well. In grand Cuban style.

Varadero. (Vahra-deh-roh) It's like a magical word, isn't it?

Where we were never more than a stones throw away from sand and water and food and a sweet independence. (I know. Cuba - independence. How ironic.)

We would travel in sibling/cousin-packs, wandering the strip of beach and vendors and having adventures on a daily basis.

We would always eat late (9-ish!) as is the Cuban custom, because of the heat. To this day, I love that so much. Late dinners and playing games until we were too tired to stay up any longer. And everybody was okay with that.

We would stay in a house that was practically-on-the-sand. And we'd swim in the warm waters. For hours. (days? weeks? years?)

Such sweet memories. It saddens me that our kids will never know that kind of summer freedom.

However, this year we managed to take a week off and get away. Just an hour's drive from here to fabulous La Jolla. (It was a little over an hour's drive from Havana to Varadero. Coincidence?)

And we stayed in a right-on-the-sand-old-school resort, aptly named The La Jolla Shores Hotel.

This is the view that greeted us each day...
We spent hours (days? weeks? years?) in the warm, clear water.

Lucy and Jonathan managed to escape from us to explore in the walking-distance-from-our-hotel vendors.

And we relaxed. And played together. And laughed.
And ate dinner at odd hours because we always waited for the sun to set before we would leave the beach.


Of course, my camera was my constant companion.

I'll say this for my husband... he knows the value of a relaxed andcontented wife. We're going back in just a few weeks. (Or he may be sick of my nagging...but that's not important right now.)  =D
E & m

It was absolutely wonderful to do nothing but play with my husband and the kids. To dive and dip and laugh in the waves.

Just for a few days, (maybe only for a few moments, really) I reached back through time and distance and once again, became that little Cuban girl with no decisions to make except for what flavor of granizado (shave ice - not a snow cone!) to buy from the corner vendor.

And so my kids were able to get a taste of that sweet summer freedom, after all.

Which only goes to show that God does answer prayer, and He can always make a way.


Check this out....I have a hand-painted-by-me (shut up. I know!) Varadero Sign. (wooden. about 18 inches long. suitable for hanging.)


For a chance to win it, please leave a comment and tell me your favorite summer memory.

(No, you don't have to be Cuban to win! =D)

I'll do the drawing on Thursday, August the 27th at 10 am Pacific Time.

Come on, tell me everything. I LIVE for stuff like this!  ;-)