Yesterday was the Sand Castle Festival at our local beach. I’ve blogged about it for years. We even entered it in 2004 but sadly those blog posts are lost. I have them somewhere on a CD but I’ve just never gotten around to re-uploading them.
Anyway, the Sand Castle Festival is near and dear to my heart. I love it and try to visit it every year. I take horrible pictures every year too because it is just about impossible to capture on camera how fun it really is. I try and try but you just can’t crop out the people and all their junk and still show the hustle and bustle of it. Plus, sand is never as photogenic as it seems in your mind’s eye. I should probably use a better camera but it’s the beach and no matter how careful you are there’s that nasty sand that gets in lenses and breaks them.
Now I have a new problem. My new laptop has some color-temperature issues so I’m at a complete loss on how to color-correct my photos. I’m opting for not correcting at all. If you notice a difference in my photos as of late, that is why. They all look greenish to me. But if I correct them to my eye they’ll probably look purplish to you. Hopefully I’ll get it figured out soon. Maybe they’re not so bad.
As usual when we visit the Sand Castle Festival, we got inspired to make our own castle. Everyone does. This year was extra fun for me though because Bug is really getting castle-building now. We certainly practice enough all year round. She doesn’t topple things over just when they’re perfectly built anymore and she’s great at fetching water.
If you know anything about anything when it comes to building sand castles, you know how important water is. If fact, in a proper contest you really have to spend a good hour or more beforehand soaking everything down. That’s the only way to keep the sand solid enough to carve without it crumbling into a flat mess.
All that water fetching means somebody has to get wet and for some reason it’s always overcast on Sand Castle Festival day, and just the tiniest bit chilly. So of course we wear long pants, or in Bug’s case, what she wore to church. (What, doesn’t everyone go running around the waves in their pink puffy skirts? Insert eye-rolling here.) No matter how careful we are, there’s always going to be a wave that comes in faster than we expected and washes all the way up to our knees. We both got soaked, naturally.
After years and years of living by the beach, sandy wet clothes don’t even faze me anymore. What can you do? It’s just part of life. Sand in your bed, sand in you hair, sand in your carpet…if you have a sand aversion, don’t visit me.
It is all worth it when you have good times like these though. I actually came down to the beach in a bad mood. Something Toby had said or done had set me off and no matter what I did I couldn’t get the negative thoughts out of my head. I desperately wanted to hash it out with him but arguing with him during his work day means he loses valuable time, and he is always so busy and behind schedule. I knew I had to shelve it and work it out with him later.
I hate shelving arguments. They just fester and fester in my head and I can’t think straight. I’m definitely the type who likes to confront things head on and not bottle them up inside. Unfortunately, I’ve had to learn with time that I can’t fight fight fight. I have to calm myself and there is nothing better than making a drip castle to do that.
Squeezing the wet sand through your hand drip by drip by drip can be very zen. Before I knew it I was festering less and focusing more on the tiny drip towers each handful would make. My kid was happy, my mind was quiet, all was well with the world again. And then people started stopping by and telling us how cool our castle was. It kind of surprised me actually since there were castles everywhere to comment on. Why bother with ours? I’m sure my adorable pink-outfitted assistant had a lot to do with it but it got me to thinking…
We’re good at this. Maybe we should enter the contest together next year, just Bug and me.