Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Our OBX Vacation

As promised, my vacation story and pictures. (I kept the pictures small here. If you click on them you can see a full sized image.) Remember you asked for it! LOL This vacation was our second to the Outer Banks, North Carolina. The first trip was with my parents and Jake and his family. We stayed more toward the middle of the Outer Banks then.

This time we were at the Northern end, in Currituck. We shared a house with my parents, and two other couples. The other couples each brought one older child and a friend. There were 16 of us altogether. We ate dinners together and did some activities together, but did most things on our own or in smaller groups.

Overall, sharing the house worked out well. There were some minor annoyances, but no big deals. It was not a stress free vacation, but the times I was really stressed were dealing with my own children, who were out of schedule and lacking sleep. Once they settled in, we were all able to relax and enjoy.

Easter Sunday we had our own little worship service, and just took it easy. Later in the afternoon, we walked to the beach. It was chilly, so I was not prepared for water play. The kids though, could not resist the water and the waves. The boys walked back soaking.

Monday, we went to the Wright Brothers National Memorial. There were some nice historical displays, full sized reproductions of the gliders and planes they built, and a very informative presentation by a park ranger. And Kellen thought he was on spring break! HA! This was one big field trip disguised as a vacation.

The next day was Tim's favorite. We went to Corolla. There are no roads there, just sand. You drive on the beach up to the Virginia line. There are all kinds of huge vacation homes there too; all with sand roads. The whole group went, taking 3 Subaru's and one 4x4 truck. We later read that AWD vehicles (like the Subaru's) are not recommended. 4x4 are the recommended type of vehicles. I don't really understand the difference though. The cars did fine as long you kept them at the tide lines. They did get stuck if you were in the loose stuff. Luckily we never got stuck, but two of the other cars did.

In this area there are wild horses. We were lucky enough to see three of them. The were drinking the sea water, for salt, I assume. You could tell they were used to being around people, but they weren't exactly tame. After they were done in the water, they rolled around in the sand.

We drove as far as we could. There is a fence a bit after the Virginia state line. We walked around some and ate our lunch at the beach, flew kites, and played some more.

The next day we visited Currituck Beach Light Station, and climbed the 214 steps of the lighthouse. Mamaw was a bit unnerved by the climb. She made sure that I had a firm grasp on Nolan the entire time. I have to say though, that looking down the spiral steps did make my stomach a bit queasy.

At 30 mph, the winds on the observation deck were intense, but the view was stunning.

Adjacent to the lighthouse is the Outer Banks Center for Wildlife Education. This also had some excellent educational displays. While there we also learned that they offer free classes. Most of the classes offered during our remaining time were full, but they did have some openings for a nature journal class the next morning. It wouldn't have been my first pick of the classes, but since the weatherman was calling for rain that morning, I signed us up. Kellen, Lydia and I went. We enjoyed the class and learned a bit more about some shells and local wildlife.

Though it rained that morning, the afternoon was gorgeous. We relaxed and enjoyed. Friday morning we did the same, and headed for one last trip to the beach in the afternoon. The thick skinned played in the water, but mostly we built sand castles.
Saturday we loaded the car, did a little shopping, had lunch and headed home.

It was a nice family vacation. It is nice to have a change of pace and see new things. It made a wonderful field trip too! :)


  1. What a blast. Sounds like something for everyone. I hope someday for our family to get out there for a visit. I love the Wright memorial (I was there once) and all the lighthouses on the outerbanks! So neat.

  2. I'm so jealous! I wanna go!

  3. I can not wait for moments like . What beautiful pics to go with your post! Looks like everyone had fun

  4. What wonderful photos! I loved the one with the horses. I have never been to the Outer Banks, but your description makes me want to. Looks like you had a great time!

  5. Wow! You fit a lot of things in while you were there. I loved the pics...everything looked so beautiful.
    I'm ready to get away!

  6. We've been to Myrtle Beach but never to the Outer Banks. I want to go there after reading about your vacation. It looks like it was a lot of fun!

  7. Oh how beautiful! I want to go some time. I want to see the horses! And the beach!

  8. When we went we looked and looked for horses but only found horse poop!!! Lucky you - you got to see them! We went to that wildlife place too....Jake touched some picture on the wall and set off an alarm. We got out of there quick! Did you take your passport book? I got a few stamps while I was there (wright bro's & that lighthouse). Glad you guys had fun!

  9. We are fortunate to have family who live on the NC coast and give us a house to live in anytime we'd like to go (another great reason to homeschool, anytime is vacation time!)