road trip chronicles
There are a lot of miles between Tifton, Georgia and Bradenton, Florida - and also a lot of rain.
Our first drizzly stop was at the Florida welcome center, where we sipped free, fresh Florida orange and grapefruit juice, took silly pictures, and found a Diney brochure that kept Neeks dreaming for most of the ride.
We drove for an hour until we hit a Krystal Burger, which is the south's version of White Castle. I couldn't even eat one, Yoda ate half of the top bun, but Rico put away three before we hit the road again.
About four hours later we coasted into Bradenton's Anna Maria Island Beach, where we took an early evening stroll on the beach. Thankfully, the rain had stopped and Yoda's was able to get her first real taste of the ocean. Even though she'd been before, she was never old enough to hunt for shells, walk through the surf, or feel the powdery sand under her feet. Today she did all three, and could only be coaxed away with a promise of a return visit tomorrow.
After a drive-thru dinner, we arrived in Riverview, Florida, home of the very best brother in the world. Yoda took a late-night swim with her cousins, watched some cartoons and happily set up camp in cousin Bailey's room. When she wakes up tomorrow she will be three, and I will officially have no more babies in the family. This might make me sad if she wasn't becoming such an absolutely cool little kid.