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Amazing Beauty

So I went to Ireland! My dear friend Gina had asked me to go after her parents had found an amazingly good deal for a group of 4. We’d been plotting and planning and preparing for MONTHS for this awesome trip of a lifetime…and in a flash it was behind us.

We spent six days exploring and wandering around the Emerald Isle, taking in all the sights and sounds. It was simply beautiful there! We saw the usual tourist spots, and I even sort of kissed the Blarney Stone! We ate plenty of great Irish food (lots of fish ‘n chips) as well as several types of Irish beer (ale? and cider)
We managed to find some quaint pubs to sit back and enjoy our meals in, as well as some great Irish music. We stayed in a beautiful golf resort apartment most nights, but stayed one night in a cute, bed and breakfast – all wonderful accommodations. The weather was amazingly warm and sunny most days, the daffodils were blooming all over the island, and the Irish folks were friendly and welcoming nearly every place we wandered into…but my favorite part of the trip was the day we stopped along the coast of the Dingle Peninsula, at an expansive and quiet beach. Walking down to the sand I couldn’t wait to take my socks and shoes off and walk out towards the rolling and crashing waves of the Atlantic Ocean. It was unusually sunny and warm during our week in Ireland, and this day was picture perfect; hardly a cloud in the sky, the sun warm on our heads, the ocean breeze fresh and crisp on our cheeks, flushed with excitement and joy. We pranced around the sand, taking pictures and basking in the incredibly raw beauty that surrounded us.
We lingered for quite a while, taking it all in…I, for one, did not want to leave.

Standing there on that sand, looking out over the water, feeling the rush of cold cover my feet…I felt so grateful to be there at that moment. I remember slowly making my way back up the road to our car, walking carefully on the rocky pavement in my sand covered bare feet. I stopped a few more times to breathe in the air and thank God for all He has created for us. I was so moved by that beauty, so thankful that I was able to be there and witness it. My love affair with the ocean continues…thanks to my new Ireland adventure.

While Dublin was a neat city, and the architecture of the buildings and villages were lovely and inspiring…it was Ireland’s natural beauty that really moved me. I know my pictures won’t do it justice…but the memory is vivid and clear in my mind. I saw many beautiful places in Ireland, and I would happily return and do it again someday if I had the chance…but that day on the beach really stuck with me. I felt…it’s going to sound weird to say it…but I truly felt moved by God’s handiwork. I couldn’t help but be awestruck…I couldn’t help the words of praise and wonder from escaping my lips. I wanted to SING and dance and rejoice. I felt I was going to burst! I was so thankful to have been able to see it first-hand and share the memory with such a dear, close friend. It is one I will treasure for years and years to come, for sure.

But then again…in my everyday life there is also amazing beauty…I returned home from Ireland to many plants and flowers springing to life in my flower gardens. I wake up each morning to the sound of happy birds singing outside my window and I can’t wait for the promise of warm spring days ahead. Today it is raining and cooler, a typical April spring day and I love it. The grass is green and lush and the robins are dancing across it in search for fresh worms. The air is clean and fresh outside my door. My house is warm and cozy and I adore the site of my husband stretched out on the couch, his beloved Hot Rod magazine in his hands while the kitties move from window to window watching the rain and stalking the birds, and sweet, old, loveable Buddy lays curled up on the floor below. My heart is full, on days like this…as I ponder all the wonder of life and all the blessings in my own.


Emily said…
No matter where it rolls into, the ocean brings magic and awe. I love in Job, "I told the ocean, 'you can come this far and no further.'"

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