Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.

Henry David Thoreau

Camping in the Woods by Another Beautiful Beach

Monday December 3 2018 to Thursday December 13, 2018                                        Most Recent Posts
Anastasia State Park                                                                                 Spectacular Skies and Hullivator Troubles
St. Augstine, Florida                                                                                             Wonderful Day at the Beach


On Sunday we move only about 40 miles up A1A to  Anastasia State Park in St. Augustine Florida.  We’ve been here several times before and prefer the older of the two campgrounds.  You can find previous posts about St.  Augustine and the park by
using the search box to the left just above the title of the blog.

We settle into our site which like many in this wooded area is shaded by live oak trees.  That’s a huge benefit when it’s hot and when it’s windy but not when it’s acorn dropping season.  I guess the oaks think it’s still fall and the acorns sound like bullets on the roof – BANG. . . BANG  . . . BANG.

The campground is about a half mile easy walk/bike ride from the park’s huge ocean front beach.  That’s good exercise to get there but it also  means that I can’t just look out my window to see if the sunrise has gotten clouded out.



I walk over every day but the walk is too long for David so the few times that he goes, we drive over.  There are two entrances to the beach both in the day use area which has a very large parking lot.  I’d say the park has perhaps the nicest beach in the St.  Augustine area but not having looked around at other nearby beach access, I don’t kmow that for sure.  It sure is a BIG beach to have any local competition.

One entrance has a short flat boardwalk and a long black fabric sidewalk sort of thing through the sand.   This is the easiest way for any one with a bicycle, a fishing cart, a wheel chair or handicapped in any way to get out to the beach.  But even from the end of the “sidewalk” it is a long way to the water.  This is a very wide and very long beach.

It’s so long that I don’t think you can see to the end even with binoculars. 


The second entrance is on a much longer boardwalk from the middle of the parking  lot up and over the dunes.  The dunes here are happily very well protected and people do not walk on them thankfully.


I give the dawn/sunrise walk a try early in our stay.  As I said, I have no real way of knowing what it will be like.  I don’t even dare hope it will be as spectacular as a few I’ve seen at Gamble Rogers recently but who knows.

This one was subtle and had a gentle rather than a powerful feel about it.

Dawn at Anastasia Beach

In the West, a sliver of a moon.  Anyone, other than Carrie and I, remember the book Wait Til’ The Moon is Full?  


Fly by in the dawn skies.


Here comes the sun.  He has to get through that  layer of clouds at the horizon.


Fliers now skimming the water’s edge


Back at home, I climb up on the roof to make sure the bombardments aren’t doing any damage.
Notice my size compared to Winnona and her compared to the trees.


No damage that I can see so I just sweep them all off including the ones that try to hit me while  I’m up there.


blue hen5

Friday of our first week at Anastasia is my birthday.  We’re pretty limited in what we can do to celebrate these days so I won’t be able to go to St. Augustine after dark and walk all through the town during Nights of Lights as we did a few years ago.  But we can still go out to breakfast.

I choose the Blue Hen completely because they have a blue crab quiche on the menu.

It’s a cute little place with church pews along the entry way.  Not sure why it’s called the Blue Hen since all the decor seems to be roosters.

blue hen1

The food is good and of course eating out is at the top of David’s list of things he enjoys. He chose some sort of corned beef hash thing.  The biscuits were obviously homemade and could be split with a fork.



Back home I picked up a package from Carrie.   I laugh when I find a box within the box.  We used to do this at holiday time.  Either we would wrap a small gift in ever increasing sized boxes or we would wrap a clue in a package and then that clue would lead to another box with another clue and on and on.  Great fun!   That’s one reason our celebrations lasted all day rather than the often rapid gift opening in most families.


I find inside a giant blue mug.  The perfect shade!  My favorite color.


Mama Bear.  Too cute!  Carrie, who has always called me Mama, says it is in honor of all the bears I’ve seen in Shenandoah and Great Smoky Mountains National Parks.   It will for sure remind me of my long and wonderful stays in both parks.


Last on the day’s activities is setting up our tree and decorations.


While we’re doing that, I get an email from a friend with a picture from Charlottesville.  This is why we are no longer there.  It’s pretty though isn’t it?

Snow at Mason Lane

Decorating is finished in no time. 


Writing this post I realize that the gold wreath is not hanging in the front window when I took this picture.  Darn!

Early the following week, David’s older brother Roger flies in from Texas for a visit.  He brings some old family pictures.  He’s printed them out so they could look at them together and he also has them on a USB stick so David can have them in jpg format.  Boy do we look young.  Where DOES the time go?


Of all the meals we ate together, this is the only one I took a picture of and this is after the dinner was over.  Oh well.  Too busy enjoying his company.


The next day the boys set out for a short walk on the beach.  David is able to walk out the short flat entrance and come back the boardwalk.  I’m amazed.  That’s the farthest he’s walked in quite some time.

Here they are in their Santa Hats before setting off.


Everyone says they look like brothers. While I think that’s true,  I also think they each favor a different side of the family.  David is a Boyd and Roger is a Johnston it seems to me.  What do you think Carol?


Roger takes this great selfie of the brothers on the beach.

D&R beach walk

Nearly every time they have been together in the past, wherever they are, they are working to create or fix something.  Last Thanksgiving in Terlingua at Roger’s daughter Amy’s home, often at the farm, at their sister Robin’s home.  I didn’t want this time to be different so I got out the broken electric cable from the Blue Ox and set them to it.


They got most of it fixed but there are two unspecified wires that we’ll have to call Blue Ox about.


We’re sad to see Roger go but so glad that he was able to make the trip.  It’s wonderful for David to spend time with him.  Thank you Roger and Carol for everythig.

Later we walk down to the boat launch and find an array of wading birds not wading but in the grasses and trees.  First the Great Blue Heron.


The Great Blue blends in much better than the Great Egret standing on the top of the bush.  Wonder what he’s looking for?



A group of  Wood Storks have staked out an area around the fish cleaning station at the boat lanch.


Notice, gray legs, pink feet.


I have to say they are really beautiful in flight.  Not so much on the ground.


The juvenile is “almost” cute.


All grown up.

A stork seems to be moving in on the fisherman standing in the water at one of the two boat launch sites here.  The fish cleaning station is further left out of the picture.

The other launch site has an egret on patrol.  The sand dunes in the distance separate this little inland body of water from the ocean.




Heading back home, we take a short cut across a little creek.  From the bridge I spot this Little Blue Heron.


As I watch, he goes on alert.  Look at the neck stretch and the feathers ruffled. Almost looks like a different bird.


Feathers smooth, his subtle colors make him look  like a tri-color but I don’t see the white stripe up the under side of his neck.


Here’s the habitat in which I spotted him.  Do you see him?


Time to leave Anastasia, pack up and head on down the road.

We wish you a Merry Christmas, a Joyous Yuletide, a Happy Hanakkah, a Wonderful Winter Solstice.

Seems every spiritual belief has a winter holiday this time of year.
We hope yours is joyful no matter what you are celebrating.


  1. This is a beautiful post. Love y'all.

  2. Happy Christmas to you both. Let's hope 2019 brings good tidings, health and Happiness.

  3. Merry Christmas to the both of you. Looks like David enjoyed seeing his brother. The birds are here now also. It was a stormy day today after many nice cool ones inside the park.
    I have decided to take a break from blogging, but will still read the ones I follow.
    Nice post.

  4. Nice to have David's brother visit and have them work out and almost fix blue ox. Your meals look so good and Happy Belated Birthday!

  5. Love the Birthday Mug!!! So great to see David and his brother together. Photo of them at the beach is so special:o)) Mother Nature paints so many different sunrises at the beach. They all are wonderful!!!

    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!!!

  6. With all those dropping acorns, you must be thankful for Winnebago putting fiberglass roofs on their motorhomes. I know I am, have had all kinds of things drop on the Journey's roof over the years, including a big branch once with nary a scratch. :c)

    Merry Christmas and best wishes for a great New Year!

  7. Your dawn pics are as beautiful as always - love the "fly by" especially. Wonderful that Roger was able to make a beach visit. Those two always look like they're having a great time together. They rock those Santa hats :-)

    Solstice Blessings to you and yours. The holiday decorations are delightful. I didn't take the time to do ours this year as we were moving until today :-))

  8. Just stopping in to wish you and David a wonderful holiday. I have not been blogging, but think of you often. One day maybe I’ll get on the computer and catch up! Just wanted you to know that I think of you often.

  9. Merry Christmas to you both also. We used to do the same thing with our Christmas presents, always made for some fun times. So nice Roger could visit and that the guys got their fixit time in. Nice sunrise pictures, Dave's always trying to get the birds in his.

  10. Happy holidays, and happy belated birthday! Your birthday mug is perfect for you. Looks like a fun visit with Roger. Great photos of the brothers in their Santa hats. :-) But hey, where's the traditional photo of you and David in your hats??

  11. The picture of the egret is great! The wood storks look prehistoric. The young one with the fluffy feathers is cute. Fun picture of your little Christmas tree in the dark. I'm glad Roger and David got to spend some time together. The beach looks really inviting. Merry Christmas! xxxooo

  12. I remember acorns and pinecones dropping on the roof made me jump every time. Your site looks pretty even if not a beach view. Sure like the boardwalks to give the land a break from our heavy feet. My husband was the package wrapper and used all kinds of odd shapes and tricks to take more time. Nice Roger could visit. Your decorations are wonderful. Merry Everything and Happy Always!

  13. We just got back to Quail Run and noticed hundreds of acorns all over the site. Tis the season. We looked to see if you were at your old spot from last year, I think it was? Merry Christmas to you both.

  14. I am very behind. This is a benefit day and BOTH kids are sleeping at the sane time! I enjoyed this post. The pictures of Dad and Roger made me smile. They definitely look like brothers, although different. So glad he could come. Lovely beach and bird pictures. Almost cute? Hmm...not sure on that ;)


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