Right after my son was born our little family moved to the coast of New Hampshire. For ten months we lived in a winter rental steps from the shore. It was a bit of a spontaneous move, and one that involved some sacrifices, but the glee in our daughter as she ran and played on the beach after looking at a few rental options sealed the deal for us. If the woods were made for children, the shore most certainly was too. It is pure magic. So…for ten glorious months we ran and played on the beach in all sorts of weather. We witnessed the moods of the ocean, the changes brought by the rhythm of the tides, sealife beyond the imagination, plants and rocks and shells to sort, organize, and marvel at, and oh so many boats. One of our favorite activities was to climb on the mountains of rocks that lined the harbor and watch the fishing boats come and go. Several times we walked the docks and watched them unload their catches, wondering at the adventures they had way out in the “deep deep” (her phrase!) of the ocean. It truly was a marvelous time. Not to mention the many kindred souls we met. Ah…we still miss our days on the New Hampshire shore.
Now the nearest shore is one of the majestic great lakes. It is so large in fact that is known as “the ocean lake” to our little ones. Though the shore of this lake offers wonderful fuel for the imaginations and curiosities of little minds, and we are truly grateful to have it so close, it is not the ocean. There is simply nothing that can replace the salty shore of the sea.