This post is very self-serving, so I'll understand if you don't read any further, as it was not your vacation and these photos / comments will not bring back any memories for you. But they will serve a very good purpose for me, in reminding me about what we liked (and a little of what we didn't like) about the location and experience of having 20 people (16 kids, age 4 months up to 15 years old, and 4 adults, ages unnecessary to divulge) under one roof.
The house itself was located almost at the very west end of the Fort Morgan peninsula. This meant that we had a long drive back to "civilization" as we had to go east for 25 minutes down a very narrow stretch of road with lots of trees and shrubs cluttering the area typically reserved for pulling off the road. The house was about 200 yards from the ocean (the Gulf of Mexico), but it was more like a half-mile walk or three-quarter mile drive to the beach.
The house had four levels, and did have an elevator (which I never rode in because it was the slowest ride known to man), but the stairs (and floors) were all hard wood. This is good in a lot of ways, but is not the most comfortable or sound proof.
The lowest level was reserved for all the beach stuff (floating toys, towels, sandals, etc.) and had a pass code entry system (I also never learned the code to get in, but some of my kids knew it so we were okay).
The second level had two bedrooms, both with connecting bathrooms, but only the far room could be considered a "master" suite because it also had a small walk out deck. Between these two rooms was a full laundry room (which came in VERY handy!) The adult Amsdens (and their three youngest kiddos) stayed in that Master Suite and the teenage girls stayed in the other room.
The third level had one bedroom (which the teen and pre-teen boys stayed in) and the rest of the "living area" for the house. This included a bathroom, with shower/tub, the kitchen, the dining room, and family room area. There was also a small walk-out deck, which was always coveted as an eating area by various groups of kids who staked their claim around meal times. The living area was a little cramped with 20 people in it at some times, but most of the time it was filled with any combination of about 5-10 people.
The top level had two bedrooms with a shared master bathroom area. The "middle" girls from both families stayed in the west bedroom, which had four beds and seemed pretty spacious for being in the "attic" as it were. The other "master" bedroom was occupied by Karen and I (and little Spencer). It also had a small outside deck, which was nice to sit out on in the early morning or late at night (if the wind wasn't blowing too much).
- the laundry room was used much more often than I thought it would be
- it's nice to know where everyone is ... and have them just a loud shout or whistle away
- wifi was good to have access to and generally powered numerous devices at reasonably quick speeds
Top Opportunities of the Beach House:
- too far from the beach to make it worth being "at the beach"
- those stairs got very tiring day after day
- sharing our "master bath" with litle girls was not fun after about an hour
- too far from "civilization" considering how often we ended up needing to go into town for shopping trips
All in all, it was very fun and I can say we would easily agree to doing this again ... but I think we all (adults anyway) agree we would want a house that actually sits on the beach directly. Whatever extra money it might cost would have been worth it for sure!
Song Of The Day:
For the title and for the tongue-in-cheek lyrics, "Some Beach" by Blake Shelton is the song for today's post. This house was nearthebeach but really onthebeach would have been much better.