Perspective and a Mexican Fisherman

Sunset Hand

Where are you going?  This is something that I’ve been reflecting on here recently as I think about the fact that my children are getting older; one in college and one in high school.  I technically have three years left with kids living at home full time.  This is surreal.  I want to soak up every last minute; every last second with them.  I want to slow down my life.  I want to slow down time.

At the same time, it’s exciting to begin thinking about and planning the future with just me and the hubs.  What will our lives look like?  Will we live in a cute cottage on a big piece of land?  Will we live in an old Florida home near the ocean?  Will we travel around part-time or maybe even full-time in an RV? There’s so many questions and so many unknowns.  It’s exciting.  I love daydreaming about these sort of things.

Today, a lady at work shared the following story that completely touched my heart and certainly put into perspective.  We must be sure to focus on what really matters in life.


A boat docked in a tiny Mexican village. An American tourist complimented the Mexican fisherman on the quality of his fish and asked how long it took him to catch them.

“Not very long,” answered the Mexican.

“But then, why didn’t you stay out longer and catch more?” asked the American.

The Mexican explained that his small catch was sufficient to meet his needs and those of his family.

The American asked, “But what do you do with the rest of your time?”

“I have a full life. I play with my children and take a siesta with my wife. In the evenings, I go into the village to see my friends, play the guitar, and sing a few songs….”

The American interrupted, “I have an MBA from Harvard, and I can help you! You should start by fishing longer every day. You can then sell the extra fish you catch. With the extra revenue, you can buy a bigger boat.”

“And after that?” asked the Mexican.

“With the extra money the larger boat will bring, you can buy a second one and a third one and so on until you have an entire fleet of trawlers. Instead of selling your fish to a middle man, you can then negotiate directly with the processing plants and maybe even open your own plant. You can then leave this little village and move to Mexico City, Los Angeles, or even New York City! From there you can direct your huge new enterprise.”

“How long would that take?” asked the Mexican.

“Twenty, perhaps twenty-five years,” replied the American.

“And after that?”

“Afterwards? Well my Friend, That’s when it gets really interesting,” answered the American, laughing. “When your business gets really big, you can start selling stocks and make millions!”

“Millions? Really? And after that?” said the Mexican.

“After that you’ll be able to retire, live in a tiny village near the coast, sleep late, play with your children, catch a few fish, take a siesta with your wife and spend your evenings doing what you like and enjoying your friends.”

“With all due respect sir, but that’s exactly what I am doing now. So what’s the point wasting twenty-five years?” asked the Mexican.

Know where you’re going in life… you may already be there.

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Mother’s Day on the Water

Coffee on the WaterD at beach in glasses D Throwing Football Earls Fish Hardheads and Crazy Faces A Man and His Dog Fishing Nana and Papa Hang Loose Nana and Papa SUP Nell the Lifeguard Papa Carrying Football on Beach Steve and Nell Fishing Steve and Papa Fishing Trey Carrying Board In Trey SurfingNana and Papa Fishing

Here are pics from a weekend on the water. My parents are in town and rented a house on the intracoastal. There was lots of fishing, paddleboarding, surfing and beachin’ it up. Good times were had by all.

Birthday Celebration :: Day 2

Day two of the birthday celebration fell on my actual birthday. The day was spent mostly hanging out at home and going to church but at the end of the day, we went to the Everglades and watched the sunset. Florida sunsets always blow me away. Check out day 2 pics below.

Everglades SunsetTrey Running in Sunset Trey on Road Back View Silly Trey Running Everglades Everglades Sunset Initial Boys on the Bridge Alligator

Birthday Celebration :: Day 1

In our family, birthday’s are important. They are so important that we not only celebrate your actual birthday, we celebrate your entire birthday weekend. If your birthday doesn’t fall on the weekend, you get to choose the weekend before or the weekend after to celebrate.

The rule is that during your birthday weekend, you get to choose what the entire family does, where we eat, etc. Of course, since my most favorite activity is paddleboarding, my weekend involved a lot of this activity. The coolest thing is that my birthday fell on a three day weekend. So, I got to celebrate for three days instead of just two!

The first day of the weekend, we went about an hour north to paddle around Jupiter Island (Florida), do some fishing from the beach, fishing from the paddleboards and simply relaxing on the beach. Check out the pics from day one of my birthday celebration.

Beach Setup Fishing out in the Ocean High in a Mangrove Tree Paddleboard Fishing Paddleboard on the Sunlight Shadow Dwellers

The Big Catch

We took my son fishing in the Florida Everglades this past weekend. Just about the time we were going to leave, he caught a 24 inch large mouth bass. A local fisherman told us it was the largest one caught from the bank in that area. That kid is awesome! Nuff said.

Treys castBird Close Up View Everglades Sunset Flowers Close Up Nell Side View at the Everglades Standing in the Sunlight with Fishing PoleSteve Engulfed by the Sun Trey Fixing the LineWalking into Sunset with Fishing PoleSteve Standing in the sunlight The big catch

October

A photo of my children every month :: October
Dancing by the Water Walking down fishing bridge
Dee {16 years and 7 months}:
She is always listening to music and lately has been the happiest, silliest teenager. It brings my heart joy.

Trey {13 years and 5 months}:
He is going through a growth spurt and changing drastically. His deeper voice still shocks me.

A Day with the In-Laws

Close Up PhotographyCatching Frisbee PhotographyCast Net Throwing PhotographyGrass View PhotographyGetting Ready to Throw Net PhotographyGrandfather and Granddaughter PhotographyIn the Hammock PhotographyLooking in Water PhotographyThrowing Frisbee PhotographyGrandparents PhotographyWalking with a Frisbee PhotographyHugging by the water PhotographyVery Close Up PhotographySilliness
The in-laws flew in for a weekend visit so we decided to take them to our favorite beach park. We fished, read, played frisbee, laid in the hammock, sat by the water, looked at the fish and simply enjoyed each others company. The sun was out and there was a cool breeze; perfect weather. We stayed for hours. It was incredibly peaceful. Well, besides my son freaking out over not catching any fish but that’s another story. We spent the day soaking in nature and enjoying family; my favorite.

Camping in the Keys

Sleeping in HammockLooking Over the Fishing BridgeFlorida Keys Sunset Fishing Area Florida KeysCooking Bacon on CoalsWalking Down the Fishing BridgeCow Fish Florida KeysBroke the Hammock Climbing Iceberg in Florida KeysRainbow Florida KeysPutting Out the Campfire

A campin’ we did go; tent camping that is. We loaded up all the gear and headed down to Key West ready to rough it, yet relax. Camping in the Florida Keys can be tricky as timing is crucial. The Keys can have crazy high heat and terrible bugs. While we didn’t avoid these two things completely, we did manage to have a somewhat minimized version of it.

After getting through the blood, sweat and tears of setting up the 8 person tent and all the camping gear, we played and relaxed. I went paddle boarding (until my son knocked a hole in it!), the boys fished, the girls took turns laying in the hammock and we all swam, ate, read, laughed and enjoyed each others company.

My husband typically makes friends everywhere he goes and this trip was no exception. He made friends with an older fisherman who was very skilled and took him and my son under his wing. This very nice man showed them how to properly catch fish, what bait to use, which type of fish is good to eat and even gave them a hands-on lesson on how to properly clean a fish. What a wise and kind gentleman.

When it came time to cook dinner we quickly realized that we were in a bit of a mess. We had hamburgers and freshly caught fish ready to throw on the grill. Problem was that they didn’t exactly have grills at this campground. They had fire pits. Even though it took what seemed like forever, we were able to put the skillet directly on the coals and eventually have a tasty dinner. Man, there is nothing like eating freshly caught fish. It literally melts in your mouth! Unfortunately, this was not the case for cooking breakfast the next morning. After a very sweaty, buggy and sleepless night we attempted to cook breakfast on the remaining coals the next morning. There were just not enough coals left to cook the entire meal and our patience had worn thin. Tired and hungry we decided to go for one last swim, pack up our gear and head to the next town to find a local spot for a big breakfast.

Lessons learned: make sure the campground has full grills and go late in the year when it’s cooler with less bugs (I have more bites than I could ever count). All in all, we had a great time. As much as I love nature and the outdoors, we may have to look at investing in a small camper before venturing on this type of journey again.

The Bond of Fishing

As a parent, you always look for interests that your children have that overlap with your own.  Where those two meet is the sweet spot for bonding opportunities.  My daughter and I bond easily because we are very similar in personality and have a lot of the same interests.  My son and husband fall into this same scenario.  My daughter and husband have the sweet spot of reading and watching movies; basically doing anything indoors.  My son and I share the opposite.  We love doing anything outdoors; surfing, swimming, camping, fishing, etc.  We’ve gone fishing before but it has always been with a fishing pole in fresh water.  This time we decided to buy a cast net and head to the ocean for fishing.  There was a bit of a learning curve as neither of us had ever thrown a cast net before but once my son got the hang of it, there was no stopping him.  Luckily, we picked a spot and a time of day where there were many schools of fish passing through.  He racked up!  Unfortunately, we didn’t have the right equipment for keeping the fish fresh.  They were dying on us fast.  It’s all a learning experience.  Next time we’ll be prepared.

Oh, and you can easily guess what my daughter and husband were doing.  Yep, they were at the movies.

Cast Net Fishing in the Ocean PhotographyCast Net Fishing in the Ocean Photography Cast Net Fishing in the Ocean Photography Cast Net Fishing in the Ocean Photography Cast Net Fishing in the Ocean Photography Cast Net Fishing in the Ocean Photography Cast Net Fishing in the Ocean Photography Cast Net Fishing in the Ocean Photography

Fishing and Photography

There is nothing more peaceful to me than nature and a little fishing.  I took my son fishing multiple times this past weekend.  Since we only have one fishing pole, I let him fish while we chat, taking in nature and taking pictures.  My son is typically not a patient person but it’s totally different when it comes to fishing.  He transforms into a very patient kid with a ton of perseverance.  He absolutely loves fishing and I grew up on the water fishing so it is something that we can do and enjoy together.  I love finding things to enjoy with each of my kids.  Here are some of the pics I took during that weekend.

Trey intently fishing 560 Trey catching the bait 560 Trey fishing in the current 560 Tall grass and dragon flys 560Flowers up close 560 Trey Fishing on the edge of thegrass 560 Trey fishing on a bucket 1 560 Nell with Pigtail Braids 560Steve 560 Trey holding up his big catch 560 Flip Flops over the everglades 560