A Pawley’s Island vacation!

Growing up our family getaway was our condo on Smith Mountain Lake, about 45 minutes from our hometown of Danville, VA. It’s still gives me the feeling of “home” more than any other place in this world, despite jumping between houses over the years and only spending summers & weekends there growing up. My parents live there full time now, as did I for the second half of college and briefly after graduation, so I guess it’s only fair to call it home now. She’s earned that title.

In any case, I think it’s safe to say my brothers and I completely took for granted the fact that our parents had a second home on a beautiful lake and, as kids, were never satisfied with it being our “vacation”.  Our “summer vacation” spot, was Hilton Head Island, SC. A beautiful place with tons of great memories, but eventually we grew up and started cherishing that time at the lake and stopped taking those week long beach vacations. We had paradise at our fingertips, after all.

Looking out from the foyer in my parent’s house = HEAVEN.

But SOMETIMES….sometimes a girl just needs a week at the beach, you know? So when my Mom mentioned last year that she wanted to find a spot to do a family beach vacation this summer, I happily volunteered to do some research and find the perfect beach.  😉

We had a blast at Pawley’s Island. They pride themselves on being “arrogantly shabby” and they are just that. Once you cross over the marsh, it’s nothing but one tiny beach road, lots of beautiful old houses, Spanish moss and sand. Our house was RIGHT on the water, so close that even my niece’s baby monitor still got reception while we laid by the water! The back of the house backed up to the marsh, so we also had a pier and gazebo that went out into the marsh. Very convenient for crabbing, watching kayakers and cocktail-ing….of course.

Here are some highlights from the week!

I woke up to meet the sunrise the first morning… Took an awesome (literally) walk along the beach by myself. Alone time is so under-appreciated sometimes.

Oyster shells are ABUNDANT on South Carolina’s lowcountry beaches. I added to my collection from last year. I’m currently using them as filler around some mason jars for my dining table centerpiece, but I’m convinced I’m going to get crafty in the next few months and make something jaw-dropping…

She sells seashells by the sea shore.

We didn’t go out to dinner much while we were there, which is kind of unusual for our family. We all love to cook, but when we’re on vacation, we also love to have someone else make us fantastic food (and clean it all up!). But we had this great big kitchen and all this fantastic seafood at our fingertips, so we ended up doing some sort of seafood every single night! One of our last nights there, my brother, Peyton, cooked a whole fish on the grill. As someone who has never been a fish eater (unless it’s raw), I was BLOWN AWAY. I ate fish every night we cooked it and LOVED it.  Look who’s growing up…

Red Snapper with Lemons and Parsley Almond “pistou”



We had an awesome vacation! It was so good to do nothing but relax for a week. The only thing that would have made it the perfect vacation, would have been my other brother, Austin and his wife Ashley. They couldn’t make it this year because of his doctor’s appointments, but next year?….Next year, it’s on.  😉

PS – One night Peyt, his wife, Alissa, and I went out for cocktails before dinner and had amazing drinks at a place called Chive Blossom Cafe. (Great food too! We had the fried green tomato appetizer & the fried oysters. My brother swears they were the best fried oysters he’s ever had!) The cocktails were so good I didn’t even take a picture… Peyt had an awesome Dark and Stormy with fresh ginger beer, Alissa had a tasty Strawberry Basil martini, and I had this Blueberry Lemonade concoction with St. Germaine and fresh thyme in it. Yes, thyme. I would never have thought to put that in a cocktail to save my life, but it was DELICIOUS. I’m going to try to recreate them for you guys soon. BOTTOMS UP! 


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