aquarium and my dad's birthday.


 Yesterday was my dad's birthday, he would have been fifty. Instead of staying home all day and being upset like I did last year, my brother and I decided to do something special that would take some of the sadness of the day out of focus. My dad loved the beach and the ocean, we were always out on our boat or visiting the beach when we were growing up, so I figured we would at least stop by the beach (I live maybe five minutes away?) but my brother suggested we visit the Marine Science Center, where my father built the main bird sanctuary enclosure. I had never been there, and it seemed like the perfect way to honor my dad on his birthday.

We arrived a bit late, making it just before last admission, but we had just enough time to tour the whole center and even spend maybe a bit too much time at the sting ray tank. There were fish and turtles and eels, and probably my favorite, seahorses, and of course as I mentioned, sting rays, which were located in the middle of the main room in an open 'touch tank' where you could stick your hand in and pet them. They were so cute and had such funny little faces that I spent most of the time trying to capture a cute little face in a photo (they're so fast!).

Outside of the center is where the keep the 'ICU', for sick or injured sea turtles to be rehabilitated and re-released into the wild. They were all so huge but had cute names like Buster and Bunny and made me really sad for them that they were hurt and had to be contained in tiny (for them) pools but I knew it was the best for them. I made a little donation in honor of my dad because I know he would have been proud as he was a big supporter of sea turtle conservation.

We made our way over to the Bird Sanctuary to visit the enclosure built by my dad, and looked at all the eagles and falcons and owls, and even got to see one of the owls super up close when a lady was taking him out of his cage to bring inside for the day (he wasn't very happy about it).

the enclosure my dad built.

When we left the Marine Science Center, we stopped to get iced coffee and made our way to the beach. Despite the mid-ninety degree temperature that day, down by the water under the pier felt nice and breezy, a bit chilly even, it was so windy, and even though I'm not a beach person it was nice because I felt close to my dad. It was really hard because the whole time I was just wishing he was there, but I think he would have approved of the way we spent the day.

dress - borrowed from my shop
heart locket w. photo of my dad - gift from my aunt


  1. What a sweet way to honor your dad - thanks for sharing Cara, your photos turned out beautiful.

  2. You look so pretty! I love all these photos of sea creatures and animals. What a great tribute to your dad.

  3. i'm sure your dad was with you through out the day. perfect way to honor him indeed. big hug for you.

    ps. great photos!


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