Thursday, April 26, 2012

I can only imagine

We had to cancel our trip to Sanibel Island this year, because of more health issues.
That meant more tests, more waiting for answers, more biopsies, and still more waiting.

We had planned to stay at Sanibel with Rog and Laurie (from Heaven's Walk) for two weeks again this year. Things didn't work out for them either. 
It seemed we would be staying home this year.
Sometimes God has something planned for you that you cannot even imagine.
Something that you will forever remember in your heart.

Another couple we know rent this house on North Captiva Island each year.
They decided to rent later in the season since their family wasn't joining them this year.
They also rent the bigger house next door when all the kids vacation with them.

Norm and Susie told us the house had two bedrooms, and if the results of all my tests came back with good reports, we were welcome to share the place with them for a week.
We had to wait until the third week of March until we could commit ourselves.
Norm and Susie would be down there anyway, so they were happy to have us join them if we could make it.

Jim and I drove down to Florida. We took our time, and made the trip a part of our vacation.
We had to take a boat over to the island.
The only mode of transportation there is by foot, bike, or golf cart.

The wildlife was amazing!
This guy was constantly following us around on the shore, and on the dock.
He knew the guys would eventually clean fish, and that he would get a meal sooner or later.

The shark catch started out small, and got larger as the days went by.
Fishing off the dock limited the size of shark caught, but not the flavor.

We ate LOTS of different types of fish all week.

After our week with Norm and Susie, we headed over to the Atlantic side of Florida.
We stayed with friends Joe, and Debbie at Barefoot Bay for a few days.
I was sitting on the dock with my feet in the water, when a mother Manatee came up with this baby.

There was another small Manatee with them.
I was amazed how they came right up to my feet in the water!!!!

I realized how blessed I was to not only see these majestic creatures in their own habitat....but to see them right at my feet!

It made my eyes tear to see these gentle giants, and experience their sweet souls for those few minutes in my life.
I'm sure they forgot all about me as soon as they swam away.
I'll never forget them.
They were the highlight of my trip.
An experience I will hold in my heart, and thank God for when I see Him.
When we think our plans are the best....and then when they fall through....we get upset.
Just look what God can do.
Tete, the song you play on your blog holds true for me....."I can only imagine."


  1. I'm sorry you had to cancel your trip but how wonderful that you were able to go to FL anyway! Your meeting with the manatee was amazing, love those pics!!! We're moving from So Cal to Florida next month and I can't wait, my heart has been there since my dad first moved there a decade ago.

    I hope you're doing well Debbie, I've been away from your blog for too long so I'll have to read up on some older posts. Hugs:) Victoria

  2. Oh,honey, am I ever so glad that God touched your heart and gave you something to cherish until you leave this earth. What and amazing trip. All the while He had something better planned for you.
    Thank you for the postcard. We were all so excited to get it! The guys were impressed with that black tipped shark supper!
    Steve's brother lived for many years in Richmond, VA and many vacations for him were spent on the ocean in different places along the east coast. His brother is THE fisherman of the family and loved doing all the dock fishing. My father in law spent his 2 weeks every year on the docks.
    That part about the manatee coming right up to your feet- they had to be angels. I am sure they will always remember you and your calmness of soul.
    I wish you could have spent another couple weeks just hanging out on the docks and wading in the tides, but it is so good to have you back on here.
    I love that song, too. I am putting in a request that you are my next door neighbor and that we share a dock and a pair of manatees.
    Hugs- Tete

  3. Looks like it turned into an amazing trip! The sharks were very cool and I'd love to see a manatee close up like that. Our Sanibel trip got cancelled this year due to finances, but I'm hopeful something positive is going to come out of all this. I'm praying for you and your health. Hugs!

  4. Hi Debbie, sounds like a wonderful time and the sea 'critters' are so cool! Sharks!!!! Oh my! I hope everything is okay for you and I'll keep you in my thoughts.

  5. Oh-Sistah! I am SOOOO happy for you. I know how disappointed you were when things did not look like they were going to work out for you to get away. Don't we have an amazing and wonderful God? You know how much I love how this all turned out for you.

    Seeing those manatees is just amazing. They are such gentle giants, aren't they? My youngest son is just smitten with them...they touch his soul...much like they did with you, I'm sure.

    I hope you are glad to be home and can get all rested up from the road trip end of thins. Blessings...and I will catch up more with you later.

    Thanks for the postcard...MyHero says...WHO is THAT? I told him I have secrets he will NEVER know!;> xo Diana

  6. Oh how wonderful. I have been holing you in my prayers. I am so thankful for the good reports and for the fun surprises. I love it when God does these things!

  7. Hi Debbie ~ Happy to hear that you were able
    to salvage part of a vacation... It sounds as
    if it was all meant to be, I think Tete is right
    with the Manatees, Angels at your feet~ what a wonderful & comforting experience...

  8. I'm so happy that you had a great time! The Mantees, I believe what Cheryl said...Angels at your feet!

  9. Debbie, You must know you are still in my prayers, as I count you as a friend .I loved your post about the wildlife. I am glad you could still get away for abit of a vacation. I am breathing much easier since my daughter got all good news Tusday. Her scan was clear, the tyroid area is also clear and then last week her mammogram was clear. I thank God for his blessings . xoxo, Susie

  10. Glad you were able to get away. I lived in Ft. Myers and Naples for years and spent quite a lot of time on Sanibel and Captiva.

    We are heading to Naples next week for a visit.

  11. Wow, what a lovely way to go...good tests, an empty bedroom appears on Captiva and off you go to greet the manatees! Your pictures are AWESOME. I visited the jetty at Venice a couple weeks ago early in the morning and a herd of manatees were passing through the intracoastal waterway. They were amazing to watch, so easygoing, breathing deeply when they emerged now and covered with barnacles!

  12. This is such a beautiful write Debbie. I could feel my blood pressure lowering as you told the story of your trip to Florida and the visit from the amazing manatees. I hope that all the things are dealing with now in your life have a good resolution. You are in my thoughts and prayers.
    sending hugs...

  13. Awwwww, what a big old gentle spirit the Manatee seems to have, i'm so glad you got to see one... my thoughts will be with you as you wait for your tests, and i'll be hoping for good results...


  14. Hi Debbie...happy that you got to escape for a bit!
    Hope all is well!

  15. Hi Debbie! So delighted that you got to have such a delightful time! I am praying that all will be well with you. Love that you got to see the manatees. Living here, we see them often, and I got to see a mama with baby nursing. Too precious.

    Rich blessings to you,