Somewhere tonite, some kid has no idea that his or her sandcastle was not washed away in vain. It served a purpose. At least to a middle aged man strolling on the beach early one morning.

As I made a final round down the sandy world in front of our camper and gazed into the clear blue Destin waters, I found this abandoned sandcastle. No, my kids, regretfully, have outgrown the sandcastles. While watching other parents and their kids interact on the beach, I could not help but pause and remember my own kids on this very beach being that small. It was, perhaps, 2 weeks ago they ran up to the waves and then screaming back up to me and their mom. Then, repeated again and again. Those screaming little faces are forever etched in my mind. Happy, untouched little faces that enjoyed the sun baked moments as they happened. They still do really. They are happy kids and for that, we are grateful.

But, as I said, in my mind that was 2 weeks ago. In reality, it was about 10 years ago or so. And I was 10 years younger, my wife was 10 years younger and 911 hadn’t happened. Then again, over the past 10 years we have made wonderful memories with our kids while watching them grow into teenagers, made new friends, got new jobs, met new people camping all over this country, saw things that we will never forget and experienced life as we built our own sandcastles.

As the tide rolled in that nite before, it took away a wall of the fort around the sandcastle. That sandcastle was built strong however. It had a moat to pool the water instead of eroding all of the walls. The castle was built high to oversee the ocean and to protect itself. So, the young builder actually did a great job.

For me, going to the beach helps me build my sandcastle. It is only coincidence that sand is there. But my point is to get out, find YOUR beach and on that beach….build your sandcastle.

Our lives are quick and fleeting like a sandcastle. Very vulnerable but beautiful things that are to be enjoyed. I encourage each of you to build your sandcastle. Don’t worry if it gets washed away by a tide, get out there while you still can. Tomorrow, your walls maybe weakened by the tide and there is no going back.

I know that somewhere tonite, some kid lies in bed and remembers his sandcastle and the dragons at sea it must have fought off. And, I thank him.

Today…find your beach….and build your sandcastle….and even if it’s only for a few moments…pause and enjoy yourself.