Saturday, December 31, 2011
Monday, November 14, 2011
Wednesday, August 31, 2011
Where did the summer go? I foolishly thought that with both boys at camp this summer I would take time to faithfully blog our exploits and enjoy the abundant quiet time and write a lot in this space. But I unintentionally seem to have taken an almost Memorial Day to Labor Day break. And it's a good thing. We've been busy living life, if not exactly capturing it in film and pictures.
I moved slowly, worked on my first college class in 15 or so years, had wonderful lunches with friends, finished and started a couple of home improvement painting projects, and generally had a good time. In contrast to last summer, we never ventured farther afield than Houston, and never once stepped foot out of state. Here are some snapshots of our staycation-style summer.
You'll notice all kinds of variations on water. With the record-breaking hundred degrees days we've endured, how could we not try to escape in water as often as we got the chance.
Kicking off the summer at the Rock'N River.
Visiting the Pedernales at Reimer's Ranch with my brother and sister-in-law in June.
Trying out a different do for summer. He didn't like it, which surprised me.
All too brief but wonderful day trip to Surfside Beach.
An amazing youth group urban Mission trip in Houston with CSM. Deserving of its own blog post, which I'll try to pull together.
A cake, made with his daddy, just because!
The drought's brought out the wild animals, even the nocturnal ones, looking for water during the day.
Friday, May 20, 2011
Tuesday, May 17, 2011
Contrary to other plans we'd made for the weekend, we ended up camping at Buescher State Park Saturday night. It was a great chance to explore a park that we usually just pass through in a car or on bikes.
Charlie Brown amused himself for at least half an hour with this activity. Balance, hang, drop. Repeat.
Saturday, May 14, 2011
The first summer in this house, four years ago now, I would never have taken a picture of this. It would have been insignificant - a potted plant set out to catch rain water. That summer we seemed to have deluge after deluge. Water ran in the street, and crawdads, literally, went swimming by. I was a cocky gardener, watching everything I planted grow and thrive.
Not so the last couple of years. I read that our rainfall on Thursday was the most significant since September. (If it would rain more, among other things, maybe I could learn to take decent pictures on rainy days.)
Drought's not over, but we're oh so grateful for what we got.
Friday, May 13, 2011
Thursday, May 12, 2011
My favorite members of the male species.
(One of my favorites is behind the camera. Have I mentioned that Bike Monkey is 13? Apparently it's against his creed to smile for photos. I should also explain that Charlie Brown brought in action figures to play with during brunch. That's what he's got wadded up in his shirt in the photos.
Because, you know, brunch with the family for Mother's Day can be boring, and they don't have a TV at Galaxy to stare at while you ignore your family.)
Thoughtful gifts from my family. I've already had to ask Lyman to only buy me Nutella once a year. I could very easily slip back into my college days habit of eating it with a spoon.
I'm a lucky mama!
Friday, May 6, 2011
This adventure and blog post was inspired by the amazing Joe McDermott, and his classic song "Transportation Vacation."
Bike Monkey escaped off to Sea World yesterday to celebrate a friend's birthday. Knowing that Charlie Brown would mope around all day and bemoan the unfairness of it all if we just stayed close to home, I decided we would go off on our own exploration. We've talked for awhile about checking out our barely year-old light rail system, and decided yesterday would be a good day to do it.I wish I could say that we were car free all day, but we weren't. It's a 5 mile drive from my house to the nearest rail station, and the bus system stops about a mile from my house, even though we're in the city limits. (A whole other rant for another day.)
So we drove to the station, and then caught the train and headed north to - the mall. I know it's kind of silly, but as you'll see, there are many attractions besides shopping at the mall. We arranged for one of Charlie Brown's friends to meet us and hang out at the mall, and this increased the fun exponentially.
I loved the train, and with the exception of convenience, couldn't really find fault with it. Charlie Brown had a reduced fare all day pass for $2.75, and that covered both ways on the train and the connecting bus we took to get to the mall. There is free wi-fi on the trains, clean comfortable seats, and even drop down trays to work on if you desire.
We went 20 or so miles in 37 minutes. Truth be told, if there's not much traffic, I can make it there from home in less time than that. And I don't use $8.25 in gas doing it. But it was so much fun, and so much less stressful. (I so wish that public transport in Austin were more developed and extensive, but I'm happy for what we've got. I also recognize that I'm privileged to be able to choose to ride the bus, and not have to rely on it exclusively for my travel needs.)
Once at the train station, we caught the connecting bus without any problem, and were deposited just outside the entrance to the mall parking lot. Much fun was had in the mall, between the bouncy place and the bungee jumping set up.
(yes, they are bouncing as high as the second story. And, they'd just eaten lunch!)
And another form of transportation was involved, if you count the carousel, which I'm inclined to do.
Next time Bike Monkey wants to come. And I think we'll try bringing our bikes along, which will allow us more flexibility once we get to our destination.
p.s. The bus connection drops you right in front of the Barnes & Noble. It was like heaven. Someone else driving and being deposited at a bookstore. That way it didn't even matter when we accidentally missed the first return bus.:)