Sunday, July 5, 2015

4th of July in Loosin'Nana

Harrison pronounces Louisiana as "Loosin' Nana." That's where we spent the 4th of July this year. I believe we spent last year there too. What do ya know....

On the way, we spent a couple hours at the mall in Beaumont where Elizabeth spent some time with her Beaumont girls at a bookstore. Phoebe decided she wanted to pay for an experience. I really didn't think she'd like it, but she did. 

The kids made a house out of hay at the park. I remember doing this as a kid too. 

At Oil and Gas Park in Jennings. 
We showed up to play (the Jennings Park is a tradition for us), and found that they were having a 4th of July Celebration with free music and bouncy things. How fun! We stayed about 7 hours, all the way through to the fireworks. Barbecued, played, tried a little fair food, and listened to some good 'ole Cajun music. 

Elizabeth and Jayda!

Jonathan coming down the water slide. It was a hot and sweaty day. The kids were glad to get a little wet.

This bouncy house actually collapsed at one point with Harrison in it. He was the first one out, sha baby. And he went around telling everyone the story. Everyone got out safely and they fixed the problem.

Cajun band complete with an accordian, triangle, fiddle, and pedal steel guitar. 

This was the annual family reunion at Uncle Gib's farm. Sugar cane and rice were in the fields. 

They make jambalaya outdoors in a big pot every year. 

And as always, everyone was very tired as we headed home. It's such a blessing to be able to go so often to Louisiana. I get to have good conversations with so many people. I love getting to know my Grandpa, the kids getting to spend time with Nana and Aupa, spending time with childhood friends. Thank you, Teressa, for keeping us every time we come!

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Summer Time

We finished school and the kids immediately got ready for camp. Elizabeth went to her own week and met up with the Beaumont girls like she has every year. I forgot about sending packages and letters to your campers (like I've forgotten the last three years), but the Beaumont parents took up the slack and sent her some letters and cards. So sweet of them. I'm a loser. (ha, ha)

Phoebe and her neighbor friend joined up with Jonathan's week of camp since their week didn't have enough kids registered. That made it nice since we didn't have to make another trip to and from camp and also since this was Phoebe and Charlize's first time at camp without parents. 

My brother Mike and his wife came to visit us. Awesome time at the Alamo and playing Risk.

Phoebe won this time. She's hysterical when she's losing and maniacal when she's winning. That girl is something.

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Harrison Turns Five

He's the baby of the family and we can't really call him a baby anymore. A five year old is school age. Tear.

But we had a fun day today celebrating. We went to an Agricultural Museum in Boerne. Lots of tractors and tractor parts and old-timey equipment. Phillip was able to explain a lot to us about what was what and what Papa and his Dad used to farm with.

Aupa, I think this is the grown-up version of the toy tractor you gave to Jonathan.

The sand table was Harrison's favorite part.

There was a blacksmith building; the blacksmith made this leaf out of steel and gave it to Phoebe.

Harrison wanted a rainbow on his cake. And we gave him trick candles, which he enjoyed.

He's a fun kid. He's been playing with all his toys this afternoon. He's already put together his puzzles and Lego set and played in the dirt with his excavator. 

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Storms, Storms...

Our days in San Antonio have been filled with thunderstorms this spring. I can actually call it spring, because it isn't so goodness-gracious hot like it has been the last few years we've lived here. I love storms, so I don't mind too much. The kids have been wanting to do more swimming than they're able to do, but they enjoy the storms too. Except when they happen at night. At that point all the boys end up in the hall (yes, Phillip too; lightening doesn't interrupt sleep in the windowless hall).

Phoebe's new dress.

 A sunny day at the pool. 

 Celebrating a birthday with friends. 
Probably the healthiest cake you'll ever eat. 
Very delicious! 

Harrison was quite distraught that he couldn't make his card perfect for Emmey. He tore it up finally. I cut off the torn parts and asked him later if he was sure he didn't want to give her the card he had made. He looked sad and said, "Mom, you can give it to her, but I won't."

 This was a cloudy day at the pool. We tried the Guadalupe River so we could float Elizabeth's raft, but with all the recent storms, it was flooded and raging. Very cool to witness, but not safe to play in. 

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Lockhart, TX

Mother's Day gift to me this year was a family outing to Lockhart, TX. 
They are famous for their barbecue apparently.

The wood for smoking the meat stored in the back space of Smitty's.

Sharing some delicious brisket, no forks allowed! 

An old library in Lockhart. 
The kids especially liked the stained glass windows.

An old piano in the library?

This is the new part of the library.

We looked in on the clock museum. This guy is a re-enactor and could tell us more than we wanted to know about all the clocks in the place. One watch had a picture of Hitler on it; a lot of those were thrown out after he was gone, of course. Another watch that was the oldest they displayed was worth much less than the Walt Disney watch made in the 20's. Go figure. 

We tried to get ice cream in town, but Blue Bell is having some issues, so none of the places had ice cream. We stopped at a Dairy Queen on the way home. 

This was my kind of gift ~ a family experience together. 

Saturday, April 25, 2015

An Aquarium and a Haircut.... and Some Other Stuff

The kids spent several days working on a train. 
And playing all kinds of games in the train. 

Elizabeth bought some luggage. That's just the kind of girl she is.

This is a new aquarium in town. The guy who did a lot of the construction on it is our neighbor. Our kids and their kids get along very well and they invited us to a night at the Aquarium for a birthday. 

Petting and feeding the Bat Rays and Sting Rays was pretty awesome.

They have a number of reptiles and birds and other aquatic life as well. It was a much appreciated experience for the kids. Harrison wants to go back for his birthday. 

And Elizabeth is enjoying a new haircut and color. She's a lot more adventurous than I am!

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Flat Stanley

Phoebe's cousin Joshua involved her in a school project with a book character called Flat Stanley.

He sent her the character and Phoebe took him around to different sites in our city. She's been writing about him during school time, and we'll send Stanley back this week to Joshua's school so he can use her information for a project. 

Flat Stanely at our library (Semmes) standing next to a Texas Mountain Laurel tree. We also saw a Road Runner on this day.

 Flat Stanley among the Bluebonnets ~ Texas' state flower.

 Flat Stanley at Cibolo Creek ~ a fun Nature Center our family visits often.

This is a replica of a dinosaur track found in the Boerne Lake Spillway after a flood uncovered it several years ago. 

 If you click on this picture,  you can read more about it.

We didn't visit the Alamo this time around. Joshua got to see it when he was here a couple months ago. But here's a picture of the Texas flag (a very important part of living in Texas) next to the most famous site in our town.