Here are some of the photos from our trip to Texas. We met up with Grandma and Granddaddy, who drove out, as well as Auntie Blah, who flew out for part of the visit. We visited four sets of friends (you know who you are), and met six of their seven children for the first time. All in all, it was a fantastic trip and my only complaint is the weather. I watched weather reports for a month before we left, and it was 75 and sunny everyday. The sun came through for us. The 75 did not. It might have hit 70 once, but I didn't notice. It was generally cool in the mornings and didn't warm up to 60-something until well into the afternoon. We fared no better in Dallas. Spending only one night there before heading back to Austin, the night we left they predicted snow. Yikes!
Here are some of my favorite photos from my collection
. The better ones are all over here in Michal's stellar gallery
. To give you a bit of an idea what you're getting into if you decide to view the entire galleries, mine has 216 photos. Michal's has over a 1000.
Vivian enjoying the selection of new toys loaned from friends and brought by family.
Vivian wearing Granddaddy's hat.
Theo all aboard for the scenic train ride around Zilker Park. He made everyone get on even though it didn't leave for another fifteen minutes or more. We did get good seats as a result, though.
Theo and Daddy riding the train. It went over a bridge and through a tunnel between two playscapes, so it hit all the basic requirements for Theo's obsession with trains.
Vivian in Grandma's lap on the same train ride. She liked it well enough but spent most of her time trying to chew on the handrail in front of us.
Theo in the sandbox with Auntie Blah at Zilker Park.
Vivian snuggling under the covers in bed one frosty morning. She slept in until about 5 or 6 most mornings in the room with us, at which point I'd feed her and discover she was a block of ice and throw her in the bed with us.
I did a terrible job taking photos at the beginning of the trip because this one is from Dallas. I got exactly two shots with all four kids. Here are Samantha, Theo, Wyatt, and Vivian in the playroom in Fort Worth, having a ball, although not exactly together.
Theo preparing some tea and cake for everyone. He adored Samantha's kitchen and baking sets.
Vivian at the children's museum in Fort Worth, which is part of the Museum of Science and History.
Samantha and Kristine rocking the hula hoops at the Museum of Science and History.
One hands-on exhibit had vertical wind tubes and materials to make flying things, like these paper cones. The cones were all in a stack until Theo discovered them and did this.
Theo in the tunnel at the Dallas World Aquarium.
Theo enjoying the flamingos at the Dallas World Aquarium. Michal has an even better video
of his delight, which includes standing on one leg like a flamingo.
Vivian thoroughly enjoyed the huge underwater window on the lowest level. She talked to everything that swam by us.
We took a walk to feed the ducks in Dallas while John cooked a spectacular meal that all four of us enjoyed. It was very very cold and windy. As previously mentioned, they were forecasting snow that evening. We didn't stick around long enough to find out if the forecast was accurate.
Theo during that same walk. He went horizontal in the stroller in an effort to avoid the wind, and we tucked him under the blanket up to his chin in addition to that.
Theo and Grandma walking around the grounds of the Alamo in San Antonio.
Granddaddy and Vivian doing the same.
Watching the fish who have been corralled into one small part of the water under this footbridge.
Theo sharing a snack with Vivian at the Alamo. Vivian has been upgraded to the stroller after Theo vacated it.
Enjoying the river walk in San Antonio.
Daddy and Theo watching a boat on the river walk.
Theo, in his bridge obsession, loves to point out the water every time we go over it. Bridges over water are the best.
Theo playing with Vivian back at the house in Austin while Grandma looks on.
Theo constructing a tunnel for the train.
Opening presents from Auntie Blah.
Vivian enjoying rice and other stuff during lunch.
Daddy and Vivian enjoying the sunshine in the window seat.
I adore the way Vivian held onto the table with her toes while she ate.
Vivian enjoying the playground at the elementary school around the block from the house we rented.
Vivian went down a slide for the first time on her nine-month birthday here. Theo thought it was awesome, and so did Vivian, who laughed. After that, they went down together. If Theo saw her going without him, he yelled and came running over to join the fun.
Bedtime with Grandma.
Snacktime with Daddy.
Theo is one cool dude. Here he is enjoying a milkshake in his shades, which he is wearing because it is "too bright!" It is also, for the record, too bright for him in Seattle in the winter when the sun comes out.
Vivian discovered where Granddaddy kept his pen.
Saying goodbye at the airport.
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