Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Farewell to all that

Killing time before this afternoon's flight to Dallas and then on across the Pacific, so here are some more Marty pics.

I said that I hadn't covered the shopping; well two days ago we went to the huge array of factory outlets at San Marcos, up the road towards Austen. More clothes and shoe shops than you could shake a stick at, but as far as Marty was concerned the rides in the mall outside were far more satisfying.

This was the first, outside Eddie Bauer.

The horse was the second favourite.
He liked to watch his reflection in the window.

But this was the real favourite, even though the rotors didn't go round.

And Auntie Joanne hired a special car trolley!

After all that a boy needs some quiet time.
The iPad has been a godsend.

He has had more outdoor experiences, however. Hardberger Park is just up the road, with pleasant strolls through the oak woods.

Hardberger Park trail.
The park is new and very popular.

Sometimes there are squirrels in the trees.

And his US passport arrived, so to celebrate we had a flag-planting ceremony

Marty, Oliver and Jac.

And now we head for the airport. See you next time, San Antonio.

Friday, November 18, 2011

What we did in Texas

Well, that should probably read "What Marty did in Texas", because when you're with a two year old he tends to dominate the schedule. But that's fine, except perhaps that we're not getting enough exercise to balance the intake of all that fine food.

So what did we do?

We went to the swings a lot. These were at Orsinger Park and popular with many small folk. And we found out just where to find the black squirrel.

This was a playground within Uncle John's gated community.

We ate at the diner. This was at California Pizza Kitchen and they provided good stuff for kids.

We drank some good ol' Texas beer. (Hold on, that must have been me).

We discovered stuff in the bush. He much preferred to be off the track.

There are probably bitey things out there, but Marty likes to turn over every log and rock. No idea where he gets that from.

We found some lovely deer statues at Huebner Oaks shopping plaza. There's a whole series of them, leaping along the pathways.

We went to Starbucks. It was Marty's first Starbucks, and he dressed for the occasion.

We went to Enchanted Rock State Park, where the trees were all turning and the wind blew their leaves down in clouds.

We found a Texas BBQ. Recognise the shape? We're about 14 bars up and bit to the right. Actually all fires in the open are strictly banned since this part of the country has been in serious drought for a couple of years.

We went "fishing" in the Frog Pond at Enchanted Rock. Marty is prepared to "fish" in any body of standing water.

We found a lovely little stream at Enchanted Rock, clear water over pink granite gravel. Marty said "This is the best water in the world".

We played in Auntie Joanne's back yard with Oliver the cat. The cat adopted us as we walked home one evening, and Joanne (who already has two inside cats) couldn't bear to part with him. The box came from Amazon with his outdoor cat igloo (in "Mouse Grey").

We went out for breakfast tacos on San Pedro.

And that little summary has missed all the shopping......

Jean and I return to Tasmania in a few days, but Marty's Texan adventure goes on for another three weeks. So much more to come.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Texas Again

Here we are back in Texas again, almost exactly two years since we were here caring for Marty when he was just three months old. We're here to join in the celebrations for the wedding of Lorena Havill (one of Jac's colleagues, and the person who sent us that wonderful "edible arrangement": see Oct 2009) to Cullen Jones, who we also met back then.

Everyone loves a wedding.

And we are, of course, part of the support team for Master Marty Richardson, aka The Whirlwind, who seems set to steal the show, though I'm pleased to say that he is still at an age where he is blissfully unaware of the attention that he attracts.

Marty fishing at Brackenridge Park.
The goldfish in Uncle John's pond have been getting a hard time.

The journey here was pretty painless, considering that it involved a direct flight from Sydney to Dallas, and it was certainly a pleasure to arrive in Dallas rather than Los Angeles. Marty slept for many hours, and coped with the rest, apart from some demands to "go outside now?".

The wedding and its associated social events passed off very well. The ceremony was held outdoors in Brackenridge Park, which worked well for Marty and several other kids who were there, since not only was there water and ducks, but also a small train!

Brackenridge Park train.
Marty was wide-eyed at the suggestion he could ride it.

The bride, with friends and relations.

Jo reading a poem.
And making everyone cry.

Marty and the Pinata.
Papier mache effigies of the happy couple, full of sweets. The kids were invited to beat them with a stick until they burst. That's how they do it here!

We are here for three weeks, so there is every chance of another blog post or two before we return home.