Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Father's Day weekend

One of Paul's favorite restaurants/landmarks is The Salt Lick in Driftwood, a legendary Texas BBQ spot just a few miles outside of Austin.  For Father's Day weekend, we drove out there on Saturday night and Paul got the "All You Can Eat" plate, which the girls shared with him.  Claire couldn't fit much more in this bite!

 Caroline had quite the mouthful as well!  They're Texas girls for sure!
 On Father's Day, we had planned a special breakfast for Daddy, but he was still so full from BBQ that he had to pass.  The girls still wished him a great day!
 Two cuties love their Daddy!
 Perfecting their frowns for the camera...Caroline can't quite hide that smile underneath.
 Neither can Claire, but I love how she tries to look so stern. 

Saturday, June 16, 2012


This past week, the girls and I took a trip back to Houston to have some family time!  We spent a fun-filled time, mostly in the water, and ate lots of Grammy's good cooking.  The girls loved seeing Emma again, and we played outside in the baby pool almost every day.

Claire loves that chilly water!

It was funny how each girl kind of did their own thing...Emma loved the little sprinkler, Caroline kept washing her legs with the bigger sprinkler, and Claire...well, let's just hope she didn't drink anything suspicious.
We took a quick trip to the Children's Museum...along with every other mom in Houston! 

Popsicle time!  The faces in this picture are priceless!  We need a good caption for this one.

Sharing some popsicle with Emma.
The girls ate their meals here...the same table I used when I was their age! 

Sunday, June 10, 2012

From the Russia!

Once again, we had a fun, adventure-filled weekend all over Austin!  There is definitely no short supply of all kinds of activities; it's just a matter of finding the time to fit them into your schedule.  Yesterday, we decided to venture to the zoo/animal sanctuary in the morning, and because it's a very small rescue facility, we were able to tour the entire zoo in under two hours. 

When we first arrived, we were greeted by this beautiful peacock, who then turned towards us, running and squawking, so we were not too sure how welcome we were!  The entire zoo is not paved, so we were racing our little umbrella strollers as fast as we could on the rocks.  I'm sure that peacock was laughing in his head.

 Then, on to one of my favorites...the tigers!  This one was really close, and started out asleep...
 But then saw something as it began to prowl over...
 And decided to perch on this rock and watch all the visitors...what a beautiful animal.  But I'm glad it's behind a cage.
 I didn't know they came this big!  While I love pigs, this one was as big as a horse! 
 These two lions had been rescued from the circus! 

Claire loved touching the goats!

After the zoo, we went home for naps, then later that afternoon, drove down to UT and went to a free music festival in one of their theaters.  We arrived as the Celtic music was ending, but the few songs we stayed for were played by this Russian group.  It was quite interesting!  That giant guitar is called a balalaika, and they range in size from very small (man on left) to giant (man on right)!  The music reminded me of a Russian mob movie, but the girls were waving their arms at the exact same time in tune with the music and it was pretty hilarious!
 Caroline was more amused by her seat bottom being able to go up and down.  I'm not sure if she's grimacing from the seat or from the music.
 Claire was bopping up and down with her seat to the music.  They both love any kind of music! 

Monday, June 4, 2012

Galleria Splash Pad

About 10 minutes from our house, in the next little town over, there is this great outdoor mall that was just built, and in the middle, directly in front of the library (where we had story time on Friday), they built an outdoor space with an amphitheater, splash pad, and Amy's Ice Cream!  Needless to say, we have visited this area quite a bit already. 

Every time we have visited, the girls have been enthralled with the fountains and have wanted to play.  Many kids just get in with their clothes on, but I wanted to wait until we had brought our swimsuits just to make sure they felt they could get wet.  So, yesterday afternoon, we packed up all our gear, changed into our suits, and headed on over to the Galleria splash pad.

I should have known that this would happen - after spending all that time getting ready, and then driving to the mall, the girls would not get in.  They tend to be pretty cautious and aren't sure about trying new things (i.e. no face-painting), but when Paul stopped by, he suggested we just swing them into the fountains and get them started.

 Good idea, Dad! Claire still refused to get in, but Caroline was ready to play with the big kids!
 So many fountains!
 Finally, after a few small tantrums, Claire decided to join in the fun - and she was glad she did!

 Claire still wanted to hold my hand and made sure I stood by the edge of the fountains the whole time.

 By the time we were ready to leave, we had the whole place to ourselves!
 Caroline was taking a break - she had been playing a lot longer than Claire, so I think she was pretty tired!

I'm sure we'll be spending many hot summer days here in the fountains.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Petting Zoo

Last week, I joined a mom's group in the area, and now I have the choice of so many activities to attend with the girls.  This group is really active; I can attend an event almost every day of the week if I want to.  So far, we've met up at the park, gone to library story time, and then today, we attended the Lake Travis Library Summer Kickoff, complete with petting zoo, face painting, and balloon animals.  This little petting zoo was set up really nicely - they had the kids come in and sit on stools, then hold a blanket on their lap to put the animals.  The girls mostly held the bunnies and guinea pigs, but they had a hedgehog, turtle, iguana, and chicks.  Their laps were pretty small, so the animals mostly slid off unless one of us helped hold them.  Caroline was so thrilled to hold the bunny!

 Claire was equally fond of this sweet floppy-eared bunny - it was really sliding off her lap, but it didn't try to jump down or move at all.

 Claire was giving her bunny a nice massage.
 Caroline got to hold the little guinea pig too!

 Claire is thinking of ways she can take her bunny home.
 Claire really preferred the black and white guinea pig, but it was definitely more wiggly and was sliding down her legs.
 Not sure if this bunny is going to stay on or not - but Caroline made sure it didn't slide off.
Oddly enough, the girls weren't scared at all of the animals, but once we got to the front of the face-painting line (after waiting 10 minutes, thanks girls), they didn't want to have any part of that.  Overall, it was a fun morning and we got to find out about some great library activities for the summer!