Monday, August 31, 2009

SFO to Tahoe

Our longest and final vacation of the summer began with a flight from AUS to SFO. We spent the night at the Marriott just outside the airport before picking up a car and driving East towards Sacramento and then across the Sierra Nevada mountains to South Lake Tahoe.

The morning of our drive I captured Ty by the bay at low tide with the airport in the background. We had clear sunny days the entire time in California. And with the temperatures in the 70's and 80's during the day, a much needed break from the sweltering Austin summer.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Back to School

This blog serves as a chronicle of Ty's adventures, but is not always in chronological order. I thought it was important to insert a photo and story tonight about Ty's first days of school this week.

We were a little nervous about the transition from the small protected environment of the Montessori school, to the big reality world of public school. But Ty seems to be handling it extremely well. He is in one of ten kindergarten classrooms (yes you heard that right, and this is our neighborhood school!) His teacher is super nice and she knows a bit of his history and how advanced he may be compared to the other kids.

To underscore this point, Ty commented about his first day like this: "The other kids don't seem to pay attention much to the teacher." Bingo. Our kid is smart and observant and will do just fine.

We took a few pictures in our driveway before we left. Here is a great one of Ty and Mom.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Funny Farm

From the last post you know we took a drive out into the Hill Country. Headed south from Marble Falls we arrived in Johnson City. Here in the middle of nowhere, sits an exotic zoo.

While waiting for the tractor that pulls a small cartload of visitors around the property, we stopped at the petting zoo and Ty found this baby goat. The bigger part of the park had buffalo, antelope, zebras, ostrich and camels which could all be fed by the kids during the 45 minute tour.

So next time you find yourself bored with the kids in the Austin area, take a drive out to the Exotic Resort Zoo.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Hill Country Cuisine

Time for a little Hill Country road trip. We took a drive West on 1431 out to Marble Falls. Here sits a famous little cafe that serves up some of the most famous pies in the land.

Dad ordered an apple cobbler with vanilla ice cream. Ty wasn't thrilled about the pie, but liked the ice cream. Not sure now if this is really my son.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Farewell Aruba

We had a great vacation. Just one more shot to leave everyone with. On to the next adventure!

Monday, August 17, 2009

Post #400 - Come Sail Away

Wow! Another milestone in the blogging time line of our Internet star, Ty. This is officially post #400.

In real time, Ty and Dad have just returned from a relaxing week in Lake Tahoe. A cool break from the unbearable heat here in Austin this summer. Eventually we will get to those great pictures and stories.

In blog time, we are still in Aruba. Amazing how that happens. But after the jeep trip we spent the next day on a catamaran cruise out in the sea. It included three stops for snorkeling. Dad took Ty along in the water to float along and see colorful fishes and even a shipwreck!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Jeep Safari, Part Four

Hopefully our audience does not grow tired of the images from the jeep trip, but it was a whole day adventure around the island and we saw many things. These two images feature our young adventurer at top with Dad's snorkel gear. We stopped at a protected pool among the rocky shores of the windy Caribbean side. This pool is hard to access and requires tricky navigating but provides an awesome collection of tropical fish. Ty waited with some folks from the tour while I took a dive.

In the second image, we are inside a cave. Natives once used these caves and left many carvings along the ceilings. There is also a large colony of bats living deeper inside. Some fascinating stalactites and stalagmites decorated the area where we were allowed to explore.

Friday, August 07, 2009

Jeep Safari, Part Three

One of the stops along the way on the jeep trip was the natural bridge. Unfortunately the bridge was destroyed by the ocean during one of the recent hurricanes. There is a "baby" bridge left or a "son of a bridge" as the guide referred to it. And that's our guide up top with Ty.

Here's a great photo of what the bridge looked like back in the glory days.

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Sunset at Sea

It took a while for me to figure out how to get the flash to fire on my new camera in this lighting situation, but it worked. Silly automatic modes just don't cooperate. Anyway, here's Ty standing in orange before a beautiful Caribbean sunset.

Monday, August 03, 2009

Visiting the Ostrich Farm

Yes indeed. One of the big tourist attractions on the island is a farm with Ostrich and Emu (They have a website!). We had a walking tour around the farm where Ty along with some of the other kids got to feed them. At one point he even sat on one!

Our guide was super cool and also took a quick liking to Ty. He came to our rescue later when Ty tripped on the trail and cut open his finger. A garden hose to wash it and a band-aid soon fixed that.

Warning to future visitors: when you come back through customs they will ask you if you visited the farm. If you did, they will pull you aside and super disinfect your shoes. When that happened I was prepared for the worst with a full bag search, but the process only took a few minutes.