Thursday, July 26, 2012

Fun in the Warm Dallas Sun

We arrived at Sarah and Miles' just as the kids were getting up from their naps--we were so happy to see them!  Right away, we went out to the back yard to let them play in their pool and on the trampoline.
Elle, Nash and Beck enjoying the water

 Elle flying high!
 The pool is great on a hot summer day!

 Another day, we went to the park where Elle showed us her skill on the monkey bars.
 Monkey-see, monkey-do!  Little brother wants to do everything his sister does!

 This picture of Beck cracks me up!  I think he looks like the definition of "all boy"--not to be stereotypical or anything!

 Sliding together

 Elle being silly

She's getting so grown up!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Last Days in Abilene

Yet another Lego project!  Aidan and Grandpa had lots of good bonding time over building these fancy vehicles!

We stopped by West Texas Rehab, where I worked for many years.  It was great to see quite a few of my former coworkers. Funny thing is that several of them, including Mary Lou and Linda, seen here, had left Rehab at one time or another and now are back.  It was like "old home week!"

Time to say our goodbyes. :(   We had a wonderful time!  Rich, Corey, Susan, Ally, Aidan and me

 Grandpa and Gigi with the kids

It's always hard to leave!  As I said when leaving Amarillo, the only good thing is that we were off to visit the next set of kids so it's a little bittersweet--difficult to head out, but excited to see the Dallas crew!

Once again we relied on friends to get us to the next destination. I am not sure why everything has to be so expensive but we looked into flying ONE WAY to Dallas from Abilene...less than an hour flight...and it was over $200 EACH. Seriously!  So Connie, Kelly and Audra decided they wanted a shopping day in the metroplex anyway and were nice enough to drive us all the way to Arlington. We had fun chatting along the way, stopping at World Market, and getting lunch before Sarah picked us up in Arlington and took us to Dallas.  Bye, bye, Abilene family and friends!  We love you!

Monday, July 23, 2012

Grace Children's Museum

Ally, Aidan and I had a great time in downtown Abilene one day. We first went to the National Center for Children's Illustrated Literature (NCCIL) to see a Dr. Seuss/Lorax exhibit; unfortunately we weren't allowed to take photos.  We walked through the Center looking at original drawings by Dr. Seuss for his book The Lorax and browsed the book shop where Ally got her own copy of the famous tale.  From there, we walked in the sunshine over to the Grace Museum, which also contains an interactive, hands-on children's museum. We've been there before but some of the exhibits have changed and it's always big fun anyway.  The kids played and played and probably would have stayed there for another hour if I'd let them!

Aidan "driving" the ambulance and feeling the "Texas Tornado"

Ally on stage

Aidan handling the lights for the next performance

This was a cool new addition--a musical wall.  Each separate wood block made a musical sound, creating a tune as each touch combined with the previous one. 

Ally's turn to drive the ambulance

Learning about body systems

Your intestine is HOW long??

Playing a giant game of "Operation"

Dr. Ally checks out her patient

We also went upstairs to see the historical museum--I loved these old phones and switchboard systems!

The kids got to try out an "old timey" typewriter--how strange it seems in the age of computers!

I also loved this sign-- "when computers were groovy."  I remember having to use punch cards in a huge mainframe computer when doing my research project in grad school.  My, how times have changed!

After the museum, we stopped by the Post Office to mail a package and then had some lunch at McKay's Bakery, including, of course, dessert!  This took me back to the days when Suzassippi and I had the Abilene Peace and Justice Center downtown and often stopped in at McKay's for soup in a bread bowl or, my favorite, cream puffs. 

What a lovely day with two of my sweeties!

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Happy Times!

 Aidan and Grandpa hard at work with the next Lego project

 Ta-da!  These guys are great at it!

It wouldn't be a trip to Abilene without my "Girls Night Out" crew.  Love these gals!  Kelly and Karen
 and Connie are always lots of fun and we have a great time catching up on everyone's news.

Aidan would rather be riding his motorcycle or building Legos but I did convince him to read a little bit with me.

Meanwhile Ally is being her cute little self,  keeping us amused with her chatter, songs, dances, and  playful personality.

We got to spend some time with Karen's son Kyle as well.  I've known him forever and he worked up here for Rich a few years ago so he's just about family.   He's working at a nice new restaurant in Clyde called Bonterra Blu, where we enjoyed a great dinner one night. Alas, the memory card was not in the camera to document our night out.  :(

Susan and Ally

Aidan riding Kyle's bike

Cute girls!

 Corey and Jim
Rich made his famous fish tacos for us one night!  Yum, yum!  Karen and Diana are getting some recipe tips. 

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Motocross Mania!

Aidan has been riding motocross since he was just a little guy.  I have seen photos and heard about his races for several years now but I have never had a chance to actually see him in action till this trip.  With a little bit of fear in my heart, I went out to the track in Clyde to watch him practice on a Saturday before a big race the next day.  Hard to believe our baby boy is now 9 years old!

 Still Gigi's sweet boy!  ("Get off, Gigi, get off!" is probably what he's thinking, but he is too sweet to say it out loud!)
 At the starting line with his Daddy

 After the first practice run

 Mama and Daddy hanging out

 Love those big baby blues!
 Scoping things out
 Catching a little air!

Day Two: Race Day!  Susan and Corey bought me a shirt with Aidan's number on it.  Here we are, proud Mama and Gigi!
 Starting line
 Wowie!  Look at that jump!
 Go, Aidan, go!
 Another jump

There was also a pro class.  These riders were CA-RA-ZY!  Wow!

 Aidan and Grandpa waiting for the next race.  His other grandpa is in the background (Corey's dad).

 It was hot out there!  Cheering section!  Susan and Jane, Ally and Karen,

 Corey and his dad, Tommy

Unfortunately, a big storm rolled in and the rest of the race day was cancelled. Aidan was going to ride a second time but everything got shut down.  Wish we could have seen him again but it was big fun to be there and get to experience a little bit of his world!  He loves motocross, stays nice and calm and takes care of business out there.  I wasn't as scared as I thought I would be (thank goodness for pads and helmets!) and really had a blast!  Good job, Aidan!  We love you bunches!