May 21, 2009

The move

Well, Katie and I are back in Lewisburg! We flew home on May 19, with two very easy flights, and were met by Oma and Opa - Betty and Dick Steffensen. It was so nice to see them again! And it was nice to see the familiar landmarks as we made our way up the Susquehanna to Lewisburg.

Katie recognized the "big brown house" and has been great so far about helping me move back in (by not getting in the way, mostly). The movers came first thing Wednesday morning, so everything is here. Except Dave and Oliver, of course -- they left San Antonio by car Wednesday night and plan to be in Lewisburg by Saturday dinnertime.

I do plan to continue this blog, but I guess I'll have to change the header and the main photos -- stay tuned from Pennsylvania!

May 18, 2009

Lasts



We've been spending a lot of time in the past few weeks experiencing "lasts" - the last Kindermusik class, the last story hour at the library, the last hike at Government Canyon, the last visits to our respective churches, the last time we go to the zoo,the Witte Museum, SeaWorld, or the Riverwalk, the last time we see fighter jets or huge C-5s zoom over the apartment. It's fun to hear Katie say goodbye to places like the Children's Museum when I tell her this is our last visit!


It is bittersweet, of course, to drive downtown for the last time, sing with the Mastersingers for the last time, see our friends the Lysiaks for the last time, play with Kim and Luke for the last time, etc., etc. But we're going home with some wonderful memories and some new lifelong friends. And we're going HOME -- that's the key word.

And it will be great to remember where Katie learned so many new skills and interests, not the least of which will be amusement park rides -- check out what she says at the end of the "monkey ride" at SeaWorld.
video

May 14, 2009

Mother's Day



I had a very nice Mother's Day this year, even without breakfast in bed! Dave talked me into a 10-mile bike ride for women only that morning. It was hard, but I did it. Only my second real ride since before Katie was born, so that felt good. And then they fed us barbecue brisket for brunch - yum.

In the afternoon we went back to the Witte Museum to see some exhibits and enjoy jazz on the lawn with three women jazz singers (my kind of jazz). Katie asked if I was going to sing, too. What a great kid! And the staff had bunches of pink carnations for all the moms.

And for dinner we met our friends the Lysiaks at a Japanese restaurant with fabulous sushi. We ate too much and too late, but we all had a good time. I sure was glad I had done the bike ride in the morning!

May 11, 2009

South Padre Island, Apr. 24-26


The last weekend in April we drove down to the Texas Gulf Coast to South Padre Island. I had really wanted a beach vacation -- the Gulf is not the mid-Atlantic, and I wanted to see it for myself. Well, in April it is WINDY!! We ended up not doing much lounging around on the beach, partly because of the wind. But we did get out a few hours each day, where Dave (with a *little* help from Katie) made animal sand sculptures. This was his cat on the first day.



We actually spent more time looking at wildlife on this trip, mostly birds. There is a sea turtle rescue place across the road from our hotel. There is a "sealife center" in Port Isabel, the closest town on the mainland, which had aquaria of interesting sealife - Katie got to touch a sea urchin and help feed some fish (and we saw seahorses so small they were tinier than sea monkeys we used to grow). There was a birding/nature trail across the road from the hotel, too, where we saw all kinds of birds, including this unusual purple gallinule. We had to ask what it was. On the way home we stopped at Resaca de la Palma State Park, part of the World Birding Center (as is South Padre) -- we saw more cool birds to add to our bird book checklist. Maybe Katie will turn out to be a birder, who knows?

May 4, 2009

Peter Rabbit April 22

Katie and I went with Kim and Luke to see a local production of Peter Rabbit recently. It was billed as interactive, and it sure was! There was a narrator, and one actor to play Peter, and everyone else was pulled from the audience -- mostly kids. It was a little hokey, but cute, and the kids really got into it. Neither Katie nor Luke wanted to participate the first few times they were invited (Katie ran crying to Mommy this very first time), but by the end, Katie wouldn't stay off stage. I wonder what that will mean?

(L: Katie watches at first; R: her role in the pond - she was supposed to be a fish, but opted to be a duck with Quack-Quack Duck)


(L: Katie sneaks onstage to be with Luke in the "hedge"; R: Katie joined in on the last scene and stayed for the curtain call)