Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Saturday, May 28, 2011

all grown up?

So much for everyone learning how to ride real bikes...they have regressed so quickly, (sigh)...


Hey L., is it really still fun to stuff yourself into a toddler car?



Oh, my mistake.  Apparently, some enjoy it into their late twenties:

(Spring 2008)

Friday, May 27, 2011

Thursday, May 26, 2011

so you think you're ready for (grand) parenthood...

Not until you have completed these easy assignments!  I am having trouble picking a favorite--the mess test or the dressing one?  Which do you like best?


(thanks to my Beth for the link!)

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

family bike ride

I have been looking forward to this for years: everyone on their own bike, on an actual trail!  We picked up a bike for A. at the thrift store and she learned to ride it the same day.  (BR-the-reckless-rider still has training wheels and I like it that way.)



First try and we didn't even crash into anyone!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Whidbey Island

Recognize anything, friends-in-India-from-the-Northwest?  It wasn't until we spent the afternoon out at Whidbey with Granny's class that I realized how many of you have roots out this way.


Riding a car onto a ferry was one of the perks













There is so much you can do with driftwood.  Building shelters from the wind is definitely one of the smartest.  It was sunny, but it wasn't warm.  (ps: we didn't build these--whoever did was the smarty-pants)

Friday, May 20, 2011

high-larious

She was giggling, embarrassed but also a little bit excited at the discovery: "I love Layla [friend at school] so much!  You know what, sometime it feels like I love her more than I love you, Mommy!"

Yeah, kid, that's a riot.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Link-guide to our Spring '11 World Tour

Since this blog is part entertainment for family and friends, partly an excuse to brag, part family scrapbook and partly an excuse to publicly shame my children for their misdeeds (they deserve it), I went ahead and uploaded way too many photos of the last couple of months.

For those who want to read the whole story, it starts here, with an explanation of why we decided to travel in the first place. You will have to backtrack to May 11th and then follow the pages up (if you want to follow chronological order) because I still can't get Blogger to show more posts on a single page.

For any of you who want to just take a few peeks here or there, here are the links to individual posts:

Last night in Kolkata
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, #1, #2 and #3.
Langkawi Island, Malaysia
Rothenberg Germany and its infamous Criminal Museum
Sights on the Romantic Road (in Germany) and why rest stops in the US don't even compare
Salzburg, Austria and the most gorgeous lake I've ever seen
Brooklyn, NY
In the Pacific Northwest, for now


And here are a few bonus links, just for fun:

Why we went to India and NY in the first place (I needed a reminder)
Road trip to Brooklyn from Colorado 2010, day 1 (with no A/C.  In June.  In a Jetta.  Remember that?)
First day in India (with crowds of thousands to welcome us, yikes)
and What it is really like to travel to and from India with kids  (this one is not funny)

Brooklyn

We were in Brooklyn next, just for a few days.  It was mostly sunny there, too, and besides visiting the library and spending some QT with P-roc and family, we also tried to go see the ocean (it wasn't visible from the boardwalk) and Maria treated us to brunch and an early morning Royal Wedding tea party. 






I kind of retired the camera for that week because, honestly, the jetlag was kind of getting to me and I was pooped.  BR fell asleep on my lap at a restaurant one night at 8pm so I guess he was, too.  I wish I had gotten some shots of the neighborhood we were in, though, because it was unlike anything else I had found in Brooklyn.  With houses and lawns like this, and this and this.  People have driveways and yards and long verandas, and the subway is no more than a few blocks away!  The best of suburban and city life all in one neighborhood (don't hate me, New Yorkers for using the "s" word).

A380

Goodbye Germany!  Goodbye giant chocolate bunnies, goodbye beer-that-is-cheaper-than-water!  We will miss you very, very much.



cool...we get to fly on that?

roadside stops and parks in Germany & Austria

When it came time to take a break from driving, there was no shortage of beautiful spots to pick from.  We had many sandwich lunches in big open fields and like I said, the weather was perfect. 



During other non-sightseeing hours, we enjoyed the creativity of the playgrounds in both Germany and Austria.  It's like someone handed some architects a bit of money and said, "go build the playground of your childhood fantasies" and then they did. 





Liar.  You know you love it.



look how steep this slide is!  and it tunnels through a hill, too.



We made a rest stop in the city of Ingolstadt which ended up being one of the best decisions ever.  Not only did they have wide open green spaces, but a water playground, traditional playground, flower gardens in bloom and this crazy space exhibit by local schoolchildren. 


My Aunt Page lived for 30  years in Germany and raised her kids here.  Now I know why!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

did the kids appreciate the masterpieces of art and architecture they saw in Salzburg?


BR: "Look, Mommy!  The naked man is eating a hamburger!"

Salzburg, Austria

We drove down to Salzburg, Austria (of Sound of Music fame) to visit our good friends Gordy and Tabita.


below is Hellbrunn Palace and some of her "trick fountains"





watch out, if you sit here and have a meal, there might be a surprise during dessert...



these fountains have been around since the 1600's--very impressive
we love getting soaked!






could Austrians love unicorns and pegasus as much as we do?

(look, trees!  with no crows!)




Gordy in his newly-adopted city
(another unicorn)





this lake has the clearest, cleanest water of any lake I have ever seen





the hills of the Sound of Music
Mozart's birthplace


yup, that's right.  1419




Okay, you guys, check this out: Gordy and Tabita live in about 400sq ft.  It wasn't enough for the seven of us, so what did they do?  They vacated the apartment and let us stay there while they slept in a spare room at their church a few blocks away.  They left the kitchen fully stocked and Tabita even packed snack bags for the kids during all of our outings!  They even volunteered to keep the kids if J. and I wanted to go tour Italy.  Talk about hospitality!  You guys rock.

Tabita was feeling so brave and helped the kids dye some Easter eggs: