Sunday, July 26, 2009

Howdy ya'll

I promised a "part II" of our friends visit to Texas. We had so much fun visiting downtown Ft. Worth. This is the stockyard area where everything is about Texas cowboys. Lot's of shops and steak houses. Let's not forget bull riding!

Becky got both of the guys to ride the mechanical bull! First Rich went. His eyes kept bugging out of his head, but he rode as well as he could keeping his balance with his arm in the air.

Next went Chris and all he could do was yell! He just kept saying "ouch!" He tried to stay on but after just a few minutes he got off and said it hurt too much! He was so vocal about it that we could not stop laughing! I hope to post the video soon because it was really funny! The picture below is what he did right after he got off! I still laugh when I think about it! I guess Chris is not cowboy material!

Next we drove over to the downtown area of Ft. Worth. It is really nice with lots of little white lights. It was a beautiful night to walk around and look at all the great architecture.
We wanted to go up to the top of this office building but it was closed.

This is a theatre and I loved the angels and their horns coming out of the side of the building!
So cool!
Here is another view after dark

We had to go to Rita's rooftop for dessert. This was a restaurant on, well, a rooftop! Great ambiance! We could not decide which desserts to get so we got one extra and shared them all. What were we thinking? It was a splurge for sure!

Great picture of Chris and A.J.! I stole this from Chris!

This is how Micah plays with baby-dolls. He tries to eat them!

Ummm, I think I'll bite his head off.

Not bad tasting, when you are teething. He has cut a tooth since then.

On the 4th of July we wanted to make sure the kids understood what we were celebrating so we decided to have Chris read to them about our journey to freedom as a country. He is a 6th grade teacher so we picked him to be our teacher.

He did a good job. Thanks Chris!

This is Becky with Julia and Micah.

Later that day we went to a friend's house to fellowship and barbecue. It was so hot! This is Olivia with her red, white and blue ribbon in her hair. A good picture of her without glasses.

A.J. learning to ride those new skateboard things. I don't know what they are called.
I'm not a very hip mom.

He did pretty good. I think he was getting the hang of it by the end of the evening.

Another night we had a little talent show.

Rich plays this goofy song called the laughing song. He basically laughs through the whole thing and gets everyone laughing. I know it looks like he is crying and he kind of was.
You know how you laugh until you cry sometimes?

We had too much fun that night. I wish I had more pictures of the evening because we played late into the evening. There were many more performances even by our guests!

The last day we went to GFA so that Chris and Becky could pick out India bags. These bags come all the way from India and are handmade. The missionaries there carry gospel literature in them when they walk or bike from village to village.

This is Chris evangelizing Becky. She's not saved yet.

Reece being the "ham" that he is! Taken in the cafe' at GFA.

We had a great time with Chris Scharmen and Becky Lee! We really hope they come to visit again sometime. A couple of our kids broke down in tears the night they left. They really get attached to our guests sometimes. One day we will all be together for eternity and there will be no more goodbyes!

Until then, we'll just say "ya'll come back now, ya hear!"

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Downtown Dallas Tourists

These are the 3 Amigos.  Chris Scharmen, Becky Lee and Rich Lodi have been friends for only about 25 years!  They have too many memories of working together as staff in the youth group in San Jose, California.  Back in the 80's some pretty crazy stuff was done to get the kids attention not to mention, have a little fun yourself!

Well, Chris and Becky planned a trip to come see us for 5 days over the 4th of July.  I will post their visit in segments since we did so much together.  I might just loose you in this post because I have so many good pictures!

One of the most interesting things we did was become Dallas tourists.  We've lived here for 6 years and have never explored downtown (isn't that sad!).  I've always wanted to go see the fountains at the base of this sky-scraper. You can see this funky shaped building from the free-way and I've always been curious about it.

We went on a Sunday afternoon and managed free parking in this parking garage. 

It's really an amazing place and I think everyone who lives in Dallas needs to visit this at least once.  

The building is all glass or at least it's made out of something that reflects the water falls all around it.  It is surrounded by water.

It would be fun to bring a picnic lunch down here sometime because there were these great umbrella tables all around.  If you do decide to visit, make sure your kids bring their swimsuits!

This is the fountain place I was talking about.  Water literally shoots up randomly out of the cement.  This is our friend, Chris, daring Reece to run across it.  Chris showed him how it's done.

So then Reece got up the courage to run across too.
So far, there is not a lot of action from the water 

But . . it slowing got a little more crazy!

Reece is still dry.

A.J. decides to join in.

Dry no more!

Back and forth they go, weaving in and out.

Olivia gets involved.

Can she make it?

This was crazy.  One of these quadrants would just blow full blast and you never knew which one or if you'd be lucky enough to be caught in one!

Here is the experience in slow motion.

If you could drowned in shooting water, Olivia would manage to be the one.  She has always loved to get fully wet, fully clothed.  The water dripping off her glasses was a great effect! Click on this picture to enlarge it.

Micah stayed nice and dry on Dad's back.  His mouth just hung open as he watched his crazy siblings. 

It was hot that day so the wet ones drip dried as we walked on down to catch the trolley.

I can't believe Micah is actually looking at the camera in this picture.  When you have 5 kids it's hard to get everyone looking at the same time especially Micah.

I wished I had gotten a picture of the trolley from the outside but I guess we were too concerned with catching it in time.  I'm not sure why because this conductor was not in a hurry in the least.  He gave us some background history about this trolley and even let the kids blow the whistle.

This is another free thing to do downtown besides visiting the fountains.  My husband is all about free!

We rode the trolley to the end of the line and then caught the DART back.  I had to take a picture of the escalator in the DART station.  It's the longest escalator that I ever been on.  It was a little freaky actually.

I think Julia is afraid of heights and she is definitely weary of escalators.  It must be the "quick decision making" factor that accompanies boarding an escalator that throws her. 

This picture was taken at the JFK shooting sight.  The street behind Becky and the kids is where John F. Kennedy was shot.  The sky-scrapers in the background are stunning as is the revolving tower next to them.  We were told that it's under construction right now but that would be fun to visit sometime.

It was a long day for Micah as it was for us all.  It didn't take him long to check out on the ride home.

We had a great time with Chris and Becky.  I hope to post more pictures of their visit soon!