Archive for August, 2008

Shout Out

Thursday, August 28th, 2008

 We want to give a shout out to Lance on his birthday today.


We’re proud of your accomplishments and the great job you are doing raising Ayden.  Have a wonderful and happy birthday.

Break’s Over

Monday, August 25th, 2008

We’re back in Rockport and have been doing nothing but watching the Olympics daily.  Our stationary activity would have been of interest to nobody except vultures.

Anyway, we had fun at Galveston with the granddaughters.  The two day interruption from tropical storm Eduoard was a real nuisance.

Again, this year, the girls were able to pretend that they were twins. (A special note:  We were notified that Gracie will be a big sister in March, 2009.  Congratulations Kiri and Justin.)


The only day that it rained during last year’s Galveston adventure we had planned on trying miniature golf.  Well, this year we picked a real scorcher to go and play.  Here, following another of Rick’s holes-in-one, the girls ponder(?) their next putt.


On Friday, Ayden’s father, Lance, showed up to enjoy the beach.  He teamed up with the girls to prepare a spot for their sand castle.


This is kind of interesting.  You might note the depth of the hole.  The layer at the bottom of the hole is mud.  The sand is quite shallow.  Although there was not much damage from the recent storm, in 2005 the area suffered the wrath of hurricane Rita.  Areas of the beach along the nearby Bolivar Peninsula were damaged severely.  We found spots at the waterline that had no sand, just the slippery mud.  It was quite difficult to walk on.

Once we convinced Ayden that she wasn’t going to be eaten by fish, she decided to try the waves.


Tinka, looking good here, showed Ayden the way to grip the board.


Gracie and Lance wait for the next perfect wave.


When we were in Puerto Vallarta, we saw vendors with their dolls on parachutes showing their wares.  They would stand there and the GI Joes would fly quite easily.  We found one vendor with Barbies flying and couldn’t pass them up for the girls.  This is about as far as we could get them up before Barbie broke into two pieces.


After the girls left on Sunday, we hung around for a few days to relax.  We headed back across on the ferry to the Bolivar Peninsula.  We were amazed to see the number of ships waiting for their turn in the ship channel.


We were unable to drive up the beach as far as we did before the storm.  There were sections of sand and shells that were quite soft.  Our jeep was able to get through it pretty well, but there were areas of that slippery mud that we didn’t want to risk.

Eduoard brought in a new batch of seaweed to drive the fishermen nuts.  It’s amazing how much seaweed can collect on your line.  We decided not to try.

Tinka and I were able to get in a little boogie board time in.


On Tuesday we headed back to Rockport and the Corpus Christi area.

Back to the Beach!!!

Friday, August 8th, 2008

We spent 1-1/2 glorious, rain-filled, days in Livingston with 2 of our granddaughters.  It wasn’t all a loss as we had the opportunity to drive around beautiful Lake Livingston and have lunch at Catfish King. 

On our escape from the coast we headed straight up I45, skirted Houston, and zipped north on State Route 146 to Livingston and the Escapees park.  We decided to take a more interesting trip back.  The distance was the same and the time increased by about 30 minutes. 


This route sent us through the area that was most directly affected by Tropical Storm Edouard.  We’d like to thank our friend David for sending us this photo of the tragic wind damage caused by the storm.


Our route took us to the town of Winnie and down to the coast and the town of High Island.  High Island is known as a fantastic bird sanctuary and receptacle for storms.  We continued down the Bolivar Peninsula to the Galveston Ferry.  Galveston Bay was quite busy.  We had to detour around a steaming freighter from Monrovia.


The girls enjoyed a ringside location for the 18 minute trip.


We made it back to the Galveston Island State Park by about 3:30 PM where, once again, they had messed up our reservations.  All existing reservations were cancelled and re-filled from the Austin reservation center.  We’re battling once again to stay over Saturday night.  Hoping for a cancellation.

We thought we were through with seaweed.  Nope, the biggest change from Edouard was the addition of a new crop that must have been uprooted from the sea floor.



The wind has died down and the water is much bluer than when we left.  We’re happy to be back at the beach and await the arrival today of Ayden’s father, Lance, who will arrive this afternoon.

Tropical Storms and Alligators

Thursday, August 7th, 2008

 Well, once again, it’s time to head to Galveston and spend a week with our oldest two granddaughters Ayden and Gracie.

We left Rockport on July 31st and headed to the Galveston Beach State Park.  Our route took us up Hwy 35 from Rockport and along some coastal roads toward Freeport and crossing to Galveston Island at Surfside.  Farm to Market RD 512 was the road that we took for a good portion of the trip.  The road was great and didn’t go through any major towns.    The road also made a wide swing around the South Texas Nuclear Power Plant giving us a good view of the facility.

One of the few towns that we went through was Wadsworth.  A couple of miles east of Wadsworth the road crosses Peyton Creek and there is an “S” curve.  When we slowed for the curve we were surprised by a 4-foot alligator  crossing the road.  Thank goodness we were at reduced speed or we would have had some new boots and perhaps a purse.  The trip was only about 200 miles.

When we arrived at the park, we would found that they were burning brush across the street from the RV locations.


Our reservations excluded Saturday night, so we decided not to pick up the kids until Sunday.  As it turned out, there was a cancellation and we were allowed to stay Saturday.

So, on Friday, we decided to look around at the communities where we may wish to live when we grow up and stop travelling.   We headed up Hwy 6 from Galveston to Sugarland and Richmond where a new Sun City is being developed.  There was just grading going on there.  Hwy 6 is really grown up, 6-lanes nearly all the way with new residential developments and strip malls along the way.

When we crossed the I-45 bridge over the inter-coastal waterway we could see a row of barges being directed through the small opening under the railroad bridge.


Our return took us south along some back roads through Needville to Surfside and through Jamaica Beach back to the park.  Along the way we looked at various properties, particularly in the areas where the homes are on canals.  Tinka made a practice of jumping out to grab real estate flyers.


On Saturday we headed to the ferry that would take us to the Bolivar Peninsula where we went swimming.  Here is the lighthouse on the shore as we approached Bolivar.


The horizon was dotted with pleasure boats and ships waiting to enter the Houston Ship Channel.


After a day at the beach we concluded the evening with dinner at De Coix’s, our favorite restaurants in Crystal Beach on the Bolivar Pinensula.  They have the best crab nachos.  It’s a good thing that they don’t enforce the no shoe rule.  Rick left his crocs on the beach.

Sunday we headed to Madisonville to meet Justin, Rick’s youngest son, who was bringing the girls half way.  We made it back to the beach by about 3:30 and had the girls on the beach by 4:00.  Shortly after we hit the beach, a ranger showed up and informed us that, due to the impending arrival of Tropical Storm Edouard, we had to leave the park by 2:00 PM on Monday.  This news greeted the bunch like a lump of lead.

On Monday morning, we let the kids go to the beach again for a short period.  In the sand……..


And in the surf.


It appears that everyone was on the move and leaving the area.  These two shots look at the beach in each direction.



Well, two huricanes in three weeks is more than we bargained for.  Watching the trajectory of the storm, we packed up our group and headed about 140 miles in a northeasterly direction to the Escapees Rainbow Park in Livingston, TX. (Our real home.)

To preserve our sanity, we’re anxious to head back to the beach as soon as possible.