One Day, We'll Be Caught Up to Present-Day

But for now, it's July on the blog.  Of course, it hit 96 degrees in Texas this week, so maybe it's not such a mental stretch. 

The first stop on our trip back in time is to Puerto Rico.  The kids were either at camp or the farm (having the time of their lives and not missing us a bit) and we took off to use up some hotel points and escape responsibility for a couple of days.

We visited the only rain forest managed by the US Forest and Parks Service.  Our guide made that seem like a big deal.  We mostly just enjoyed the views and hiking in the pouring rain. 

We visited the only rain forest managed by the US Forest and Parks Service.  Our guide made that seem like a big deal.  We mostly just enjoyed the views and hiking in the pouring rain. 

View from atop an observation tower in El Yunque rain forest. 

View from atop an observation tower in El Yunque rain forest. 

Definitely my favorite part of the trip (not including those 20 minutes when I took an actual nap on the beach), we kayaked 2.4 miles through a mangrove forest to reach this bio-luminescent bay.

Definitely my favorite part of the trip (not including those 20 minutes when I took an actual nap on the beach), we kayaked 2.4 miles through a mangrove forest to reach this bio-luminescent bay.

Our morning in Old San Juan was a hot, muggy mess but we were glad to see the city and explore El Morro. 

Our morning in Old San Juan was a hot, muggy mess but we were glad to see the city and explore El Morro. 

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This big guy hung with us at the pool on the morning we were flying home to Texas.  He sure could swim quickly for a lizard that spent the previous hour only moving his eyeballs.

This big guy hung with us at the pool on the morning we were flying home to Texas.  He sure could swim quickly for a lizard that spent the previous hour only moving his eyeballs.

Although we spent just a short time in Puerto Rico, we fell in love with it. 

“Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all of one’s lifetime.” – Mark Twain

As we watch the weather news, with Hurricane Maria set on the same path as HurricanesHarvey and Irma which passed over Puerto Rico a few short weeks ago, we picture the places we visited and the people we met, enduring yet another catastrophic storm.  Our hearts go out to them and we are reminded of the power of travel and understanding people and places that are unfamiliar to your own. 

For those of you who follow me on Facebook, you'll know that we have been matching donations made to JDRF with donations for hurricane relief organizations. 

We look forward to doing even more. 

Back at home in Texas...we are taking solace in the fact that Kate is not yet a senior.  These photos were made for her adventures in theater.

Back at home in Texas...we are taking solace in the fact that Kate is not yet a senior.  These photos were made for her adventures in theater.

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I grabbed a few photos of our handsome nephew that same evening.  His shirt was definitely the right color!

I grabbed a few photos of our handsome nephew that same evening.  His shirt was definitely the right color!

With such busy months in June and July, we also made time to head out to the lake a few times in August. 

With such busy months in June and July, we also made time to head out to the lake a few times in August. 

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Kitchen Duty

Kitchen Duty

Uno

Uno

Suddenly, it was the first day of school. 

Suddenly, it was the first day of school. 

"I'm not sleepy at all," she said. 

"I'm not sleepy at all," she said. 

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The first day of school collided with the solar eclipse. 

The first day of school collided with the solar eclipse. 

Possibly more exciting than the eclipse to the kids, we had a few deliveries that left us with big cardboard boxes to decorate and re-imagine as planes and rockets. 

Possibly more exciting than the eclipse to the kids, we had a few deliveries that left us with big cardboard boxes to decorate and re-imagine as planes and rockets. 

With the start of school, comes the start of fall sports!

With the start of school, comes the start of fall sports!

With the Minions largely heading their separate ways, several of the boys have joined an Evolution team for the year.

With the Minions largely heading their separate ways, several of the boys have joined an Evolution team for the year.

Back at the lake for the weekend, Henry's always the first to tucker out. 

Back at the lake for the weekend, Henry's always the first to tucker out. 

Deciphering a recipe for scones.

Deciphering a recipe for scones.

That gleeful look of a cheater, cheater, pumpkin-eater. 

That gleeful look of a cheater, cheater, pumpkin-eater. 

Oh it was funny.  For a minute. 

Oh it was funny.  For a minute. 

Then Kate got her revenge.

Then Kate got her revenge.

And Ella couldn't let her brother escape the same fate. 

And Ella couldn't let her brother escape the same fate. 

Friends again.

Friends again.

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It took a while, but we finally had a return drive to the city where we had time to stop at this mural for a photo.  It was a little sunny.  But I'll take it. 

It took a while, but we finally had a return drive to the city where we had time to stop at this mural for a photo. 

It was a little sunny.  But I'll take it. 

Drew is playing baseball for the high school now and his debut pitching effort was fun to watch. 

Drew is playing baseball for the high school now and his debut pitching effort was fun to watch. 

Gator rides at the farm!

Gator rides at the farm!

Followed by a little swing practice.

Followed by a little swing practice.

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It was Roland's, Sandy's and my turn for our quarterly family birthday celebration.  Any excuse to get together for THAT CAKE. 

It was Roland's, Sandy's and my turn for our quarterly family birthday celebration.  Any excuse to get together for THAT CAKE. 

Fall ball!

Fall ball!

Sometimes, things get a little slow when playing in the out-...well, no, he was playing in-field.  Same difference in U7 ball, I think. 

Sometimes, things get a little slow when playing in the out-...well, no, he was playing in-field.  Same difference in U7 ball, I think. 

Batters up! 

Batters up! 

One of Henry's favorite parts about playing baseball is getting to use Drew's batting helmet. 

One of Henry's favorite parts about playing baseball is getting to use Drew's batting helmet. 

When Ella decides she wants it, she gets it!

When Ella decides she wants it, she gets it!

We're looking forward to many more (cooler!) games as the fall goes on.  Go Hurricanes!  Go Evo!  Go Red Sox!

We're looking forward to many more (cooler!) games as the fall goes on. 

Go Hurricanes!  Go Evo!  Go Red Sox!