Thin Places

I’ve long been fascinated with the Celtic concept of Holy Grounds.  The Irish call them “thin places,” places where the veil between this world and the next is so thin that it is easy to step through.  I’ll admit that this blending of existences and closeness to God is a pretty bizarre concept.  But it all makes sense once you find one of these places for yourself.  And for me, there’s only place like it in the world…

I don’t know what it is.  The history, the music, the people, the Shiner?  Probably a little bit of all the above.  But whatever the reason it’s one of those places where you can’t help but feel it.

Portrait of one happy man.

Sunday was one of those days.  It was so beautiful I got in my old convertible, drove around San Marcos, and I went down this one alley and there were 20 Mexican guys sitting around a table drinking Schlitz beer, and I thought man, I hadn’t had a….  Wait, wait…sorry, I was caught up in the moment.

Sunday was a perfect day, though.  I told Al, let’s just put the girls in the car, go to Gruene Hall, and walk around lost all afternoon.  Al went through her standard, “But this hasn’t been on the calendar for the past six months… and the girls”

“Girls,” I said.  “Who wants to sit outside with daddy by the river and eat ice cream?  Two scoops?  Cookies N Cream?”  Al was quickly outnumbered.

I convinced Al that you couldn’t find any better spots in Texas for some Spring pictures.  A couple of matching sundresses later, and we were gone.

I think this one might be the Caroline Beilue Band’s first album cover.  Love MK’s steely eyed gaze.

A flair for the dramatic.  MK rocking her softer side.  Gotta give the audience what they want.

I know I’m extremely biased, and Al tells me I can’t comment on how beautiful Miss CB is just because she looks like her father.  But hey, it’s my day, and I’m making the rules.

That blue eyed beauty is why my firearm collection is growing by the day.

Taking in the action at Gruene Hall.  And yes, we did get Cookies N Cream.

“No. No. wait. Mommy’s watching.  Just act nonchalant and she’ll go away.”

No trip would be complete without a hike to the Guadalupe.

One of my personal favorites.  This picture captures it all.  CB scanning the horizon, MK in hand, making sure she’s not too deep, on the lookout for anything else that might come this way.  All the while, little sis is left wondering what is that thing on my foot?

It could not have been a better day.  Beautiful day, beautiful girls, and what a place.  Like I said before, I don’t know what it is about that whole area, but for me it’s something special.  Al will be the first to tell you that I’m not one prone for happiness, but just spending the day down here is enough to keep me smiling for quite some time.

Spring Is In The Air

That can only mean one thing…Strawberries

“I’m taking these.  All of them.  The rest of you just back away slowly, and nobody has to get hurt.”

MK lets one slip and CB jumps at the chance.

Sweet Berry Farms is the place to be.  We made the trek last year for strawberries, blackberries, potatoes, and onions.  Right now, only the strawberries are in season, so the girls ventured out by themselves.

Of course, after eating 4-5 lbs of strawberries, there’s only one thing suitable to wash it down…

Clearly, the signs of a good meal.

The big deal last year was the picking.  There were lots of goats, horses and other animals, but the girls were a little skiddish.   This year, not so much.

I blame it on Saddle Club.  Have any of you out there seen this show?  Dear Lord, help us.  CB is hooked.  It’s basically a stripped down Australian version of Melrose Place for the Tween set.  Why CB is even watching it, I have no idea, but that’s another conversation entirely.

MK made other friends.

Can’t say I blame her, I’ve always been a big fan of the goat.  Al said that MK was chasing this goat around everywhere, and at one point MK had the thing cornered until he literally jumped up on one of the picnic tables.

MK and I had a discussion later that night, and she assured me she was just trying to get the goat into our car.  Funny thing is, he wouldn’t cooperate.  Made sense to me.

And speaking of MK, she has been on quite the tear lately.  My parents laughed and laughed when we used to complain about how stubborn and strong willed CB was as a toddler.  I never understood why anyone that raised me would think it so funny that I had a stubborn child, but I just let it go.  I’ve always been the bigger person, you know, I’m just saying.

Lately, Al and I have been talking about how easy CB was compared to MK…words I never thought would come out of my mouth.  I say all that to show you this.  I think it explains a lot.  MK found a certain affinity with a group of friends at the farm.

Feeling Old?

Al is.  It was the fall of 96.  An innocent little Ms. McBride was just beginning her student teaching at Chiney.  Everyone had their star pupil, and Ms. McBride was no different.  Lauren was the perfect student.  Smart, talented, hardworking.

“If I had a whole classroom full of kids like her, life would be perfect.” Al would often say

“Yeah and if a frog had wings…”  Al never appreciated my humor the way I did.

Hard to believe that was more than a decade ago.  Even harder to believe that same brilliant 2nd grader is now a Sophomore at UT.

Does having kids make you shorter?  I’m pretty sure Lauren wasn’t looking down on you the last time you were in the classroom…

I shouldn't be surprised

I’ve long lamented the fact that girls toys leave a lot to be desired.  However, I never knew that Tinkertoys were gender specific.  I spent hours building an island fortress, complete with cannons, a working drawbridge, and a roving howitzer.  Those days are long gone…

When you’re stuck with neon pink and turquoise, you play the hand you were dealt.

I will have to admit, the flamingo turned out pretty sweet.

A Dream Realized

He’s thought about it, dreamt about it, even trained for it his whole life.  Who knew that with one visit from Uncle Dan, it would be a dream realized.

Seve’s finally going to get to run with the big dogs.  Sure he’s captured squirrels in his prime, but a squirrel is no Greyhound.  Seve might be giving  up 60-70 lbs., and quite a bit of reach, but like anything in life, it’s all about the attitude.  Eyes on the prize.  Stay focused.

And like that…it’s over.  It’s like thinking you’ve drawn Sabatini in the first round and then watching Tiger walk up to the tee.  I knew I was on to something when I tagged my first born Seve.

The New Addition

Would you believe this is the first time Caleb is making an appearance on the blog?

Come on…it’s not that incredible.  I’ve been a little backed up lately.

See, throw big sis in there and it’s all better.

One thing no one can resist is a case of the chubby cheeks…especially MK.

A sneak peak of the most exclusive new restaurant in the “Wit”.

Can you believe anyone would eat this stuff?

Apparently so.

Couple of Blue Eyed Girls

It’s been a loong time since the last update, I know, I know…  And one thing that’s long overdue is a thank you.  We posted the vacation pics, but MK reminded us that she had a lot of fun while we were gone too.  So for that, we all say “Thanks!”

Wild and crazy blue eyed girls…