Saturday, May 30, 2009

Weekend In Austin: Part One-Lake Austin

Finally, as promised, photos of Memorial Day celebrations on Lake Austin. Ciara and Ryan's friends Zach and Carley hosted a pre-Memorial Day party at Zach's parents home located on the banks of Lake Austin. Their home is directly across the lake from Mt. Bonnell. Unfortunately, the day was gloomy and the rain came in, moved out, came in, moved back out again. There were hopes of a leisurely ride up to the dam and burgers on the way back at a restaurant (the name escapes me) where you can pull up to the dock and eat in your swimsuit. All of those plans were derailed by the weather. However, a valiant attempt was made. I have most of it documented in photos and one short film. However, after two drinks of grapefruit Izze's and vodka I gave up the camera and Ciara took hold of it (which she tends to do after two grapefruit Izze's and vodka...I get lazy, she gets productive!) Enjoy the photos.......

Ciara and I shortly after arriving............

Leslie and Beverly.......

Ciara sitting on the dock. This is a perfect picture of her. When I think of her I think of THIS EXPRESSION....joyful, loving, laughing, radiant.....

Ciara and I sitting on the dock as we are waiting to get on the boat. Behind us is Mt. Bonnell....unfortunately you can not see it in the photo. Notice the choppiness of the water. I am not a lake person.....I am more familiar with the beach. I was shocked at how choppy the water was. Of course a lot of it seemed like the wake created by ALL the boats...and there were MANY! (And a lot of them were painted Ed Hardy style. That troubled me.)

Ciara started playing around with my camera fairly early and was trying to help me understand the different settings. (This setting apparently softens up individuals in the photo. I don't know...judge for yourself.)

Matt and Leslie. Matt is a friend of Ciara and Ryan's from high school. Leslie is his girlfriend. I REALLY enjoyed talking with her. She and I found we were alike in many ways! Two days later she participated in a triathalon....and not a mini one...a full on Olympic style one. Congratulations Leslie! Ciara and I are fascinated....but decided on our way home we were not cut out for a "thon" of any kind! However we are very proud of you and hope the event went well.

Zach, Carley and John.....


Ryan stealin' a kiss from Ciara....

Another smiley photo of my sweet friend......

We finally took the pontoon and ski boats out. The sun was shining. We felt relatively safe. Carley and I posing for a photo with John sitting behind us. I had met Carley a few times before but had never had the opportunity to sit down and chat with her. I REALLY enjoyed my conversations with her as well. Carley was THE life of the party. She is so much fun to be around and she tells really great stories!
Carley and I were so busy talking we didn't realize it was starting to rain. Perhaps the beverages had also dulled our senses? Yummy....! Anyhow....we were weaving in and out of various coves and underneath tiny, ivy covered bridges. The guys decided we were in for a serious down pour so they pulled in underneath one of the bridges. Seconds later another boat (of strangers) pulled in and we all sat there for what seemed like an hour. Carley and I continued to talk and were of absolute no help at all!

In order to stay in place the boys had to keep hold onto the underside of the bridge. I think an anchor was eventually dropped...but I can't say for sure. Again....senses dulled!

Again....we were of no help. We just kept chattin' and taking photos. This one felt very "Girls Next Door." I call Bridget......

Beverly doing her part by holding onto the bridge.....

Ryan and Zach.......

The boys relaxin' as we wait out the rain.....

Eventually the rain passed and it was time to head back home. HOWEVER...the ski boat would not turn on. So the pontoon boat had to tug the ski boat back home. Which was fine until it was time to dock. Then the ski boat had to be "swum" into place. Ciara had the camera and captured it on film.

Again....important note....if you are hearing music....scroll down to the bottom, press pause, scroll back up and press play (the arrow, Dad) to watch and hear the film.......
video
Lake Austin was a blast despite the uncooperative weather. A big thank you to Zach and Carley for generously hosting us. I can NOT wait to go back when the sun is out, there is no threat of rain and we can head to the dam and jump into what is apparently some seriously cold water then get back in the boat and head for some of the best hamburgers (according to Ciara) in town.

I am lovin' Ella Bella and Toby! Ella is Ciara and Ryan's daughter. She is two and half years old. She is currently between schools but will be starting a new school this week. Her interests include Dora the Explorer, coloring, chalk, taking off all the blankets from freshly made beds, playing dress up, having books read to her, spending time in her new playhouse and playing with Toby. She enjoys goldfish crackers, graham crackers, yogurt covered pretzels and various juices. She has a penchant for shiny, girlee shoes even though her mom really wants her to wear closed toed shoes to school (for safety). She is currently mastering the fine art of potty training. It is a celebration when all goes as planned! She enjoys a nap around 1:3o every day and really enjoys wearing her hair down...unencumbered. She collects treasures such as berries, shells, buttons, rocks, coins, etc. and is allowed to carry treasures in her pockets or stored away in her special treasure bags.
Together Ella and Toby bring me so much joy. It is very hard to leave them. They make my heart feel better and after this last visit I found that I missed them both very much. Ciara told me that Ella said, "It smells like Patty in here," after I had left. Of course several days later Ella was watching Oprah and said, "That's Patty." Hmph.....? If only I had Oprah's fortune?
I love you Ella and Toby. Big hugs....Auntie Patty will see you soon!

I recently (in Austin) ate Chinese food. I received the following fortune and I liked the fortune so much I decided to host a new segment on the blog. So every time I eat a fortune cookie I will report the fortune. This is one of the best fortunes (from a cookie) I have ever received.
Your principles mean more to you than any money or success.

Lorelai and Christopher (Rory's father) are meeting for lunch to discuss something "big and important."
Christopher: I don't know how you do it. You always look amazing!
Lorelai: Yeah, well, I got the girls from the "Wash 'Em Brush Up Company"from the Wizard of Oz working for me now.

Goodnight, friends. Have a wonderful week and the next post will be Part Two of my weekend in Austin.

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