Monday, April 12, 2010

Coming Back

I'm slowly making my way back from the allergy induced land of sneezing and general malaise.

Monday was a pretty normal day. I even got to swim at the YMCA pool.

Tuesday I felt like I had been run over by a truck.

Wednesday I was pretty much a sneezing zombie with bloodshot eyes.

Thursday I was still a zombie but had to venture out in the world. The kids were having their last class for the year at the Houston Museum of Natural Science.

Rachel attended a frog dissection class.
I don't think she was too thrilled about it but she did a great job.
Charlie's class had less yuck factor. He got to study about and build bridges.
After the museum classes we browsed around the gift shop. A magician had a small, table set up so we asked him to show us a trick or two. He dazzled us with some amazing tricks for about 20 minutes. HMNS is having a magic exhibit right now that we are going to have to see.
After the classes I had the kids try "glass blowing." The Phoenicians were famous in the ancient world for their glass blowing. They also were well known for their purple dye made from the murex snail. We made dye earlier in the week from blueberries. No crushing of snails here.
Charlie's attempt at glass blowing. It's actually some gel stuff from a tube that makes plastic bubbles. Lots of fun.
Rachel made a few bubbles.
Pretty soon a crowd of neighborhood kids had gathered to see what we were doing. Before I knew it, Charlie had ridden off on his bike into the sunset with the kids. It's so hard to hold a boy's attention.
Friday was field trip day! Everything Phoenician.
We visited Phoenicia Grocery.

They had almonds still in their green, fuzzy husks. Now that's fresh!
There were so many varieties of bread. The conveyor belt brought fresh pita to a work station where people would bag it and put it out for sale while it was still warm.
Warm pita being bagged. mmmmm
Pistachio baklava, I'd like to get to know you better.

More Phoenicia. This time Phoenicia Deli. This place is packed at lunch time. The line winds around the restaurant and there is often no place to sit. Even outside!

Chuck and the kids had chicken shwarma with roasted potatoes and garlic sauce. I had the falafel pita wrap. Truly the best in Houston.
Charlie and his shwarma plate. He loved it.
How is it, Rachel? I think she said mmmmmm.

Saturday was a pretty lazy day. That evening Chuck and I had a date. We had free tickets to see "Birthday from Hell" preformed at Radio Music Theater. It was really funny and we had a great time. We didn't get home until after 1am! That's pretty late for old folks like us. :)
Sunday I got in a little exercise by taking a hike at Brazos Bend State Park on the Red Buckeye Trail.
Felt ok at first but then my throat started bugging me again. It was such a beautiful day that I wasn't going to let it bother me.
Charlie decided he wanted to get close to Big Creek which joins with the Brazos River. He didn't realize there was thick mud because of recent flooding. When he jumped down from a small ledge he sank in the mud. He started to panic because he thought he was going to sink. We knew he was ok so we were laughing and Chuck got some great pics of the scene.
It really was some thick, deep mud.
While we all found it hilarious, Charlie was less than amused.
While on the trail we heard owls and various songbirds, saw insects and flowers, and had a great time.
We took our time and sat to watch the Brazos River rush towards its destination at the Gulf of Mexico.
After the hike (and getting Charlie cleaned up) we met Chuck's parents for dinner at Texas Roadhouse. I am so proud of me: I only had 1 roll (those 227 calorie bites of bliss are hard to resist!) and the grilled chicken salad with no croutons and half the cheese. Yeah for me!
I only got in exercise on Monday and then the 1.81 mile hike on Sunday. My total calorie deficit for the week was only 1785 because I didn't work out. Hopefully the next week will be better.
It's good to be in the land among the living again. Allergies are a killer this year!


  1. What a blistering fast weekend this was.

    This coming weekend we will certainly get a workout. Paddling is always a good calorie burner, plus it's fun!

    Can't wait!


  2. Oh Charlie - what a crack up! I wouldn't have thought you'd sink so much - what a trooper! And I'll bet he probably would have love to switch classes with Rachel and have at the frog!

    Your food on Friday looks wonderful! Oh, and did you buy any of those almonds? Do you crack them with a nutcracker? Interesting!

    Glad you are coming around - this has been a really bad allergy season. We met our kids in Temple on Saturday afternoon and our oldest was looking pretty beat down from the pollen...I feel for you!

    Can't wait for Sunday and our 6K! It will be fun to see you and Chuck again, and meet your kids!

  3. Those pictures were cute - thanks for sharing even if Charlie wasn't happy.
    I'm sorry about your allergies - that sucks but man I'm envious of all that green you have around you.
    I've got SNOW today :(
    It sucks.
    So I have to live through people like you who share pictures to make me feel better - thanks ... LOL

  4. I love love love Mediterranean food. We don't eat it that much anymore since we have small kiddos are restaurants are tough.
    Allergies are kicking my but too. The oak pollen is so thick right now the ground is yellow with it.

    I could've used a warning for the frog dissecting. Yuck! I was eating. ;)

  5. Wow- I wish I could have had you as my teacher! What fun ways of learning! :)

  6. I usually can't enjoy Greek pastries because most all of them incorporate walnuts which I'm allergic to. I've only been to one restaurant that offered a pistachio version of Baklava which I enjoyed immensely. You are lucky to have such a great resource nearby.

  7. I hear yah. The pollen here is a real B$*#H.... I have flippin fog head all day and im trying to push through it. Still can't take any meds till the breastfeeding is done... ARGGGGGGG.

    Lovely pictures... The mud looked soooo fun...

  8. Man you are all over this!
    And frog legs for dinner again!


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