My parents came for a nice long visit this month. They arrived on a Thursday and the next morning, we packed up a borrowed truck and headed off to Texas hill country!
San Antonio is is just 2 1/2 hours away, a straight shot on I-10, so we stopped there first. We loved the shady, cool river walk on the 100 degree day and had a HUGE lunch at Rio Rio. Sam and I ordered fajitas for two and they delivered us this pile of meat and melty cheese.
Our next stop was, of course, the Alamo. It was much less crowded than the last time we were there, so we were able to let Anna just look and crawl around. She stayed very happy, especially once I changed her diaper and let her crawl in the grass, chew on sticks, and look at the fish.
After stopping for gas and milkshakes, we headed up to McKinney Falls State Park to camp for the night. Anna had a wonderful time crawling around in the grass and dirt, playing in the truck, and singing Kumbayah around the campfire with her daddy. Like any good scout, she found herself a stick and used it for all sorts of things: digging in the dirt, chewing on, drumming on a frisbee. It was one-year-old heaven. She struggled a little to go to sleep, but she slept really well all night in her pack and play in the tent.
The rest of us ate tinfoil dinners and smores. Mom and Dad went on a night hike and Sam and I talked and held hands by the fire under a big full moon. It was just what camping should be.
The next morning, we hiked to the upper and lower falls, swam a bit, built dams, and dug through rocks. Anna loved it all and fell asleep in the stroller on the way back. It was nice and overcast, so the weather was perfect. After we ate a much needed lunch, we broke camp and packed up the truck, and started for home.
After almost 2 hours of driving, we wandered onto some country roads so we could see three of the painted churches of Texas, beautiful little country churches built by German and Czech immigrants at the turn of the last century. They look simple and plain from the outside, but are intricately decorated on the inside. I loved seeing the different styles of paintings, from elaborate flowers in subdued colors to bright, geometric shapes. At one church we took a rest under a tree and had some yogurt for a snack while Dad serenaded us on a grass whistle.
Sam finished the drive home and we all unpacked our tired selves and all our camping gear. I'm so glad we went on the trip and saw more of this big beautiful state of Texas.