Friday, April 18, 2014

Bluebonnets | 2014

It seems like we waited a while for the bluebonnets to bloom this year, but I think they're actually right on time. We had such a cold winter (and are still having cold days here and there) that maybe they were slow this year. All I know is that I kept looking for them in my usual field near our house. And they never showed up. That field is still not blooming so it's officially a dud this year...after who knows how many years of thick blankets of bluebonnets. I have no idea what happened. But thankfully, a friend (thanks, Melody!) shared her field that is a little further from home, but not too far. And that's where we went this year to get our photos. 

First, I am not sure it will be evident from the photos just how crazy my boys were on this evening at the bluebonnet field. They were so excited about all the flowers that they just kept running around like maniacs. My mom and I had to work hard to keep them from photo-bombing anyone else and also to make them come and sit for photos. Of course, they were still pulling antics when they sat down...

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Honestly, I was a little surprised when I went through the photos at home that I came away with any good ones. It was that kind of night. But I should know by now that you always get more than you think. Some were actually pretty sweet and cute.

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This field was pretty great. The bluebonnets were nice and thick and there were trees on one side, which is nice. (I still missed our other field, but this was a good back-up.)

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I had my mom snap a couple of me with the boys. One of the things I noticed immediately was that they were lucky to have short hair that didn't blow like crazy in the wind. It was pretty windy and gusty that evening, but you wouldn't know it by the boys' photos.

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We took a couple with Mimi too...who was nice enough to come along and corral the boys with me, hold my reflector, and hand out "picture treats" (that's what Logan calls my smarties that I give them for smiles).

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A Spring Storm and Rainbow

Right in the middle of March (and right after we moved into our new house), a huge thunderstorm came through our area as is usual for spring time. And of course, the boys wanted to watch it. I have several photos of them doing this through the years. It's almost a spring tradition. (See 2009, 2011, 2013).

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This year they were kind of scared of the storm. It was a big one. It rained so hard and so fast that a river formed in our street and literally carried our big trash bin all the way down the street in its current.

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After most of the rain died down the boys took a shower. While they were in there I went to let Duke out at the back door. I just happened to glance up and see this magnificent rainbow. And then I noticed that it was a double rainbow. So, I grabbed my camera and went outside in the very soggy grass to get a couple of photos.

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As I went out into the yard I noticed that it was also a full double rainbow. I honestly can't remember the last time I've seen a double, full arc rainbow that was this bright. I was in a hurry with the photos because the boys were in the shower, so this one (the only shot I took of the full arc) is out of focus.

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And here's the left side of it. Amazing. Of course, after the boys got out of the shower I carried them out there to see the rainbow. You can't miss something like that.

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Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Dallas Blooms at the Arboretum | 2014

Right at the very end of the boys' Spring Break we went to the Dallas Arboretum like we do every spring during Dallas Blooms. It just happened to be a chilly day, which seems to be a pattern this spring.

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However, it was just plain cold that morning. I should have found them longer sleeved shirts to wear, but I thought they could manage for a few minutes without jackets. And they did, but it kept our photos to a minimum, which is okay. You can tell they are cold here...

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I always get a few shots of their faces before they smile. He's trying really hard not to because Logan is adamant about doing the opposite of what you want him to.

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But he couldn't resist for long. That's my Logan...

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He smiles with his whole face and I love it.

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Ethan was just cold, which is funny because he is always hot. He's been like that since he was a baby.

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I can always count on Ethan to be goofy...

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And I have a hard time getting a genuine smile out of him these days, but this is one of them. I love when that happens.

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The boys put their coats back on and we went further into the Arboretum to see the blooming peacocks. I love these...they are so beautiful. The boys were totally in awe. Logan refused a photo, but Ethan wanted his photo taken by the flower peacock.

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They shed their jackets one more time for a few snaps. I made it quick, though.

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I just love this photo of them. They are making the cutest faces and leaning into one another. Cuties.

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The flowers are just spectacular. I truly love going every year to see them. It never gets old to me.

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We made our way through the Arboretum toward the Children's' Garden. The boys insisted that we stop and look at the purple flowers. And then they did this...

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And there was a little of this... (I still take the stroller because inevitably, someone - Logan - can't make it all the way back to the car, and he's heavy).

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I had given the boys the choice of going to the zoo or the Children's Garden since they were out of school for Spring Break. Ethan immediately said he wanted to go to the Children's Garden and Logan agreed.

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We had arrived at the Arboretum right at 9am that morning when it opens. After about 20 minutes of chilly photos with the flowers, we spent the rest of the morning in the Children's Garden.

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I am pretty sure that they explored every square inch of that place. Ethan made certain of that.

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It cracked me up that they didn't say anything to each other...they just started doing hopscotch at the same time.

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They worked together to separate the magnets into categories...plant, animal, and mineral.

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They took turns using the stamp to create a "film strip" of a seed sprouting. Then, they placed it in the viewing wheel and spun it around to see their strip animate. It was actually pretty cool.

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Next, they built a flower piece by piece.

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And then, right up Ethan's alley...they did a scavenger hunt.

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Logan was interested and participated, but Ethan was very thorough and took his time with it.

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How cool is this kaleidoscope? The boys loved it. I kind of had to pry them away from it after a while.

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For about a year now, Ethan has been obsessed with tornadoes. And he got to make one in water. He was so excited.

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The water section was a big hit. At least they managed to stay mostly dry because the wind was still cold.

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They could see the tree house as we had been moving through the garden. Finally, we were on our way to climb around...

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Ethan climbed to the top, while Logan was more interested in walking around and bouncing on the bottom of the net.

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We made our way through the rest of the garden...including their favorite part...the maze and sword in the stone. After making a big circle, we ended up at the picnic area and had our lunches. And after that we headed home. Another fun trip in the books.

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