Cody loves his new job. He works with lots of wonderful women and they take really good care of him. Lunches, reminders, curriculum, etc. They are great! So this year, they all decided to go to the Texas Social Studies Teacher Conference in San Antonio. Since he is the only guy, he got his own hotel room and invited Harper and I to go with him. This is definitely a perk of staying home - getting to travel and do fun things during the week.
Harper and I left Thursday morning and headed to Austin for the day. We got there just in time to hang with Eric for lunch at the bus. Afterwards, we headed to Tim and Tina's for dinner in Dripping Springs. I only get to see them once or twice a year, so anytime we are down south we stop by. We had a great time, talked for hours, and Tim and Tina cooked some good food as always! Harper enjoyed being the center of attention and even got used to Hudson, their new doodle who is about up to my waist. At bedtime, we headed to San Antonio and Harper slept the whole way.
When we got to the hotel, we put Harper to bed. Cody had set up a "room divider" of sorts and it worked pretty good. It was a chaise lounge turned upside down, a tall lamp, a chair on a desk, and a sheet covering the "wall". We had to be quiet, but we could at least watch tv and relax at night.
Friday morning, Cody had to go to his conference from 8-4, so we walked him down to the lobby and had breakfast with his coworkers. When they left, we went exploring around the hotel the riverwalk. Near the Grand Hyatt where we were staying, the river ended (or started) in some fountains and a beautiful walking area with trees and a park. It was the wooden playground type that Harper loves. About a minute before we got there, 50 2nd graders jumped off a bus and invaded the park. Harper didn't mind at all, so she just ran right in and followed some kids around. All the kids were so sweet, yelling "careful of the baby!" and eventually were leading her around the park by the hand. We left the park and walked back around the waters. It was a beautiful morning!
We decided to go to Sea World while we were there. They had a special where we got an entire year's admission for the price of one ticket (since it was off season). However, it didn't open till noon, so Harper had to miss her nap. We went anyways and just stayed for a few hours. She had an absolute blast though! We saw all the shows - it pretty much took up the whole time. Her favorite was the dog show where all these dogs, cats, birds, pigs, etc ran across the stage and did tricks. She liked the sea lions, the dolphins, and the water dancers. She also really like the penguins and the Elmo show. For some reason she didn't like Shamu, but it was pretty slow and uneventful for a 2 year old. Plus, that show was at the hour where she is tired and needs her nap but is pushing through. It was a little rouch for a bit. She did pretty good though, she walked some, rode in her stroller mostly, and sat fairly well at all the shows. We rode her first roller coaster, these little teacups that went up and around in a circle.
This scene is one that I have engraved in my brain. It's the exit to Sea World, and it was at this exact place that we found Dane. We were little, maybe 6ish. My whole family had come down to San Antonio for a vacation and all of us cousins were there. It was so fun, each family dressed in matching colors and walking in lines holding hands. There were a ton of us, so I'm sure it was chaotic. Either way, Dane got lost, for a WHILE and when we finally found him he had made his way back to the front. It was scary and memorable all at the same time.
At 4 pm, we headed back to the hotel and met up with Cody. We went for a walk along the river and grabbed dinner at a mexican restaurant near the water. Harper loved people watching and we actually had a really nice dinner. We headed back to the hotel and played around for a bit. Bath and bed and on to day 2.