End of the Summer

Well, its the end of the summer, at least officially, though the temperatures are in the 80s still here this week.  Its funny how our highs drop out of the mid to high nineties and everyone celebrates.

A while back we went to Camp Allen for a retreat with our church small group and had a great time.  We did a camp fire on one of their lakes and they had a cross across the way.  A friend and I both had our cameras trying to get neat shots.  I really like this one.

And this one turned out cool as well.

Levi is officially moved into his big boy bed now.  The crib is still in the room because its storage space needs cleaned, but he hasn’t used it once since his new bed was put in.  He has done a great job.

Its football season again and we went to a game this year with Levi.  Its not his first game, he went to a high school one as a baby, but this is the first since he’s more mobile.  It was here in Houston at Reliant Stadium, where the Texans play.  It was against Rice. 

Texas has a lot of young guys, so its going to be a rough season, but lots of fans showed up regardless.  At least this game wasn’t much in question.  Here’s our Longhorn mascot.

Levi in his Hook ‘Em shirt.

And some Longhorn stickers.  He kept playing with these.  By the end of the game they were on our hands.

The band makes some cool shapes.  Here’s a UT and 2 stars.

A big T for Texas and two smaller UTs.

The Rice band is called the MOB and they don’t really march, but they do funny formations and such.  Here’s an accordion in their band.

Levi and his mommy.

Levi wasn’t so keep on the group portrait.  The guy behind us though it was a good chance to throw up his horns.  The lady though Levi fighting was funny.   They were the ones that gave him the stickers on his cheeks that by this point have migrated around.

After the game he was pretty tired.  I had to carry him the whole way back to the car and he slept much of it.

Levi’s Granddaddy Charlie had a big milestone birthday this year, so after the game we went straight to his party.

Here’s his fancy cake.

Levi’s I guess cousin (Uncle’s wife’s brother’s son) Matthew was there and they are very close in age.  Here they are playing some ping pong.

Two of Levi’s favorite people are Kendra’s brother Matthew’s friends Amy and Bob.  Here he is talking to Amy.  Bob has two broken feet in the picture due to an error in gravity calculations.

One day after doing some laundry we came into the room to find this:

We’ve been working on teaching Levi to play catch.  He’s been doing a pretty good job and he loves doing it.  He’ll ask to do it a lot of nights.  We play in the kitchen, where things are put up enough that he won’t break anything, at least nothing expensive, like say my big screen TV.

Here’s a great video of him playing

We got a great chance to go onsite at Johnson Space Center to one of the big mockup area’s with Levi’s friend Olivia and her family.  I had been in there a long time ago, but they’ve added a lot more modules since then, so it was cool.

This is Orion, the vehicle I’ve been working on that Obama is currently screwing up with all his changes.

A look inside.  To quote Monty Python and the Holy Grail, “its only a model”

Here are the three things I spend most of my time on in my life.  (Buzz isn’t one of them)

Here’s the reason Orion had so many problems, Ares.

Here’s Olivia with her family inside the Space Station mockup.  This is how big the actual station is, with bonus gravity.  Olivia didn’t want to take a picture.

Levi decided to try to float away, so I had to hold onto him.

Here they are looking down into the Russian section.

They were playing like they were hiding in the Russian sleep area.

I see you!

Here’s Levi in the Commander’s seat in a Space Shuttle mockup.

Which one of these moves the seat up so I can see out?

Olivia wasn’t sure she wanted to climb up into the cockpit.

Kendra was in the pilot seat in case Levi needed any help.

Old school technology with all those buttons.  A toddler’s dream.

A shot from behind of Olivia in the pilot’s seat.

Her daddy, Jesse in the commander’s seat.

Where’s the guns.

I’ve gotten to climb in these before, but having worked on the shuttle cockpit in the past I still find it cool.

After all of that we walked over to the Mission Control building.

Holding hands, how cute.

Here’s Levi, the flight director, making the tough calls.

This is the Apollo mission control, you may have seen it in the movie Apollo 13.

The red phone was used to call the president.  Here Olivia is giving him a piece of her mind.

Levi is telling him to increase NASA’s budget.

Here they are watching the space station mission control in real operations.  I used to do the software for all of this, and actually helped with the big upgrade of all their systems to modern stuff.  Olivia’s mom is one of the flight controllers.

Here they are.  Right after this Levi managed to wipe out and cut himself, so no group picture for us.

After we calmed down we walked over to the duck pond on campus as JSC.

Checking out the fish and feeding them some.

The ducks want some too.

There are three ponds, they came from all over to get the food.  They were flying to beat each other to the food.

Here’s some video of them feeding the ducks.  They had to hold the food over their heads so the ducks wouldn’t steal it.

They had a lot of fun feeding the ducks, and then decided to chase them when the food ran out.

Most of the ducks took off.

We had to go catch the kids before they took off too.

We have a busy fall planned, going all over, even up to North Carolina and Baltimore to visit family.  After that we’re going to Philadelphia for a few days.  It should be a great time and I’m sure we’ll have lots of pictures.

Posted in big boy bed, birthdays, Camp Allen, catch, Ducks, football, Levi, Longhorns, Olivia, Space Center