Saturday, March 11, 2006

Lots of Photos

Gabriel is down to one pair of shoes that fit him, so we went shoe shopping, and along the way, we couldn't help but pick up some new duds, too. Here are his two new outfits. I finally broke down and got him the Vans I've been eyeing for a year. Look closely at the shorts in the second photo - they are cammies, but they are dinos. Clever!

Since he is now a big boy and a hiker in his own right, he has earned himself his own pair of hiking shoes. They look just like Daddy's.

It didn't take us long before we broke them in; the next day we were off to the Battlefield with our friends Wendy and Ty for a good hour-long hike on relatively flat terrain. They were great hiking buddies.

When Chip isn't hiking or playing with his trains, one of his favorite things to do is to talk to Aunt Laura on the phone. Here he is maxing and relaxing in Big Chipster Style during one of their long chats.

We took Grammie to the High Museum of Art this weekend. In the children's gallery, Gabe Luke embraced the spirit of the day and created a work of art of his own.

Today, we took Mom to the monastery and had a great time. It was kind of relaxing but spiritually rewarding. We got to say a prayer in the church, walk a little on the grounds, and we got a new Japanese maple (acer palmatum) bonsai. When we got home, Gabe stayed with his Grammie while we went to Kennesaw Mountain to do some training (more about that later) and test out our new pack. We got an Osprey Atmos 50 with the help of our REI membership benefits, and it is the most awesome piece of outdoor equipment ever, even though we'd never heard of the Osprey brand before we started shopping. It has a whistle built into the front clasp in case of emergency, a unique curved frame that allows air to circulate behind the back, which is the biggest problem we've had with packs in the past, hydration compatibility, and lots of other great features. With the pack loaded up, I couldn't feel a bit of weight. When the wind blew, I actually felt the breeze on my back. The performance of our Osprey was absolutely amazing, and we highly recommend this pack if you are ever in need of one.

We are excitedly making preparations for our trip to Peru next week. On Thursday, we finally decided definitely to add an excursion to Cusco and Machu Picchu to our trip. We knew that we made the right decision as soon as we made it, and we are really, really excited to go.