Photo Tour of Our Austin-y Summer

A few years ago, we had the busiest summer ever.  We traveled non-stop, all over the country and up into Canada. I took the kids to amusement parks, museums, resorts, water parks, and shows. They enjoyed three months of non-stop entertainment.  Then, just before school started, we ran into my son’s former Kindergarten teacher who asked if he had had a fun summer. He said, “Well, we went to the pool once, when the fan broke.”  I don’t know what fan he was referring to, but I had to laugh! Clearly, our neighborhood pool had made more of an impression on him than our international travel.

This summer, by contrast, we didn’t take a family vacation. We never traveled further than San Antonio and the bulk of our summer adventures involved splash pads, snow cones, trips to the library, games of Chess, and LEGO bartering (where my boys offer to buy LEGO bricks from each other without ever actually exchanging money – this game can last hours, so I don’t question it). I’ve had pangs for a real vacation, but I’ve been reminding myself that it’s the little things that kids remember. 

Here are a few snapshots of our big summer of little things. Seeing all the photos together makes me think that Austin is a pretty great place to vacation.  And lucky us, we live here!

“Fishing” in Bull Creek
Rosewood Park Splash Pad (one of 12 Austin splash pads we visited in one day)
I am cuckoo for Wimberley Market Days (Wimberley)
Main Street Plaza Fountain (Round Rock)
Barton Creek Greenbelt hike to Twin Falls and Sculpture Falls
Shaylah Dame Skate Park (Round Rock)
HOPE Outdoor Gallery
Making pea gravel castles at Lake Pflugerville
Learning some history at Texas State Cemetery
Splash Park at Falcon Pointe (Pflugerville)
Giant Lite Brite at the Thinkery (free on Sundays, from 5 – 6 p.m.)
Penfold in the Park – Romeo and Juliet (Round Rock) 
Shopping for rocks and minerals at Nature’s Treasures
Checking out the unique aquariums at the Fish Gallery
Pflugerville Pfarmer’s Market at the Green Red Barn
Visiting the peacocks at Mayfield Park
Digging for dino bones at Austin Nature & Science Center
Our first time inside the Texas Military Forces Museum 
(because we always seem to visit on Mondays, when it’s closed)
Strolling the grounds of Laguna Gloria (free on Tuesdays)
Glenwood Splash Pad (Hutto)
Zilker Summer Musical – Oklahoma!
Dodging bird droppings at the Purple Martin Roost
Snacking and playing at Whole Foods Market – Domain Location
Bullock Texas State History Museum (free on the first Sunday of the month)
Colored lights at the Liz Carpenter Fountain in Butler Park
Great fun at the free Westenfield Pool
Blanton Museum of Art (free on Thursdays)
Brushy Creek Lake Park Splash Pad (Cedar Park)
Austin Symphony Concerts in the Park at the Long Center
Storytime at BookPeople with Tiny Tails to You Petting Zoo
Blue Hole (Georgetown)
Eating at the Gristmill and antiquing in Gruene
Chilly swimming at the spring-fed Deep Eddy Pool ($)
Finally tall enough for the slides at Scott Mentzer Pool (Pflugerville) ($)
Glow Bowling at The Union Underground ($)
All aboard the Zilker Zephyr ($)
Testing the new slides at Bartholomew Pool ($) 
Barton Springs Pool (free from 5 – 8 a.m. and from 9 – 10 p.m.)
Rock’N River Pool (Round Rock) ($) – not really cheap, unless you compare it to a water park!
Gus’s Fried Chicken – the pie disappeared so fast, I almost didn’t get a photo!

It’s hard to believe three months of vacation have already flown by!  What fun did you get into around town this summer?

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