Thursday, October 29, 2009


The end of the Holy Month of Rammadan in the muslim calendar ends in a string of holidays.  In Kuwait, the country effectively takes the entire week off.  Since we have vacation, we thought it was a good time to visit somewhere new.  This year, the holidays were in September so Europe seemed like a good choice.

Since we managed to see the pyramids in the spring, I thought that seeing another ancient site would round out the year.

My pick was Greece.

Here is the view out of our Athenian hotel.
As you can see, the streets are narrow.

You can see the Acropolis from our hotel breakfast room.

As we walked to the Acropolis, we passed other ancient structures.

This amphitheater can only be entered when performances are held. 
It is the odeon of Herodes Atticus.

Othe Acropolis in front of the Caryatids.

Here is the parthenon.

There is lots of scaffolding as it has been under restoration for awhile.

Some of the carvings still have good, clear features.

Dante posing on the acropolis.

Heading towards the ancient agora, we see the long structure of "Stoa of Attalos".

This is a nice, intact temple of Hephaistos.

This is the Odeon of Agippa.  It is also known as the Palace of the Giants.

The church of the holy apostles.

This is in the ancient agora....the ancient marketplace.  This is inside the Stoa of Attalos.

After months of sunshine, Deanna finally saw rain.

After lunch, we took in another view of the acropolis.

Here you can see the acropolis from the Temple of Olympian Zeus.

This building was in the middle of the Athenian pedestrian zone.

This is the ruins of a Roman forum.

Now for some sights in the National Archaeological museum.  They actually let you take pictures inside.



A nice courtyard inside the National Archaeological museum.

Most of our sight seeing was done so Dante and Talyn are ready for lunch.

As is Nyssa.

We are off to see some Greek Islands.

The kids spend start playing cards while waiting for the boat tour to start.

This is Hydra playground for the rich.

The tourist area is full of shops and restaurants.

Beautiful water.

Deanna insisted that at least one photo had me in it.

This is Poros.

Another very small tourist area.

This is a temple on Aegina.

Quite the picturesque setting.

Aegina grows pistacchios. 
Talyn is enjoying homemade pisctacchio ice cream.

Church of Agios Nectarios

It had beautiful gardens.

Squids are drying out on the squid line.

Here is another shot of the acropolis.

This is in the national garden.

Palm trees line the walkways.

The kids wanted to take a time-out to play on the playground.

We had some time to kill so we stopped for a coffee.

No trip to Athens is complete without saying good bye to Yoda.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Talyn's Birthday

We were in California for August so Talyn was able to celebrate his birthday in California.  Notice the big cake.  This celebration was at the tail end of a Sunday barbeque at Anne and Adam's.
Talyn did not get much presents then, but he did get his wish of going to Disneyland on his birthday.
Talyn loved the attention.
Since Deanna and the kids were in California for six weeks prior, Deanna purchased a 3 day hopper for $99.  Normally the birthday person gets into Disneyland free.  However, if they alreay have admission to the park they can get several items.  One is fastpass packet for the family for major rides.  The second is a gift card worth the price of admission.  Talyn chose this and got a gift card for $78.
We started the day going counter-clockwise around the park.  Indiana Jones was not open yet so we headed to Splash Mountain.
Here we go.
It was a little hazy in the morning.

Next stop was Thunder Mountain.
Talyn asked to sit in the back and he got his wish.
On the Matterhorn, he sat with me.  That is why he is not in the picture.
We met up with David and Kathleen at the exit to StarTours.  Talyn bought his backpack and then we went on Astroblasters.  Then, I dragged them to the other part for an Italian lunch.
Talyn got a free birthday cake after his meal.

We hit Soarin' over California (we Fastpassed it before lunch--Smart),then we got some IceCream.
Jelena likes her ice cream Mickey.
We Fastpassed the rapids before we hit Soarin' over California--double smart.
They look so dry.  How about some water?
I missed the after Rapid shots, but let's say some adventurers got wet.  Liz and Deric joined us and we headed out to California Screamin' and Toy Story Mania. 
More missed shots, but hey, I have other things to do beside taking pictures for the blog.
Afterwards I was feeling peckish and I wanted another sit down meal.  Boy, I am getting old.  I knew there was a sit down restaurant at Ariel's grotto.  However, I had forgotten that Ariel's grotto is a character breakfast.
So my family and the rest of us were subjected to:
This one did not work there, but she seems jolly.
Talyn has a crown and he is happy.
Jelena enjoys time with Sleeping Beauty.  That princess seemed quite awake.  She must be drinking espresso nowdays.
Here is Talyn with Cinderella and mini-Snow White.
R2-D2 is a Dodger fan.

Now for Mega-Snow White.
Talyn ordered the seafood pasta.  Nice!
Talyn got another birthday cake--boy was he spoiled.
Jelena wanted to blow out some candles so Kathleen put crayons in the cake.  The person on the left is NOT an odd looking Disney character.
Sing happy birthday and then blow out the candles, Jelena.
Talyn put on his back pack and is ready to go.
It was dark so time for the Electrical Parade. One, two, three!  Everybody hum the theme music.
My camera was not good enough to get great pictures.  All the rest ended up blurry.  I could only grab the slow ones.

Disneyland was near the end of our trip.  Now it was time to say goodbye.
We used miles to upgrade the return flight. Here Nyssa is all smiles in Business class.
Talyn pretty much ignored us for the first 8 hours of the flight.  He was playing games and watching movies.  He was so busy, he did not want to eat.
Well, that is it.  The Summer vacation came to a close and we were set to return to Kuwait for another school year.