Monday, September 28, 2009

5-Year Anniversary Trip

Sharon and I had talked about wanting to do a special trip to celebrate our 5-year anniversary, though I never really thought it was going to all come together. However, thanks to a lot of frequent flier miles and Sharon's parent's willingness to Caleb-sit, we were able to swing a 4-night trip to Puerto Rico. We truly had an incredible time, and we were definitely not ready to come home at the end of it - though we were excited to see Caleb. Caleb had a great time with his grandparents and didn't really seem to miss us at all, so maybe we should have stayed longer after all. Anyways, since I have so many pictures from our trip, I am going to intersperse the pictures with the description of our time in Puerto Rico. For those of you who could care less about our vacation and are really just interested in seeing recent pictures of Caleb, you can scroll to the end to see the one Caleb picture we threw in to keep you reading.

During our first full day we rented a car and drove out in the morning to hike in the rain forest - which is the only one found in the US. Below is a view from a window of an observation tower.
We also hiked up the mountain and got some great views of the island.
After that, we hiked down to La Mina falls - which is a great waterfall to swim in. If you look closely, you may notice that Sharon is the person standing behind the waterfall. Her husband was super impressed by her gutsyness to get back there :)
Below is a picture of hiking through the rain forest.

After our morning/early afternoon, we had a boat excursion to Vieques - a small island off the coast of the Puerto Rican mainland.

On the way over, we were treated to incredible views of the sunset and the clouds.

The main reason we went to the Island of Vieques was to swim in the bio-luminescent bay, which is a pretty amazing place that is hard to describe. Basically, you get the chance to swim in water that is filled with tiny creatures that light up when disturbed - creating the effect of swimming in glowing pixie dust. It can't really be captured on camera, but I encourage anybody to take in this experience if you're in Puerto Rico. Below is a picture that somebody with a very high-tech camera took, and you can read more at

After our first full day on the island, we needed a vacation from our vacation. Our second day we spent just hanging out around our hotel on the beach. On the third day, we went into old San Juan where we go to see streets such as the one below.
In addition, we also visited El Morro - which is the impressive fort protecting San Juan Bay

Here is a picture of me in one of the lookout posts in the fort.
Here is an imposing cannon pointing out to sea.

Sharon also convinced me to take her on Bicardi factory tour. Though this may have been the first time she ever drank rum, she did really enjoy the science behind it and learning how they make it.

Our final evening in Puerto Rico was spent in Old San Juan enjoying the sunset and the views of the old city walls.

Finally, for those of you who persevered - following is a picture of Caleb showing his joy after successfully using his toddler potty. He is definitely getting better at potty-training himself and we're hopeful that he can keep up the good work.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Farewell to Summer(s)

This summer brought the realization that summers as I've known them for the past 25 years have changed dramatically. For almost my entire life, summer has meant a change of pace from the routine of the rest of the year because my life was built around the school calendar. In my current job with TeachBeyond, summer actually brings an increased busy-ness rather than a slowed pace that I had grown to love. Though last year I was in the same job, the fact that we moved early in the summer served to signal the beginning of a new season.

Thus, it was with amazement and a bit of dismay that I noticed this year that summer was already over before I even realized that it began. Even so, we were able to have a lot of fun times this summer, and we so much enjoyed our family vacation in the middle of August. I also imagine that in a few years I will once again be in the typical summer mindset as Caleb begins school himself. In the meantime, it will take a bit of an adjustment to get used to being off of the school calendar mindset. Maybe I'll appreciate more that the true mark of summer is the weather rather than the change of pace I had become accustomed to over the past 25 years.

The annual Koerber family beach photo

Good luck trying to get 6 kids under 6 to look at the camera

If only Caleb was looking...

Feeling the love

Caleb loves his boxes...

his bagels...
his bath time...

and his mommy's undies.