Friday, December 18, 2009


Merry Christmas
San Antonio
And thanks for stopping by!
Flat Stanley

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Birding San Antonio

Tommy's Auntie Karen is a birder.
Not a bird,
a birder.
She always has her binoculars with her,
and she's always scanning the skies and the treetops.

Of course,
while we were riding through the San Antonio area,
we had to stop and look.

Auntie Kirsten was very patient.
I'd never been birding before.

We saw lots of different birds. Turkey Vultures, Black Vultures, and my most favorite,
the Crested Caracara, as shown here.

Also called The Mexican Eagle, the Crested Caracara,
occurs from Florida, S. Texas and Arizona
to tropical Central America.

They are very different from the Bald Eagle that we sometimes see near the water in New England. They eat snakes and lizards.

(photo of caracara  borrowed from with many thanks)

Next we visited The Paseo del Rio!

Next, we visited the River Walk, or Paseo Del Rio.
It is a 2 1/2 mile stretch of beautifully landscaped
waterfront with lots of stores and restaurants.
(Most of the buildings, and all of the bridges
are older than my Auntie Karen! )

In the 1600s and 1700s, the river was used for drinking, irrigation and livestock.
When the river was no longer needed for practical purposes, an architect developed the River Walk with fun, park-like features, like the Arneson River Theatre (below).
During the summer, visitors can take a boat ride down the river.

Across the water from this little stage, there is ampitheater-style seating built into the riverbank,with steps leading up to La Vallita, a little shopping village that was once the first neighborhood of homes in the area. All of this is nestled deeply in the middle of the big city!!

Monday, December 14, 2009

South Texas Vegetation

San Antonio is located
on the northern boundary of what is considered South Texas.
Because Auntie Karen likes all kinds of plants,
I had to pose in front of all the different types
of trees and cactii
that we passed
during our tour of the Alamo.

(OOOOHhhh, THIS could be DANGEROUS!)

You surely don't see plants like this growing in Massachusetts!
That's because it's too cold there in the wintertime.

We went to The Alamo!

When Auntie Karen, Kirsten's mom,
finally arrived from Maine
for a Christmas visit,
we began our adventure with a visit to
The Alamo!
When the Alamo was first built in 1724,
it was called Mision San Antonio de Valero,
and was home to missionaries and their Indian converts for nearly 70 years.
(Boy, that was a long time ago!! Before I was even born!)

(Like my hat?)
In the early 1800's, the Spanish military stationed a cavalry
unit here. The soldiers called it the Alamo, the Spanish
word for "cottonwood", in honor of their own hometown.
It played a very important role

We got to read a lot of information about the Alamo
and even got to tour through the Long Barracks.
Here I am next to the Long Barracks... it's a looonngg room.

Auntie Kirsten and I really enjoyed reading all the historical
markers and information. She helped me with the big words.


Here I am posing with the statue of Davy Crocket! He's my hero!

Peekaboo from the Long Barracks!

Here's Auntie Karen and I with one of the Alamo Rangers!
The Alamo Rangers guard the Alamo.
(Funny thing - he knew exactly who I was!
Do you suppose he read my book, too?)

For information about the Alamo, click HERE!

Welcome to San Antonio

HELLO! My name is Flat Stanley.
My friend, Tommy, lives in Massachusetts.
Tommy and his classmates read a book about me
and decided to
so I could learn about
far-away places, then share my adventures
with all the other kids.
So, with Tommy's help, off I went
through the mail.
Here I am with Tommy's Auntie Kirsten
in San Antonio, Texas.
As soon as I arrived,
she outfitted me with
a new cowboy hat and a Texas State Flag.
She tells me
that San Antonio is full of history
and that we'll have lots of fun exploring the city.
(Be sure to click on all the links throughout the postings
to learn more!)