December 24, 2008

2008 in Review

I'm using my time over winter break to enter the personal blog world. While we don't have tons to blog about, I'm sharing with you to encourage myself to be more of writer - plus who doesn't like puppy pictures? I've already added notes from a few favorite trips to the blog, and will attempt to be retrospective and add other travel logs from the past before all is forgotten.

2008 in Review
  • I started my 3rd year at the librarian at Bright Elementary, and started a work blog too: Book Buzz @ the Bright Library
  • Matt started his last year at UNT as a graduate student in history and received an internship working with the Rare Book and Texana Collection at the university library.
  • More traveling! Took great weekend trips with friends to Austin, New Braunfels, Granbury, Broken Bow, Lubbock, and Houston and a summer vacation to New Orleans and Caddo Lake.
  • Duncan learned how to roll over on command - that's big for him.
Hope your 2008 was great too. Thanks for joining us and happy holidays! ~A

Lubbock for Labor Day

We went to Lubbock in September for a Labor Day/Birthday/Tech Game trip. It was fun visiting the old haunts, and hard to believe it's been 5 years since I graduated!

Favorite stops included Gardski's and Cricket's (the site of our first date back in 2003), driving through Tech Terrace, shopping on Broadway, stopping by Prairie Dog Town, walking around the Texas Tech campus, and of course - the game. Tech beat Eastern Washington 49-24 - if only we'd known we were witnessing the start of such an awesome season! It was a fun, relaxing trip and a great way to celebrate my 28th birthday.

New Orleans and Caddo Lake Summer Trip

For our big trip this year we spent time sightseeing in New Orleans and relaxing at Caddo Lake.

  • Drove from Crossroads to New Orleans - and listened to three audiobooks on the way
  • Stopped for lunch in quaint Natchitoches, LA and walked around downtown
  • Arrived in NOLA and checked in at the Hotel St. Pierre - a wonderful little hotel within walking distance of everything in the French Quarter and a great deal
  • Headed straight to Jackson Square to walk around and eat our first po'boys and muffulettas of the trip
  • Up early to visit the Chalmette Battlefield after driving through the newly-constructed lower 9th ward on the way
  • Visited the awesome, brand-new WWII Museum, a must-see (plus it had air conditioning!)
  • Back to the French Quarter to be tourists - visited shops at the French Market and the patio at Pat O'Brien's, ate more po'boys and muffulettas, and relaxed
  • Spent the evening on Bourbon Street - ate red beans and rice, drank Hand Grenades, stopped for beignets at Cafe Du Monde, and lots of people watching
  • Arrived in Uncertain, Texas and checked in at the Moonglow Lodge - a cute cottage right on Caddo Lake with a butterfly garden, canoes, a great dock, and a hot tub
  • Drove to Jefferson for dinner, groceries, and a tour of the historic downtown district
  • Relaxed at the cabin on the pier over Caddo Lake and tried our hand fishing from the dock
  • Visited Caddo Lake State Park to hike and enjoy the lake views
  • Grilled at the cabin and relaxed at the lake - always on alert for alligators!
  • Back to Dallas to pick up Duncan and enjoy cooler weather

June 30, 2008

Oklahoma Weekend Trip

For our June getaway we enjoyed a fun weekend with friends at the Tree Top View Cabins on the Glover River in Oklahoma. The cabins are north of Broken Bow, in Battiest, a beautiful, wooded 4 hour drive from our home. The cabins were right on the river, with a full kitchen, beds for six, an awesome porch, and a porch swing in the living room. Wildlife included fish (perch, gar, sunfish, bass), turtles, snakes, and tons of hummingbirds.

  • Drove to Battiest with Andy, it seems Oklahoma doesn't believe in road signs so landmarks were key in making it to the cabin
  • Checked in and explored our lodging, the Cedar Shack, at the Tree Top View Cabins
  • Fishing on the river, Matt grilled chicken and brats for dinner, and relaxed by a campfire
  • Fished on the Glover River, hiking, canoes, and suspension bridge fun
  • Back to the cabin to relax in the rainy afternoon with grilled burgers and hot dogs for dinner
  • Coffee and brownie breakfast, packed up, and headed home

May 23, 2008

Spring Break in Austin and New Braunfels

Saturday and Sunday with Maggie + Monday and Tuesday with Matt = A fun spring break!

  • Headed south to Austin
  • Started with fun with lunch and music on the patio at Opal Divine's Penn Field
  • Dinner and relaxing at Earl and Evelyn's
  • Church and La Madeline's in San Antonio with the grandparents
  • Shopping and a movie with Maggie to complete a relaxing day
  • Headed back to Austin with Maggie
  • Coffee and reading at Mozart's on Lake Lady Bird-my new favorite place
  • Met Matt for burgers, Maggie went back to DFW
  • Shopped and explored SoCo
  • Dinner at MoonShine and drinks on 6th Street, complete with St. Patrick's Day craziness!
  • Morning coffee at Mozart's
  • Brunch at South Congress Cafe
  • Back for more exploring on South Congress - hunt for Hey, Cupcake!
  • Stopped at the San Marcos Outlets in the middle of a giant rainstorm
  • Explored Gruene, enjoyed drinks on the patio at The Gristmill
  • Dinner and relaxing at E & E's
  • Breakfast, quick walk through beautiful Landa Park, then heading home to DFW

May 11, 2008

Granbury and Glen Rose Weekend Trip

For our May getaway we enjoyed a fun and relaxing weekend in Granbury and Glen Rose, Texas, an easy 1 1/2 drive from our home. Overall, the perfect weekend trip! Our farmhouse cabin, The Neri Place, was fabulous - beautiful, private, convenient, and full of charm. We enjoyed the view of Comanche Peak, wildlife sightings - deer, frogs, lizards, cows, and the other amenities of the farmhouse, it is definitely recommended. We'll have to go back to Dinosaur Valley with friends to camp out and tackle the rest of the trails too.

Friday: Granbury
  • Drove to Granbury
  • Checked in and explored our farmhouse cabin, The Neri Place
  • Explored downtown Granbury and went in a few shops on the square
  • Dinner at Don Ayala, picked it because of the patio, next time I'd prefer the Cajun Cafe or a different restaurant on the square
Saturday: Glen Rose - Dino time!
  • Breakfast at the farmhouse - the stocked fridge was a great surprise
  • Drove to Dinosaur Valley State Park, just 20 minutes from the farmhouse
  • Spent the day hiking and exploring the park, we were able to view two great sets of tracks, next time we'll definitely have to bring Chaco's so we can cross the high water to get to the other set of trails
  • Enjoyed a picnic lunch on the trail at the park
  • Drove through the cute town of Glen Rose
  • Back to the farmhouse to relax and grill for dinner
Sunday: Home Again
  • Coffee on the patio and another great breakfast
  • Drove home - stopped and picked up Duncan from his relaxing getaway at MH's house