Saturday, September 19, 2009

Astros Game

Sent from my BlackBerry® smartphone with SprintSpeed

Wanted to see if this worked...blogging from my phone...and it does! Crazy. Anyway, the Blackberry has the worst camera imaginable but this is us, with blurred out faces, in front of Minute Maid Park after the Astros beat the Phillies!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Places I want to go...

The Mystery Road Trip got me thinking about other places I've always wanted to visit in Texas. So, here's my list of places I've always wanted to go and have never been and some places that I have been to but I was too young to remember...

My idea for our Mystery Road Trip was to visit Marfa, TX made famous for the Marfa lights, Balmorhea made famous for the huge "pool" and also it's referenced in a song by Charlie Robison one of my favorite Texas Country singers, and last but not least a visit to the McDonald Observatory. So, I'll start with these places first...

1. Marfa, Texas: Located between the Davis Mountains and Big Bend National Park, far out west, Marfa is really only known for it's "paranormal lights" that can be seen in the distance of the Mitchell Flat. Now, I am not really into "paranormal" things but I do believe that there are spirits or maybe things we may never figure out. God's little mysteries, maybe? Anyway, I think it'd be cool to go and check it out. I first remember hearing about these weird floating "orbs" and seeing pictures in a science text book the week we were learning about phenomenons that science or man haven't been able to "figure out." The only thing about travelling so far to see these lights is there is no guarantee you will see them. There's no special time each evening or night and it's only a maybe 10 to 20 times per year that they are seen. But, it'd still be a fun trip and I can only imagine that annoyed residents (there's only about 2000 Marfans) come up with some crazy stories to throw off the stupid tourists, me, but it'd still be interesting. Also, it's never a guarantee you'll even seen the floating, flickering, bobbing orbs but it'd be a fun trip!

2. Balmorhea, TX: This is a tiny town in the middle of nowhere. Perfect. The main, and really only attraction is a huge spring fed swimming pool!! When I say huge I mean 77,053 sq. ft., which is 1 3/4-acre size, 25-foot depth and it maintains a constant 72 to 76 degree temperature. Awesome! It looks beautiful and you know it has to feel so good on a hot Texas summer day. Balmorhea is also located near the Davis Mountains.

3. McDonald Observatory: Located near Ft. Davis, also in far West Texas. I think it was our first anniversary of dating when I surprised Blake by taking him to the observatory here in San Antonio. It was precious really. We went to dinner and then I told him I had a surprise for him. We drove around down-town, stopping a few times at gas stations so I could get directions as to where to go, and then finally we pulled up and I told him that a trip to the observatory was his surprise! Sounds stupid but it was fun and Blake was always pointing out constilations and things to me so I thought it'd be sweet. And it was. So, I want to go out to the wild west where the skies have no city lights polluting the darkness. I've been to the observatory before, in first and second garde and it was my favorite field trip out of them all. Think about adding some friends, the road and making a road trip out of it. Fun!

4. Bastrop, TX: I still can't believe I haven't been here. I drove through Bastrop multiple times going to and from College Station my first few years of school but I never stopped, unless you count getting a Route 44 Diet Dr. Pepper at Sonic. Sometimes adding a shot of vanilla. But, I'd love to float the Lower Colorado River. They have rafting too. Plus, it reminds me of visiting family in Mississippi with the huge pine trees.

OK....I'm not done but I need to get some other things done. I'll finish later...

Monday, September 7, 2009

Mystery Road Trip

We've had a camping trip planned for a couple of weeks now to get away for a bit during the long Labor Day weekend. We went to Koyote Ranch back in July for the 4th but one of our "couple" friends couldn't make it because it was a pretty last minute trip. So, this was going to be a do-over so all three couples could go. However, Jennifer and Cayman couldn't go this time either. Jennifer has her Series 63 or 6 or one of those investment test coming up VERY SOON and she is the most responsible out of us :) and knew she needed to stay behind because she only had a few more days to hit the books. So, Friday came, the day before we were due to head out to Medina, and we went to dinner with the other "couple" friend, Billy and Stephanie. Towards the end of dinner I said, "I am not really feeling this camping idea anymore." And, one by one the other three at the table all said the same thing. But, we knew we wanted to do something!! Thus, the idea of Mystery Road Trip...
Someone came up with the idea of taking a road trip. But, to where? We all started talking about ideas and decided why not throw each of our ideas into a hat and head on out. Here were the Road Trip Rules we came up with:
1. It has to be within a 350 mile radius of Boerne/San Antonio
2. No complaining or whining if your idea doesn't get picked...there's always next year
That's it just two simple rules.
We decided we'd meet at 12 noon at Billy and Stepanie's house, with everything packed and ready to go. We threw our ideas into one of Billy's hats and Blake picked the "winner." Before I reveal who won, here are the ideas we came up with...

Holly: Marfa, TX. Labor day weekend is the annual Marfa Lights Festiva and we could also visit Balmorhea, TX (with a huge 2 acre pool, I've always wanted to see it) and the McDonald observatory (another place I've always wanted to visit) which are both only 45 minutes from Marfa.
Blake: College Station to eat at Cenare's (The best Italian restaurant...anywhere!) then cold beer at the Dixie Chicken, then on to Bastrop to the pine forrest.
Stephanie: Corpus Christi to visit the Lexington, Aquarium and beach
Billy: Houston to see an Astros game and a visit to the Johnson Space Center.



It was a lot of fun. We got into Houston around 5:30, checked into the hotel, and then headed to the ballpark. Of course every road trip has it's ups and downs and the first "snag" was when we checked into the room and only saw it had one bed. When I made the reservation, right before we left Billy and Stephanie's house, I chose the "Standard Room" because the only other choice was "King Room" so I assumed a "Standard Room" was one with two beds. There wasn't a choice for a room with two Queens. Well, we got everything fixed at the front desk and got a room with two beds.

At the game Stephanie's friend who lives in Houston came to meet us and told us about the bars across the street. After the game we went and had some cold beers and celebrated the win!

The next morning we woke up ready to visit Johnson Space Center but started looking at maps and it was about 30 minutes from where we were at and also the price wasn't cheap and both of us couples spent way more than we had planned...we originally planned to go camping, remember?! :) So, we nixed that idea and headed to the next best place. IKEA! :) We had a fun time but now that Blake's been he is NEVER going again. I'm not sure if you've ever been to Ikea, but once you are in, you are in and you aren't leaving until you follow the arrows through the entire store! There's no turning back. You enter the store, go up the escalators and you literally have to see everything in the store to get out! But, it's all fun, pretty in-expensive home stuff. I want to go back but I'll probably just order out of the catalog or from online.

After our trip to Ikea we stopped into a Kountry Kitchen Buffet that was in the parking lot thinking it was going to be a Golden Corral type restaurant. But, when we went in it was actually a Mexican food buffet. What could be better?! Some of the food was different but it was a fun experience too.

Then, we headed home. :) It was a good weekend.

Enjoy the pics...Us, in our "rally caps" They must work! The Astros won!

Pictcher for the 'stros

Shot of the field

The cute train, filled with what else but, ORANGES (Minute Maid Stadium), that actually "drove" across the track up there at the beginning of the game.

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