Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Happy Birthday to Me

This year’s birthday included some Mommy/Daughter pampering and a yummy dinner at one of my favorite restaurants.

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PLUS

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= birthday bliss!

Snuggles from my gremlins.

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My handsome date.

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Happy 34th to me and thank you thank you to the hubs and kiddos!

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Friday, August 16, 2013

Gracie’s New Haircut

Gracie’s hair has been growing and growing and looking a little scraggly lately. Brian was heading out to get his & Ben’s hair cut and he offered to take her, too. I sent him with a picture of a little girl style with notes under it like "side part on the right" and "a little face frame" and "long layers". God bless him, he didn't bat an eye. Is he not the sweetest hubby/daddy ever?

I apparently over estimated the skill level of the stylists at Great Clips, but Gracie still came home with a pretty cute bob. The most important thing was she was loving it!

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One of her swim team coaches gave her that little heart necklace. She loves it and wears it all the time. She calls it her “Am-wu-yet” (Amulet).

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Monday, August 5, 2013

Austin Getaway

Sweetie, Paw Paw, Dee Dee, Aunt Cindy, Uncle Curtis and Niki all joined together to give Bri and I EIGHT kid free days! I took the week off of work and Brian took a couple days and we headed out of town for a short vacation.

We made reservations to go zip-lining Sunday morning, so we left the house bright and early. We drove the scenic route and were able to take our time. We hit up a couple antique places on the way, including one that was in and around a family’s home in the middle of nowhere. There were animals (in pens and wandering around) everywhere – alpacas, geese, cats, dogs and 3 or 4 large birds in cages. It was a little different.

We arrived at Cypress Valley Canopy Tours and our tour guides got us started right on time. There were 7 people total in our group and we enjoyed talking and laughing with them while we zipped through the trees – I can’t wait until the kids are old enough to do it so we can go back!

Geared up and ready to go!

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There were a number of these rope bridges to cross between the platforms. The pictures do not adequately portray how high up we were… eeeeee!

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We didn’t have the good camera with us, so it was hard to get pictures of us actually zip lining. But I promise we really did it – multiple times – and it was really fun!

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This was the last zip line, which was also tandem. Brian and I raced. I cheated and went on “2”.

He still won. I’m not bitter.

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Zip lining was definitely a success! When we were all done we were ready to head to our hotel and change out of our hot and sweaty clothes. We may have also taken a nap. We had to balance out the excitement of the morning! :)

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On Sunday night we stayed at a hotel near the airport (courtesy of a free night voucher from our travel agent neighbor – thanks Melissa!) Although the location didn’t include the best scenery, the staff was so nice and it was very clean and the room was pretty and comfy. Two thumbs up for the Courtyard Marriott.

After nap time we headed out to dinner and a movie. We ate at the Catfish Parlour (very yummy) and then we saw The Heat (funniest movie we’ve seen in a LONG time). My stomach hurt when it was over from laughing so hard for so long.

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On Monday, we checked out of the hotel and headed out to bum around Austin. We walked around and did some shopping on South Congress and ate lunch at Guero’s. Then we drove over to the antique mall. We saw lots of foofy antique stuff but also a lot of cool things like over sized wall letters and stuff. We searched and searched for a “B” but they were fresh out. We did find a large framed mirror that will be perfect for our guest bathroom for $40 – a friggin’ steal! Even the lady who checked us out looked at the tag in disbelief.

When our shopping was done, we headed over to our second hotel – The Barton Springs Resort. Unfortunately there was a mix up with our reservation and instead of having a suite for us at Barton Springs, like we requested, the lady we were working with mistakenly made our reservation at the Omni near the airport. You know, the side of town that we had just left. It eventually got worked out, although they would not agree to honor the rate we were quoted for a suite and gave us a regular room instead. We were not too impressed with the staff at the Omni. They acted like they were doing us a big favor by letting us stay there, and the room was “eh.” I was much more impressed with the hospitality at the Airport Marriott. They treated us like royalty even though they knew we had a free voucher. That spoke volumes.

I will say that the property at Barton Springs was BEAUTIFUL. This was the view from our room.

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For dinner we went to the Oasis on Lake Travis. Last time we were there was for one of our dating anniversaries (2002? 2003?). A lot of the property has been rebuilt since then after a bad fire destroyed a lot of it in 2005.

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It was crazy to see how low the lake is now. The view was still gorgeous.

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We probably should have waited until a little later so it wasn’t so hot – the sunsets out here are awesome!

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We wanted to hit the pool/hot tub after dinner so we headed back to the hotel. At one point, Brian asked, “Do you think we should go to a club or something?” After we both stopped laughing we pulled into a Red Box and picked up a movie to watch after pool time. We are a wild pair, let me tell you!

It was a really fun mini vacation! We are so grateful that the kids were in good hands and enjoying themselves in Louisiana. Next up is trying to get some work done on the kitchen cabinets while the gremlins are still gone. :)

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