Category Archives: Girls Night

A road trip with my girl #FourteenAndForty Part 2

So I left you off with Cady and I vedging in our beach hotel watching Lost – because what else are you going to watch while you are at the beach? duh.

Day 3:

When we woke to see the sunrise (out our window…), I was overjoyed to see clear skies and the actual horizon!  Look at the difference a day makes!

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We opened our window and listened to the ocean and then headed out for a run walk on the beach.

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Seriously, standing next to the ocean is such a wonderful feeling.  It never gets old.  Okay, maybe it would get old if I lived there, but I don’t so…  I love it!  After a walk and then grabbing breakfast, we headed back to our hotel to get dressed and then back out for a hike on a rocky section of the coast before leaving the island.

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We took tons of pics (all with our iPhones… we actually brought the nice camera but never got it out because I was afraid it would get wet).  I really like this one of Cady:

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It was all fun and games until this happened…

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LOL.

We set the timer on my phone to take a pic but we weren’t very successful.

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Barely got the beach in there. 🙂  After our hike (and me getting splashed), we loaded up and headed out to our next destination.  On the way we stopped at this little school in College Station.

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Well, little might not be true.  A&M has a beautiful campus.  It was fun to tour and we may have sent a few pics to Gage (LSU and A&M are rivals).  After leaving the campus we stopped off only for a few minutes in Hearne, TX.  That’s where my paternal grandparents are from.  I spent summers and holidays there as a kid – we even lived there for a short stint after my parents divorced.  Cady & I drove through their old neighborhood (they passed when I was a teenager) and I was horrified at the state of it.  It looked like a place people would go to do mission work.  Awful.  Animals roaming freely, roofs falling in on houses people actually lived in, trash everywhere.  It made me sad and I got a huge knot in my throat so I told Cady that I’m going to choose to remember it the way is used to be.

We made it to central Texas by evening and settled into our bed & breakfast.

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This last leg of our trip was probably our favorite.

Cady was in love with the whole B&B thing… She had no idea what they were.  We looked up a few online and settled on this one.  This one has several small cabins/houses on the property and a main house that also has rooms.  You have your breakfast in the main house and can also just go there to hang out, get a movie out of the library, sit on the porch and drink coffee or wine or whatever you want.  Here’s a few pics of our little house we stayed in – yes, this is the one Cady picked.  I wanted a traditional B&B with like old fashioned furniture and stuff… I think this one sufficed.

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Anyway, we loved it.  That tub was crazy… Seriously, you could swim in it.  We elected to use the shower (not pictured) but still… And you can’t really tell but there is an old Victorian chair in the bathroom too! HA!  Cady’s favorite part of our room was the antique armoire… when you opened it, it was a little kitchenette.  It has a sink, and fridge and microwave and coffee maker.  It was so cute.  We had our own porch and picnic area and even a couple of country cats that wanted to hang out with us.  We were definitely OUT IN THE COUNTRY and it was quiet and peaceful.

We drove into town for dinner (and we had seafood oddly enough – I guess we were missing the beach).

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My, my that pic makes me hungry… lobster and rice and baked potato? drool…  After dinner we came back to our room and snuggled on the couch for Fixer Upper and reading.  The next morning we got up for breakfast in the main house.  It was so fun meeting all the other people staying there.  And the breakfast was SO good.  The owner prides himself on his breakfast abilities and he did not disappoint.

After breakfast I finished another (or maybe two more…) cup of coffee and enjoyed the view.  There were deer and birds and it was just peaceful.

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Cady hung out with those dang cats again…

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I took this one of her before we headed out for the day.  This cat’s name was Donkey.  LOL.  the B&B owners had all sorts of stories about these cats and their mischievousness.

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And did you see that I mentioned Fixer Upper earlier?  It’s a show on HGTV that takes place in Waco, TX.  I love it!  Well, once we left our B&B we headed over to Waco and visited Magnolia.  It is the store of the couple that is on Fixer Upper.

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We didn’t buy anything in there.  It was SMALL and CROWDED!  We did hit up several vintage shops and other fun stores.  Waco has a place called Spice Village that has all sorts of fun shops and homemade and antique stuff.  Cady found a bunch of Baylor stuff that she wanted to buy but I told her she had to choose just ONE shirt…  She loves Baylor. 😉

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I snapped this pic to send to Matt because Cady kept asking “Which is your favorite?”…”Which should I pick?”  She can be a *little* indecisive some times!  Next up was lunch at a quaint tea room that we had heard great things about.

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Such a fun place!  It was totally full and all women!  We had fancy sandwiches and cold pasta and water and lemonade.  So cute.  Once we finished lunch we had to head over to Baylor where we were scheduled for a tour.

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We walked the campus and took in all the major stops.  Cady has been to camp at Baylor in the past so she knew her way around better than the average prospective student.  We also visited the bear habitat…

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And Cady did a little yoga…

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When we finished up the tour, the day was coming to an end and we headed home.  Thankfully we only live about an hour and a half from Baylor so we were home before dark.  It was such a great way to spend our spring break.  We were tired but excited to sleep in our own beds and eat from our own kitchen and chill on our own couches.  We had lots of funny stories to share with Matt and Milo and all sorts of treasures we had picked up along the way.

Now if I can just get organized enough to get all these photos and blurbs into a shutterfly book we’ll have a sweet memento to keep forever.

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A road trip with my girl #FourteenAndForty Part 1

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Cady and I recently headed out on a mother/daughter road trip over spring break.  We needed some time to get away and reconnect – being a teenage girl is hard… being the mother of one is harder.  Ha!

We only had a few objectives for our spring breakation:

1. go visit our friend’s baby (I wish we could see him every day!)

2. Walk on the beach

3. Antique & thrift shop

4. Laugh

*ding ding ding* we did all four and had a great time.

I’m not sure I can fit all 4 days of our adventure into one post so I’ll split it up.

Day 1:  We got up early and headed out.  Houston would be our first destination, but not before grabbing road snacks.

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Doesn’t everyone get coke & peanuts and funyuns for road trips?  If you don’t, you need to start.  We drove south for a couple hours and then stopped for lunch at a diner… because I guess we were hungry again?  We did a lot of eating on our trip…

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Turkey and dressing was the special of the day…in March.  It was tasty, but the chocolate sheet cake was even better.

After lunch we were back on the road and listening to our #fourteenandforty road trip playlists (I made a playlist of my favorite songs from 9th grade/when I was 14).

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That’s a pic of a few of the songs from my playlist… Want a pic of Cady’s?  No need.  It was ALL Taylor Swift!  Every single song.  It was fun telling Cady all of my memories from each of the songs.  The shock of Milli Vanilli’s fakeness… My first slow dance to the Bangles… writing every single word of ice ice baby down in my spiral so me and my friends could memorize it.  I thought it was awesome that I still knew almost every single word to those songs – I’m not sure Cady thought it was as cool as I did.  I told her that when she is forty she will listen to the songs she loves now and have all sorts of fun memories.  I’m hoping this road trip will be one of them.

More miles… and more hunger…

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So I ate this miniature Snicker bar.  Moving on.

We finally made it to Houston so we could hug and squeeze on the Ellisor family.  We loved hanging out with them at their home and catching up.  Then, what else?  more eating.

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^ That baby though! I love him!  They took us to a local Mexican restaurant and it was yummy.  After dinner we found a Target (Cady and I love going to target…) where we picked up snacks (gah!) and magazines and nail polish and then checked into our swanky downtown hotel – with our overfilled plastic target bags cause we keep it classy like that.

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Day 2:

We stayed downtown because our friends live there and we planned on exploring the next day.  This was a good plan except that we didn’t realize there was actually NO parking.. anywhere.  Like we had to valet our SUV at the hotel (at $30 a night).  I get that parking is limited downtown (it is here in Dallas as well) but wow!  So we had to do a lot more walking then we had originally planned.  And it was kind of drizzly outside, but we still had a blast.

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Brunch at Toasters:

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It was so goooood! Chocolate Chip Belgium waffles, eggs, bacon, homemade hash browns, buttered Texas grits, biscuits & gravy.  Sweet Jesus.  Perfect for a rainy day!

Next up was driving to Galveston Island for some beach time.  We rolled in late that afternoon and so did the fog.  Record breaking misty fog!  Everyone was talking about it.  We stayed at a hotel on the beach with a beach view and could BARELY see the water outside our window.

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Look at that crazy fog?  It was spooky and cozy and kinda amazing all at the same time.  I texted Matt and told him it made me want to drink hot tea and write novels.

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We ate fried shrimp, shrimp pasta, shrimp scampi and shrimp taquitos at a local restaurant (does that make you think of Forrest Gump?  It was actually a shrimp platter but still…) and it was divine.  Afterwards we shopped for souvenirs (for MIlo…) bought t-shirts (you have to…) and goofed on the beach.

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^ I stole that pic from Cady’s twitter – proof that she was having a good time!

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We knew it was going to rain quite a bit while on our trip so we were prepared.  Rain jackets, umbrellas and rain boots were used quite a bit.  We didn’t get to lay out and get tans like some people on their spring breaks, but we found a new appreciation for thick fog, quiet rains and cooler temps.

We closed out day 2 of our trip doing our own mani/pedis, eating chocolate and watching Lost.

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I’ll post about the rest of our trip later.  It really was a great time, and I felt so blessed to be able to spend time with my teenager and not argue.  That may have ended an hour after we got home but still..

To be continued!

Movie Review: Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

movie alexCady and I opted for a midweek Girls’ Night to see a screening of Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day last week.

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If you’re looking for a fun family movie, this is a good one.

This is my review copied directly from The MungleShow site.  Visit it for all sorts of movie info!

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PG 81 min – Comedy | Family

If you are a fan of the original children’s book like myself, this movie might have peaked your interest. There have been several adaptions of children’s books into movies in recent years that have been less than successful so I will admit I was skeptical of this one… I’m happy to report if you are looking for a clean family flick, this one fills the need.

Starring Steve Carrell and Jennifer Garner, the story examines what it would be like to have a very very bad day…VERY bad day. Ed Oxenbould plays title character Alexander – the kid who just can’t catch a break. Waking up with gum in his hair, a popular kid planning a way cooler birthday party on the same day as his, and struggling to find his place among siblings that all seem to excel is just a typical day for twelve year old Alexander. As he sits alone at midnight on his birthday he makes a wish that his family could understand what it’s like to have a day when everything goes wrong. When everyone wakes up the next day (very late of course), the hilarity ensues.

This movie is perfect for families with kids five and older (if you don’t fit into that demographic, you might consider seeing something else). The humor is juvenile and there is a scene where Mom (Garner) uses the word penis several times – but nothing inappropriate. My fourteen year old and I found ourselves cracking up several times. There is something for families in all stages to identify with and of course a reminder of what’s important at the end of every day – even if it’s a very bad one. I give the movie 4 out of 5 flammable pirate shirts.

Movie Review – Gone Girl

Unless you’ve been under a rock, you are probably fully aware that there is a book and now a movie called Gone Girl.  If for some reason you haven’t seen the trailer, here it is:

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And I’d like to point out a quick scene from the trailer.  Nick Dunne (one of the main characters) owns a bar called The Bar.  He visits there a couple times during the movie and at one point drives by the outside to see the media frenzy that is happening because of his missing wife.

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And because I am a superfan, I insisted that while we were visiting Missouri last summer we visit the location the movie was filmed.

On location where Gone Girl was filmed.  (The Bar in Cape Girardeau, MO)

On location where Gone Girl was filmed. (The Bar in Cape Girardeau, MO)

ANYWAY!  Matt and I went and saw the movie last week.  It’s superb, go see it!  It follows the book quite closely.  There IS a lot of sexual content (a bit much I thought… but I guess it was added for shock value, you will see parts of Ben Affleck and Neil Patrick Harris that you have never seen) and a really graphic gory scene that was a little over the top – so consider yourself warned.  I thought the actors did an exceptional job (even tho Rosamund Pike’s voice kinda got on my nerves – it’s hard for me because she will always be the quiet sister Jane from Pride and Prejudice).

I may or may not have seen this movie at least 100 times...

I may or may not have seen this movie at least 100 times…

Matt did a fantastic job on his review.  Check it out for additional info.  And then go see the movie…

You can also find some other good reviews on current movies if you are looking for something a little different.

The Mungle Show – Movie Reviews and Much More…

Cady and I are headed to see a screening of Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day this week. I’ll let ya’ll know what I think.

October Goals

Gage's girlfriend Alyssa "doodled" this today.  She is a genius at hand lettering - cool, huh? <3

Gage’s girlfriend Alyssa “doodled” this today. She is a genius at hand lettering – cool, huh? ❤

So my friend Vanessa and I went to a Professional Women’s Forum dinner last night.  The topic of discussion was Debunking the Superwoman Myth – you know, how we as women try to do it ALL?!  Although I am a career woman, mama and hobby lover – I actually don’t struggle too much with thinking I need to be a superwoman.  I was telling Matt after I got home last night that maybe it’s because I was a single mama for 10 years, but I don’t have a problem NOT doing everything.  I know I can’t be at every single practice, sign up for every volunteer need, work out every day, join the tennis club, or take on additional projects at work so I can advance quickly. I just can’t, and that’s ok.  My kids are turning out just fine and guess what, I don’t have a homemade nutritious meal on the table every night… Sometimes it’s frozen lasagna, or bacon sandwiches or *gasp* drive thru!  Our house is not always clean, the bills not always paid EXACTLY on time, and the state of my SUV is horrific 90% of the time (Matt just cleaned it out 2 weeks ago so right now it’s REALLY nice).  The good news tho? We are all doing really well. It also helps that I now have a husband that believes in the 50/50 part of parenting, managing a household, financial responsibilities, etc.  And what’s even better?  When I can’t put in my 50%, he is more than willing to do extra – and that goes both ways.  I will never understand those husbands that don’t help with bathtime or homework, or laundry, or cooking dinner.  Dumb.

Last night was a good reminder tho – there is no need to do it all YOURSELF and it’s okay to say NO.  The most helpful part was talking about helpful language to use with yourself and others.  For example:

Don’t get in the mind trap of saying “I should/I must/I ought”… if you say/think that, you aren’t going to want to do it… start thinking in terms of “I want to/I will/I choose to”.  For me I want to say less of “I should be working out 4 times a week”… or “I ought to cook nutritious meals for my family each week night”.  I want to say more of “I want to find new healthy recipes to try with the family” and “I choose to take a run with Milo when the weather is nice this week”.

Also, don’t use the should/must/ought terminology when considering your expectations of others.  Think more in terms of “I will ask…”  Easy, right?  Less of “My husband should do more laundry” and “My teenager should empty the dishwasher more”… and more of “I’m going to ask Matt to wash the sheets and towels this week” and “I will ask Cady to empty the dishwasher twice this week”.  See, helpful hints, huh?

Beth and a panel of other professional women were our speakers last night.  Her blog can be found HERE

I started listing out monthly goals earlier this year and I’ve been pretty intentional about accomplishing them.  I intended on starting to post them as well so last night’s dinner was perfectly timed!

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The reading and writing speaks for itself.  Those are things that I need to do for ME.  Here in Texas our weather can be less than desirable for many months out of the year.  However, right now it’s nice and I want to take advantage of that by walking/hiking/running with the family a couple times a week.  I’m on the hunt for a new recipe to try this month.  Last month I made a brand new soup and I’ll be sharing it this week.  This month I’m on the hunt for a good pot pie or enchilada recipe.  And  yes, it’s October, so we will be heading out to pick up a few of our favorite orange gourds one weekend this month.  The pumpkin patch has been a tradition in our family for more than a decade!  I’m hoping to try a new one up in this neck of the woods and avoid some of the crazy crowds at the arboretum.   What are your short term goals?  It’s nice to challenge ourselves, but also good to remember to keep our expectations reasonable.  🙂

P.S.  Last night I forgot to pay Vanessa back for purchasing my ticket (I had made a special trip to the ATM earlier in the day), I lost my phone (found later in her car), forgot to wear my invisalign trays even tho I have a dentist appt in a few days, didn’t sleep well because Milo got up TWICE last night (he was thirsty…) and overslept.  So yeah, I’m NOT a superwoman – and I’m perfectly okay with that.  *Logging off to go fix tuna helper*