Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Toto, I don't think we're newlyweds anymore

Blake and I jetted (more like drove) away last weekend to celebrate our first Anniversary. We decided to revisit the scene of the crime, Brenham, Texas. I would recommend our itinerary to anyone - we really enjoyed ourselves. Anytime we were driving anywhere we would roll down the windows, plug our destination into the TomTom and avoid 290 if we could. Result - we saw some of the prettiest scenes on small country roads. There really is nothing like Washington County during Bluebonnet Season.

To give you an example, this house we passed was for sale.

And this was the backyard. I'm not kidding.

Pause for wishful thinking...

We arrived in Brenham before we could check into our Bed and Breakfast so we went to have lunch at the restaurant where my bridesmaids and I ordered sandwiches from on the day of the wedding, Must Be Heaven. Blake's lunch was delicious. Mine wasn't. So their lunch is kinda iffy - but I do recommend their desserts. Hand dipped Blue Bell and homemade pies yummmm.

After lunch we got a chocolate milkshake to split and walked around downtown Brenham to browse some of their antique shops. Then we went to the Ant Street Inn where my bridesmaids and I stayed the night before our wedding, got dressed on the day of, took pre-wedding pics, and Blake and I spend the night the night of the wedding. We sat on a swing in their courtyard and reminisced. Mostly of Mark's sexy date to our wedding. Haha

Then we went to go check into where we stayed - Scenic Hill. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED! Blake's family stayed here the weekend of our wedding and they enjoyed it so much so we decided to go back. (The Ant Street Inn is really nice, but it's also 20 ft from a railroad. Not pleasant.) This place is wonderful! Every house is secluded from one another. You don't have to check in or out the key's already in the door when you get there. They don't serve a breakfast, instead they stock your fridge with fixin's for breakfast - including Homemade Pecan Pie Muffins yummo I'm going to have to make those real soon.

We stayed in the Woodland Cottage (porch above) and as nice as it was being tucked away in the woods - the real places to stay are the Cabins that have fabulous views of the 'scenic hills.' I'll book our reservations early next year and stay in one of those. Complete with hot tub on the patio!

This pic doesn't even do the landscape justice. It's gorgeous.

After dropping off our stuff we went to Pleasant Hill Winery for 'Wine Down Friday'. Pleasant Hill is a nice little winery on the top of a hill with sloping hills down to their vineyards and fields of bluebonnets. Very nice people and pretty good wine! We enjoyed a glass and walked around the property and then sat down to enjoy a cheese platter and watch the sunset.

Betcha they don't have bluebonnets in Napa!

I thought West Texas Skies were the best but these were making me reconsider. Maybe it was the wine. :)

Then we went back to Scenic Hill and walked around to look at the property - here's a pic of the two of us using the timer.
And we enjoyed a dinner of crabcakes on Cesar salad with remoulade like they use to make at the City Club. Yummm...
Saturday morning we woke up had breakfast and packed a picnic lunch and we were off to antiquing!! First stop the dancehall where we got married. La Bahia Hall. Man that place looks a lot different when it's set up for an antique festival! I wanted to go back to the exact spot where we said 'I do' but tons of Uhauls were parked there!

Ahh well - we did buy a painting there. A really pretty scene of bluebonnet hills to remember our weekend by.
Then we drove to Round Top and had our picnic lunch in a field of wildflowers.
We enjoyed all our favs:
1. Spinach salad with orange segments, walnuts, blue cheese, red onion and balsamic vinaigrette from Central Market.
2. Fresh pineapple
3. Fresh kiwi
4. Smoke gouda cheese
5. Fontina cheese on crackers
6. Smoke salmon with cream cheese, red onion and capers.
8. And chardonnay of course.
We're kind of serious picnicers. We've got a picnic basket/icechest that comes with all the setup and then stakes that go in the ground for the wine that you can kinda see above. It was a delicious lunch and got us energized to antique some more!
Except the only thing we bought in Round Top was a sign that shows a man fishing naked and it says 'Show off your rod, fish naked.' It's proudly displayed in the garage.
We came home early to veg out and then went to dinner at the restaurant where Carol and Charlie hosted our rehearsal dinner, the Brazos Belle. We enjoyed a delicious Country-French dinner of pate, lemon grass marinaded shrimp, steak medallions, risotto, fresh veggies, fresh bread, homemade butter, cheesecake and chocolate mousse. Ahh... can we go back now? Andre, executive chef and owner, even came out to tell us hi. We told him we're coming back every April. He's such a talented man, use to work at the Four Seasons.
Sunday morning we got up early and packed up to go home but made a pit stop at the Rose Emporium. Gorgeous place with plenty of roses and other plants to buy and lots of great gardening ideas. I'm official inspired. We bought 3 plants but I'll post about them later.
So that's it! If anyone living in Houston or Austin wants a quick trip to get away from the city I suggest Brenham. We love it everytime we go and it's such a quick drive.
Happy Anniversary my love. I'm so blessed to have such a wonderful man to call my husband.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Lake Livingston Camping

Ok here's our weekend recap of the camping trip!

We were going to go to Bastrop State Park because Jason and Christy had been there before and said it was really nice, but they had a burn ban due to the lack of rain. So we decided to go to Lake Livingston State Park. I really liked it because it was so close! We got on the road at 6, stopped for gas and food once and got there by 7:15. I like that!

We def couldn't go somewhere where there was a burn ban. We FROZE at night when it was 55. Ha to think I was trying to convince everyone to go earlier when it was 45 at night. :)

So we set up our sites and started to unwind - the boys with Bud Light, the girls with white wine - and boy did we unwind. :) Whew! I was a dancing MACHINE (see below) and Jason has the video to prove it.
Here's Blake and I trying to see if we remember any of our moves from the wedding, minus the concussion.

Oh la la! Someone took the pic thru all the ash from the fire and it looks like we're dancing in the snow.
Jason put Jack to bed when it was his bedtime but he didn't want to miss out on all the fun. Here he is trying to bust out of the tent.
The moon is so bright! (Inside joke that I'm not explaining bc it makes me look dumb.)

Can you see his new glasses? I think he's sexy!

Nothing like a 2003 Clos di Bois Chardonnay in a Burger King cup! (I'm sure I didn't spell that right.)

Ahh he looks so MEAN -NOT!Saturday morning we woke up nice and rested and enjoyed some breakfast tacos (with just a touch of butter) and started to plan our day. We decided to try some fishing first so here's Blake patiently trying to set up a fishing pole - specifically an Ugly Stik - and it kind of took him a little while. So here we are fishing! (More like drowning worms.) We didn't catch a THING.Christy's super proud of this pic bc she took it with her new camera's self timer. You're so high tech!Then we went bike riding - nice view eh?

Here's what Jack was doing while we were gone. He's a busy man.

Next, a card game of VC. Jason's frowning bc he just lost to Christy.
Relaxing after the bike ride - Christy took nap and Jason covered her up while she was sleeping. Isn't he sweet?!? :)All bright eyed and bushy tailed after her nap. (I took one, too. I guess we were a little hungover.)Blake got hot and didn't have any shorts - so I offered him mine. They fit perfect don't they?(He later put on a pair of Christy's that were a little bit longer.)
Here we are catching a snack after a highly-skilled (as in watch your shins because Christy and I can't throw a horseshoe to save our life) game of horseshoes. Blake really liked these powdered donuts that Christy bought so he was a little mad later on when... He walked up on a squirrel eating our food! So he started to chase after it - AND THE SQUIRREL DIDN'T MOVE. Ballsy little thing, and fat too!He must have been hungry bc he started to eat out of the boys hands. I wasn't about to try - I was just waiting for it to go crazy and jump on their head and start gnawing on an ear. :)Skip ahead to that night. Our Valentine's Dinner Menu: salad, baked potato and ribeye (with Blake's Essense - BAM) with a chocolate fondue bar for dessert. Yum! Blake and Jason ate it all up like they'd never had fondue. I'm glad it was such a hit! We dipped bananas, marshmallows, strawberries and green apples that fell on the ground and Blake just rinsed them off. Perfect.Valentine's fireMaking hearts with our hands To next time!! I had a great time you guys!