Tag Archives: travel

Starting Fresh…

On this first day after Christmas my thoughts are focused on the new year and what I can accomplish personally and professionally.  The list includes getting fit, getting organized, read more books, traveling, entertaining and expanding my fledgling vintage resale business.

My list isn’t anything unusual.  It looks a lot like my list from last year. However, I am looking for inspiration from wherever I can find it.

Although everything on my list can and will happen simultaneously throughout the new year…something has to kick things off and set the stage for the coming year.

First things first…I will start with jumping on the fitness band wagon…I am not unfit but since the holidays rolled around I’ve been fittin’ way too many treats in to my diet. Also, let me just put this out there… I can always find something else to do instead of  working out.  However, there is a Caribbean vacation booked for later in the year and there is nothing like the thought of wearing a bathing suit in public to scare a girl into putting in some time on the treadmill.  I won’t bore you with the details of my eating habits or exercise routine…there are enough posts about that on the internet without me adding to it.  But if you are looking for someone to motivate you or an online bootcamp or an online fitness group check out On The Geaux Fitness

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The second thing on my list is to get organized…clearing out all of the clutter in my life.  Let me be honest…I lack organizational skills.  I am easily distracted when a task takes too long or requires thinking outside of the box. I have separation anxiety when it comes to letting go of all of my good stuff.   Therefore, I am looking for help in that area and I think I may have found a declutter challenge that will keep me focused. But in the meantime I will start working on this list I found...60 things to toss out in 60 days!

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Check out this great read at the Happy Turtle Blog

Third on my list is to read more…I love to read!  I am one of those people who have the ability to disappear into a book.  I think it’s my super power.  Pinterest is a great place to gather reading recommendations.  Two years ago my reading list was made up of books that were being made into movies.  Last year my list was filled with books whose story lines were based in the Mediterranean…This year is still up in the air…but this looks like a good place to start.

Here are a few of my previous reads…the only one in the stack that I haven’t read is “The Dovekeepers” by Alice Hoffman.  Maybe I’ll start that one tonight.

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Also, my sister has published her first book…check out Guarded the first book in The Enforcer Series…

I’ll cover the last two on my list in due time…entertaining and my fledgling business.  It’s quite possible that they may go hand in hand.  Only time will tell…

So, what are your plans for the New Year?

 

 

 

 

 

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Balmorhea…

a cool oasis in the high desert

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Filed under 2014 52 Week Photo Challenge, 2016, Life, Travel

Escape…

How do you escape from your everyday responsibilities…

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Most people get one weeks vacation a year, if they’re lucky. So how do you escape from the demands of work and family responsibilities…I suggest you pour yourself a glass of whatever makes you happy. I prefer a glass of Malbec. Grab a good book and do a little traveling.
Lately, I have traveled to Nantucket, the Italian Coastline and 1912 Shanghai…next up I’ll be traveling back in time to the fall of Jerusalem.
Where will you travel this year?

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My year (2015) in pics…

Durango, Colorado…Purgatory Ski Resort

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Houston Live Stock Show and Rodeo…Luke Bryan Concert

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Somewhere in Texas, Poker Night…Families that play together make memories.

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Austin, Texas…South Congress Ave. Photo OP

Austin I Love You So Much

Angleton, Texas, Rayzurs 6th Annual Best Batch Crawfish Cook-Off…

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Bowling Green Kentucky…Corvette Museum.

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Nashville Tennessee, Antique Archaeology

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Cave City, Kentucky, Diamond Caverns Campgroud…1961 Shasta Airflyte Reissue

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Cave City, Kentucky,  WigWam Village, …Teepee Hotels do exist.

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Hammond, Louisiana…celebrating another blessed year…Birthday Cake made with love by my MOM

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Manvel, Texas, New Hope Church, Going away party…a bitter sweet end to a decade of doing God’s work

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Lake Palastine, Texas…spur of the moment camping trip.

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Houston Texas…Uchi Sushi Restaurant

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Roundtop, Texas…Antique Week

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Somewhere in Texas, Spooky Ghosts for the Trick or Treaters…

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Somewhere in Texas, Party on the Patio

November fireplace pic

Somewhere in Texas, Christmas Eve Eve, Champagne Punch

Champagne Punch

Lake Jackson, Texas, New Years Eve Celebration

New Year 2016

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Bathhouse Soapery

I love to travel. I love the adventure of discovering new places and meeting new people.  If I had to choose my favorite part of the entire experience it would be keeping it local. When my husband and I travel we seek out locally owned businesses.  We stay, eat and shop local.

Check Me Out

It doesn’t take long to figure out you have met someone who is following the desires of their heart.  All you have to do is ask a simple question about their business.  Their eyes light up and they almost bubble over with enthusiasm over the simplest request.  I understand that big box companies serve a need in communities…but small businesses draw communities together and they are what make America great!

Welcome

On a recent trip through the Ozarks we stopped in Hot Springs, Arkansas.  The weather was perfect for a little pedestrian activity. Hot Springs is known for their…well, Hot Springs! In the early 1900’s a beautiful row of stone bath houses were constructed. The remaining structures are now part of a National Historic Landmark District and represent the grandest bath houses in North America.

Choices Abound

After walking through the bath houses we decided to do a little local shopping.  Directly across the street from bathhouse row I discovered the perfectly placed Bathhouse Soapery & Caldarium. The place was buzzing with activity. I was about to get my shopping therapy on….

As I meandered around the displays touching and smelling all of the soaps and lotions I eavesdropped on a few conversations…now before you go judging me…it was only so I could get a feel for how people felt about the product.

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I discovered most of the patrons were regulars…although this business is strategically located to capture the tourist dollar, most of the people in the store on this busy Saturday were repeat customers.

Soap Bars

At first I was drawn in by the simple window display and the activity going on inside.  The soft color palette of the walls, the chandeliers and fixtures were visually appealing.  The depth of the color of the soaps and scrubs reminded me of the display case at my favorite Gelato shop.  Finally, the girls working in the store were genuinely friendly and exceedingly helpful.

Bath Bar

Needless to say, my shopping experience was memorable.  I selected a half-dozen luxurious handmade soaps; cloud, Moroccan vanilla, peppermint rosemary, honey almond and vanilla oatmeal.  They were individually wrapped in pretty paper and hand labeled.   I created my own blend of scrubs, dripping pear and Cleopatra.  They were mixed and packed in sweet little jars and labeled. I love that each item was labeled so I can re-order my favorites. Maybe even join the soap of the month club…well I don’t think they have one but I could start my own.

Soon, I will plan my own personal spa day, complete with luxurious soaps, scrubs, scented candles, a cup of tea and a terry bathrobe.  All purchased on my travels across America, made by true artisans, sold in locally owned shops.

Street ViewHappy Shopping…Keep it Local!

 

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Filed under Made in America, Travel, Weekend Getaways and Vacation Spots

Historic Bathhouse Row…

Hot Springs Arkansas is home to Bathhouse Row. This row of buildings are a beautiful collection of eclectic architecture in the neoclassical, renaissance revival, Spanish and Italianate styles. Bathhouse Row is a National Historic Landmark and part of Hot Springs National Park.

Buckstaff-BathouseAre you thinking about planning a Spa vacation…you might include Hot Springs in your list of potential spa experiences. The hot springs are known for their therapeutic healing minerals.

Quapaw BathsThe Quapaw Baths and Spa offer a unique way to experience the hot springs mineral baths. The name comes from the local Indian Tribe that once resided in Arkansas.

Quapaw 2The architecture of these buildings is stunning…Most of the bath houses began to fall into disrepair in the 1960’s when therapeutic bathing began to decline in popularity. Restoration of the baths began in the 1980’s by the parks service. Currently the renovated buildings are leased out for commercial enterprises.

FordycePeople have been enjoying thermal baths for centuries.  Thermal baths are well-known in Europe but are also found in Hungary, Canada, Mexico, Iceland, England as well as many locations in America.

Superior BathsWishing you safe travels!

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Filed under Made in America, Travel, Weekend Getaways and Vacation Spots

Inns of America…

I love traveling around the United States. This country has so much to offer if we only take the time to discover it.
On a recent road trip to Branson, Mo. we decided we would take a side trip and stay overnight in Hot Springs, AR. By chance I was able to book a one night stay at a little Inn.

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Little did I know what awaited us at the end of our long drive. I was expecting the typical B&B, a residential home renovated to accommodate multiple guests at one time. However, Lookout Point Lakeside Inn was anything but typical. The Inn felt more like a boutique hotel than a B&B.

Lookout Pointe
We were greeted by the same young lady that I spoke with when I made the reservation. We were quickly checked in, given a tour and shown to our room. And that’s when I knew we had made the perfect choice for our overnight stay.

Room with a ViewThere are 12 rooms in the Inn all of which have a view of the lake.  Our room was well appointed and cozy.  Complete with rocking chairs on our private balcony.

The ViewThe grounds surrounding the Inn are well manicured.  There is a little creek with a waterfall that soothes the senses as you walk through the garden breathing the scent of magnolias and listening to the birds sing.

The InnAnd if time permits and you are so inclined you can take the canoe out on Lake Hamilton.

Red CanoeThe Inn even has there very own Labyrinth.  The perfect place for quite meditation.

The LabyrinthThe Lookout Point Lakeside Inn offered a welcome respite for these weary road travelers.  This Inn is also part of a group affectionately referred to as the Eight Broads in the Kitchen.  I know we will certainly seek out these Inns in our future travels.  I hope you will find yourself staying local in your upcoming travels. Wishing you safe travels off the beaten path.

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Edible Color…

I think I love the colors of a candy store as much or more than I do the flavors. The rainbow of colors in this store were a feast for the eyes. I discovered this family owned gem of a shoppe, Northwoods Candy Emporium on the Landing in Branson, Missouri…IMG_7428Giant Lollipops make me smile…

IMG_7429Fruitful flavors…

IMG_7430A flavor to satisfy every craving…

IMG_7431A swirl of a treat for those who prefer to drink their edible color…

IMG_7432And then there is the sweet creamy indulgence of Fudge…peanut butter is an obvious favorite!

IMG_7433Saltwater Taffy…I only admire these chewy treats from afar…I’ll keep my fillings thank you very much.

IMG_7434However, they do look good sitting on the counter in a candy jar…IMG_7435Chewy delights but not quite as sticky as the taffy.IMG_7440A sweet and sour combination in case you are indecisive…IMG_7442Fruity Sours will make your face pucker up…or better yet offer one to a friend and capture the moment for a funny instagram post.IMG_7443These remind me of quartz crystals…very pretty!IMG_7444Need I say more…

IMG_7446I have a perpetual sweet tooth…help me out by sharing your sweet posts.

 

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People Watching…

People watching in Jackson, Wyoming…

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Hostessing at the Wort Hotel, Silver Dollar Restaurant…

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Window shopping at Jolly Jumbucks…

???????????????????????????????Chocolate persuasions at Coco Love…

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Persephone baking up artisan breads, sweet pastries and signature layer cakes…

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Sweet Surprises…

My soul mate and I celebrated our 25th anniversary last month…Although we planned our anniversary trip to Jackson Hole, Wyoming together there was a little sneaking around going on with some of the details.  I thought I would surprise my husband by ordering a small version of our wedding cake from a local Jackson bakery.

When we arrived in Jackson our room wasn’t ready so we decided to take a walk around town. Our hotel was right off the town square and everything was within a 4 block radius.  As we walked I began to talk about this bakery I had heard of in Jackson.  I talked and talked about the macaroons they made and I expressed how I just had to have a macaroon while we were there.  We walked until we came to the bakery I had found online. I asked my husband to wait while I ran and checked to see if they had the desired sweet available at such a late hour of the day.  I came out with a little white cake box that held the cake I had ordered weeks earlier. I smiled, he smiled..we walked back to the hotel.  What was really in the box was still my little secret surprise.

We walked back to the hotel with the little cake box.  Our room wasn’t quite ready so we sat in the lobby in front of the big fireplace and looked through a couple local magazines.  The wait wasn’t too long. Finally our room was ready, our bags were taken up and a few minutes later we walked into the most beautiful hotel room.  That’s when I discovered I wasn’t the only who had been planning a little surprise.,,the room was filled with flowers.  Roses, lilies, hydrangea…where do you find hydrangea in February in Wyoming?

It was so sweet knowing that we both had been thinking about making our anniversary extra special for the other by planning, plotting, researching and seeing to a few extra special surprise details.

sweet surprises

The cake was 6 layers of sweet red velvet covered in cream cheese buttercream icing. The flowers were lovely and fragrant…all of my favorites.

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Cake

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Filed under encouragment, Travel, Weekend Getaways and Vacation Spots