Sunday, July 6, 2008

Happy Belated, Val! And other stuff ...

In addition to celebrating the birth of our nation, I also want to send out a big Happy Birthday to Val Babe (a little late)! Hope you had a blast! (Look at those young-uns!!)

And finally, photos from our trip so far. We would have more, but unfortunately our brand new camera is now on the bottom of Grapevine Lake

My fully loaded car, somewhere in Texas:

Our drive through Texas ... where'd the mountains go?

Our poor Kai dog on said drive in said overloaded car:

The view from our apartment:

Our first meal on our toolbox table (which has since been replaced with a real table):

Dave, Katie, John, and Tara in Grapevine Lake:

Oops, nope, that picture is now on the bottom
of the lake with our camera. Boo hoo!

We've been having a great time here. Last Friday, we saw the Gin Blossoms at The Glass Cactus, a great bar overlooking Grapevine Lake. A week ago Sunday, we went for a 25-mile road bike ride around Flower Mound/Grapevine. Apparently it was just a leisurely ride. I missed that part of it, as I was pedaling furiously trying to keep up with piston-legged Mark and veteran bike rider Dave.

For the Fourth, we went back to Grapevine Lake and had a wonderful day with Katie and John (the owners of the boat and wakeboard). [Katie works for Dave, Mark's partner.] We spent the afternoon lazing about, swimming, wakeboarding (not me, though ... way too choppy and crowded!), snacking, having a couple beers and a delicious mixture of fresh watermelon juice, lemon juice, a bit of sugar, and vodka. Mmmm,mmmm. After a gorgeous sunset, we anchored just below the Glass Cactus and watched the fireworks of at least three different towns (including the ones for Grapevine, just over our heads). The music blaring from the Cactus was an odd mixture of John Phillip Sousa, country patriotic songs, choral versions of patriotic standbys, the theme song from Forrest Gump (really?!), and a couple USA-type rock songs (conveniently leaving out the parts of "Born in the USA" that say anything bad about this country). It was an incredibly relaxing, fun day! Thanks, John and Kate!

Yesterday (Saturday), we headed off to Bonham, Texas, the home of Sam Rayburn, to visit Mark's old Terracom pal, Sean Hutchinson, at Sean's grandparents' ranch. It's still a working ranch, with a bunch of ponds his grandfather dug, filled, and stocked himself. We visited with the family, completely avoided any political or religious arguments (they are through-and-through conservative Christian Texans), and had some good ol' fashioned Texas food--fried fish (caught by Sean and his family in the ranch's ponds), fried chicken (bought fresh from KFC), sweet potato casserole, roast beef, baked beans, white bread, peppermint salt water taffy, ice cream, and on and on. Mark and I ate it all up and then headed off with the boys (Sean; his cousin, Jason; and his nephews, Kyle and Colton) for some fishing. I thought I would just sit and watch and keep Kai company. But it turns out Kai was in his element--wading out into the water, rolling in cow manure, being completely intrigued by whatever it was that we kept throwing out and then reeling in. So, I got a pole of my own and gave it a shot. And wouldn't you know it, I caught the biggest fish of the group that evening. My first fish caught since we went fishing with Uncle Paul when I was 10! I was sure it was about 5 pounds, at least. But back at the house, when Grandpa Hutchinson asked, turns out it was a whopping 1.5-pound bass. I'm still not thrilled with the whole idea of fishing (sushi-loving hypocrite that I am), but I was just a little proud of my accomplishment. I just hope they get it out of the basket and cook it up before it dies.

Now Mark is off for a 28-mile mountain bike ride (at high noon ... in Texas?!). I've decided to clean up, do some grocery shopping, and get some work done. Perhaps sit by the pool and read. Maybe even go to the gym to workout. Who knows! The options are endless.

Hope you all had a wonderful weekend!

1 comment:

Beth Wedlake said...

well, dang that sounds fun! We miss you guys!!!