Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Amy does Dallas!

Seriously, I crack my own damn self up with that title.  Any who, Happy Fall Y'all and all things pumpkin to you!  Life is super fun and busy over in these parts, but I managed to take a few days out for myself recently!  A couple of my best friends and I hopped on a plane and headed to Dallas, Texas! 

Why Texas?  Well, the Texas State Fair has always been on my bucket list and the dates weren't going to work for school breaks to take the kids!  So my lady loves indulged me and off we went!

We were on our flight at literally the butt crack of dawn and landed at 8:30 a.m. Texas time!  We rented a car at the last minute since we knew we'd be all around town.  They gave us the fanciest Chevy Malibu ever . . . we affectionately nicknamed her "Boo," and she treated us right! 

The weather on Friday, Oct 10th was sunny and gorgeous so we made that our fair day!  We headed straight over after we arrived . . . nothing like starting your fried food binge at 9:30 a.m.

Our first stop was to see Big Tex because he seemed like the best place to start!  He "talked" to the crowd and gave a bit of a creepy message about germs.  Funny stuff . . . I can still hear his voice in my head.
I was a little freaked out because I forgot my sunscreen and darn if they didn't have free dispensers of 30 SPF!  Happy dance!  I would get a squirt and then walk away . . . for some reason I couldn't loiter.  And I just decided I do not like the word squirt. 

I was so super excited to finally be there I couldn't half stand it!  I tried to not be too ridiculous about the pictures.
Everything at the fair had to be purchased with these green tickets so after Big Tex, we headed to a coupon booth.  We each got $30 to kick off the festivities!  It was like play money after that!

We only road one ride, and it was the humongous Ferris Wheel! 
None of us are afraid of heights, which is a good thing considering it's the largest amusement park ride in the Western Hemisphere standing at 212 feet tall!  We had great views of Dallas and the Cotton Bowl Stadium at the top.  Now that the non-eating events were over, it was time to get our fried on . . . and we were not afraid!
Everything I'd read online said you must get a Fletcher's corndog.  I'm not even a huge corn dog fan, but damn, that thing was delicious.  Line it with some yellow mustard, and it was done after each of us had 2 bites.  See corndog happy and sad pictures below.  We may or may not have had another one later in the day.
The corndog was just the beginning . . . we made it a goal to try all the heartburn inducing delights we could find.  It should be noted that we shared each of these among the three of us and did not finish all of them. 
My personal favorite, besides the delicious Fletcher's corndog, was the fried butter, and they are the front and center picture.  Starting at the top right and moving clockwise we have 1. Fried Breakfast for Dinner (a tortilla spread with refried beans and filled with eggs, bacon, sausage, ham, hash browns and French toast wrapped and fried), 2. Fried Loaded Mashed Potatoes, 3. Fried Cookie Dough, 4. Fried Collard Greens, 5. Fried Grilled Cheese Sandwich, 6. Fried Meatloaf, 7. Frozen Margarita, 8. Fried Frozen Margarita, 9. Texas Biscuit Fries and 10. Fried Frito Pie!

Let's just say that this fried food frenzy is a one and done kind of life event.  We each purchased another round of tickets and by 2 p.m. we had totally grossed our own selves out with all the junk!  It was like we hit a wall and couldn't take any more. 

We headed to our hotel to check in and shower off the shame of the Fair.  We stayed at the Fairmont Hotel in downtown Dallas.  It was supposed to be pretty swanky, but I wouldn't stay there again.  It was just ok. 

I read about the Beauty Bar in an online search of Girls' Weekend fun so we decided to check it out!  It's a bar made to look like retro hair salon from the 1960's. 
For $10 you can get a martini and a polish change . . . also known as martinis and manicures!  For $20, you could upgrade to 4 nails with hand-painted art.  We were still kind of stuffed from the fair so we headed over and while the wait was a bit long, it was totally worth it!  Miss Pattycake, the nail artist, was awesome!  She could paint just about anything, and it was so fun to sit and chat with her.  Check out our fabulous nails!  This would be a serious addiction if I lived in Dallas!
Guess which ones belong to me?
It was late and we were hungry again so we headed across the street to Louie's for some very tasty wood fired pizza!It was featured on Guy Fieri's Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives and was a great spot to grab a casual dinner!
On Saturday we woke up to some craptastic weather so we headed out for a delicious Thai brunch and some shopping.  Cindy was in the market for some cowboy boots so in our search for Wild Bill's Western Store, we ended up near Dealey Plaza, the site of JFK's shooting in 1963.  There is a museum on the 6th floor of what used to be the Texas School Book Depository, aptly named The Sixth Floor Museum.  This was where Lee Harvey Oswald worked and where he sat in the window to shoot JFK.  I highly recommend this tourist attraction . . . it was extremely well done and obviously very moving.  
The window arrow is where Oswald sat when he shot JFK and
the "X's" on the road are where JFK was when the first shot hit (top photo)
and then the second fatal shot (bottom photo).
So onto something more light hearted . . . cowboy boot shopping!  Check out how we made the "I" in "BIG" because big things are happening in Texas.
We had the best time in Will Bill's Western Store, mostly because of Lance, our amazing salesman!  He was so super helpful and offered us beers . . . nothing like a Shiner Bock to make shopping more fun and win our hearts!  There was a drunk Boomer Sooner fan that came in and made a scene with some naughty words . . . we were cracking on her after she left which lightened the mood for Lance and turned on the fun!  We could have stayed here for days but alas we had to go.  If you are ever in Dallas, go see Lance . . . he'll treat you right!
After wearing ourselves out flirting and shopping, we rested and then headed to Fort Worth to Billy Bob's, the largest Honkey Tonk in the world!  We enjoyed some great people watching and had fun at the indoor bull riding, but after a while the smoke got to us and we headed back to the hotel!

The next morning we had a yummy Tex Mex brunch and then headed to Southfork Ranch, of the TV show Dallas.  Can you hear the theme song playing in your head?  That's what I remember from Friday nights as a kid . . . going grocery shopping with my mom and then after dinner she was off duty and would go watch Dallas by herself!
While I would totally recommend this tour, it was actually all very underwhelming compared to the glitz and glam of the show . . . very 80's which was a fun throwback!  It was fun to hear the little tidbits about the show and it's stars.     I totally remember the hype around "Who shot JR?"
We were able to tour inside the home and around the grounds.  The most notable things were the small size of the pool, the Waterford crystal chandeliers in the dining room and the still intact scene of where they filmed JR actually dying in the new series . . . pretty cool!
And the final fun was seeing the huge old car they used back in the 80's for filming and the faux graveyard where JR is "buried."  
On our last day we headed to the George W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum for a tour.  It was absolutely gorgeous.  A large portion of the museum was dedicated to the events and aftermath of the terrorist attack on September 11, 2001 . . . it was hard to see it again but so very moving. 
I liked the quote on the wall as you exited the museum . . . very inspiring.
And I couldn't resist a photo with the Bush Presidents!
Our last stop in Dallas was the flagship Neiman Marcus store. 
It was such a yucky, windy day . . . may as well shop.  In the end, we didn't get much other than the famous chocolate chip cookies . . . which came with their own little carrier!
The store was definitely in need of some updating . . . it felt like an episode of Mad Men with the décor.  Same goes for the café where we had lunch.  The service at lunch was great, but I don't have a burning desire to go there again!

We turned in Boo the rental car and got notice on the bus to the terminal that our flight was canceled.  We were automatically booked on an early flight for the next morning, but the check in lady was able to fix it.  While we were delayed, we made it safely back to Atlanta late Monday, October 13th. 

The big news while we were in Dallas was the Ebola crisis . . . the first nurse to contract the virus was hospitalize while we were there.  Areas close to us were front and center on the national news, and it turns out we were at the airport the same night the second nurse to contract Ebola was there.   

In summary, we had a great trip!  It was a welcome break from the day to day life, and we all got along famously!  I can't wait until next year!  Coincidentally, I'm leaving again to head to Virginia to enjoy a girls' weekend with my college best friends . . . I cannot wait! 

And you know those ridiculous things that make you laugh but are way too difficult to explain or just wouldn't be funny if you did?  We had several of those from Dallas and these are to trigger my giggles when I look back on the fun . . .

Drunk as a bat
Shut yo mouf, chile
Brown town
Mind blown
Where is my boo?
Dismissed
Do you want a Shiner Bock?  A shot of what?
Je ne sais quoi?  I know, but what did she say?

Hope you all are well . . . until next time!

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Friday, October 31, 2014

Five on Friday . . . In October

Nothing like last minute . . . my OCD requires me to publish at least one post for the month of October so here is my quick and dirty Five on Friday!

1.  Getzy . . . I love him long time because he walks the kids, and some of their friends, around the neighborhood on Halloween, and I get to stay home to give out the candy.  I'd rather turn off the lights and have a cocktail alone, but the candy needs to get gone so I play nice.  Here are the little gremlins and friends tonight . . . fun times!
And check out the eyelashes on my "kinda" scary princess!  And those freckles . . . I die. 
2.  I love some festive, non-scary Halloween décor so here's a picture of my mantel this year . . . it makes me happy to sit and stare at it!
3.  The heat went out in my car last week so I took it in for service.  After a large bill and a plain Jane Dodge minivan rental for a day, I picked it up only to find that two days later that the heat wasn't working again.  So I sat on Monday for two more hours for them to fix it only to be freezing again by Thursday.  Boo.  Hiss.  So I called and said I couldn't make it back until next Monday but the super nice service guy offered me a free rental so they could fix it before the cold snap here in Georgia.  Let's just say I didn't want to give this one back.  It was a mac daddy fully loaded Tahoe with a Bose sound system and seats that tapped my bum when I got to close to the lane lines.  I hashtagged this one . . . #swervingalot
4.  So I drove my swaggy ride to downtown Atlanta last night, like a serious baller with the bass thumping, to go to another concert at my favorite place, The Tabernacle!  My concert buddy and I love us some Jason Derulo!  Becky G opened for him . . . she was super cute! 
But Jason, well . . . I just need to thank him for doing most of his concert without his shirt!  He had some awesome dancers and really put on a great show! 
And while I'm sure you enjoyed Jason's abs, you probably would prefer to see my smiling face, right?  Well, here you go! 
5.  If you work out or run and can't stand your hair in your face then you must check out Fleurty Bands on Etsy!  She made the perfect head for a Getz Girl on Fire, and I purchased two . . . and I'm not sure that was enough!  Go check them out!
Phew, that felt good!  I'm so behind on some many things that I'd like to write about . . . I'll just have to do a bunch of throw back posts . . . from like a couple of months ago!  Totally legit, right?  Happy Halloween!

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Wednesday, September 10, 2014

#trackthetank and My Motivation

Well, well, well . . . lookey he-yah!  September is upon us, and the blogging has clearly taken a back seat.  I suppose it's better to live life than to write about it, am I right?

So check it out . . . I'm participating in a cool blog giveaway!  I think this idea is fabulous.  A workout tank from Ruffles with Love is making it's way around the country to fellow bloggers who sign it, and then pass it on to the next one in line!  This brilliant idea is the brainchild of Tia at Hands On, Pants off and Candra at Camo and Lipstick!  Highest of fives ladies!
Once you receive the tank, possibly take it on an adventure, sign it with a motivational message and mail it to the next blogger, you then blog about the tank and what motivates you to get (or stay) physically fit.  There is some irony here for me since I don't feel particularly fit right now, but I never let it get too far out of control before I start to real my shiz back in again. 

So my motivation . . . it's pretty simple. 
In short, I need, not just want, to stay physically fit and healthy because of these cuties.  I want to watch them grow up, become good citizens, have their own kids and live their life to the fullest.  I want to be there for them through all the ups and downs in their life . . . just like my mom has been for me.  I'm so grateful that I still have her because I lost my dad in my early 20's and there have been many times I wish he were here to offer advice or a hug. 

While I know I can't control everything that happens in life, specifically when my time is up and God will call me home . . . I can do my best to take care of myself and mitigate my risks of health related illness.  I really try to not take life, and the day to day chaos, for granted.  Each moment is a precious gift and life is meant to be lived . . . not wasted.
"Life is no brief candle to me…" George Bernard Shaw
When the tank arrived, I thought it was a great time to try a new adventure.  Lots of my friends have fallen in love with hot yoga so I figured now was my time to give it a whirl!  
My cute little Colombian friend met me there and was kind enough to lay out my mat near hers . . . shout out Natalia!!  So I get myself all situated and was sure to get a picture of the tank on it's new adventure. 
And all the future bloggers receiving the tank, you're welcome for me just simply taking a picture and not wearing it during the class.  HOT yoga . . . need I say more?   

So for an hour and 20ish minutes, I sweated like I was going through menopause and realized how out of shape I was.  I mean seriously, I'm apparently just not that bendy.  I thought yoga was supposed to be relaxing and mind clearing.  For me, it was anything but that.  I've heard people accidentally fart at yoga so I was stressed out about that, about trying to do the moves, and trying not to puke from the heat.  I was trying to be all zen when really I was watching the clock until it was over (and I thought it was only an hour) and did I mention how freaking hot it was.  Yeah, they really mean that when the title includes the description.  Wait.  I paid for this?

So hot yoga was a bust for me . . . there are plenty of other activities I prefer and have no plans to go again.  It is apparently the gift that keeps on giving though . . . my wrist was killing me afterwards, and I figured it would just go away in a few days.  Uh, no.  So now I'm sporting this little beauty in an attempt at avoiding taking my wrist to the doctor.  Such is life . . . what doesn't kill you makes you stronger!  Apparently I should leave downward dog to my actual dogs. 
 
I can't wait to see more adventures of the tank so if you want to following along as well, you can #trackthetank HERE!
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Monday, August 4, 2014

Back to school and last minute adventures!

I'm sad today . . . my babies have all left me.  I knew it was coming, but I've been in denial about it for awhile.  Today is the first day of school here in the south.  I shouldn't complain since we've had 10 weeks off to rest and relax.  I guess it's like the old saying goes . . . the days drag on but the years fly by.  Why do they have to grow up so fast?

This little sugarplum is going into the 4th grade.  Seriously, I only have one child left in elementary school.  That just rocks my world.
Petey inspired clothing . . . love.
These two awesome fellows are my middle schoolers.  What the what?  Two, not one, but two of my children are in middle school.  It seems like yesterday they were just in preschool. 
We embraced the spirit of summer . . . sleeping in (although I never really made it past 8 a.m.), way too much computer time, staying up too late, too much junk food, no studying and trying to make sure we had fun adventures.  We work way too hard during the school year to not just laze about in the summers. 
 
In fact, one of our last adventures for the summer of 2014 was a tubing trip to Helen, Georgia!  We didn't want to ruin our cell phones on the actual ride so we took pictures afterwards!  Look at these yahoos . . . so much fun!
Notice they are showing off their very classy airbrushed tattoos . . . nothing but the best for our children.  I know you're dying for an up close shot . . . and no, I didn't get one.  
We ate at a restaurant right on the water called The Troll . . . can you stand how fun that name is?  We walked around the cute little town for a bit and of course got some treats.  We had beautiful weather for a day on the Chattahoochee, although the tubing was slow because the water level was low.  All and all, we can't wait to come back next year! 
And while we are on the subject of adventures, I took some Boy Scouts to visit the Georgia State Capitol last week as well.  I've never been, but I do love a tour.  This one happened to be self guided, but my friend and I were like professionals!  
It was a ghost town around there so we were able to wander at will.  The Senate and House of Representative chambers were beautiful, and the marble stairs and architecture were amazing!    
Want to know the best part of our visit?  Rolling up into Governor Deal's office like we owned the place.  Ok, we were super respectful, but it was still a pretty cool bonus to our visit. 
Loitering in the "gov-nahs" office . . .
Geez, now I'm on a roll since we've had such fun with this family . . . one more story . . . adventures come in all shapes and sizes.  Sometimes they involve setting the alarm at 4:40 a.m. to be in line for the grand opening of the new Hardee's in town.  Here's what that looks like . . . you're welcome!
These are our "where the heck are you" faces.
Now before you start judging, let me tell you that I can't remember ever going to Hardee's, expect maybe with my grandparents years ago!  Supposedly they have awesome biscuits and never one to miss any fun, we were in!  We got their first and were worried our friends decided to sleep in . . . nah, we just beat them there!  Boom!
 
And I can assure you that Hardee's does, in fact, have awesome biscuits!  I'm also here to tell you that their "thick burgers" are tasty delicious as well.  I know that because we "earned" 1 a week for a year for being the 12th in line for the grand opening!  Winna!
So here's a photo wrap up of our Hardee's adventure.  Notice Amanda was absent . . . it seemed like a good idea until I tried to wake her.  She decided to keep sleeping since daddy was still home!  Her loss because IMHO, the biscuits and gravy breakfast was to die for!
Nom, nom, nom!
I have so much to catch up on with this little old blog . . . writing my own and reading my bloggy friends' posts.  Maybe the blessing of school starting is being able to get some of this done.  Until next time my friends . . . be well!

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