Thursday, March 29, 2012

Spring has Sprung ! Part 2 The Final Wrap Up

Wednesday afternoon, we headed to downtown San Antonio. Every time I visit the Riverwalk I wonder why we don't go more often since it's not that far from Houston. The kids enjoyed themselves. We had dinner at The Iron Cactus . The food was pretty good. A Mariachi  band came to the table to serenade us. After dinner we took a boat ride through downtown.

Walking the river
Lazy River

Boat Cruise

Ready to ride !

The kids were most excited about Thursdays activity, Horseback riding. We went to Cypress Trails the same place we went a couple of years ago. The girls have ridden before so they were acting like little equestrians ! The two boys 5 and 7 had never ridden before but they can work with any skill level.

The little ones get ready
Getting mounted up

All eight of us on Horseback !

Ridem' Cowgirl !
Pay attention ahead ! LOL

My mom sponsored the horseback riding this year. She knew the kids really wanted to go & that I plan a lot of activities for them & this was her way of helping out. I truly appreciate her giving spirit.  I was so glad that the weather cleared up after raining for two days straight. The trails were a little wet, but it was an absolutely beautiful day to ride.

Between walking up and down in those caves on Wednesday and riding that horse on Thursday, I had used some muscles that I haven't used in a while so I was feeling it in my back & legs  before long ! By Friday, I had to have my niece to give me a massage LOL !

Kids taking over my bed !

Best Buddies !

Worn out from the ride !

Friday was the last day so we did it big, the weather cooperated so off to Galveston Beach we went......We had fun in the water, had a picnic for lunch and managed to relax in the sun for a bit before we had to trek back to Houston to wind up this years Spring Break Adventure. Mr. Mixologist was a life saver last week.We would not have been able to do so many activities without his assistance & extra supervision of the little ones.

Beach Buddies !

Jet Beauty !

Laying out !

Cool pup !

Picnic time 

Building Sand Castles

Taking a Break 

A had a very long night Friday washing & conditioning lots of hair, washing clothes & packing bags for the return trip.  We cut out the Spring Break Party at my house this year because I wanted to go back early to see about my mom over the weekend (she is constantly improving). As God's perfect timing goes. My 24 yr old step-daughter (ex-husband's daughter) happened to have her baby on Saturday morning. We had talked just the week before about getting together for a visit when I brought the kids back over the weekend. When I called her on Saturday to try to meet, she was in the hospital !

Their new cousin 

My nieces & nephew were excited to see the baby, so we went & picked up some flowers, a card and balloons & headed over to see her. The baby is absolutely beautiful and she looked great to have just given birth only hours earlier(but not yet photo ready) LOL.

Do I look like a grandmother ! LOL

Mr. Mixologist gets a real kick out of me being a grandmother & has been teasing me in the months we have been waiting for this baby to arrive.

It was a busy, fun, stressful at times, love filled wonderful adventurous week, but I am glad to sit still for the moment. We have been recovering all week long (hence the late post). I am truly thankful for the blessing of my family.

Thoughts ? Comments ? Questions ?

Beautifully Complex 

Spring has Sprung ! Part 1

Last week I hosted all of my nieces & nephews for Spring Break. The annual tradition continues. This year for some reason they did not have the same break as the Texas kids, so Mr. Mixologist had to really step up to help me out because all my girlfriend's kids were in school so we were on our own for the week.

He is such a big kid  !

They are totally in love with their new "uncle-to-be" and he is quite ate up with them as well. This makes me so happy to see.

My mom made sure the kids had plenty of snacks & drinks for the road trip. After several movies, singing contests, bathroom breaks and of course the mandatory McDonald's stop, we finally made it to Texas.

Ready to ride !

The kids are ages 5 through 11. Three are my sister's children and the other  three are my first cousin's kids who also come every year.

Monday we slept in, had a big Brunch and then went shopping for our outfits for the professional pictures we take every year. We ended up at Boudreaux's their favorite  Cajun restaurant for dinner. I think coming from a landlocked state, they just can't get enough of all the Gulf Coast seafood we have here.

See how clean those plates are ! LOL 

Mr. Mixologist has got them all hooked on his creamy grits for breakfast. Even my mother has to have them whenever we come for a visit. It must be all those summers he spent in Charleston, because he makes them perfect every time.

I decided for this years picture, I wanted the girls to get their hair done at the Salon right along with me. This kept me from having to wrangle with four heads, plus mine AND get kids dressed for pictures.

Sleepy heads

Tuesday we had to get up very early to get to the Salon so that we could be sure to be on time for our photo appointment early afternoon. The girls were sleepy but once they woke up they were excited about getting their hair washed and styled. We brought our clothes to change for the pictures after we were finished.

My stylist is a sweetheart. When she told me what I owed her, I did a double take because I know it should have been way more, but I guess she appreciated the business & gave me a very nice discount.

Picture ready !

If you are ever in Houston and in need of a stylist give her a call. Check out her FB page right here.  The photos really came out great. This was Mr. Mixologist's third Spring Break with the kids & since it's official now, they wanted him to be in the pictures this year too. He & the boys met us there.I will post them on the blog next week.

After taking our pictures we headed over to Itz to have some food and fun. The best part was there was no Spring Break crowd so getting there in the early afternoon allowed us to have our run of the place. No waiting on the rides or the games or anything. We got the best seats in the movie theater for our meals. The manager noticed our colored shirts when we arrived & inquired about our group. She was nice enough to give us a group discount we DID NOT technically qualify for because we didn't have the correct number of people. We were definitely #winning!

Riding High ! 
The Disco

Shoot em up !

Things that go bump
Trying to focus for the win

We rode bumper cars, played games, rode the rides & ate until our heart's content. We spent so many hours there we had lunch AND dinner ! LMAO Mr. Mixologist foolishly let my nieces talk him in to getting on the indoor roller-coaster  with them LOL ! I have actually ridden it with them before & didn't fall for it this time. He admitted that he didn't think it would be that bad because they are 9 & 11.... boy was he unprepared. After he recuperated from the wild ride, I managed to spank him in some basketball. We played best of 3 games & he did NOT get to redeem himself.  We wore those kids out that day & we definitely got way more than our money's worth.

On Wednesday, we planned a day trip to San Antonio. First stop, was Natural Bridge Caverns a place I hadn't been to before. It was a pretty cool tour. The kids really enjoyed it & thought it was really cool to be inside real caves.

Waiting for our tour to start

It turned out the be quite the workout (which I really need right now LOL) you are walking 185 ft down and back. I took lots of  photos but my camera just didn't capture the beauty of it at all.

Inside the Cavern

After the tour we headed downtown to the Riverwalk. I will wrap up the rest of the weeks activities in Part Two.

How was your Spring Break ?  Do you do anything fun ?

Thoughts ? Comments ? Questions ?

Beautifully Complex 

Friday, March 16, 2012

An Engaging Affair.......In Pictures

Although it rained for most of last weekend, we got a slight reprieve to enjoy our Engagement Party that two of my friends hosted for us.  That damn Houston humidity got to my hairdo, but even still we had a blast at Monnalisa with some wonderful people who came out to celebrate with us.........

The patio cabanas are cool to chill in when it hasn't been raining all weekend ! LOL

Yes we wore the cheesy buttons ! 

Me and one of my closest friends. She brought me some very lovely flowers and a cheesy "Bride to Be" button to wear because she knew I would wear it proudly ! LOL

Tulips & Classic Black & White Pics

The food was great and the drinks here do.not. play.  If you come try the signature drink called "The Monnalisa" it has Raspberry infused vodka & fresh raspberries. !

My beautiful Hostesses !

Me and my love were trying to practice that very famous "photo pose"  that TIH and her husband have down to art form ! LOL

Lovely Ladies !

I really love the fire pit in the middle of the lounge ! It is very romantic at night & creates nice ambiance. Two years ago I surprised my love on his birthday and we came to this same place & made some great memories, so I was really happy they picked this spot to celebrate such a milestone in our courtship.

Our Adopted Texas Family

My best friends family adopted me years ago & they love Mr. Mixologist like no other and we are so blessed to have their support and encouragement as we walk this path to marriage.

My great friend and Soror !

He is such a funny guy, who makes me smile everyday & has shown me how to lighten up and even how to laugh at myself.....often.

He was so surprised, looking like, what are you doing ?

Just before the toast, I surprised everyone by reading a poem that I wrote for my love. I have been working on it for a while, even before we got  engaged and I thought it was the perfect time to share it. I also got it framed for him with some of our favorite pics......He loved it ! I would share it here but I don't really trust these innanets with my prose ! LMAO

Aficionados in the House ! 

Of course the Cigar lovers had to hit the patio to indulge before all was said & done. He got a few sticks as gifts that he could not wait to try. All in all we had a lot of fun and laughs (some tears too LOL), with great friends, and we are blessed beyond measure to be surrounded by so much love and support.

An emotional moment after my reading. 

Your heart wins, when you're not afraid to lose...

That is how true love is built...starting with an open heart !

Hope you enjoy the photos !

Thoughts ? Comments ? Questions ?

Beautifully Complex