Monday, March 4, 2013

Lone Star Adventures-- Part 1.

Two weekends ago, Donny and I flew to Texas to visit family and friends. Neither of us had been back since last September, which is way too long to be away from Texas.  It was a wonderful weekend, but also SUPER busy.  We were on the go, bouncing from one person's house to another the whole time.  We got home from our "vacation" exhausted.  Haha.

We flew directly from Charlotte to DFW mid-morning on Thursday.  It took a little longer than usual because of the storms that were traveling across the south-- instead of flying over Tennessee and Arkansas, we flew south over Atlanta then New Orleans and Houston before turning north to get to Dallas.
We finally landed in Texas, got our luggage, then went to pick up our rental car.  We had reserved a mid-size car, which would be a Toyota Corolla or Ford Focus or something similar.  As we walk out to the lot to get in the vehicle, however, we see a woman driving away in the last mid-size car on the lot.  So, the attendant tells us to pick whatever we want.  Score!
Donny selected a Chrysler 300c. I thought it look like a car a drug dealer would drive, but he was undeterred. And it ended up being awesome. It had all sorts of options, heated and cooled leather seats, a V8 engine, navigation system, backup camera, and, my favorite, heated and cooled cupholders!!
I think someone liked the car...

It was so good to be back in Texas.  It looked exactly as I remembered it.  We had a few hours to kill after we landed before we had to be somewhere, and we both had a few stops we wanted to make...

First up for me was Taco Cabana.  I know you Texans think my TC love is crazy, but there's just something about it...  And the fact that I only get to go to TC a few times a year doesn't help.  

Nothing but yumminess in this pink bag.
Of course, we had to go to Rangers Ballpark in Arlington. As soon as we got within sight of the place, Donny lit up like a kid on Christmas morning.
We went in the gift shop, where I may have worn my Yankees shirt... :) 

And then, we cured his Whataburger withdrawals.

After visiting these very important Texas landmarks, we meandered our way back up from Arlington to Euless to meet some friends for dinner (with a stop at Barnes & Noble to kill some time with some good books). I doubt our die-hard Ranger fans (along with one Red Sock and one Dodger) will let me pick the restaurant ever again, but I loved it.  :)
Thank goodness for Lyn, my fellow Yankee fan, and her fiance John to be on my side. :) They're too cute!
Mike and Monica
Donny and the Red Sock, I mean Brandon.
All the girls-- Julie, Monica, Lyn, me, Rachel, and Laura
Me and Monica
Me and my boo :)

After dinner with our crew, it was time for us to head south to the big metropolis of Cleburne, Texas! We stayed with Donny's "grandparents," Buddy & Claudine, for the weekend. We got there right around 10pm, and I was EXHAUSTED. We stayed up for a bit to chat with them, but I faded pretty fast and we went to bed. They were so hospitable and generous. Not only did they let us stay in their place, but she also made breakfast for us in the mornings! Friday morning, we woke up to bacon, eggs, biscuits and gravy, and fresh fruit. (Thank goodness we had a big breakfast, too, because it was several hours before we got to eat again...)  Our first stop was at Donny's mom's office. She works in an office with about a dozen women who have watched Donny grow up for many years. I hadn't met any of them, so they wanted us to come by so they could meet me and visit with Donny, whom they hadn't seen in a long time. They were all incredibly sweet, and I could tell that they cared a lot about Donny and his mom and their family.

After we left there, we went to see Kristi's (his sister) new apartment and pick her up for lunch with his mom, Kim. Kim and her husband were in the middle of moving to a new place near Lake Whitney, but she took time out of moving to make us all lunch at their old house in Joshua. While we were at their place, we got in a lot of baby time! April (Donny's step-sister) had her baby, Layla, just five or six weeks before our visit. Layla came several weeks early, so she was TINY!  (FYI-- Layla was only baby #1 of the weekend...)

Tiny baby toes!

Heather, Kim, Kristi, Donny, me, and Layla 

We had quite the interesting lunch. Heather (Donny's other step-sister) and her friend Dani showed up for lunch. Dani was something else... She appeared wearing a sweatshirt with a marijuana leaf on it and clearly had partaken of some that afternoon... (Who goes to meet their friend's parents and family wearing this???) Immediately upon her arrival, Brent (Kim's husband) asks her, "So, do you like pot?" Oh, it was a fun afternoon. This poor girl had no idea that we were literally laughing at everything that came out of her mouth. But really-- that's what you get for arriving high at a family lunch...

After a few hours there, Donny, Kristi and I headed back to Cleburne.  We had some more folks to visit, and Kristi had plans for the afternoon, so we bid her adieu and headed on our way.  We were trying to see Donny's friend Anna, who just had a baby boy with her fiance Brock.  We missed her, but did get to see the baby, Brock, and also Anna's father, David.  I failed and didn't get a picture, so I stole this one from her facebook page so y'all could see how adorable her baby is!  (Baby #2)

Friday night, we headed back to Buddy and Claudine's for a chili cookoff with some other folks from Donny's former church in Cleburne.  We had a good time with those folks and a lot of laughs!

Coming up tomorrow-- a tour of small-town Texas!  :)


  1. My family and I would totally be the ones making fun of that girl when she was still there too! What would make her think that it would be okay to wear something like that?

  2. Oh I would have been making fun of that girl too! :)

  3. Heated and chilled cupholders? I have never heard of such a thing but it sounds magnificent!

  4. ok i'm gonna be honest, I don't get the taco cabana thing!! haha. I've never really liked it! My favorite is Taco Bueno which we don't have in Houston! I'm with Donny on the whataburger!!!

  5. 1) That restaurant you went to in Euless is about 5 minuets away from me. No joke. 2) Totally get your Taco Cabana obsession... we're going there with Matt's sister this Friday and I'm so looking forward to it. 3) Heated/chilled cupholders? Dude! 4) Looks like you had a great but busy Texas reunion!

  6. Fun weekend! Sweet rental car! Adorable babies!! :)

  7. That make temperature-sensitive drink cups!?!? THAT IS AWESOME. I had no idea technology had come so far. I am legitimately impressed. I would have chosen that car too, regardless of whether or not it looked like a drug-pushing car. :)

    Tacos. I dig it. I always see you post about Taco Cabana, but I can't remember seeing any pictures of the food. It's a drive-thru place? Like Taco Bell?

  8. WHY would you show up to a family type function when you're high and wear that shirt?! She must think everyone's family does that :-P Too weird! But looks like fun anyway :)