In May, Mitch and I celebrated our 15th Wedding Anniversary. I surprised Mitch with a weekend get away trip to Waxahchie and Waco, Texas. Mitch is a huge fan of the HGTV show Fixer Upper, so part of my surprise was taking him to their store, Magnolia Farms, in Waco, Texas.
We headed South to Waxahachie on Saturday afternoon and spent the day in historic downtown Waxahachie.
The Courthouse is in the center of historic downtown and is one of the most photographed Courthouses in the Country. I can see why. The architecture is amazing.
On Sunday, we took the pups to a local park for a walk. The weather was perfect and the park was very shady.
There was an old bridge (above) that looked really neat. It led to nowhere, but people use it to fish. There is a river right below it. There use to be a path from the bridge, but it has long since been covered by tall overgrown brush.
After our nice long walk, we dropped the pups off a the hotel so they could enjoy a nice long nap. We headed out to the Scarborough Renaissance Festival and met up with our good friends Ernie and Deb for the Cat and Fiddle Wine Tasting. We were able to taste several wines from Spain and Portugal. The tasting was hosted by a Sommelier so we gained a lot of knowledge too.
On Monday, we headed further South to Waco to check out Magnolia Farms. We did a bit of shopping, but did not stay long. The pups had to stay in the car while we went in and I did not want to leave them out there for very long. We will be back at another time for a longer visit.
In July, we headed further South to Gavelston Beach, Texas. It had been several years since we had a family vacation with Mitch’s family. The last time we saw our niece, Breanna, was in 2007 when we visited Maine. Her mom, Darcy, was not able to make the trip to Gavelston Beach, but we were glad that Breanna was able to. She is all grown up now (age 15). It was nice to spend quality time with my sister-in-laws, brother-in-law and nieces and nephews.
We rented a beach house for the week. Mitch’s sister, Carol, had an upcoming Birthday in the month of July so this was part of her Birthday celebration.
Our location was perfect! We basically had the whole beach to ourselves. The house was located in Sea Isle, which is towards the end of the Island, and away from the public beach spots. It was peaceful and relaxing. We did spend a day in historic downtown Gavelston and went out to eat at local restaurants twice, in the above photo we are at The Spot. The rest of the time was spent hanging out with family at the beach enjoying the ocean breeze and soaking up lots of vitamin D. The weather was perfect. The pups were able to enjoy time on the beach too! I did not think it possible in July in Texas but we had an overcast day which was perfect for them. We enjoyed early morning sunrises, afternoons playing card games (we played PIT a lot, it is a family favorite) and evenings by the fire making smores. The pups had lots of love all week long from all the family and spent early mornings and evenings walking along and playing in the ocean and spent their days napping on the couch.
This was our first beach trip without our Cueball. Mitch wrote his name in sand and we watched the waves wash it away. He always loved the beach, the sun, the breeze and the ocean, so it was a nice tribute to him. We miss our goofy boy so much.
We made it through the week without seeing one snake, yay! This was a bonus for me, as it was a bit of a worry with all the dunes. Rattlesnakes are known for lying on the dunes. Gavelston Beach was really nice. I was not sure what to expect, as I had heard that Texas beaches are not pretty and some areas stink of seaweed. None of this was the case for us. The beach reminded me of VA and Myrtle Beach except for the water temp being a lot warmer, which was a bonus.
The really cool thing, I think at least, about Gavelston Beach is the farm land is on one side and the beach on the other. So as you are driving along, on the right there are cows hanging out on their fields and directly to your left there are beach houses and the ocean. I guess you really can have your cake and eat it too! We did learn how Saltgrass Steak House acquired its name. The story: Each winter, Longhorns were driven to the Texas Gulf Coast to graze on the rich coastal salt grass. And when they headed for market, they followed the legendary Salt Grass Trail, known far and wide for creating the best beef in the Lone Star State. I am not sure if they still do, but there are cows on the island nonetheless.
It was everything a vacation should be. We came home relaxed and not feeling like we need a vacation from our vacation. It is always a lot fun spending time with Mitch’s family. We sure do miss them already!
South Padre is on our list to visit next. We hear this beach has clear blue water and white sand. Sounds amazing.
We have already made plans for our next trips with family. We have not yet made it out to California to visit Carol and Kathy so in 2017 (November), we and the pups are going to make the 20 hour drive from TX to CA and spend a week visiting. In May of 2018, we will head to Florida to visit Mike, Ramona and my nieces and nephew (Corie, Katie-Beth and Carl). At some point in the near future, we hope to make it back east to Maine to visit Darcy and Breanna.