Monday, July 28, 2014

Early 20th Anniversary Weekend Get Away

In August, Larry & I celebrate twenty years of marriage.  Since our anniversary falls during the week that I go back to work for in-service at school, we decided a couple months ago that we'd do a little weekend away in late July to celebrate early.  At the time we planned the trip, Larry's dad was still alive and we had no idea what the future months held.  Since his dad's death in late May, we have all been working every weekend at his house, cleaning up things, getting it organized for an estate sale, working on the property, etc.  Larry has spent more time than the rest of us, dealing with legal matters and helping out the rest of his family who live in the same area.  So this weekend when we left town it was as much about our anniversary get-away as it was getting away from all the hard work he's been doing for months now.  He needed a break.

On Saturday morning, just before lunch, we left on our great adventure.  Our destination was Nacogdoches, TX.  This is where we lived when we first got married.  We thought it would be fun to spend the weekend there and reminisce.  On our way there, we stopped at this pretty church & cemetery.  We're weird like that.  Old churches and cemeteries are so interesting to us.  We have no particular connection to either, but it was a cool place to stop and look around briefly.  It's okay.  You can think we're strange.

After our visit at this stop, we continued on our way to Nacogdoches.  This was our home for the weekend.

This was the view out our window---notice the deer feeder in the field?  We watched for deer all weekend but never spotted one.

Upon arrival, we promptly took a nap.  I know, I know....we're old!  ha ha!  Later Saturday afternoon, we hopped in the car and went for a drive around our old stomping grounds.  It was fun to see how much has changed...and how much hasn't!

If you're not familiar with Nacogdoches, TX (pronounced Nak-ugh-dough-chiss) it is the home of Stephen F. Austin State University.  I attended there in the Fall of 1994 when we lived there.  We roamed around the campus for a while, getting lost in all the new paths and buildings that have been added.

We went to Beall's and bought Larry some sandals while we were there and stopped at Family Dollar to get a curling iron for me because I forgot mine.  Aren't we romantic?  Can't you see the flowers & balloons & little smiley faced sunshines all around us?  ha ha!

And don't forget the stop we always make on every trip. Bookstore!!!!

I got these.  (I'm almost finished with Bossypants.)

After the bookstore, we went to the apartments where we first lived after our wedding and found our old apartment.  Great memories!  This place was where we spent our first four months of marriage, in a tiny 500 sq ft apartment.  I found a floor plan online and it can't convey well enough how tiny the apartment was--but it was perfect for us!  {Note:  Our apartment was the flip-flopped version of this floor plan, but it's the same place none the less.}  We had to be sneaky when we got there.  We weren't sure if the current tenants were home or might be freaked out that we were tip-toeing up to the door to get a picture.  ha ha!

We eventually found a place to eat and roamed around some more before finally heading back to the hotel about 6:00.  We laughed that we must be really old and boring.  I dozed off reading my book while Larry watched some TV for a while.  About 8:00, we (woke up) decided to go out for some ice cream, so we headed into town and found this humorously-named frozen yogurt shop.  It was yummy.  I really have no idea why it's called this.  The yogurt was made with regular milk.

Sunday morning we slept late and then headed out for brunch.  I had a not so lovely experience with a really greasy piece of zucchini there, but the rest of the meal was good.  We roamed around the SFA campus a little more after brunch and found the Arboretum.  I had seen it mentioned online and wanted to find it.  I'm so glad we did.  It was really nice.  I'm sure that it would be even prettier in the spring when all the flowers are blooming, but it was nice this weekend, too!  There are trails to walk through the flower garden part, then another trail through the "Shade Garden", which was really nice in the heat.  If you live within a couple hours, I would recommend it.  It only took us about 45 minutes to walk through it, but if it was a little cooler we would've stayed longer and enjoyed it more.  In the spring, there would've been more to see, too, so it would take longer to walk through all of it.

(Remember, it's late July in East Texas.  It was about 400 degrees at about 1:00 PM.  Sweaty selfies rock!)

After the arboretum we found some cold drinks and air conditioning for a while, then headed out again to the movies.

In all our driving around town, we found several really pretty churches.  These two were my favorites!  These are pics I found online because I didn't get a chance to snap a picture when we drove past.  This first one is Christ Episcopal Church.  The second one is labeled with its name.

After the pretty church hunt we went back to the hotel to swim.  It was nice.  The water was just the right temperature and the 2 kids and their dad left to go back to their room just as we got there.  When you can have the pool all to yourselves, that is the perfect time for swimming!  Hush up about my sock line!

This morning we made our way back home.  It was a little sad to leave behind our weekend of sleeping late and taking naps and remembering the "good old days" in Nacogdoches, but reality called and it was time to return.

Tonight, we sat around with the kids and watched Monsters University.  It was good to be home, snuggling with them on the couch, watching an animated movie.

For those of you who knew about this little detail, our kids survived!  Since Savannah will be 18 next week {let's not even talk about that!} we decided it would be okay if the kids stayed here alone.  We left money for dinner Saturday night, tickets for the movies yesterday and a long chore list to be completed while we were gone.  Somehow we returned to a still-standing house and no one had bruises or stitches.  Could it be that they're really growing up & learning to get along?  For those of you who were watching out for them, calling & checking in and praying for them to be smart & safe while we were gone, THANK YOU.

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