Tag Archives: Austin

On our way and catching up

Happy March, everyone!! (Really? March???)
We packed up this morning and began our drive to our next ‘neighborhood’!
Although our final destination is Trinity, TX (Trinity Pines Conference Center), we have a couple of stops to make along the way. One of our responsibilities as the Eastern TX Reps is to visit ‘our’ projects at least once a year (hopefully in person – if not, then by phone or proxy), so we’re taking the next couple of days to stop at three projects sorta-kinda on the way. (You can check out the map over on the “So Where are we now” page.) But, before we get into those travels, I figured I’d better do a quick recap of our final days at Twin Oaks Ranch. After two months in the greater Austin area, we finally made it to the State Capital.
Capital 2
So that we could get the big picture, we took one of the free tours they offer. Ours was The Women of Texas Tour. It took us through the building and explained the ins and outs of the building’s history, but focused on the women who influenced the settlement and government of Texas. Full disclosure – we only took that tour because it worked best with our time schedule, but we’re glad it worked out that way since it was so interesting. Here are some of the pictures from the Capital Building –

Door Hinge Woodwork Mariachi watchers
Capital Dome Senate Chamber Texas Stars
Original chandelier House Chamber Looking down
House chamber from the gallery More chandelier Fence

Aside from the terrible time we had finding parking (the Senate and House are both in session, so it’s a pretty happenin’ place right now!), we had a great time. For all of our travels, we have really been remiss at getting into cities (especially state capitals), so I’m trying to remedy that going forward. Since we were already downtown we also checked out the Bullock Texas State History Museum – another must-see in Austin!
Bullock Museum of TX History
One thing you notice about Texas (not just in Austin) is the huge amount of The Lone Star State Pride!
Big TX Star
We even took a quick selfie –
Selfie with star
And although there is so much more to see in downtown Austin, we chose to check out the SoCo (South Congress) area which is full of eclectic shops and eateries.
SoCo streets
We grabbed a bite to eat and made sure that we got at least ONE photo of Flat Stanley enjoying our Monday excursion!
Flat Stanley in SoCo
If you look all the way down the road you can see the state capital. The F. Stanley assignment is officially over, but we may just continue to show him the sights. 🙂
So that was our Tourist Finale for February. Note to self – take advantage of Urban Opportunities. There is so much to see and do!!
Yesterday was spent cleaning, doing laundry, and getting organized for a couple of days on the road. But we did have a special treat at the end of the day. Here’s a little back story:
Earlier this month I got a message from a friend who we had been close to many years ago. His precious wife Barbara, a very dear friend of mine, passed away more than 30 years ago and although our life paths went in different directions (we moved and changed churches, he eventually remarried, etc.) we’d stayed in touch through the years and especially more so with the advent of Facebook. (He’s an amazing photographer (http://photographyworksofart.smugmug.com/) and has always been a great encouragement to me with this blog and my photography attempts.) Anywho – Early in the month he sent me this message –
Barbara’s brother lives in Buda. I can give you his contact info. I am sure they would love to meet you. There is a great BBQ place near there.
I figured, why not?, and got the brother’s information (Art had checked with him and he (and his wife) said they would love to meet us.), and then promptly forgot all about it. (That ever happen to you?). With a little nudge from Art, I finally called last weekend, and made plans for dinner last night. It was pretty unusual heading off to someone’s home for dinner when neither of knew them (and didn’t really even know their last name.). But we’re so glad that we went a bit out of our comfort zone to make new friends! It was a beautiful connection, reminding me of the very special friendship I had with Barb those many years ago, and a lovely evening all around!
Evans and Conrads
So next time someone says – “Hey – I have a friend (distant relative, even) in that area that I know would love to meet you” – say – SURE!!!

We’ve made it to our first stop-over (Camp Tejas, Giddings, TX), and will be having our Area Rep visit soon! We worked here 5 years ago, so we’ll enjoy seeing all the changes!
Thanks for coming along!



Mondays are for Memories – More LBJ

Since we had such an interesting visit at the LBJ Ranch on Friday, I thought I’d go back and find the post about another piece of the LBJ puzzle. So here is post from almost five years ago, when we once again (or would that be once before) checked out a bit of Presidential history –

About those places and things…. 02/02/2012

We’re parked tonight at the Walmart in Port Lavaca, TX.  Tomorrow we’ll head into our February project at Texas Baptist Encampment in Palacios, TX (right along the coast between Houston and Corpus Christi). Before we get started on February Goodness, I figured I’d better finish up the “Places and Things” part of my post a couple of days ago.
So, the places…..
JoRoyButler We didn’t do a great deal of sightseeing while we were in Giddings, but we did make one trip into Austin to meet up with our good buddies, Jo and Roy.
And of course, not wanting to waste a 60 mile drive on just sightseeing, we met up at Costco. 🙂 We both did a little shopping and we got our tires rotated and THEN we decided to check out the Lyndon Baines Johnson Presidential Library and Museum.
Now, I confess that I’ve never particularly enamored with LBJ. But I did find this museum full of memories of my teenage years, so all in all it was pretty interesting. And, it was Free. I love Free.
There were many interesting displays and places to explore
but we couldn’t actually check out the Library –
since it isn’t open on Saturday. It sure did look impressive (though I think I’d have had trouble finding any “light reading”)!
Here’s a view of Austin –
and a view of the guys waiting for Jo and I…..
🙂 We finished up the day with a late (great) lunch at Eastside Cafe (as much as I get frustrated with my “smart phone” I LOVE that I can find these fun places to eat when we’re out and about!).
So that was Austin. To say we scratched the surface is an understatement – but at least we can say we were there.
Now let’s see….what else did we do…?
Well, we met up with 3 SOWER couples in San Marcos for lunch one day.
Can’t say we saw a lot of San Marcos, but it was fun to get together with friends at another fun spot (thank-you Yelp!)
And that, with the exception of a wonderful final (for this year anyway) trip to Waco to see Lara and friends and collect hugs(where Gary did not do ANY major projects and we enjoyed a lovely evening sitting around that firepit!) was about the extent of our “places” this month. All good. All very good.
Which brings me to the “things” –
And it’s really only one thing.
Every time we drove into Giddings we saw this sign-

OK – enough rambling for tonight. Tomorrow we’ll be getting settled by the bay :), but even tonight, here in the Walmart parking lot, we were blessed with a beautiful reminder of our creative God.
Sweet Dreams!