For October, Marco ended up having a more flexible schedule due to this month’s rotation which we found perfect since it’s Cassie’s birth month and we’re also celebrating our 4th civil wedding anniversary so it… More
For an unplanned trip to the rodeo, I think we did pretty okay. We really didn’t have a specific day to go nor were we picky with the performing artist, I just wanted Marco and Cassie to experience the rodeo as it was their first time to go. We picked Wednesday because it had the cheapest tickets for the concert and the artist performing that day was Thomas Rhett, a well known country singer. Of course this was the first time we were hearing about him but that’s because Marco and I don’t usually listen to country music.
We started the day with a bunch of rodeo fails :
#1 We didn’t leave early enough. We could have made it an entire day affair but we didn’t take that into consideration. So for future references think of it as a day at Disney or Six Flags, there literally is a lot to do over there.
#2 And again, since we didn’t leave early enough we caught the rodeo traffic and it took us a good hour to look for parking
#3 We forgot to withdraw money, we only figured that out when we were trying to park and they had signs saying they only take cash. FYI, parking is hard during rodeo season if you’re not there early. Parking costs range from $20-$50, maybe even $60. We were lucky enough to find more in the yellow lot for $20.
#4 We forgot to bring our umbrella stroller and we ended up lugging our big jogger stroller around.
We knew it was going to be impossible for us to take a decent family picture once we get rolling with the rodeo activities so we opted to do it as soon as we entered the vicinity
The biggest boot in town
She’s at this stage where she completely recognizes the animals and masters the sounds they make so you can only imagine how delighted she was to be surrounded by them. We probably would have spent more time at the petting area if only she wasn’t recovering from the flu and if we had more time before the concert.
It was pure chaos buying food at the rodeo, with a child and a handful of food it was impossible for us to take photos of what we ate. (Volcano Nachos, Giant Pizza–one slice was actually 2 regular ones, Cheeseburger and Funnel Cake)
One out of the two photos I took from the Rodeo festivities. Marco and I were so into it that we forgot to take pictures. Our favorite was the Kids Mutton Bustin’ event where the kid who could stay on the back of the mutton, the longest wins.
….We finally got introduced to Thomas Rhett and we enjoyed his songs more than we expected. I think I like country music as long as its not too hard core. Haha. This photo right here was when he asked everyone to take out their phones and wave it in the air, it was a pretty cool sight, this photo does not do justice.
Cassie on the other hand didn’t really act up considering that this was her first ever concert. She tried to out-scream the music during the concert and couldn’t figure out why people couldn’t hear her, it was the funniest thing ever. She was scared a few times when they would dim the lights but generally she was a sport and would clap her hands with everyone else after every song.
Me and my sister after the concert. They kinda allowed us to crash their monthsary date to the point where we sat next to them during the concert.
Our last photos of the night.
It is exhausting to go to the rodeo with a baby but I’m glad that Cassie had a great time. It was challenging for me and Marco but the day turned out great and most importantly we were safe. To those who didn’t hear, there was a shooting scare that day so after the concert we were asked to stay in the stadium premises until they cleared things out in the grounds. They didn’t really mention anything about “shooting or gunning” but it was on the news so people were texting us, asking if we were okay and that’s how we knew. After that, Marco and I decided to call it a day and we headed home.
This has got to be one of the most random, most unplanned road trips I’ve ever taken in my entire life. But sometimes its those random adventures that make the journey worth while especially when its with your family, now if you don’t enjoy being around your family then what I just said doesn’t count. Oh, and tell me why my brother Paulo finally gets to take off from work only to find out that our plans were up in the air, talk about bad timing. For years now we’ve been nagging him to come with us coz he never makes it to our family outings and the one time he decides to come, we didn’t have anything planned, well we did but the weather kinda messed that up.
So here was our original plan (the one we picked out of a million) —Barton Springs and Hamilton Pool in Austin and then camping in one of the State Parks. And just like the weather forecast stated, it rained like crazy washing away our one and only feasible plan and so we had to google what to do on the spot as we were already in Austin.
First stop, Kerlin BBQ.
So originally we weren’t supposed to eat in Kerlin but that other Bbq place we were planning to go to ran out of meat. I’m glad we ended up eating here though, yes it may be a food truck and it wasn’t really an ideal set up to be eating outdoors especially with the rain and the mud puddles but their BBQ was so tasty and their prices were decent, not to mention they had good service. That lady who helped us (possibly the owner) made sure we got our bang for the buck and we did.
Loved loved loved the cream corn
Did someone say local beer?
The outdoor set up
Next stop, Cathedral of Junk.
Address to Google: 4422 Lareina Drive, Austin, TX
After years of working on this piece, Vince, the artist and the owner was finally given a permit for Cathedral of Junk to stay for good as an Austin landmark. This place is free of admission but like any struggling artist donations are greatly appreciated to fund the maintenance of this Art Museum and other art pieces in the works. For groups a suggested amount of $10 is good enough but if you want to donate more then all the better. Make sure to call 512-299-7413 before heading there since the place is by appointment only.
Cathedral of Junk
Ramas- Mendezonas outside the Cathedral of Junk.
Bits and bobs everywhere, its hard not to stare at the walls
Okayyyy, random Barbie parts are kinda creepy
How creepy…trolls randomly strapped in the ceiling
The view of the cathedral from the back
Vince, the artist.
Third stop, Hope Outdoor Gallery.
Address to Google: 1101 Baylor Street, Austin, TX
Austin’s community or gallery for graffiti art. If you want artsy photos with cool backgrounds like those you see on IG (rolls eyeballs, haha) then you’re definitely in the right place, only problem during the time we visited Hope Outdoor Gallery was it was raining and the place was clearly muddy and slippery. I didn’t risk taking Cassie further up for the fear of slipping, the rest of my siblings climbed all the way up though. Marco and I will definitely be back to explore this place some more when Mr. Sun is out.
Last stop, Texas State Capitol.
Address to Google: 1100 Congress Ave, Austin, TX
Located in Downtown Austin, this was the only place we could think of to cap our random Austin trip on a rainy day. At that point we weren’t too keen nor were we interested in reading or learning about anything that involved Texas’ political history. We did enjoy touring the capitol and spotting Sam Houston’s portrait (since both my sisters go to Sam Houston State University). Btw, admission is free although parking wasn’t, I think we paid $10 for parking.
And there you have it, a recap of our random day trip to Austin.
Marco was scheduled for another interview here in Texas but this time it was in Harlingen so we took a road trip close to the border of Mexico more for business than pleasure. It’ s days like these when I get to take advantage of the perks working PRN (as needed) at the hospital. I love how I can just pick my schedule and take off from work without any hassles or complications when need be. It took us roughly 4 hours and 30 minutes to get there and the first thing we did was google a good place to eat. We ended up having lunch at Brass Wheel Restaurant.
Visited this mini museum mainly for the Iwo Jima Memorial statue. The wind was acting up so we didn’t even stay long and I didn’t even bother visiting the gift shop like I normally would.
Iwo Jima Memorial up close
Because he feels the need to do the “Lion King” pose at every historical landmark we go to.
Checked in at Courtyard by Marriott
It had a modern minimalistic feel to it.
The hotel’s poolside was pretty decent and since we had nothing else better to do, we decided to take Cassie for a swim.
She acts like she runs the place, waiting for daddy to get ready.
So apparently people who viewed my snaps thought we were crazy for swimming that day since it was rather breezy, the water was warm and we didn’t really stay long so I promise you Cassie was fine.
Famished after her swim so she grabbed her snack, sat on the sofa and started munching on her puffs like a boss
That night Cassie and I stayed in and ate left overs while Marco had an informal dinner with the rest of the interviewees for the residency program.
The next day, Marco rode a shuttle and left early for the hospital, Cassie and I packed our stuff, loaded up and went window shopping after we had that cockroach incident. I am not even going to expound on what happened since I am positive that it wasn’t even the hotel’s fault but lets just say I had to get over my fear of roaches so I could kill one. I felt like if I didn’t, it would have called the rest of its friends and Cassie and I would have a cockroach frenzy.
Just roamed around town while Marco was doing his interview, its a good thing I found the mall right when he finished. He gave me a call just when I walked in a Forever 21 and it looked like 6x this photo. It felt like a Forever 21 warehouse and I was just glad he called before I could do any credit card damage that I would regret in the future. Everything was on sale!!!!
Met up with one of Marco’s friends from med school that was currently doing residency over there, they had a quick catch up before we drove back to Houston. On our way home we got stopped at an immigration checkpoint. Because the city was located in the border line of Mexico, immigration was taking precautionary measures that Marco was unaware of and I totally forgot about. He forgot to bring his green card and it took them a while to verify his identity with his drivers license. I’m just glad nothing crazy resulted from our inefficiencies. We got home safe, extremely exhausted but safe.
Filipinos by nature are very much family-oriented, if they could live with all their aunts and uncles and cousins they would, and in one way or the other that was how my childhood was. There was never a dull moment because I grew up being close to both sides of my family, I got taunted, teased and semi-bullied (a lot by my kuyas). Yes, it was one of those “Ugh-I-hate-you-but-I know-you’re-pestering-me-coz-you-actually-care” type of relationships and it was true, they teased me a lot but I knew they had my back and that they loved me. But of course everyone grows up and life takes us to our own paths sometimes away from those you grew up with.
Today, I got to spend time with my kuya Giancarlo, his wife ate Dulce and their 2 wonderful kids Isaiah and Jude. I’m glad that amidst the hectic Christmas season our families found the time to meet up. From a very-filling barbecue lunch at Lucille’s to a stroll in Laguna Beach to a Gingerbread display at the Ritz and a dinner at a local Korean soup place we found ourselves catching up and talking about random things in our current lives, a day was definitely not enough but it is what it is, I’m just happy that we were able to push through with this meet up. Lujans, thank you so much for spending time with us and taking us around AND for spoiling Cassie with her new toys, we don’t know when the next time will be but we will definitely be looking forward to that.
Here are some photos from today:
(Wish we had at least one photo with all of us together)
Cassie and her kuyas, Isaiah and Jude
They gave Cassie her favorite, Minnie Mouse in her Christmas-themed outfit
Beach art work
The whole display was edible. How yummy is that!
Visiting Disneyland during the holidays, we already knew the place was going to be jam-packed. Prior to getting there my husband was telling me to prepare for long lines and a whole lot of waiting, pretty much he wanted us to brace ourselves for anything and expect the unexpected to avoid frustrations. I told him that this trip was all going to be about Cassie since its her first trip to Disneyland, all I wanted for her was to ride the “It’s a small world” ride and have a photo with Minnie Mouse, her all time favorite Disney character (so far).
Thanks mami for this trip, we had a blast and we could tell Cassie was sooo happy to be there based on the number of “Wows” she uttered all throughout the day.
Ready in her Minnie Mouse outfit (without the ears yet in the picture)
This ginormous Christmas tree was a sight to behold
…We’re officially here!!!
Why hello there Monstro the whale.
T’was tempting but we skipped out on this one just because you can have Carousel rides elsewhere
Oh, look who we bumped into—the Evil Queen.
Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage
Cassie’s 1st ride. The only reason why we made this her first ride was because it was the closest one to where we were at, at that time and it had the shortest waiting time. I’m glad we went that route because when we checked the Disney app the waiting time doubled. I guess this ride is pretty famous with kids.
If you’re taking a child around Cassie’s age (a year and 2 months), be prepared for dark moments in the submarine which might possibly scare him/her. Overall she was in awe with all the bubbles and the fishies and she loved it!
While waiting in line
Alice in Wonderland Ride
We didn’t necessarily have this ride as one of our “must-trys” but infant-friendly rides were limited and this had the shortest waiting time after the submarine ride so we went anyway. What it is, is a mini-roller coaster where you encounter the characters of Alice in Wonderland, which would have been perfect except that it was set in the dark and the characters were colorful with a neon-effect, giving them an eerie glow. Add on the Cheshire cat’s creepy grin to the whole scenario and you get a crying, creeped out infant. I feel like if we take Cassie 2 or 3 years from now, she’d love this.
Turkey Legs and Pizza for Lunch
Thanks tita an for taking care of Cassie so mommy could eat
Cassie’s Disney’s #OOTD
It’s a Small World Ride
Of course the line for It’s a Small World seemed endless but it actually went by pretty fast. Cassie ended up sleeping while we were waiting and I was dreading the fact that she would miss out on the ride. When we finally got on the ride, we took that chance of waking her up and I’m glad that we did because she was just in awe the entire ride. She woke up smiling to the little dolls moving and dancing and the “Its a small world” song on replay. “Wows” and a whole lot of pointing— that was Cassie. Looking at her, you could tell that she felt like she was in her own wonderland and that just made me and Marco happy, seeing that look on her face was priceless!
Tito Mik helping out with the Cassie-carrying.
…and the lines keep going and going and going
This part of the park is literally like a big playground for kids where they can visit the classic disney characters’ house. We came too late in the afternoon and the lines were so long that we missed everyone except Goofy. We ended up going inside Minnie Mouse’s house and I’m pretty sure to Cassie that was a big blur but I knew she had fun while we were in there. At this point we still haven’t seen Minnie and I really wanted Cassie to have a picture with her since she is Cassie’s favorite, they directed us back to the front of the theme park and told us she’d be hanging out there until the start of the parade.
Outside Mickey’s house
Mickey’s Ice cream bar—a disney must-have
Yay! at least we found Goofy. Good job tito mik and tita an for falling in line for cassie 😀
Minnie Mouse’s House
We finally found Minnie up front but Cassie wouldn’t wake up at all. She opened her eyes for a few seconds but went back to sleep, poor baby was really exhausted from today’s activities.
Disney’s Electrical Light Parade
Everyone who visits Disneyland should really stay to watch this especially since they won’t be having this around forever. It’s not only fun for kids but its safe to say most adults enjoy this spectacle, I’m a bit sad that Cassie slept through the entire thing but on the bright side, Marco and I enjoyed the parade in peace ( no offense Cas).
Sorry my pictures below won’t do justice to the actual parade but at least we had most of it on video for Cassie to watch later on.
Of course she woke up after the parade, She was in a good mood too.
You’ve been good to us especially Cassie, thanks Disneyland. Till next time.