The Longdogs

The Longdogs
Willy, Harley (back center), and Gretchen

Lunch With Some Pink FlaminGoes

A couple of Pink FlaminGoes came through San Antonio which is always cause for celebration. They took in the Alamo and Riverwalk their first day. We planned to meet for lunch and their only request was no chain restaurants....someplace that represented San Antonio.  Mi Tierra immediately came to mind as a San Antonio landmark. Margareta and I picked up Barb and Kat and we were off.

Next, we headed across the courtyard to El Mercado or Market Square....another great San Antonio landmark. We found a fabulous display of pink flamingoes.


Kat decided she couldn't live without one. Of course, you can see that they are big Oklahoma State and the big game was here in San Antonio.....orange was everywhere.

It always great to get together with friends especially when you can introduce them to San Antonio. With a short amount of time here, they got a great taste and will be back.

Christmas Cheer

I got a real nice surprise Christmas Eve day. Some of you will remember that I had two blowouts on my 5th wheel while on a trip out to Arizona in October. Bought both of the tires at the same place at the same time, they were only two years old, in perfect shape as I keep them covered when not in use, and the 5th wheel is definitely not overloaded. They were also higher rated than the original tires, were properly inflated and blew out within 150 miles of each other all of which combined made me feel pretty confident they were defective. Discount Tire in Albuquerque and Flagstaff (where I replaced the tires) filed claims for me with Goodyear. Goodyear was dawdling around with taking responsibility so I ended up filing with Progressive so I could get the RV repaired (about $8000 total for the two claims). I paid the deductible on each claim and Progressive went after Goodyear. Christmas Eve, I got two checks from Progressive returning my deductibles because Goodyear paid up. It made my day not only getting the money back and taking away the claims but because Goodyear had to accept responsibility.

We had a good Christmas with family this year. We had the big Christmas dinner with prime rib on Christmas Eve at our house. Christmas day was at our son and DIL's house. The grandkids were here for the holidays and called us at 8:30 AM Christmas morning to find out how soon we would be over. It works out better this way so the kids can have all their presents there and other toys to play with during the day. Helen made mini-quiche as well as a couple of regular size quiche for brunch along with sausages and croissants. Later on we had prime rib sandwiches so it was a relaxing day for everyone.

My son and I managed to keep my husband's new Grom motorcycle a secret for a whole month before Christmas because Steve stored it in his storage building for me. It is a small bike compared to his other motorcycles but he and Steve both wanted one. I put the title in a shirt box and he had to go out to the garage to find the bike.

Hoping all of you had good Christmas's too.

The Beauty of Christmas is all Around Us

Just wanted to share some of the really beautiful Christmas displays in South Central Texas.

Marble Falls, TX



Pedernales Electric Coop, Johnson City TX



Park by the square, Blanco TX







Travis Park, San Antonio TX


The Riverwalk, San Antonio TX



There is so much beauty at this time of year, if we just stop and take the time to look! Have a wonderful Christmas wherever you are.

Grape Creek Vineyards....Fredricksburg, TX



Late Saturday morning, Steve, Helen, Angus, and I headed towards Fredricksburg TX. Steve took us cross-country on several back country roads. It was really a nice drive and we saw a surprising number of trees changing their colors. Our first stop was Grape Creek Vineyards on the Hwy 290 Wine Trail. I was amazed at how many vineyards and wineries there are now around Fredricsburg especially along Hwy 290 between Fredricksburg and Johnson City.

My DIL joined the Grape Creek Vineyard after an earlier visit with friends. She gets special deals on wine packages as well as free wine tastings for two when she visits. Steve was the designated driver as he isn't a big wine drinker. The vineyard and winery are very nice.

They have outdoor patios for both members and nonmembers.


They also have a Trattoria where you can order pizza or cheese/cracker trays. We had three different kinds of pizza (personal size) although neither Helen or I could finish ours so we had take homes.


We went to one of the member's patios to do our wine sampling.


We both like the same kind of wines.......definitely not dry.

It was nice enough to be outside for lunch and tastings but they do have an indoor area in the gift shop as well.


It was a really nice way to enjoy several hours.

We only visited the one vineyard on this trip because we also wanted to visit Fredricksburg. We walked around to see the sights and people-watch. Angus wasn't really sure about these fish moving around right under his nose.

Fredricksburg was definitely a busy place.

 
It was great to be back in Fredricksburg but it was way too short so another trip will have to made in the near future. You can't visit here too often....there is always something to see.

Teenager In The House...Cam's Birthday

It's hard to believe but it's true.....our grandson is a teenager. Cameron hit the big 13. So far he hasn't grown any horns and continues to be his same loveable self. This is the family birthday hat in case you were wondering. My DIL found it and it became a tradition.

They took the kids and a friend ice skating in the afternoon. Then we did the traditional family dinner (birthday boy's choice) and then the birthday cake. Helen moves so fast she blurs.

They got a cake with a Capt America and Ironman picture. Cam thought it looked great and it was delicious.



I found out that Cameron has been playing disc golf with his friends so I found a set of discs for different purposes and a special bag for them.


Dad and Helen got tickets for an Indoor Car Racing adventure. Cameron was really excited about that. They went the next day and had a ball driving the miniature race cars....Cameron got to drive the adult cars so he was extra thrilled.
 
This was the second birthday celebration as he already had one up in Brownwood with his mom and friends there. All in all, I think he had a really great birthday.

Old Mesilla NM

Friday morning we headed over to check out Old Town Mesilla which was only a couple of miles from our RV park. We had no idea what to expect. Prior to 1800, Mesilla was simply a camping or stopping place for Indians and Spaniards. Permanent settlers came to Mesilla after the treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo in 1848. Constant attacks by Apaches were a huge problem until they formed their own militia and retaliated. In 1851 Fort Fillmore was established to provide some protection. As a result of the Mexican War and the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, Mesilla ended up within a strip of land claimed by both Mexico and the U.S. basically a "no-man's" land. Due to the closeness to Fort Fillmore, Mesilla became the supply center. In 1854, the Gadsden Purchase declared Mesilla officially part of the U.S. Along came the Civil War. In 1861, Colonel Baylor and 220 Texas Mounted Rifles arrived in Mesilla and the Union troops abandoned Fort Fillmore. Baylor raised the Confederate flag and established the short-lived territory of Arizona with Mesilla as it's capitol. In 1862, the Confederates ran short of food and retreated to Texas. Billy the Kid and other notorious figures frequented Mesilla. Billy was even tried there and sentenced to hang; however, that didn't happen. In the 1880's, Mesilla was a lively social scene but by 1881, the railroad by-passed Mesilla in favor of Las Cruces and it was downhill from there. With little growth, there was little change which resulted in what you see there today.

Interesting bed and breakfast.


The Plaza is a pretty place and, no doubt, much livelier on weekends and during the summer. It was very quiet while we were ther.


There are signs with information about the history of Mesilla.

Note the "M" and "54" noted in the sign above.

This building is the oldest documented brick building in the state of New Mexico. Construction began in 1860.

There are a lot of restaurants located in the old town area.



If you have read many of my posts from New Mexico, you will remember that Billy the Kid really got around this whole area.

The Fountain Theater dates back to 1905 and is still in use. It is now the home of the Mesilla Valley Film Society which features foreign and alternative films nightly. 

This restaurant was absolutely huge. On another side, a worker was reapplying adobe in an effort to restore crumbling areas.

The Saint Albino Catholic Church has been a parish since 1852. We had hoped to view the beautiful stained glass windows and interior but the church was locked......very surprising for a Catholic Church.

 
 
We enjoyed our visit to Mesilla but it would have been much better with some activity going on. On a side note, we stopped at the Visitor's Center which was in the lobby of the local government offices. They had absolutely no information on Mesilla at all although they had lots of pamphlets and brochures on other places in New Mexico. We tried to ask some questions about what we might be missing. One gentleman sitting behind the desk apologized and said he didn't work there and didn't know. He said the man next to him was the employee.....and then commented about how helpful it would be if the man quit playing on his phone and helped us.  Not a good way to treat visitors to your town who are actually interested in seeing thing.