Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Day trippin' this summer: Taos

While waiting for the troop to come off the trail in Philmont we did a bit of exploring on our own.  First stop:  Taos.
Taos from Angel Fire is a winding road through the mountains on narrow highways that are very much like a roller coaster!  FYI: roller coasters terrify me.
It makes Hubby a little crazy when I grip the dashboard and say "oh!" like I do...I'm a bit of a Nervous Nellie as a passenger, I'll admit.
The scenery was pretty wonderful, though and the weather was great.  A little overcast, but cool.
We went to a market square in town and spent time bopping around looking at local crafts.  We bought some souvenirs, including another patch for Hubby's cook apron, some Taos incense, and some green chiles.  There were shops with pottery, turquoise, and leather items.  Lots of beautiful handmade crafts. 
Then we stopped by a Mexican restaurant off the square and enjoyed some stuffed jalapenos, and chilies relleno.
Such a good lunch in a shady patio.  I could have licked the plate.

And the wait staff were very friendly, as were most people we met in our travels.
Hubby approved of the beer, too...
We drove around Taos a bit, but we didn't stay long enough to see the Taos Pueblo. However, we did go to the visitor center and watch an historical movie and learn about the history of the art scene in Taos. We were pooped from walking about a million miles on low oxygen so we left to go to the RV resort to hang out.  Back in Angel Fire we bought some scallops, fresh veggies, and ramen to make a stir fry for dinner.  Next stop: the Vietnam Memorial and Eagle's Nest.

Monday, August 29, 2016

What the week holds, and game on

Last Thursday was the first game of the season for our high school football team - the Taco Shack Taco Bowl.  Sadly we lost the game by 6 points.  But it was a great start for the band who sounded terrific!
Seven p.m. in Austin is HOT in August. 
The show this year is "Tango" - it's a competition year and so far the show is really good!
This week we have Court of Honor and a dessert potluck for Scouts, I have a follow up with my doc for a gastritis issue (no fun), and I'm helping with catering for the band on Thursday (big fun).  Hubby and I have documents to gather for the purchase of the land so keep your fingers crossed for us it will all go smoothly.  Other than those things, it's a calm week around here.  Just rolling on to September!

Friday, August 26, 2016

So...we are buying some land...

For months now, Hubby and I have been talking about our Plan B - what we would like Life to look like after the last bird leaves the nest.  And to that end, he's been researching land for sale in the Texas Hill Country.  And I think he found a winner - a 5 acre lot in Burnet county, with two other smaller parcels that gain us access to the boat launch owned by the property owner's association.
 Looking off to the right as you enter the driveway from the road.
OK, this is where the country driveway takes a turn, literally and figuratively.  One of the previous owners was a distributive education instructor.  So there are loads of BIG trash on the property.  Like boats.  And tires.  And empty tanks.  And trailers.  And other stuff I don't even know what it is.  For now, let's just continue the tour...
The paved road ends and a crushed stone drive begins.  And so do beautiful views.  See the speck of blue just there?
 Hills and trees!
 Cacti!  And, we do have neighbors, but you pretty much can't see them, and they can't see you...
 Gratuitous pic of my hiking boots
 About the only sounds you hear up here are motorboats on the lake, far below.
Hubby put on some pants protectors to take me on a walking tour.  As you can see, the more excited he got about it the further ahead of me he progressed - I was still worried about tripping over cacti and rocks!
 Another pretty view.  That's Lake Buchanan.
We were told there is a flock of wild turkeys up here, and other critters like foxes and the occasional bobcat or mountain lion.  And we saw plenty of scat, but no critters.
 The property is bordered on one side by a county road, and surrounded by ranch land on the back.  Lots of trees - mostly oak and cedar.
 My favorite shot:
Notice the absence of trash in the pictures...I will show that next time, if we happen to get financing and go out there again to show the boys.  But the owner agreed to clear most of it away as a condition of the sale (the biggest stuff) and the rest we either keep to use, recycle, sell, or haul off.
Along the way we talked about perhaps building there some day.  We don't have to decide that right now - as long as we have the first piece of the puzzle, we can fit the rest together later.  And we can take Mabel out there a few times and get the feel of it - where does the sun hit and when?  That sort of thing. 
On the way back out, I spot a pile of rock gravel we can use to augment the road up to the top of the property.  And a nice shady oak.  Not pictured:  a rock "cliff" that surrounds the property from the county road side, landscaped by ferns - so pretty.  Wish us luck - every time Hubby and I attempt something like this, that we just "feel" is right, it seems to work out for the best.  And every time, I'm amazed that I'm a grown up that can do such things!  Ha!

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

On the road with Mabel - New Mexico travelin' and Cimarron

{I guess I should tie up the loose ends of our summer trip in Mabel, seeing as how fall is about to be upon us!} 
After Palo Duro, we made our way west.  The one thing you notice when you are in New Mexico is that things stretch out forever, just like in West Texas.  And there is very little traffic on two lane highways.  And zero big rigs!  And zero trees!
 And one minute you are travelin' along, enjoying seeing the mesas in the distance...
 ...the next minute you are closer and what's that you see?  Storm clouds!  It pretty much rained daily.  Which was wonderful coming from the drought and heat in Central Texas.
  Beautiful scenery, cloudy days included.
 By late lunchtime we had found our way to Cimarron.
On the way through Cimarron, we stopped at the Cree-Mee Drive-In for a plate of wonderful enchiladas - heck, once you make me wait that long for lunch, any enchiladas will do.  Hey look, there are scouts in here!
 The main drag of Cimarron is less than a mile long, and since the population is just over one thousand, we didn't see many people out and about.  Looks eerily like a ghost town in places.  After a few days in Angel Fire, we returned to Cimarron to meet up with Bubbie, fresh off the trail.
We did some shopping and bopping around.  The people we did meet were very friendly and there was a neat shop with lots of old scout memorabilia.
Another shop was in an old mercantile building and had a soda fountain, along with this wall of scout patches from years of young men going through Philmont. Very neat!
We mostly just puttered around.  Although we did buy patches to sew on Hubby's camping cook's apron.  We also visited an old mill, but of course I forgot to take pictures!
We stopped by a "haunted" hotel called the St. James.  Seems like everywhere we went, there were flowers blooming - so much beautiful color.
And no mosquitos or flies!
 The road from Cimarron to Eagle's Nest comes with some awesome scenery.
I should have taken more pics - again, too busy to fiddle with my camera or phone!  Plus, I was so out of breath the entire time we were in New Mexico - I never got used to the altitude.
Bubbie looked tired but happy - what an accomplishment!  We gave him an iced gallon zip-loc of Snickers to share with his trek mates and took him shopping at the trading post.
 Mount Baldy: 
 My kid made it to the top of that mountain! 
Next up: exploring Eagle's Nest!


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