The end of September/beginning of October my kids had a week off for Fall Break and we took off for New Orleans on a spur-of-the-moment, long weekend trip!
The cotton was being harvested on the roads from Arkansas to Louisiana. I always love seeing the cotton come in. So beautiful.
We stayed at a Hyatt Place hotel, close to the Convention Center downtown in the warehouse district. It was close enough to everything that we didn’t get our car out of the parking deck until we left.
New Orleans is so friendly and fun. So many interesting people and gorgeous weather in the fall. I absolutely adore it.
Fun things we did:
- Ate beignets in Jackson Square at Cafe du Monde
- Visited the Audubon Aquarium (Fun if you haven’t been, but we visited the aquarium in Atlanta this past year and this one paled in comparison, probably pass next time.)
- Walked in the French Quarter *
- Ate at Mother’s (This is our favorite restaurant in New Orleans! You have to be prepared to order when you get to the front of the line though!)
- Listened to live jazz on the street *
- Ran in Jackson Square *
- Visited the St. Louis Cathedral *
- Toured the French Quarter on a Carriage Tour
- Visited the World War 2 museum (we could have spent two days there- amazing)
- Walked through the Farmer’s Market *
- Toured the Old U.S. Mint (*Neat museum of money, history, and musical history. We also happened on a swing dance/band festival! All the real NOLA jazz is in that area of the city now, the FQ is mainly a tourist attraction. Lots of great places to eat or listen if you park close to the Mint at the end of the Market.)
- Toured the old cemeteries *(we didn’t do an official tour, just parked down by Cemetery #2
*All the starred things are FREE!!!
Trip wasn’t too expensive, except for food. If you get out of the tourist areas you’ll get better deals. For attractions look for coupons/deals online before you go. There were some really cool places to eat and hang out down in the warehouse district that I’d like to try next time. With a baby that was tired by the time we stopped to eat we didn’t try any of the fancier places.
On the way home we drove down to the ocean and stopped at a beach in Pass Christian, Mississippi. Beautiful little town and they happened to have a church shrimp festival going on that was fun to walk around. The kids had a great time playing in the sand at the beach before the long trip home.
School Pumpkin Patch trips,
Fried everything and Turkey legs at the Arkansas State Fair,
Zombies at the zoo,
Fall Fest at school,
Trick or Treaty fun,
and Candy meltdowns!
Even with our vacation this month,
October wore me out!
How about you?
Adios, October- Hola, November!
Last week we drove to Clarksville to pick a little bit of heaven
(with a bonus visit with my wonderful Grandpa, aunt, and cousins!)
|Some of our helpers.
The peaches are fantastic this year, so worth the drive.
There are so many and they are so abundant and sweet!
|Red Havens and White Nectar (or Winblo?) Peaches
Of course all the kitchen counters covered with peaches means
I had to get busy putting them away…
(Peaches turn quickly if you’re not careful!)
Two batches of peach jam…
|First batch of Peach Spiced Jam
Some canned peaches…
And also a beautiful fruit salad
and several quart bags of frozen sliced peaches to use later!
It wouldn’t be bad if I wasn’t allergic to fruit…
It’s really hard to not eat some!
Also, Johnson County has a beautiful new outdoor recreational area
so we checked it out. There water park is only $6 and nicer than anything we
have in the Central AR area. The kids had a blast. They are working on an indoor
pool that looks like it will rival anything here! I’m a bit jealous!
This past weekend I attended the Arkansas Women Bloggers Unplugged conference in Mountain View at the Ozark Folk Center State Park.
If you know me (or read my blog) you know how much my family loves Mountain View and the folk center. It isn’t unheard of for us to get an urge and drive the 2 1/2 hrs for some Tommy’s cheese pizza and music in the square.
If we were closer I would beg to work at the folk center. (As a kid I liked to dream that I was transported back to the pioneer days.) We did get a few breaks where we got to roam the center to shop and explore. So I pretended I was the only female blacksmith in the village- but then remembered how easily I get hot and just bought some windchimes. Maybe an herbalist or glass blower instead?
|Bloggy Buds (Kyran, Alison, Whitney) Shoppin’
I hadn’t been on a girls’ only trip in over ten years- and this was an amazing experience. I got to room with some fun and feisty ladies (Alison, Sarabeth, and Whitney) and hang out with others (esp. Melissa, Jerusalem, Brittany, Kyran, and Natalie!) We got to be nutty and smart- my favorite! I learned how to “tweet” properly, Instagram, and how to get Klout in some strange things. If you live in Arkansas please check out Arkansas Women Blogger’s– a great community of fantastic ladies willing to help you with anything.
On Friday had an Iron chef AWBU contest and got awesome aprons with our blog names embroidered on them!
|Team Savory’s Contribution!
And swag? Wow. The AWBU team outdid themselves. The sponsors went all out and I came home with bags and bags of goodies (Ziploc Versa-glass containers, All You magazines, Mrs. Meyers goodies, boot polish, Happy Birthday baby books, Field notes, Duck Tape that my daughter confiscated, handmade lotion from Tommy Sue’s Critters AND an amazing pair of Ariat boots from Country Outfitter!)
(Be reading for a chance to win a gift certificate for your own pair of boots from Country Outfitter in the next month!)
At our BBQ on Saturday night we even were witnesses to one of the sweetest things…
A fellow blogger, Gina was asked to tell her tale of how she started blogging. Unbeknownst to her, her boyfriend Thom walked up behind her during her talk and proposed! Such a sweet love story- read more about it on her blog!
|Gina & Thom’s Engagement!
A big “Thank You!” to the AWBU team, the great sponsors, and all the folks at the Ozark Folk Center State Park for all of your hard work!
This coming weekend I’m heading to the hills!
Arkansas Women Bloggers is having an “Unplugged” Conference in Mountain View, Arkansas at the lovely Ozark Folk Center!
Reasons why I’m so excited?
- I can’t even remember when I ever went on a girls’ only weekend!
- Mountain View is such a neat town!
- I get to learn how to photograph food better (something I really need!)
- Getting to hang out with old and new friends!
- Needle Felting, beadmaking classes!
- Dancing a jig!
- Great blogging tips from the pros!
- Watching the craftsmen at work in the Ozark Folk Center!
- and… FREE BOOTS from the conference’s sponsor, Country Outfitter!
|Aren’t these beautiful!
I’ve wanted a good pair of cowboy boots since my hubby got his Ariat’s a couple of years ago.
He adores his boots and wears them well, I must say. Country Outfitter has so many beautiful boots and at very reasonable prices. I think I’m going to get my youngest a new pair for Christmas- he’s outgrown his poor boots several times over and still tries to shove his feet into them!
Mountain View is a wonderful place for a mini-vacation right here in Arkansas. My family begs to go several times a year. Besides the Ozark folk center you have floating and fishing on the White River, great camping, Tommy’s Pizza, Blanchard Springs Caverns, Loco Ropes zipline center, free music on the square every night, horseback riding and so much more.