Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Summer Vacation: Somewhere Down in Texas

I find myself at the precipice of a whole new world opening up to me. My children are old enough for all of us to enjoy a vacation, with enough forethought. There is no baby, so no diapers to pack and no special diet to accommodate. We just need lots of wipes (I will now always carry wipes in my bag, as long as I live because they are brilliant) and perhaps some extra clothes. The world is my oyster!

As is the case, at the beginning of the month we found ourselves getting lost in the Hill Country, spending a few nights in Canyon Lake near New Braunfels for a little summer vacation, Texas-style. Anyone who complains about the landscapes in Texas either has a terrible memory, or they have never experienced the Hill Country for themselves. It's lush and rolling hills provide the perfect backdrop to have a little fun with our family.


Because we were traveling with kids, we opted to stay at Yogi Bear's Jellystone Hill Country, which has a great splash pad, both an indoor and outdoor pool, movie showings in the evening, and our fave, the glow-in-the-dark hayride. We stayed in one of their Hill Country cabins, and it was definitely the best "camping" experience I've ever had. If Mr. G could promise every camping trip would have those accommodations, I would be the first in the car. Full kitchen, great deck, bunk beds for the kids, and TV. I would do it again.

My parents and brother went with us, so my mom watched my children at the splash pad so I could go have fun. :) We floated the Guadalupe River that day. Because of the crazy flooding we've had this year, the Guadalupe had many restrictions on it. At least once I thought I would smash straight into a cypress tree. Next time we'll opt to float the Comal River if the conditions are similar, since it's a little less intense. That evening we dined at The Gristmill in Gruene, which is a must-do if you've never been. The food is SO GOOD, and there is a LOT of it.


The last day we headed to Schlitterbahn, which has been on my bucket list for years. We attempted to go once on vacation when my brother and I were young, but it was a rain out. It made it all the better that my second attempt was with the rest of my family.


On our way home, we rounded out the trip with BBQ from Black's in Lockhart, a tiny little town known as the BBQ Capitol of Texas because of its two renowned BBQ joints. Always worth the detour.

It was a great time to be away for a little bit and spend time with my whole family in a very laid back place. My brother has some big life transitions going on right now, and we made a point to celebrate that while we were there as well.

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