Monday, August 8, 2011

Texas Trip 2011

My parents arranged a trip to visit family in Texas so I decided to tag along. Katie didn't go because she is in the third trimester of baking Baby Vickery!

We coordinated our flights and I arrived on Friday the 29th and quickly met my parents at the airport. Pretty soon we had our car rented and were off to the hotel, the Comfort Suites in Grand Prairie. This hotel was memorable mainly for the softball tournament and baby shower it hosted while we were there. Oh, and the bed was really comfortable.

After meeting Teresa and Charles (and their new dog Rosie), we headed to Babe's Chicken in Arlington for a great family style dinner. The place was super popular as we had to wait close to an hour for our large group to be seated. Attending were myself, my parents, Aunt Teresa, Uncle Charles, my cousin Becky, her husband Kenny, their two children Brayden and Grace, my cousin Matt and his fiancee Kasey, Charles' parents Clint and Barbara, Grand-Aunt Joyce, cousin once removed Letitia and her husband Chip, cousin once removed Loretta and her husband Charlie. Suffice to say it was a big group but the restaurant was designed to handle it! The only sad part was that I didn't take any pictures...

A constant theme of the trip was Texas' epic heat wave and drought. As we arrived the Dallas area had experienced high temperatures above 100° for over 30 straight days! Combined with the fact that there had been no significant rain in two months, everything was super dry and brown looking. I'm trying my best rain dances to help but sadly they appear ineffective...

On Saturday we (myself, my parents, Teresa, and Charles) went to visit my Nana in Palestine. Before we got too far down the road we had a breakfast at the Cracker Barrel in Desoto. Along the way to Palestine we stopped at Teresa and Charles' lot where they plan to build a retirement home. It was in a very nice area along a reservoir with a nice clubhouse - sadly, my camera ate the pictures. After the stop, we continued to Palestine where my Nana is in the care of the Alzheimer's unit of the Cartmell Home. She is doing pretty well physically but Alzheimer's has definitely taken a toll on her mind - I think she only had a vague idea about who my parents were and I'm not sure she knew who I was at all. It was great to see Nana but of course very hard to see how much Alzheimer's had affected her. The facility was very nice and the staff in the Alzheimer's unit were impressive - that is one tough job! After we left the Cartmell Home, we had a late lunch at El Toro (yay for their green sauce) before making stops at Pilgrim Cemetery near Elkhart and Crawford Cemetery near Slocum. These two cemeteries are where many of my Vickery and Seymour relatives are buried, including my Papa Vickery. From there we headed home, getting back to the hotel late in the evening.

On Sunday my Mom and Teresa decided we should go to a giant flea market in Canton, which is a little ways east of the Dallas area. This flea market was massive, I would estimate a square mile in area, with countless open-air buildings, parking areas, and even one air-conditioned building. Upon getting there we proceeded to walk around the flea market in the triple digit heat. Both Dad and myself surrendered to the heat after awhile and just sat there drinking water. Teresa, Charles, and Mom did a better job staying at it but the heat eventually got to Mom. Of particular note were the eating establishments at this flea market, highlighted by the fried food emporium. I am proud to say I ate no food at the flea market! On the way back home we ate lunch at the Ranchero (a decent buffet) and stopped at an improbably placed bead store along I-20.

On Monday we went to Frisco to meet my Mom's former co-worker Kathy and her husband Lloyd at La Hacienda Ranch in Frisco. It was Kathy and Lloyd's anniversary so we all had a nice lunch to celebrate! The restaurant was really good and I really enjoyed my enchilada with chili on it. The restaurant was founded by the inventor of the frozen margarita machine which is an interesting bit of trivia. Afterwards Kathy, Mom, and Teresa wanted to go shopping at Sam Moon's and T.J. Maxx. I decided I would rather walk around the giant mall nearby so I did that. I was blown away when I saw that the mall had an ice rink in it. Combined with the Barnes & Noble and Chick-Fil-A, this was a pretty solid place to hang out.

On Tuesday we headed home. Once again we coordinated flights with both of us departing around 10:30am. For once our flights were in the same terminal so we were able to hang out at the gate until our flights were almost ready to board. We said our goodbyes with the memories of a great trip together!

Texas Trip 2011 Pictures!
Mom's Texas Pictures!

1 comment:

Cathy said...

Sounds like you got a lot packed in to a few days.