Sunday, May 20, 2018

Final Days of Fun With the Grandkids in Texas…

Image may contain: JJ Hinton and Sharon Hinton, people smiling, sunglasses, outdoor, water and nature

With our time winding down in the Texas Hill Country we tried to squeeze in a few more tasks along with a bit more fun. The last of our spring cleaning goals was to clean the front window’s drapes, steam clean the couch and clean our throw rug which our steamer trunk/coffee table rests upon. Since our son Jason has a steam cleaner we asked him bring it when he came to spend the night with us at the RV.

Image may contain: one or more people, shoes and indoorImage may contain: people sitting, shoes, table, tree and outdoor

While it certainly isn’t a lot of fun cleaning, it sure was a relief to be done knowing we are now good to go for another season. The steam cleaner made short work on all the items we wanted to clean and it was really nice not to have to rent one.

eImage may contain: tree, mountain, sky, plant, outdoor, nature and water

Before leaving the area, we wanted to take one last drive along the River Road to New Braunfels. This is definitely one of the most scenic drives in the area. We took Jason along for the ride and as is typical fashion we all  '”oohed and ahhhed” at each of the river crossings we made. Our final destination was to the Aquabrew Brewery (one of our favorite Texas breweries) for a cold craft beer. Back at home we made Jason some panko fried shrimp for dinner as a treat he rarely has since his wife is allergic to shellfish.  He seemed to really enjoy it so it was fun for us to see his delight.

Image may contain: one or more people, people standing, mountain, sky, tree, grass, plant, outdoor and natureImage may contain: shoes and outdoor

Our last weekend at Canyon Lake had arrived so we dove back down to San Antonio to have one last weekend with the grandkids. Of course we also took advantage of Jason’s BBQ grill to smoke a large pork butt which we feasted on the entire weekend. Also since it was mothers day weekend we planned in a family hike as our last hurrah before we heading back to the lake.

The hike was at Government Canyon State Rec Area where we found a nice three mile loop winding up one of the hills in the hill country. The hike was enjoyable as there were still wildflowers all over the place. The Mexican Hats and Indian Blankets have replaced the Bluebonnets and Paintbrushes but the color is always welcome on a hike.

Image may contain: 4 people, including JJ Hinton, people standing, mountain, sky, outdoor and nature

We were also lucky that i was able to call up a Painted Bunting so we all got a good look at one of the most colorful birds in the state. There are no pictures of it though as I was busy showing it off to the grandkids. The main feature of this hike was a bluff offering a vista of the surrounding Texas hill country. The return trip was easier as it was down hill and once we got back we feasted on our leftover BBQ pulled pork sandwiches made with Sharon’s homemade ciabatta rolls. Yum!

Image may contain: 1 person, standing and outdoorImage may contain: one or more people, people sitting, tree and outdoor

With some final playing with the grandkids the time had come for us to head back to Canyon Lake and pack up for our move the next day over to Blanco State Park. It is always fun to enjoy some family time and we look forward to seeing them all again at Katie’s wedding in October…

NOTE: Next up was a drive of just about 35 miles north to Blanco State Park for three nights but we are now in Waco Texas…

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Day Trips From Canyon Lake in Texas…

Image may contain: 3 people, people smiling, people standing, sky, mountain, outdoor and nature

With Katie and Brooks back in North Carolina and our grandkids back in school we went back home to Cranes Mill COEPark to chill at the RV for a while. However, since our son Jason and his bride Kelly had a few more days off they drove out to the RV park so we could show them a few of our Texas Hill Country favorites..

No trip to the hill country would be complete without a stop to Luckenbach Texas. Since Kelly hadn’t been to this cool place nor the town of Fredericksburg we made a long loop drive to include them both.

Image may contain: 2 people, including JJ Hinton, people smiling, people standing, tree and outdoorImage may contain: birdImage may contain: John Hinton and Sharon Hinton, people smiling, people standing, tree, hat and outdoor

The first stop was Fredericksburg where we found a free paring spot on a side road off the main drag. From there we walked the blocks of downtown first up one side and then back down the other so Kelly could take in all the sights. We of course stopped in at one of my favorite stores. This particular store sells all kinds of sauces, relishes, jelly and pickled products but best of all encourages visitors to sample dang near every one of them.

[Fredericksburg%2520and%2520Luckenbach%2520TX%2520010%255B10%255D.jpg]

We made our way through tasting the products that appealed to each of us and for me that meant heading back to where the hottest of the hot sauces were located. Man I love some of these hot sauces but they are so hot they would probably sit in my refrigerator for years taking up very valuable cooling space. So sampling once a year is what satisfies my need for a hotter than hell sauce. Jason saw me trying one that was over 500,000 scoville units. To put this in perspective a jalapeno is about 2000 scoville units so this sauce was 2500 times hotter that a jalapeno! He tried it too and we had a laugh about the burn.

Image may contain: 3 people, people smiling, people standing, sky, mountain, outdoor and natureImage may contain: sky, outdoor, nature and water

After Fredericksburg we stopped at Luckenbach for happy hour beers and to listen to some music. We apparently chose a poor day to do so as there were workers reroofing the bathrooms and making a lot of noise so the music was inside the small bar rather than out on the back porch area. We still opted to relax outside with our beers to point out to Kelly the resident rooster and cat who were both mingling with the small crowd. Although it wasn’t ideal, I think Kelly still was able to enjoy spending an afternoon at this legendary place she'd always wanted to visit.

Image may contain: sky, outdoor, water and nature

Another day we took a loop drive over to Pedernales Falls for a hike. Pedernales Falls, or P-falls, as we used to call it in our younger days is a gem of the Texas Hill Country. Both Jason and Kelly had never been there so it was a treat to show them the trails to P-Falls. As always the scenery of the Pedernales River cutting through the limestone and reshaping it was a feast for the eyes.

Image may contain: food, outdoor and natureImage may contain: sky, cloud, ocean, outdoor and nature

We sure have been having a great time in the Texas Hill Country enjoying beautiful weather, brilliant wildflowers and making memories with our family…

NOTE: We left Cranes Mill Park on Canyon Lake in the hill country of Texas and moved just about 35 miles north to Blanco State Park for three nights. We are now in Waco Texas…