Thanksgiving in Nola

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New Orleans is almost the halfway point between Houston and Birmingham. That means I’ll probably spend a lot more time there than I ever have before! My best friend Josh and his family drove over after Thanksgiving and I drove down to met them. Josh and I have been to New Orleans many times: my brother’s 21st birthday, his bachelor party, St. Patrick’s Day. There’s always something to do in New Orleans.

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This trip, we went to the Mardi Gras float factory. It was pretty awesome! They make all the floats, store them and do work for theme parks and hotels. The company also does the Chick-fil-A cows. They didn’t have any cows when we were there (bummer), but the scale of things they did have was amazing.

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Most of the creations are Styrofoam sheets glued together and sculpted by hand. Then they cover them in paper mache and paint!

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It was really great getting to see Josh, Breanne and his mom, dad and brother. I couldn’t get all the way back home for Thanksgiving, so it was great to spend some time with people I consider family.

Year of Travel

I always make resolutions at the beginning of a new year. Things like make my bed each day, work out, volunteer. In fact, I have a running list of goals to accomplish. This year I decided that I haven’t seen nearly as much of the world as I wanted to by 26. So I decided to make 2013 the “Year of Travel.” Big or small, in state or out, I am going to see as much as I can.

Frisco SHSU National Championship Game Jan 2013
Me, Jessica and Charlie in Frisco, TX.

I started in January with a return to Frisco, TX, for the FCS National Championship Game. Sam Houston State was playing in a rematch of 2011’s game with North Dakota State. It was another heart breaker of a game for us Bearkats. However, the weekend wasn’t a total loss. I did get to see a couple of the greatest friends I have AND eat at a sports bar lost in time. Bobby V’s Sports Bar is remarkably unchanged from the 1980s.

Bobby V's in Arlington, TX
Bobby V’s in Arlington, TX

Neither are the people who go there. A dive sports bar if there ever was one.

Next was trip to Las Vegas. It was the first time I’d ever been. It’s nothing like it seems on TV. It’s bigger, dirty, louder. Went with a group of guys from B/CS and had a blast though.

The Strip in Vegas.
The Strip in Vegas.
Las Vegas Celine Dion Show Jan 2013
Waiting to see Celine.

Saw my first Vegas show! It was Celine Dion. The woman can perform! Hit a few casinos and was pretty hot a roulette table, almost tripling my money. Overall, great city with more things to see and do then you can in a lifetime. Also ran into my old SHSU friend Dan. He’s working at News 8 in Vegas. He was kind enough to show me around the station and introduce me to some folks.

Last weekend, I took a trip to New Orleans for my friend Josh’s bachelor party. For obvious reasons I won’t divulge too much, but we did have a blast. Even though the drive there and back always seems forever, I genuinely love town. On Saturday, we took an air boat tour of the swamp. We had gators coming right up to the boat! It was incredible. Even for a cloudy morning, the swamp land is just a gorgeous as you think.

Next on my list? To finish out March and look ahead to April; Waco (for work training), Snook (for Chilifest), Austin (for Texas Associated Press Awards), Washington, TX (for Josh & Breanne’s wedding) and Oklahoma (for work). I see each of these trips as a small adventure away from the normal, everyday routine.

Where will you travel this year?