Monday, December 3, 2012

Downtown Dallas

It's been warm here in Texas. 

I mean really warm. 

Like not right for the first of December kind of warm.  I'm ready for hot chocolate and snuggling, but our air conditioner is humming away and I actually got a bit of a sun burn on Saturday! 

Every December, there is a fantastic parade in downtown Dallas.  We try to go whenever we can and this year it worked out. 

We have new neighbors who are new to Texas, so we woke them up early and dragged them along. 

Meet Liza and Ulysses - very adorable newlyweds and good sports for getting up so early to go on our adventure.

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We left the house at 7:30am and road the light rail to downtown to hopefully get a good spot for the 10:00am parade. It was so crowded but we ended up on a nice ledge that made for a good seating area.

It was perfect for crowd watching. I loved this little girl's jacket. 12-1-12 (31)

And here's my little girl, who is not so little anymore.
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Here's another cutie.
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Grambling State University was in the parade this year - it was great to see the well-known band. They were fantastic. 12-1-12 (90)

After the parade, we walked around downtown Dallas for a bit.

I love to capture people from behind, and Rominal and Bailey know this so it is sometimes difficult to get their picture without them knowing I took it. 12-1-12 (178)

But if I wait long enough - they forget about me.
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Here's the old Red Courthouse which is now a museum.

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The clouds parted a bit just as we got up close to it.

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We then walked over to the John F. Kennedy memorial - or the Sixth Floor Museum. 12-1-12 (199)

There are always a lot of people around there - you can see the "X" on the spot in the road where JFK was killed. 12-1-12 (201)

This building is still under construction, but I liked how it sparkled in the sun. It's a new church. 12-1-12 (205)

Here's a random building.

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We eventually made our way to a new park that just opened up in downtown Dallas, the Klyde Warren Park. 12-1-12 (208)

Another perfect spot for people watching and enjoying the beautiful weather. 12-1-12 (210)

One of the things that makes this park different from others is that it was built over an existing highway. It's located in the arts district of Dallas where a bunch of museums are close by and it is a nice addition to the area.

Here you can see the highway going underneath the park. 12-1-12 (218)

There was a little fountain area for young kids who seemed to be having fun playing in the water. 12-1-12 (222)

Luckily for us, the park is an attraction for food trucks. We ended our great day with personalized ice cream sandwiches. Yum! 12-1-12 (225)

Monday, November 26, 2012

Banana Bread

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I hope everyone had a fantastic Thanksgiving. 

Since my last post, I went on a Girl Scout camping weekend with these two - Tiffany and my daughter Bailey.


We had a super weekend.  I think the girls had a blast.

Here's one more picture from that weekend - the area was beautiful.


So, now back to a quick recipe.  Normally when I have over ripe bananas, I make my chocolate chip banana muffins, which are awesome, but I wanted something more basic this time.  This recipe fit the bill.  I actually doubled this recipe and made two loaves - which was nice because I gave one away.  I got this recipe from here.

Here's the details:

  • 3 or 4 ripe bananas, smashed
  • 1/3 cup melted butter
  • 1 cup sugar (can easily reduce to 3/4 cup)
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 1/2 cups of all-purpose flour

    (The recipe says you can mix this with a spoon, but I ended up using my Kitchen Aid mixer anyway)
    Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). Mix butter into the mashed bananas in a large mixing bowl. Mix in the sugar, egg, and vanilla. Sprinkle the baking soda and salt over the mixture and mix in. Add the flour last, mix. Pour mixture into a buttered 4x8 inch loaf pan. Bake for 1 hour. Cool on a rack. Remove from pan and slice to serve.
    I peeked into the oven about 45 minutes into the cooking time and the bread looked perfect - golden brown and ready to go.  I did the knife test (stick a knife into the middle and see if it comes out clean) and it failed.  The bread was not done yet - so it did cook the full hour.  So, don't be fooled - it will take an hour.
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    Sunday, October 21, 2012

    Dallas Arboretum - Part Two

    This is a continuation of last week's post about our trip to the Dallas Arboretum. Here's the first post in case you missed it.

    Here's Rominal and me, and this was his first choice of poses.

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    I made him turn around though.
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    Here's some more pictures from our trip.

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    This time of year all of the walkways were lined with pumpkins.

     Everyone loved this.

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    This was one of the knockers on a door on the property. Dallas Arboretum 10-13-12 (214)

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    I handed over my camera to another visitor and she got this picture. Very nice!

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    We saw this little critter on the walkway. We waited and made sure he got into the safety of the flower beds before we left him.

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    Sunday, October 14, 2012

    Dallas Arboretum

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    This weekend we went to the Dallas Arboretum. I've been wanting to go since Spring because they have a Chihuly exhibit that Mom and I wanted to see. However, the thing with living in Texas is that you have to wait until it not so hot outside. We tend to do a lot of indoor things during the summer.

    This weekend was hot still, but not flaming hot.

    We got there right when the gates opened and had a lovely walk. I've got tons of pictures and here's the first half.

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    I love how you can see the fuzz on this flower.

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    Here's some of Chihuly's work, surrounded by the flowers.

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    My mom was with us, and she took this picture of the three of us.

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    It's hard to see how tall this really is, but it was huge.

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    This little cutie was getting her picture taken in the gardens. Lots of people go there to do that, we even saw a wedding! I couldn't help but sneak a picture too.

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    And the last one for today - my Mom and me.

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    We had such a great time.  I'll post more pictures next week.