Tuesday, September 13, 2011


Yes, I know I am behind on blogging again. The week before last I was on edge trying to figure out if Randy was going to get to go on this trip I has planned. Who knew ginning season would start this year before Labor Day when I planned it? Certainly not me, the person who booked this vacation. I knew Cari didn't have classes on Friday. So I knew she could join us toward the end of the week. We had the condo booked from August 28th (Sunday to Sunday) to September 4th. The plan was for Randy and me to go up there after church on Sunday and then the kids join us for Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Well the best laid plans don't always go as planned. My Baton Rouge kids couldn't come. Randy had to gin cotton and I couldn't find anyone with a schedule flexible enough to permit them to join me.
So I decided God must want me to spend some quality time with Him. I took the challenge and that's what I did. I traveled the 6 hour trip alone. Totally stepped out of my box. I had never done anything like that. I did my morning walk and prayer time with God on Wednesday of that week. Then I came home and finished packing. Then set out for my journey alone. I got there a little before 5:00. I took some bible study with me, some Karen Kingbury novels and my swimsuit. The first day was spend walking, reading and relaxing by the pool.
The next day Cari and her boyfriend, John Mark, arrived by mid-morning. They were very tired when they got there from late night, little sleep and driving the 4 hour trip. So I showed them their rooms and I gave them a 2 hour nap time while I went to run a few errands. Then when I came back we went for a late lunch at a famous local place called, Whole Hog Cafe. I wasn't extremely impressed. Maybe because at that point I was still trying to eat healthy and my choice was a little dry. Still glad we tried the place. Next we headed to downtown Hot Springs. Poor BF...Cari's guy followed us patiently into each little dress shop as Cari and I shopped and browsed the merchandise. He quickly learned to find the "man chair" in each of the little shops.
After all the shopping, walking and sweating, we decided it was time to head back to the condo. We had worked up an appetite too by then, so we decided to go ahead and have dinner at a restaurant not too far from our condo on Lake Hamilton. It was called Fisherman's Wharf. It was actually on the lake. Cari had ate there this summer on a previous trip with her friends with some friends that she had met in Cancun. They drove a boat there that time. The heat of the day had finally begun to be cooled off with a breeze. So we ate on the porch. We didn't take any photos, but it was quite nice. And we all ate too much...especially me the WW person. John Mark convinced me to indulge since it was vacation. And I did!
The next day I let the kids sleep late. Maybe not late, but late for me. I fixed them a big breakfast, my Eggs & Bacon over Asparagus. Then we got ready and headed back downtown so we could go to the lookout tower. This was our view from the tower. John Mark had never been to Hot Springs so this was must do.
We stayed in this hotel back in 2006 when my family came to Hot Springs. The name of this historical hotel is the Arlington.

Cari and John Mark looking down at the city and the surrounding area of Hot Springs. It is so amazing how far you can see when are this high above everything.

Okay, posing for a photo for mom....
Yes, I had to ask JM to take one of me and Cari too.

Cari stopped looking at the historical info long enough to pose for me.

A candid image of these two...
This is an another area at the lookout tower that I wanted to take a few photos in before leaving. I remember doing so when I had been there 5 years earlier with the rest of my family.

They were patient with me on the "picture taking " thing.

Below: the view from this location...

So next we went to the little park by Arlington Hotel where the hot springs were flowing. I wanted JM to feel just hot this water really is.

This park is actually where I did Natalie's one-year portraits. I will do a short post and add a few those images soon.

Yes, I saw this yawn a lot. Cari has a hard time getting her sleep regulated lately.
These two were always so happy to take pics...which was very nice for this photographer/mom.

BELOW: It was nice that JM didn't mind taking a few of me and Cari too. I hate asking people, but I do it anyway and I am glad I did. Otherwise, I look back and hate it even more that I didn't have any of me with my family.

My trip didn't turn out like I had planned, but it was a great trip all in all. Cari and JM kept me laughing. They are so precious and obviously in love. How can you not smile and be happy for that. He is an answer to many prayers for my daughter (but I won't get into that on this post). We ate a famous pancake place before leaving downtown. We spent the evening resting, playing (put-put golf, badminton...they played horse shoes) and watching a movie back at the resort.

The next day we packed up and headed home different directions. Cari surprised JM with a detour home to an Auto Museum and a little more sight seeing. I will try to link some photos of that later once she posts them. [If you are her facebook friend, she has a nice album on her page of them.] She's a bit behind in blogging too. She got a little behind during RUSH week and then trip that she is trying to adjust to studying for college and just life in general. I am so glad that she and her guy joined me for two days of the trip. Before I left I had a very long lunch date with Randy's cousin, Karen, and her daughter, Clair. I had the best time telling her what all God has done in our lives the past 1/2 year and Celebrate Recovery. I've been planning to do a Celebrate Recovery post and I promise I will. I want it to be a good one so I stall on that for now.


I finally left and my trip home wasn't quite as easy going and as it was coming. Tropical Storm remnants started getting in my path. The last 2 hours home were the hardest and I had never been more happy to see this muddy dirt road that leads to my house than that night!

1 comment:

Sujay said...

So beautiful, nice, and important the site is.Perfect arrangement.Well done carry on.