Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Austin the Trip, Part 1

So Austin, Texas. A couple weeks ago we were away in Austin visiting Paul's mom and it was a great trip. We started out on the Thursday by leaving work early and driving down to Renton to spend the night with Rebekah and Tony, which was LOVELY. They cooked us a great dinner and made a nice place for us to sleep. They drove us to Sea-Tac bright and early! That's true friendship. 

On the trip to Austin we had two flights, Seattle to San Fransisco, then San Fran to Austin. The first flight was short and easy, I read a book and a People magazine mostly. The second flight I was sitting in front of a very very unpleasant woman. Everyone around me was allowed to recline their seats but not me - when I tried (as I'm pregnant and have a bad back, upright seats aren't made for being comfortable) she shouted at me, and kicked the seat while shouting until I pulled it back up. So unpleasant. Being pregnant makes me way more emotional and I definitely cried. I tried not to, but there you go, I had no ability to pull it together. Paul was furious with how she was treating me and kept offering to switch seats but he's a big guy and the aisle seat is very much suited to him, sitting in my little middle seat was something I was willing to let him do for me. Why should we both be uncomfortable? Because actually he chose not to recline his seat since there was a baby behind him and he wanted to give the mom space. Anyways, the lady behind Paul (with the baby boy, Jake) was super pleasant and her baby was so great on the flight. We caught up with her at baggage claim and Paul pulled her bags off for her. Paul was so great to me on the flight - even though he was so angry with the woman behind me (who was rude to numerous other people while we were near her) he knew it would make me feel worse if he called her out, and so instead he spent his efforts making sure I felt loved and happy. We played games and chatted and I felt very supported! All in all the flights were smooth - we had great timing and I never felt bored.

Though I did learn that even if I watched my beverage consumption (trying not to drink many beverages to limit times in the washroom) as a pregnant lady on a flight I still need to use the washroom all the time. Oh my word. I did not realize how often that would be happening, how unpleasant! Thankfully Paul was the only person who needed to move when I had to get up, so that was a blessing.

We arrived in Austin at 4:45pm and headed straight to Chuy's Tex-Mex (this was my one request for places we HAD to eat), home of my favorite sauce, the creamy jalapeno sauce, that they serve with salsa  and chips. So good! We waited an hour for a table but we had a great time in the warm Texas air waiting and chatting. I had their Flautas (which are more like toquitoes than a larger flauta, but either way are FABULOUS). The meal was awesome from start to finish. I took half my dinner to go and they gave me a cup to go filled with the creamy dip. So happy!

We headed to the store to pick up some groceries and stopped by to visit Nancy & Cris' new office space, which was really great - it's an excellent space for their work! Then finally it was "home" to their new apartment - the guest room has it's own bathroom with huge tub and is a very private part of the house, which is nice when you're visiting people. It's nice to have a space to call your own while travelling and visiting. I definitely took at least 3 baths in the  days we were there.

Saturday morning we were off to go errands and shop around town. We braved traffic (crazy) but thankfully by starting the morning off at Taco Deli we were in good shape. Taco Deli is Mexican breakfast taco joint - their Migas Taco is fabulous. Their Horchata is also really great, sweeter than we get up in Canada. Paul enjoyed spicy tacos, obviously, and loved the Dona Salsa that is their specialty.

We then headed to a super super exciting destination for Nancy's Birthday. We decided to surprise Paul's mom with a 3D ultrasound to see the baby and hopefully find out with us the gender (since as of November 25th we still haven't found out in Canada!). It seemed really special to us to do this with Nancy since she does live so far away. It was a really special time - getting to meet our baby in 4D (the 4th D being movement). Baby was so active! At one point baby even yawned, which was really cute. Of course, like all babies in the womb, baby looked a bit like ET but that's to be expected, so I just thought it was sweet. The ultrasound tech had a strong guess for gender, but we're waiting until we have it confirmed by the doctor here (hopefully later today). 3D/4D Ultrasounds  are less a technical time, and more like pre-natal photography. The tech's are trained in ultrasounds but not to the degree that a medical ultrasound tech is trained, so before we blab on the internet we want to be sure! But the woman, Tammy, who did our ultrasound in Austin was FABULOUS. She was kind and gracious and made it such a positive experience. It was really really neat to do that with Paul and Nancy - I'm so thankful to see how active and healthy seeming our baby is. It feels so much more real that way! We used First Glimpse Imaging and we would definitely recommend it. Especially now that we've done the normal 20 week ultrasound, that's so lackluster compared to 3D. 
Just before heading in!

Nancy and I: I swear this was a happy time - I'm not sure why we look so grim! Maybe it's the cold jelly she'd just squirted on me!

The lovely tech, Tammy

Then it was off for a day of shopping; REI, Container Store, Target & Old Navy, Babies R Us & World Market, whatup! In the middle of of all that shopping we swung by Whole Foods to grab lunch. Whole Foods in Austin is an experience. It's nothing like Whole Foods in Vancouver. Not only does it have a walk in beer cooler and beer & wine samples all over the place, it also does a great to go lunch and has double the amount of stuff around. It's pretty amazing. I mean Vancouver has lunch items but it's just not the same. 

Saturday night we went out to celebrate Paul & Nancy's upcoming birthdays. Nancy's birthday is in mid November and Paul's birthday is December 5th, and he's turning 30. It was great to celebrate them and to do so we did something I've been wanting to try for a while. We hit up a brazillian steak house, Fogo de Chao. They bring meat around, table to table. You sit and all sorts of meats arrive and you can pick whatever you like! They also bring little side dishes - cheese bread (non gluten!), mashed potatoes, parmesan polenta & carmelized bananas. There is also a salad bar; sauteed mushrooms, scalloped potatoes, smoked salmon and tons of other salads and salad options. So great.

Not only was the food excellent but we had such great conversation around the table - favorite character traits were shared about each of us, dreams for the future and answering the question, "Is your life where you thought it would be?" It was a great way to end our first full day in Austin.
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