Down South Where I (Wanna) Stay……

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This past weekend, we went down to San Antonio for the long weekend, because we had nothing better to do. Just kidding. I’ll tell you why, later.

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We got to see the Terminator(Aspen) and spend some time with family for Jaelan’s birthday. But, more importantly, we got away from the blistering cold! We did come back to about half a foot of snow.

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I was able to check out a couple of coffee spots, Local Coffee and Press Coffee. Both were awesome spots and served a great cortado. I found Press Coffee a little cozier and less crowded.Β Xavier and I tried out the Esquire Tavern on the Riverwalk for desserts and cocktails for Valentine’s. I highly recommend. Great space and atmosphere, and a little history. We had the VDay special and the pulled pork sandwiches, and the Bitter Flip cocktail. We couldn’t squeeze in Fiddy Shades, but maybe that was a good thing?

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We also went on a hike with the girls at a nearby park for VDay. May just be a new tradition. Right before we finished:

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Xavi: How many miles have we hiked?
Aspen: 5 days!! We walked for 5 days, Xavi!! (She sounded angry)

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I think she was tired by then, lol. It was only a couple of miles, jeez.

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Here are a few more photos. Sadly, I did not get any shot of the Riverwalk, next time. Have a great rest of the week!! πŸ™‚

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Week 41: Finally, Friday!!

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Happy Weekend!! I hope you had an awesome and productive week. Excuse the blog silence during the week, it was a long week.

This week was a test-bed(an overused compound word/phrase at work) for running early in the morning, before work. I’ll give it another week or so before I denounce it.

Highlights:

Since we didn’t have the girls for Father’s Day, I got Xavier and I tickets to the first Boulevardia (Beer)Fest at West Bottoms on Sunday. Mistake number one: we should have definitely went on Saturday. Mistake number two: expecting it to be similar to the Houston Wine Fest or the Houston Beer Fest. Also, I missed out on the first PorchFest KC on Saturday, because I am a super procrastinator, and father’s day gift perusing took way longer that I had anticipated.

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Boulevardia:

We went on Sunday afternoon. It was not as crowded as the previous day, as indicated by Instagram. The down pour in the morning might have impacted this as well, and the fact that it was Father’s Day. I was a little disappointed at the selection of taps and what was available to for tasting on this day. Maybe the participating brewery and distillery did not pack enough for the 3 day festival, I don’t know. But, this event was scheduled for 12-6, and by about 230-3pm, most samples were gone.

We got there around 2pm, as I was sure, this was early enough and more than enough time to taste and stroll. Not. We were able to taste a couple of samples. I tried out an awesome cocktail from Pinckney Bend Distillery, their white corn whiskey collins, and it was great. We didn’t get much in by the way of tasting. The beers on tap were ok.

But the music was pretty good and there was plenty of food trucks lined up. There was an awesome all girl band on the Homegrown Stage, whose name escapes me. I was glad to find out that the festival had plenty of family friendly activities as well. There was also a Makers Market of local artisans. Overall, for a first time event, it was decent, and I will probably go back next year, on a Saturday.

Also, Xavier invited me to go fishing with him and his friends. The last time I went fishing, I hooked my finger pretty bad. This time wasn’t so tragic, and I even caught a fish, though not as big as Xavi’s catches. I can’t remember ever catching a fish as an adult, so it was nice. The fishing spot was really nice and peaceful, and we were so busy enjoying the peace and quiet, that we lost track of time, and Olathe Police had to kick us out of the park. But, it all ended well, lol.

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Finally, we finally got to try out La Bodega. Apparently, it’s the only tapas bar in Kansas City. Is this true? The paella was pretty good, but the sangria was only ok. The Spanish Coffee, with its fancy blazed 151 and cinnamon, was awesome, and not just because it’s a coffee drink.

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The Girls:

This week the girls were in Dallas. They went to Six Flags and got to spend a day in a farm and feed some cows. Interesting. They were really excited about the cow and were minutes of missing a mama cow give birth. They did get to see a baby cow take its first steps. No cow milking though.

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Jaelan said now she is a real Cowgirl. This is good practice for when they visit Tita Dora’s place in West Virginia. She has chicken, pigs, and goats.

Aspen is missing home and she keeps asking me when I am going to pick her up. Soon, Terminator, soon.

Also, Aspen’s birthday is coming up, and she is very excited, she can’t wait to turn 3. I can’t believe she is turning 3, already.

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Week 39: Finally, Friday!!

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Happy Weekend! What are y’all doing this weekend? We went down to Austin and Houston this past weekend and it was really nice to see friends and family and MY GIRLS!! Aspen was being mean to me and only wanted her dad, but she came around….when he had to go to the bathroom. Whatever, she loves me.

Since the girls are off for the summer, I had envisioned myself being able to do so much around the house, but it’s not the case. Unfortunately, all I have been doing is eating, sleeping, drinking, and repeat. Not that it’s a bad thing, but I need to get on a million of these house work or before I know it, it will be back to school time again!

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Highlights:

It is very uneventful around here sans children.We went down to Texas to visit. Highlights were family, friends, baby Santana(that’s him down there with Xavier), Noah(that’s him up there smiling at brunch), and the poker game until the sun came up. FYI: Don’t play Poker with the Ogoes, you will lose your money. We tried Ramen Tatsu-ya in Austin and Xavier was mad because he was still hungry.

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Xavier and I checked out the Summer of Sounds in the Park Concert at Park Place. I am also partaking in Negroni Week, so far I have tried Parisi Coffee’s Cafe Negroni and Julep KC’s Negroni. Still on my list are Barrel 31’s and Snow and Co’s. I was also able to finally check out the Food Truck Rally at First Friday. Xavier had to work, so I dragged a friend along. The lines were uber long so we tried Thai Place on Pennsylvania Ave instead. The food was excellent, but the service was not acceptable, and I will leave it at that. Finally, running has been non-existent this week, just like house work. But I did register for the Aramco Houston Half Marathon lottery. I hope I get picked again!

The Girls

The girls are at their Nana Bubu’s right now(I think), but they spent last weekend with their Tita Paris and Jonathan. Paris reports that they had a blast during their sleepover and it gave her insight into what having 3 kids is like. She said they were very good and even made their beds the next day πŸ™‚ What!? They don’t do that at home! Xavi got Pokemon cards, Boogie got art supplies, and Terminator got a Team Umizoomi book. They built forts, played lots, Β and ordered Chinese, Β because the girls love Chinese food. We are still trying to work out West Virginia into this summer, I really hope it happens. I want to shoot targets and birds and 4 wheel my afternoons away into the woods. And I want to squeeze in McAfee Knob in there somewhere. I am sure my boss will start giving me the side eye with all of these requests that I am submitting. But it is summertime!

Also, Aspen told her Poppa that Jax ate a bad bone and got sick, so now she needs a new puppy 😦 More on that later 😦

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We passed by a drag show at Hamburger Mary’s, but we were too focused on the food trucks, so next time drag show, next time πŸ™‚

 

 

 

 

SXSW Spy!!

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South by Southwest kicks off this weekend and of course I won’t be there. SAD FACE. Β If you live under a rock and do not know what it is, go here. It’s basically a huge creatives(music, film, craft goods, ect.) festival thing in Austin, Texas. (Hook ‘Em!) Besides getting to listen to awesome music and see lots of creativity, it is also a huge learning and networking event for literally everyone, for both the participants and the attendees. I am loving some of the lineups this year, and of course Renegade Craft Fair will be there. If you go, get me something πŸ™‚

SXSW has an interactive segment, in which, the issue of surveillance, online privacy, and technology are leading topics. They keep it weird in Austin, so you get music, film, creative trade crafts, food, meet and greets, book signings, and moderated panel discussions. What peaked my interest, cause I am a current affairs nerd, is Edward Snowden will be speaking via video conference, specifically on March 10, regarding NSA surveillance, technology, and the technology community. If you don’t know who Edward Snowden is, go here. Technology and the digital/online community is of great significance to the SXSW culture. This is a great opportunity to reach a large number of people, whose trade and craft rely heavily on the digital world, and to everyone who has ever used technology, so that means you πŸ™‚ The discussion will be moderated by an American Civil Liberties Union director, and regardless of your opinion of Snowden and of his involvement with the NSA, Russia, or anything in particular, this should be an informative session and interesting. I will probably watch the stream. I’m just saying.

*Image from sxsw.com*

Week 12: Thanksgiving Day 2013

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I hope everyone had a wonderful and delicious Thanksgiving. As you can see, no Friday post this week, instead, a Thanksgiving 2013 πŸ™‚

This year we went down to Dallas to celebrate Thanksgiving with Xavier’s family. So, we were close to home. It was a much needed trip, especially for Xavier and the girls. It was great to see everyone.

I started off Thanksgiving like I did last year, with a turkey trot. This year was the Dallas YMCA Turkey Trot, I ran the 5K. Last year was the Houston Turkey Trot, and it was a 10K. It is a new tradition that I am hoping to do every year on Thanksgiving, no matter how cold. Hopefully, my girls will join me, once they get a little older. It’s a great way to start the day. The weather was awesome, once I started running. Before hand, the cold was a little nippy, it was about 28 degrees. Brr! As usual, there were a ton of people, the course was flat and fast, and I ran ok, definitely not one of my better runs. But, I did get to see a little bit of Dallas, since I had never been downtown before. Dallas is very pretty and view of downtown from the front of city hall, is gorgeous. My lack of photography skills does it no justice πŸ™‚

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After the run, everyone pretty much got to relax and hang out, while the elder ladies worked the kitchen with their magic. I have so much to be thankful for this year, it is unbelievable. The kids played with their cousins the whole time, and Aspen was so happy to see everyone, especially, her Mimi, Poppa, and Uncle.

I ate about 3 plates of food, and I could barely move after. The food was sooo good! I feel so bad that we forgot to pack some left overs to bring home. After we ate, we took the kids and the the big kids to the movies. We saw, “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire”. It was great, but I think, no, I am positive, that there will be a part III πŸ™‚ After the movie, we ate some more and just enjoyed the rest of the day with family. Now it’s almost Christmas time! πŸ™‚

Here are a few photos. I am sure that everyone has seen enough food photos the past few days, so I opted for others, instead of food. Ok, maybe a couple of food photos πŸ™‚

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Video

Cry Baby Corner (2012)

Paris Jomadiao, an artist based in Houston, Texas, was recently interviewed by the Houston Press. Here is the interview. She is a super talented gal and totally deserves the awesome publicity! She also happens to be my baby sister and the one who encouraged me to start this blog. So she is extra awesome because of that πŸ™‚

Also included in the interview is a featured work, Cry Baby Corner (2012). It stars a familiar face, well a snippet, of my XAVION!

Here is the video and go check out the artist as well πŸ™‚ ENJOY!

Houston vs. Kansas City: 5 Things You didn’t Know

No, this post is not a preview for the upcoming football game between the Texans and the Chiefs. Sorry. Instead, it is a short compilation of a few random differences between Texas and Kansas/Missouri that I have come to find out in my short time here in Kansas City. Listed by importance to me, from bleh to what!? Here they are:

1. Fountains: There are over 200 registered fountains in Kansas City, hence the moniker, The City of Fountains. Houston has 2(according to my research, you can correct me if you want), it’s called the Waterwall at the Galleria, and The Mecom Fountain at the Museum District, that drives everyone nuts. I am sure there might be a couple more, but I am positive it is nowhere near 200+.

2. Terrain: Kansas City is nice and hilly with lots of green, even the inner city is has plenty of trees. Houston is flat with lots of ditches and potholes.

3. Vehicles: Texas, requires a yearly vehicle inspection along with a yearly(or you can opt to renew for 2 years) registration renewal. Kansas only requires a one time inspection upon the vehicle’s first registration, and that’s it. For how long? My research didn’t get that far.

4. State Income Tax: Texas does not have state income tax, but Kansas does. So, this did not sit in well with me. I consider this important.

5. Education: Kansas, with their stupid state income tax, requires students/parents to pay for their books….in public school. Really? Texas requires no such thing, they just test the heck out of your kids. The Missouri side of Kansas City? Don’t bother, the whole school district lost its accreditation. It’s the main reason why we decided to live on the Kansas side. This is very important, this is my kids’ education. I can’t have slow kids. I’m just being honest.

There you go, 5 things you didn’t know about Houston(Texas) and Kansas City(Kansas/Missouri). And, if you did in fact already know, good for you!

Here is a couple of Kansas City point of interest photos, will periodically post more as they are photographed:

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The Bloch Fountain in front of Union StationmemorialThe National World War I Memorial, with my family walking towards the museum.