We've been out of town the past two weekends and while we're both fairly tired, the visits were absolutely worth it. Two weekends ago we traveled to Tulsa and had a reunion with several of my college friends, and this weekend we traveled to Mount Magazine (Arkansas) to visit one of my high school best friends. You probably noticed that both visits were to see "my" friends, but Michael said one of the nicest things on our drive home today. He talked about how glad he was that I'd made (and kept up with) such wonderful friends, and in turn how happy he was that they'd each married amazing guys who he now considers his friends as well. Music to my ears. While I know family comes first, I'd have a hard time marrying someone who didn't love and support the relationships I'd made before we married. He's quite the opposite and is constantly encouraging me to give one a call or find out how another is doing. To see him talking and laughing with each of them is one of the greatest gifts he could give me. And while this post is about the past two weekends, let it be known that I feel the same way about his friends--we're both so fortunate.
TulsaWe left right after work and headed to Kait and Steve's house. Leighton was already asleep so we sat around their dining table and caught up on the past few months. Kait is constantly updating their house with beautiful furniture or awesome throw pillows so it's always great to see the place. Saturday morning we met up with the rest of the group at Dilly Deli (aahhhhh, I love that place so much!) and were introduced to beautiful baby Siena. I know it's so cliché to say, "We picked up right where we left off" but I don't know how else to describe it. Let's just say if there was a television reality show for the best set of friends I'd submit us in a heartbeat. Mostly because I'm so competitive and would love to retire early... But I really think we'd stand a good chance. The girls (Summer, Emily, Kaitlin, Siena, and myself) split from the dudes and went to Utica Square so we could visit our favorite Starbucks. I've known these girls for 11 years and it just gets better every time we see each other. While a visit doesn't go by without discussing our crazy college antics, it's clear we've all grown up a bit and our "new" stories are just as fun and fascinating as the old.
We drove back to Kait's place and the boys picked up some steak, fish and chicken for a grand cookout. Food was delicious and the night ended with Oklahoma's largest earthquake. Perfect way to end the night. :)
On Sunday Leighton found my phone, which has a picture of our favorite fat feline, Thumbs Magee. She looked at me and said, "Kitty? Kitty!" and I swear I almost took her to a cat store (yes, I said cat store) to buy her a kitty. It was precious. She'd leave my side to play and then come back moments later and ask to see the kitty again. I missed that girl the moment we got in the car to drive back to Dallas.
While we were there I took some pictures of Summer's beautiful family. I also managed a 2-minute photo session with the sweetest ginger I know.
Mount MagazineLast October the two of us along with Leslie, Julie, and their counterparts met in Fort Smith and together we visited Arkansas wine country. We named it Altoberfest (Altus, Arkansas) and decided we'd do it every year. Unfortunately, Julie and Mark weren't able to make it this year due to their recent move to Charleston. We missed them so much. The trip got pushed back to November and Leslie had the excellent idea to switch it up and head to Mount Magazine State Park. Seeing that she is 19 weeks pregnant, a winery tour would've been a bit boring. We met up yesterday morning so Michael and I could see Riggs before we drove east. When he's excited or surprised he gets a huge grin on his face and yells "Oh wowee!" It is absolutely adorable. We had a great lunch at Grapevine Restaurant in Paris (not that I really need to clarify but I'm not referring to the city in France), and then made our way to the Mount Magazine lodge. The foliage is breathtaking right now--I couldn't get over all of the colors. I'm used to Dallas, which has a lovely mix of green and dead. It's gorgeous.
The wind was ridiculous so our plans of hiking turned into sitting inside the lodge and staring at the beautiful view. Dinner was "meh" but I'm not sure any of us really cared. I love that couple so much (and I think they should write a book on parenting). When Leslie found out about my miscarriage, she asked if she could come to Dallas (after dropping off Riggs in Fort Smith) so she could be with me. You guys, the girl lives in Memphis and was ready to jump in a car and drive 10+ hours so she could cry with me. Of course I told her it was not necessary but what made it so special is I knew she would've done it in a heartbeat if I'd said yes. How did I get so lucky?
Sorry for the brief side story. Back to Mount Magazine. After dinner we watched Bridesmaids and then had a delicious breakfast this morning with the same beautiful view. It was SO great to see them.
Both visits just made my heart hurt and soar at the same time. I miss those girls like crazy. I learn something new about each of us every time we're together. Regardless, I ended each weekend feeling so content. Of course I wish we all lived on the same street and met each other for coffee each morning (did I mention my high school and college friends all get along too?!) but I know that will never happen. What I DO know is my Prius better be prepared for a lot more road trips because these visits are never going to stop.
Shutter speed is fun...