Wednesday, February 26, 2014

First Married Valentine's Day

Have I told you that Truman has a thing for hot springs? He's kind of obsessed. Coloradans think that hot tubs and hot springs are winter activities which seems a little odd to me (how do you avoid cold ears!?) but when in Rome... Anyhow, Mt. Princeton hot springs had an awesome February special so we decided to have ourselves a little mini-getaway. I have to say, our Colorado road trips are becoming one of my favorite things. It's nice to get away for a bit, the drive was nice, the hot springs were great, and the company couldn't have been beat. 

The view from our room


 Pictures that make us look like we're naked are becoming a bit of a theme (probably because we got a water proof camera this year and now take more pictures of us doing water-related things). 

Lovebirds.  

 The room had a microwave (and lava cakes are microwavable!)...and also plastic cups. 


I also got Truman this shirt as a gift. Not sure if I should be offended that he hasn't worn it yet. 

Monday, February 3, 2014

Austin

I had some work meetings in Austin last Thursday and Friday so I talked Truman into coming to Texas with me. Since my ticket and hotel were covered (and we had a Southwest credit for Truman), Truman and I decided we should both head to the Lone Star state and make a weekend out of it. Turns out it was also super bowl weekend so we made a somewhat short weekend out of it.

One of my save-money-while-traveling trips is that I always troll the daily deal sites for whatever city we're going to be visiting in hopes of finding discount activities and dining (since we'll be eating out anyway). This is how we ended up on a sailing boat in San Francisco and riding bikes in New Orleans. It's hard to top the epically cold, way more legit than expected sailing trip but we found a pretty sweet discount activity for our Saturday morning in Austin.... a Segway tour!



Segways are kind of awesome. Basically we fulfilled all of our fantasies of being mall cops. I'm a little sad segways never took off as a real mode of transportation for urban dwellers. The first 5 minutes is pretty scary and the "training" I got from our guide (who happened to have Pee Wee Herman laugh) was less than comprehensive but once we got out "Seg-legs" (her term) it was a pretty sweet, if totally dorky, experience. Also, you feel like a baby duckling following the line of your fellow segway tourist all over a the city. So that's pretty cool.


As I've mentioned before, I am totally down with embracing my role as a tourist. I think it's fun to visit a city and do the silly and fun things the city offer to visitor (see: segway ride above). This trip was no exception. We stayed at the conference-provided hotel for the first two nights in town and then rented a condo from a lovely host on Air BnB, a website similar to Vacation Rental By Owner (VRBO) which lets individuals rent out rooms or whole houses, for the second two nights. If you've never used the site before you should check it out (and also use this link because I'll get a referral credit). We had a friend in town who very generously offered to let us crash at his place that was in the next city over but we decided to stay in downtown Austin because we like walking around cities so much (you know, unless there's an option to ride a segway) and we didn't really want to rent a car. 

The condo was great. It was within a mile and a half of pretty much everything and less than a block from a bus that will take you to the airport for a dollar. It might not have gotten much any natural light and it was a wee bit shady that our hostess told us to say we were  "friends of hers" is any neighbors asked but for half the price of a the hotel across the street it was the best deal in town. 





On our second night in town Ted took us to the Salt Lick, a BYOB barbecue place. We kept it classy though. We used an aerator before poring wine into solo cups. Sadly, I caught a cold Friday night and ended up falling asleep on the couch in the condo at 9p. So much for our wild night on the town. I tried to rally and make up for my early night by cramming Saturday full of activities (which, I am pretty sure, is what doctors tell you to do when you catch a cold).

 Everyone looks sexy in helmets...

 ...and on segways. 


 After the tour we walked down to South Congress which is the "weird" part of Austin. Honestly, I expected the city to be a lot more eclectic. It didn't really feel that much different from Boulder (tiny downtown, lots of white people, giant whole foods, lots of people running) but South Congress was still pretty cool and we really enjoyed walking around. I bought myself some jewelry and got my little brother an awesome birthday present from this shop. We also grabbed a cupcake from Hey Cupcake. Mostly we stopped just because the cupcake on top of this airstream was so f'ing legit.

 Isn't he handsome? 


Before the end of the night we checked out a lounge singer at the Brass House which gets many points for find a way to make builder grade chandeliers look good. Before heading to bed we got lava cake at Flemmings, walked down 6th street (but decided we were too old for that mess), caught a couple songs from the end of a Spazmatics show (felt like I was in college again) and ended the night at Oilcan Harry's.

Sadly, I didn't get a single picture of me rockin' my awesome cowgirl boots. When in Rome Texas...