Confessions of an Unintentional Domestic Goddess

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A White Tiger, A 50 Pound Gold Nugget, and a Surly Teenager

on February 24, 2013

Our kids were out of school on Friday as well as Monday for President’s Day weekend. My hubby can’t get any time off over spring break, the whip cracking bosses are making him do inventory. In a clothing store. The weekend before Easter. Yeah, I don’t know which calendar they’re looking at, but have you been clothes shopping right before a holiday where new clothes are not required, but encouraged? Tell me, what did the stores look like? Were they well stocked and neat, or did they look like the closet threw up? Right, see what I mean? Well, anyway, since he can’t get any time off then, he was able to get this weekend. We decided to send the mutt to doggy jail, load up the offspring and head south to the booming metropolis of Dallas, Texas.

It’s an easy drive, one I made hundreds, maybe thousands even, of times when I was in school there. We went straight to the Perot Museum of Nature & Science, with a pit stop at In N Out for lunch! The Perot is a new museum in downtown Dallas and is a really interesting structure. At first glance, it looks out-of-place. All the other buildings around are symmetrical and beautiful, but this building is none of the above. They have exhibit halls on several floors ranging from gems & minerals (our favorite), petroleum extraction/refining, fossils, birds, engineering, the human body. It was very fun and interesting. In the hall with the gems and minerals, we saw a nugget of gold that was over 50lbs! And a geode with amethyst inside that was at least 5feet tall! Outside was a water feature and xylophones as well as a ‘gravel chime’ that made music when you drop gravel into the openings.

Oh.Em.Gee. I mentioned living in Dallas, which has a reputation for crazy traffic, and it’s very well deserved. It rivals LA, seriously. It seems there is always road destruction construction. You’d think they’d get finished some day. Nope. I think they just like digging in the dirt and causing more headaches. Highway 75 (AKA Central Expwy) has always had construction on it at some point. On this trip, there was more than I’ve ever seen. The interstate btw Dallas & Ft Worth, I30. And 635. In addition to Hwy 75. They like their elevated highways in Dallas. It’s really astonishing to see roads being built 70 feet off the ground. The interchanges, and now even the roads are that high, at least, there are some that are even taller! Another reason I’m glad to be outta there!

From there we went to the Hard Rock Cafe, which was walking distance to the museum. It’s in a new location and looks like it’s straight out of the 60’s. The bar is surrounded by gold chain mail & glass bubbles hanging from the ceiling.

I hate to say it, but this trip was sad in many ways. SAd in the realization that some places we used to visit have now become abandoned and decayed. In the 80’s & 90’s, the West End was the place to be in Dallas. I went numerous times and it was a blast. There was a ‘market place’ that was in an old factory with all sorts of shops on multiple levels and attached to it was the Dallas Alley. it was the night club to beat all. There were about 8 or 10 different clubs of all types, piano bar, blues, country, classics, dance, you name it. Pay one price and get entry to all of the clubs. My friends and I had so much fun there. We saw the building and the sign on the side so we decided to take a stroll over and check it out. Sad sad sad. Not a soul in sight, well, besides the business people scurrying home and the random vagrant. And another location that had been called ‘Restaurant Row’ in Dallas in the 80’s & 90’s has now become vacant and abandoned buildings, a nudie bar or a car dealership. I guess time moves on and not everything progresses or stays the same.

Our hotel was not fancy, but it was clean, had an indoor pool, and a free breakfast. All bonuses. And it was centrally located in regard to where we were planning on going.

Babe’s Chicken Dinner House was our dinner of choice on Friday night. The last time we’d been there was 3 years ago and our children have not stopped talking about it since! Seriously, if you get an opportunity, you should go, they’re scattered around the DFW metro area. You choose your meat and the sides are served family style. Three of us ordered the fried chicken dinner and they brought out 12 pieces of chicken and let me tell ya, they weren’t all wings. We took home probably half of them!

Saturday was clear, sunny and 50 so we decided to go to FtWorth Zoo. We’d never been and the weather was perfect. All I can say is, if you get the chance, go! It was a really beautiful zoo. I’ll tell you right now I’ve never been to San Diego. I’d love to, but this was pretty incredible. Nice, wide open enclosures that were well-kept and laid out. The white tiger was a stunning creature and just breathtaking. The giraffes were fun to watch, we were mesmerized by them. My kids both loved the reptile house with all the snakes & gators. We spent 5 hours there and only left because we didn’t want the food they had available. Why would you want to eat the crummy hot dog/pizza when you’ve got all the choices available in DFW?

Oh, the surly teenager. Yeah. Still not quite ready for that one. My son, my oldest, has always been a happy guy. I knew he wasn’t feeling well if he woke up any other way than smiling. He’ll be 13 this summer. We were talking about this trip. His response, ‘I don’t want to go.’ He wanted to stay home & play on his computer. Not even the temptation of an indoor pool or Babe’s chicken was enough to shake his resolve. He was this close to staying w/my folks. I told him if he was going to be grumpy the whole time he could stay here! He went, a little grudgingly. Today I asked him if he was glad he went. Guess what response I got. Shoulder shrug, aaah. Good times.

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