Friday, September 11, 2009

toobs toobs toobs

I went on my annual toobing (sic) trip with "the girls" to Austin again this year over Labor Day weekend. It was a glorious and much needed vacation and I got to spend some real quality time with my friends. The typical Austin toobing cast is as follows:

Jessica Roberts, a.k.a. J-Ro, a.k.a. booker of the hotel every year and founding member.

Julie Whitaker, a.k.a. Julesdwit and/or Jules, who flies down to Texas from her not-so-new-anymore home in Brooklyn, also a founding member from back during her A&M days. (We don't talk about those days, and we certainly don't "Woop" about those days)

Jessica Allen, a.k.a. new mommy who unfortunately had to be with us only in spirit this year so she could tend to her sick babby (sic yet again - I like purposefully misspelled words). We missed you!!!

Lindsay Hampton, a.k.a. Hampton, a.k.a. Hamps, a.k.a. queen of the Jell-O delights who was until this trip a toobing virgin.

Miss Briana McKeague, a.k.a. Brawny, a.k.a Bri joined us this year and provided not only good times, but her access to Kenichi an amazing sushi place in Austin where she works.

And then of course, there is myself, Becki, a.k.a. Becks, a.k.a. the one that has to be "calmed down" the most on the trips (though I'm sure my friends find my easily riled up nature to be nothing short of hilarious.........right?!?!)

We drove down Saturday afternoon, and didn't get settled in until later evening because J-Ro's iPhone decided that it, too, wanted to take a vacation, so we had to go on an adventure to "The Domain"....a very new and high brow out door shopping center in a part of Austin we usually don't go to, which housed the closest Apple store to our hotel. Then when we got there, they didn't have any Genius appointments available until Monday anyway. So J-Ro decided that her phone could take a vacation if it wanted to and we made our way back to our usual hotel. (Feel free to skip the intro) We like it because it's green and we don't mind using the same towel for 2.5 days. :)

Saturday night we went to eat delicious Mexican food at Gueros, a local hot spot with ridiculously good food (and beverage). We partook of their amazing chips & salsa, fajitas and margaritas. To top off the food experience, Julie's wish came partially true while we were at the restaurant. She had wished for only one thing while we were in Austin - to see the cast of Friday Night Lights. All of them. Hopefully they'd all be at Guero's, she dreamed as we were making our way there. Well we walk up onto the patio, and who do we see?!!? None other than Connie Britton!! And she happened to be dining with a comedian friend of hers who Julie had happened to see perform in New York not too long ago.

SCORE! One cast member down.

Then Saturday, better known as the Day of the Toob, we did just that. We went toobing! We go down the Comal River, which is technically in New Braunfels about 45 minutes south of Austin. Each year we prepare more and more in advance. This year we each had our own little coolers that hold 6 cans each and a little top compartment to hold our jello delights. We got koozies for drinks and throw away sunglasses at the gas station in case we lose them on THE WATERFALL OF DEATH!! (which is actually just a very small dip after the initial toob chute that becomes slightly less small if the river is lower than usual, which it was on this particular trip) Last year was the first year I encountered "Trouble on the Falls" wherein I lost my toob, cooler, sunglasses and umbrella.....yes I use an umbrella. I'm quite pale, and I've learned over the years that I must be kinder now to my skin than I have been in the past. Needless to say, I walked around the fall this time.

The river was a blast, equipped with all sorts of River folk and we had so much fun! After the river we went and ceremoniously ordered friend pickels, fried okra, fried mushrooms, cheese sticks, chips and salsa and water to rehydrate - like ya do. Then we went home, changed and got ready and went out for a night on the town to the aforementioned Kenichi where we had sushi and sake AND had ANOTHER FRIDAY NIGHT LIGHTS sighting! Oh the fortune!! I don't know who it was, but it was a blond, younger guy, and Julie said he's the nerdier guy on the show, so maybe you avid FNL fans will know who I'm talking about? Mmm?

This post is getting ridiculously long, so I'll finish up by posting a few pictures of our final night in Austin. I took my camera but forgot to charge it, so alls I gots is a few pictures from my phone.

This toobing trip is something I look forward to every summer and I had the best time this year! Thanks to my friends that I love so much who care just as much about this weekend as I do and want to make sure it happens every year!!

Hip Hip! TOOBRAY!! (work with me)

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

thought of the day - fear

"Though a host encamp against me, My heart will not fear; Though war arise against me, In {spite of} this I shall be confident."

-Psalm 27:3

"I gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which I must stop and look fear in the face...I say to myself, I've lived through this and can take the next thing that comes along...We must do things we think we cannot do."

~Eleanor Roosevelt

And then in a different context:

"God blesses us, That all the ends of the earth may fear Him."

-Psalm 67:7