Treaty Oak Distilling has Texas made bourbon for sale

Sher and I took off in search of a brewery that is owned by one of the stars of the TV show “Supernatural”. We found it, but it was not yet open. So thanks to Google Maps suggestions, we found a nearby distillery.

The Tasting Room

The Treaty Oak distillery is back a long lane and we saw cars so we know it was open. Once we started into the grounds a staff member informed us that the tasting room was open, but not the other buildings.

Our flight of three for tasting

The tasting room was like others: a bar, bottles lining the walls, and a neat display with T-shirts, glasses, flasks, and other branded merchandise. The tasting menu included wine (available ’cause some folks don’t like the hard stuff), gin and bourbon. Not all of the offerings were products of the distillery, but were available for sale under the distillery labels.

Yep, we decided to buy a bottle!

Our hostess in the tasting room helped us decide which products to sample. We sampled a gin, a rum and finally a bourbon. The gin was not a favorite of ours, the rum was good, but wow the Ghost Hill Texas Bourbon Whiskey was terrific! It was also one of the products that was, as the label states, was made “Grain to Glass” on the grounds of the facility.

It turned out to be a delightful and fun stop. We’ll go back to that other one sometime when they are open.

Mansfield Dam and Lake Travis near Austin

We drove up to an overlook site to see the top of the dam. In 1937 construction began on the then Marshall Ford Dam across the Colorado River in Texas. The 278′ tall dam was completed in 1941, was renamed the Mansfield Dam in honor of a local member of Congress. The dam created Lake Travis northwest of Austin.

The Lower Colorado River Authority (LCRA) controls the dam functions

No drones allowed!

Lake Travis has 30 square miles of surface  water that  winds through the former canyons of the large watershed area of the Colorado River. The lake is as you would expect a center of recreational activities.

 

An interesting sky and old time transportation

Sometimes Nature puts on an interesting show, to say the least. One day the sky over our RV resort displayed a set of wispy and stringy looking clouds. I had to snap a couple of shots.

Deep blue sky painted with wisps of white

Soon after you enter La Hacienda RV resort you will see a couple of neat old wagons. These coupled with a longhorn outline provide a neat piece of Texas atmosphere and ambiance.

Looks like a chuck wagon

Love the sign: “The Original RV”

You know you’re in Texas!

We’re enjoying our stay here at  La Hacienda RV Resort. Lake Travis is nearby, as are good restaurants. Austin is reasonably close as well.

Gloria’s at the Domain in Austin

Let me explain: The Domain is a large upscale shopping, dining and residential complex in Austin, Texas. Our daughter recently flew in from the WestCoast for a business meeting in the Westin Hotel at the Domain. She had a few hours before her flight back  so we took advantage of the opportunity and met her at Gloria’s.

My two best girls enjoying time together

Gloria’s is a sophisticated and upscale restaurant a block or two from the Westin. We were seated immediately after we got there. Sher and I had a delightful visit with our daughter, catching up on all the news of her husband and our 5 year old grandson.

Good food at a decent price

Gloria’s offers a great menu. We all found items we liked, portion sizes were fine and everything tasted great. The service was attentive but not overbearing. For a nice, quiet and private place for a family get together, I don’t think we could have found a better place.

 

Nancy’s Sky Garden in Austin is a hidden gem

Want to eat healthy? This restaurant in Cedar Park is truly a hidden gem. The menu is unique, to say the least. You pick your protein, pick your carb, pick your veggies, and finally pick your dressing. Get ready for a totally different, delicious and remarkably filling meal that you can consume with no regrets.

Signature plate. So much good stuff here!

Signature Plate protein choices feature varieties of chicken, fish and tofu. Don’t want protein? No problem. Veggies include rainbow salad, with fresh fruit. For your carb you have the choice of sweet potato noodles, baked or a tasty purple rice. Top it off with one or two of seven different dressings.

The smoked salmon Poke bowl featured a very generous portion of salmon

Other menu items include poke bowls with fish on a bed of veggies, purple rice, seaweed salad and other delicious items. In addition, soups, prism rolls, MixMix and Buddha bowls are also part of the unique offerings at Nancy’s Sky Garden. And don’t miss out on the hot and iced teas.

Store front at the Cedar Park location

This dining experience is most enjoyable. Look for all four Austin area locations at Nancy’s Sky Garden website. You won’t be disappointed.

 

Bull Creek Park in Austin

Bull Creek Park is rather small, (48 acres) but is large in activity. Trails criss-cross the park, however Bull Creek itself is the highlight. The limestone riverbed, flanked by even more exposed outcroppings bring the Wow! factor into this delightful green space. We visited with family on a warm Saturday afternoon.

A beautiful Saturday

Natural water slide into a deep swimming hole!

Hiking and swimming are two of the favorite things to do at Bull Creek. I can imagine this park is packed with water seekers during the heat of the summer. We had a most enjoyable time walking along the river.

Haunted Hotel in Texarkana

The Grim Hotel in Texarkana was built in 1925. At the time of its construction it was considered an architectural marvel of the day. With its massive ornate lobby, upstairs ballrooms and highly elaborate room furnishings it soon became a hotspot for the rich and famous.

The original sign still clings to the rooftop of this now rapidly decaying building

There have been many reports of paranormal activity in the hotel both during the times it was opened and since it was finally closed in 1990. Many famous and infamous people have visited here including Bonnie and Clyde.

This shot shows the massive size of the eight story structure. A recently posted sign states that by 2021 the building will be completely remodeled and filled with apartments for rent

 

Fun muddy day at Crater of Diamonds State Park

Today Sher and I gambled on the threatening rain and went to the Crater Of the Diamonds State Park. We had an absolute blast even though the ground was very very muddy and hard to walk in.

Getting ready to head to the muddy field and begin our search for diamonds

 

Here I am shovel in hand and ready to find one of those huge diamonds shown in the picture next to me

The shed in the background is where you screen the soil for diamonds and gems stones

Little Shop of Horrors is at Beef and Boards Dinner Theatre

Prepare yourself, Indianapolis, for the off-beat, dark musical comedy that is Little Shop  of Horrors! The show’s premier was in May of 1982. The Off-Broadway run was a great success, and during that run a star studded film was also produced.

Picture a skid row flower shop struggling to stay in business. Assistant Seymour Krelborn comes into possession of a strange plant. Named Audrey II after the girl of his dreams, Seymour discovers that the strange plant talks, sings R&B, promises fame and fortune, and needs human blood to survive and grow. Starting  in a flower pot, the blood thirsty creature soon is a monstrous size.

Seymour Krelborn (Joey Boos), center, introduces Mr. Mushnik (Douglas E. Stark) and Audrey (Jenny Reber) to his strange and unidentified plant

Mayhem breaks out as Seymour tries his best to keep feeding Audrey II the human blood that the creature demands. “Feed Me!” becomes the mantra for the monster, and the terror for Seymour! Side story lines keep the show rolling along as Seymour keeps loving Audrey, who is stuck in a violent relationship with dentist Orin Scrivello. How does Seymour keep Audrey II alive and well? Let’s say that people start to disappear. Laced throughout the show are some wonderful songs and dance routines.

The B&B production is filled with stage favorites. Joey Boos returns to the Beef & Boards stage in the role of Seymour. Also returning are Jenny Reber as Audrey,  and Logan Moore  as Orin Scrivello, DDS. Douglas E. Stark plays the role of Mr. Mushnik, the hapless owner of the skid row flower shop where Audrey II lives. It is interesting to note that the voice of Audrey II comes from Josiah R McCruiston and Josh Maldonado is the talented puppeteer of the creature. You never see either on stage!

Seymour (Joey Boos) is horrified by the demands of Audrey II

 

It is easy to see why Little Shop of Horrors has a nearly cult status.  The sci-fi hit about a carnivorous plant with world domination on its mind is just too much fun. Rated PG-13, the production does present some violence and graphic references and a touch of sexual innuendo.

Little Shop of Horrors is rated PG-13 and is on stage through Nov. 17. Tickets  include Chef Odell Ward’s dinner buffet, fruit & salad bar, unlimited coffee, tea, and lemonade. For reservations, call the box office at 317.872.9664 anytime between 10 a.m. and 7 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday and from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays. For complete show schedule, visit the Beef & Boards website here.