Estes Rockets Review

IMG_20160505_154349

At the beginning of summer, we were given the opportunity to try out some really fun air rockets from Estes Rockets.  The company sent us three of their most popular, The Sonic Boom, the Mini Blaster and the Whirlwind.  The kids were thrilled, and so were a few adults when we told them what had arrived, so on Mother’s Day we all congregated in a field to check these rockets out.

IMG_1918

IMG_1934

IMG_1935

_MG_1925

whirly rocket

IMG_1942

IMG_1946

One of our friends actually had Estes Rockets with the engines, so he added those to the mix and for the next 2 hours we all were kids again!  What fun these rockets are!  The air rockets were simple enough that even the littlest of kids could participate, but went so high into the air that the adults were just as amazed!  I think our favorite was the Whirlwind Rocket!

IMG_1960

 

IMG_1962

IMG_1955

IMG_1958

IMG_1983

The engine rockets were thrilling!  I had no idea how much fun and how high these little rockets can fly!  Simple to use, and the rockets themselves are reusable, so all you need to replace are the engines and fuses.

_MG_1929

IMG_1969

Thank you Estes Rockets for a serious good time and allowing us adults to feel like kids once again!  I highly recommend everyone trying these!  Who doesn’t like being a bunch of kids in a field sometimes?!

The opinions and thoughts contained in this post are 100% mine. I only ever work with companies I support and think you, my readers, will like. Please read my full review and endorsement policy here.  All photos by myself, video courtesy of Jeff Hunt.

Tres Lunas Resort Part 2

(This is the second part of an article on our experience at the Tres Lunas Resort.  For Part 1 please click here.)

IMG_2160

pool

Morning time.  After an amazing meal and dining experience the evening before, we awoke to a beautiful morning full of promise.  I was already trying to push away the feeling of sadness at having to leave this day, I promised myself I would savor every last moment.  Oh what a morning awaited us and I had no idea that the experience there would flourish even more.

We were warned that breakfast would be hearty.  That the morning meal is indeed a true feast.  We were not disappointed!
_MG_2218

IMG_20160714_125419

When we walked into the main room, the smell of fresh coffee greeted us and the the table was set and ready for us to be seated.  Craig came out with fresh squeezed orange juice and asked us if we could spare some time after eating so we could all chat.  I was looking forward to that!  Within moments he sat before us a beautiful bowl of fresh fruit, yogurt and homemade granola which was followed by eggs cooked to our taste, homemade hashbrowns, bacon and a small skillet of biscuits.  The condiments were just as beautiful as the meal!  We ate until we couldn’t take another bite and after freshening our coffee, Carol came and sat down with us.  This is honestly when the entire experience really began I realized later.

IMG_2241

Carol is a breath of fresh air.  She has this amazingly positive aura about her and her smile just lights up the room.  Craig is a gracious and generous host who makes you laugh and feel at ease immediately.  That is a gift!  We had dozens of questions about how they got started, the history of the property and the resort itself.  Both Carol and Craig have backgrounds in the hospitality business.   Craig has worked for a few gourmet food companies and Carol is an amazing chef having taken classes with some of the top chefs in the world.  When they met, they dreamed of running their own establishment.  They had a few other bed and breakfast establishments before finding this magical piece of property.   The story is that Craig found this and within 30 minutes made an offer.  He knew right away this was the place they had to have.   Both are Hill Country proud and appreciate the history of the area, especially this area.  The original house that was on the foundation the resort now resides upon was a 2 story ranch house that had been damaged in a tornado at one point.  It sat on 100’s of acres that had been divided up by the family over the years.  The moment they saw the views and felt the spirit of the land, they knew this was the place.  It was a stretch with all the renovations they needed to make, basically tearing down the structure to the foundation and starting over.  But their dream was to create a retreat.  A magical place where people could come and feel their spirit renewed.  They want people to experience what they do, to offer them the ultimate in care and are obviously so grateful to be where they are.  It shows on their faces and in their voices.  There is an amazing amount of warmth and love that come from this couple.  It took my breath away to be honest.  So much Peace and gratitude lives in this home.

IMG_2242      IMG_2243       IMG_2246_1

As I mentioned in the first article, the resort caters to weddings and retreats (I will be doing a feature on this for the last installment).  One area that I fell in love with is the yoga patio.  Carol has so much experience in spiritual practices, traveling around the globe to learn from the masters.  She is truly a student of the spirit and freely gives all that she has been taught.  She created a place where yoga enthusiasts can come and practice their craft surrounded by this spirit of peace.  Everything planned to help with the hot Texas sun, to create a sacred space,  all geared towards maximum comfort and serenity.  Listening to her share her stories, I got goosebumps and a bit teary eyed.   If you go visit her, ask her to share with you.  They are her stories to tell, but I promise they will affect you in a way that you won’t expect.   She wants to share her love for life and the spirit with those who come to Tres Lunas and to help them find a restful and healing place in their lives…even if just for a moment.   And she is doing just that.  I can only imagine the healing she has participated in just by providing such a space.

0714161032_HDR

Our tour continued into their private quarters where I was greeted by beautiful works of art created by friends and Carol herself.  Her mother was an incredible artist and she has a few of her pastels hanging.  One of which was drawn on a piece of brown paper bag while on a picnic in those very same hills decades before.  It was of a beautiful deer found in the Hill Country.  The pastels were so soft and soothing and it looked like you could reach out and feel the softness of that creature.  Carol didn’t know that she would end up finding her home in that same countryside.  What a special gift!

0714161029_HDR

There is Carol’s office which is filled with prayer flags and a massage table, and yes, more beautiful art pieces.  Even their private quarters were designed for maximum serenity!  And I know with a resort you need a good size laundry room, but their’s made me completely envious!  So bright with windows everywhere….perfect place for Carol to paint as the laundry area only took up a portion of the huge room!

0714161024_HDR

0714161025_HDR        IMG_20160714_132133        0714161023b_HDR

Craig’s office is the ultimate of man caves!  Jason loved it!  Craig’s father and grandfather were both Texas lawmen and Craig was able to find an old jail cell that he restructured to fit inside his office as a guest quarters for family or friends!  It’s really awesome!  On the wall behind his desk hangs the head of a huge Longhorn.  Craig told us that someone had given the living animal to Carol as a gift at one time and they loved him!  He was their pet who they truly loved, and when he finally died of natural causes they donated 800 pounds of ground beef to the food bank in Mason, TX and mounted their beloved pet’s head on the wall of Craig’s office.  It is an impressive site!

_MG_2156

We talked for a good 2 hours about life, our backgrounds, our love for nature and art.  Carol and I especially found that we have so many similar feelings about our journeys in life.  I felt like I have always known her.  We all found we had so many things in common and I don’t think any of us wanted to conversation to end.  But as all good stories must wind down, so did our time there.

We left with our arms bearing gifts and our hearts filled with the brightness of new friendships.  I can honestly say we both felt renewed and so relaxed.  It was a true healing experience and one we hope to repeat in the future!  I am so grateful for the opportunity and for the compassion that Carol and Craig show to others.  It’s truly remarkable.  I promise if you make a reservation there, you will honestly be able to leave your cares and worries at the front gate.  Once you drive in, the magic begins and the spirit smiles down upon you.  It is a rarity in life to find a place like that.  I am grateful that we did.

IMG_2217

*All photos are credited to myself and Jason Locher.  Some of these were taken on my phone, hence the quality.  Look for Part 3 on weddings and products used at the resort!

The Van And The Truth About Community Conciousness

We are a one car family at the moment.  Jason’s 1965 Chevy Truck is still out of commission and we have been trying to save every nickel, dime and penny to get it fixed.  We also knew that we’d need work on the van in the next few months, so the “Car Fund” was born.  Not easy for us to save much as we don’t make alot to begin with, but we can become super frugal when the time calls for it, so that’s what we’ve been doing.  Well, yesterday the van decided it was tired and done…yep, with 4 kids in the car going uphill, the transmission decided to commit suicide and all of a sudden I wasn’t moving anywhere except to coast to the shoulder.  I remained calm, called J and then a friend who was close by.  She came to rescue us while I waited for AAA to send a tow-truck.  Two hours later, the car was hooked up to the tow truck and hauled off to the mechanic by our house (who is a great guy btw – Guaranteed Automotive is the name of his business if you live out here by the lake and want a fair mechanic).  J and I started scrambling.  We didn’t have enough saved up yet for the massive cost of rebuilding our transmission and unfortunately we do not have the normal avenues available to us in being able to borrow from family or credit cards.  But we do have the most amazing friends.  And once again they all showed their true colors.  Knowing our predicament, all of them banded together and without being asked (none of it was even a thought in our heads beyond asking for rides for J to get to work) got us a loaner car (one of two extremely generous offers) and the balance of what we need (again, no hesitation just blew my mind with the offers we got) to have the van back on the road in a few days.  I was in tears most of yesterday because they all just have been so amazingly generous.  The unconditional love we feel from the people we’ve chosen to surround ourselves with is just overwhelming.

So this post is for my friends.  You all are truly appreciated by our family.  Community is a truth amongst all of you and you have all proved it time and time again.  We are so grateful to be amongst this group and would not hesitate to return the love in anyway we possibly can.  Thank you from the bottom of our hearts.  It is so good to know that we are “home”.  Love you all….

Peace!