Carnival in The Crescent City

We spent Wednesday night through Monday in New Orleans for the first weekend of Carnival season in New Orleans. Everyone was gearing up for Mardi Gras and the town was full of energy, just without the massive crowds that will no doubt be flocking to the city over the next couple days.

Thursday, we checked out the horse races, the French Quarter, a stroll down Bourbon St and had a famous Moss Family fish fry (nom nom nom).  It was our first time to the horse races and didn’t do too bad on our betting. We were down $5 on $30, so $5 spent for a couple hours of entertainment was surely worth it.

Friday, we went back down to the Quarter for coffee and beignets at the famous Cafe du Monde, took a stroll around Jackson Square and bought some artwork from the street vendors. Had a Muffuletta and Pimms Cup at The Napoleon House. Grubbed on some Popeyes after watching the evening Uptown parade before catching a show at Tipitina’s Uptown.  The band we went to see was “Yo Momma’s Big Fat Booty Band“. They were pretty fun funk band. I highly recommend catching them if they ever swing through your town. The headliners were Leo Nocentelli (Guitarist of The Meters) with Bill Dickens (Bass for Janet Jackson), CR Gruver (keyboards), Jamal Batiste (drums) with special guest Art Neville of the Meters and the Neville Brothers. They rocked the house too and Bill Dickens plays a MEAN bass guitar!!!

Saturday was a pretty lazy day of chillin’ in our parade spot along St. Charles for the 3 Saturday Uptown parades. Munched on homemade crawfish etouffee and red beans and rice all day. Ended the night at Rock N Bowl to catch a Kermit Ruffins concert. For people that don’t keep up with the New Orleans music scene, you may recognize Kermit Ruffins from his role as himself in HBOs series Treme about post-Katrina New Orleans. He sure can put on a show. He played for a good 2 to 2.5 hours. He sure can blow that trumpet! and his piano player was INSANE! Tasha got her picture taken with Kermit and got a couple CDs autographed.

Sunday we got up early for the 2 Uptown parades and lounged around resting before stuffing our faces with some good ol’ New Orleans cuisine at Upperline Restaurant.

Monday we got up to see Rae, Darwin, and Laura off and then BJ and Jim took us to Destrahan Plantation for a tour and then drove us around the area before dropping us at the airport for our flight home.

Pictures from the long weekend are below. Click on the slideshow to go to the full album.

In & Around Jakarta

During my trip last week to Jakarta, I had Tuesday off of work because it was a public holiday, so a colleague from the local office we are working with took me on a scenic drive around the Jakarta countryside. We drove to the Jatiluhur Reservoir to look at an old dam built in the 1950’s, toward Bandung, Cianjur and then Puncak (click for a Google Map). The area is very scenic and beautiful once you get out of the pollution of the city.

Enjoy the pics. It was the first full-time camera duty I have experienced with my new iPhone 4 (yeah, yeah…that will get it’s own post soon) and I was pretty impressed. Some were taken with the Hipstamatic app for retro-type photos. With the grittiness of the area and the retro look from the App, it made for a pretty neat effect.

Click on the slideshow to take you to Photobucket where the pics are actually in order…

Whoa Nelly!

No posts since July, so I suppose one is due now…

July went by and we spent some time with Doug and Renee and their kiddos at the lake and at their pool. Was nice and refreshing with the heat this summer.

In August we headed out to the 3rd Annual East Texas Goats Guadalupe River Trip. Most folks camped out, but being late August…in frickin’ Texas, we stayed in the Holiday Inn. We also got to use our new waterproof digital camera for some action shots on the river without having to buy one of those cheesy disposable 35mm water cameras.

September was a busy month. For Labor Day weekend, Tasha had Brandy’s bachelorette party and Lisa’s birthday, for which we met up with Duane, Brandon, Denise and Bryce for a trip to Longhorn Caverns.

Brandy’s wedding shower was later in the month..same day as mom’s birthday and the same day I got to fly back from Colombia into Austin on a Saturday afternoon to catch all the fun. I also got to try out the new slingbox since the UT vs UTEP game was going on while I was traveling back home. Pretty neat technology! 🙂 Check out the pics from Brandy’s shower below…

Late September/early October was pretty busy for me with work travel. Nothing too exciting, just a bunch of short trips. The weekends have been just as busy though. We had the State Fair Car Show and my dad came up to hang with us for the weekend. Tried all sorts of fried foods…fried butter, fried cookie dough, fried pecan pie, sweet jalapeno shrimp corndog, Fletcher’s corny dog, and a Fletcher’s jalapeno cheese corny dog. Got the car all detailed for the car show (thanks to the guys at Stuart’s since I was traveling too much to do it myself), only to have it rain that night! 🙁

The next weekend was Eric and Virginia’s wedding…awesome time, despite the reception place not having the UT vs Colorado game on TV :). Seriously, who doesn’t have ESPN?!?!?! I kept everyone up to speed watching the live action via Slingplayer on my phone! Beat that iPhone fanboys! 😉 We forgot the camera so no pics 🙁 Beautiful wedding with a nice Texas (UT) flare!!!

The next weekend we headed out to Mexico for Brandy’ss wedding at the Iberostar Grand Paraiso in the Mayan Riviera. We stayed for 8 days and had a blast. Some nights we (I :)) can’t fully remember and some days we will NEVER forget! From catching Britney on fire with a flaming shot, to snoring so loud Tasha slept in the huge jacuzi tub, to a day trip for snorkeling and beachside chilling in Akumal with everyone, to a day trip to drive around Cozumel island to enjoy undistrurbed beauty and oceanside drinks and grub, and last but not least, the beautiful oceanfront wedding of Brandy and Todd. We thoroughly enjoyed meeting and hanging with their other friends and family in such a scenic and fun place! We didn’t even have to miss the Texas-OU game thanks to the wonders of Slingbox and free broadband at the resort. It rained most of the day anyways that day, so we didn’t miss too much resort fun! 🙂 We stayed a bit longer than the rest of the group to celebrate our 5 year anniversary and then headed back home this past Friday. There are a ton of pics posted up, so have a look…

I think that is enough for now. If I think of more later, I will post. To look at the individual pics if you like, head over to the Photo Gallery

– peeps

Cozumel Baby!

This past week we went to Cozumel for 4 nights and stayed at the Occidental Grand Cozumel. It was just the 2 of us and we had a great time! The weather was mostly good, aside from the raining most of our last full day there. We took a snorkeling tour one day where we got to check out 3 different reefs. The last reef was a deep one and the water way pretty rough. By the time we got back in the boat it was about all I could do to keep from hurling! Next time I will be taking Dramamine for any snorkeling we do!!! 😀

The resort was a decent place. We would probably stay there again if a smokin’ good deal came up, but it wasn’t so great we would just not consider other places the next time. I mean what kind of Mexican resort doesn’t have a swim-up bar????

Click on the pic to go to the pictures. Enjoy!

– peeps

Blake’s Wedding

So on May 1st, Blake Marrou got hitched to a really great gal named Becca Rice. I got the honor to be a groomsman in the wedding. It was a fun time and we are really happy for Blake! they suit each other so well! We wish them the best! The pictures we took are in the gallery

Below is a video of Trent’s toast! He is quite the character!


Dustin Does Frisco

This video is just too funny not to share. We were at Courtney & Richard’s house for supper club and they had a karaoke game…the perfect way to allow people to make fools of themselves. Their friends Dustin and Angie were there too and this video of Dustin getting his groove on.

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This is also a test of some new code I added to allow me to embed my own flash videos with my own configuration, aspect ratio, etc instead of having to worry about using other sites like youtube or whatever. Please let me know how it works out for you by leaving comments below.

– peeps