Dizzy Swallows

M is for Migration

November 17th, 2010 2 Comments

Sitting amidst half packed boxes, stacks of folded clothes, and paper wrapped bobbits, I can’t seem to wrap my head around just how quickly the time has flown. Now, with six months behind us, it is time to head north again; a reverse winter migration. Friday morning bright and early we will be hitting the road west, and then wind our way up the coast back to the Pacific Northwest.

As we say our goodbyes to Texas (at least for now), I’ve come up with a short list of characteristics, quirks, and rules particular to the Lone Star State. So:

  1. Always use a coaster. I once heard a woman exclaiming over her grandchild’s failure in the department: “Child, who raised you!”
  2. Football is God. As Coach Taylor once said: “You live in Texas now, son. You looove football, you just don’t know it yet.”
  3. High school football is especially God.
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Enchanted Rock

November 1st, 2010

Hello all! I trust everyone had an appropriately spooky and candy-filled Halloween. We, sadly, did not. With no costume party plans, I was all set to hand out candy to all the good little ladybugs and knights of Fredericksburg. Sugary delights in hand and family-friendly costume donned, I waited for trick-or-treaters in vain until my fangs fell out (literally). Halloween fail. A single group of fourteen year old girls (who couldn’t even be bothered to say “trick or treat!”) did little to salvage the evening. Jacob and I consoled ourselves by snuggling up with popcorn and watching old episodes of Battlestar Galactica.

Saturday, however, was a much greater success. After months of trying, we finally made it out to Enchanted Rock, indisputably Fredericksburg’s biggest bragging right.

Enchanted Rock is the largest pink granite monadnock in the United States. It covers 640 acres and rises to an elevation of … Continue reading

Home on the Range

October 27th, 2010

Last Sunday we indulged in some rather Texan pastimes: shooting, drinking and football. It was my first time firing a gun and I must say, the experience was pretty darn fun (with proper respect for your weapon of course). While I’m not likely to become a gun-toting member of the NRA anytime soon, I do think that knowing your way around a firearm is an important life skill. After all, you never know when the zombie apocalypse might come.

If there’s one thing a 120 acre ranch has it’s ample shooting space. Father dearest informed me that the average .22 bullet will travel about a mile, so even in the wide open spaces of Texas it’s a good idea to shoot towards a hill least you hit any stray neighbors.

Our humble range was measured out with 25 and 50 yard intervals, and a simple paper target fixed to a … Continue reading

Beef Bourguignon at the Ranch

October 6th, 2010 1 Comment

Last Sunday, Jacob and I made the trek out to Campe Verde with two pounds of local, grass-fed beef and a bottle of wine in tow. Oh yes, it was time for me to attempt beef bourguignon and who better to experiment on than family. I know, how Julie & Julia of me.

My dad and his wife Kris live on a beautiful Hill Country ranch with one Scottish Terrier, two horses, a herd of Scimitar-horned Oryx, and various furry squatters. Over the past couple years, they have added two blocks of grapevines to the landscape and will be bottling their first wine next year. The ranch is a unique and entirely lovely mash-up of French country living meets African safari.

With the help of my ever obliging and eternally patient sous chef, the dinner came together without a hitch. In case any of you are curious, for this … Continue reading

Textures from Town

September 10th, 2010

Somehow another Friday has sneaked up on us. I wanted to share a few photos today from a recent visit to Main Street Fredericksburg. I do, however, feel the need to caveat this post slightly. While I am not one to throw ink at people’s fur coats or dismantle hunting trophies, I would not choose such things for myself. That being said, I would be remiss to pretend fur, leather, trophies, and taxidermied animals are not part of Texas culture. Therefor, as a visitor, I can at least appreciate the textures of this strange landscape.

Wishing you all a lovely weekend!

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