Throwback Thursday: {2nd Anniversary Trip}

There is seriously a curse on our anniversary.
Our honeymoon forever set the bar too high and after last year’s hillbilly hoe-down (no seriously, there was actually a {prostitute} involved) we thought we’d “play it safe” and have a nice little staycation in Dallas.

And God laughed and laughed and laughed at poor Devin Bybel and her need to control and plan everything to a “t.”

Let’s begin.

It all started with a Groupon.  The ever schwanky and raved about {Adolphus Hotel} which is described with words such as “grandeur,” “luxury,” “elegance,” and “4-Diamond” was offering us regular folk an opportunity to stay in their lovely establishment at just a fraction of the cost!  Oh, how many nights I laid awake counting my lucky stars.  A night at The Adolphus…how magical!

And that’s pretty much where that party ended.

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We arrived and valeted our car (for the low low rate of $35/night – kill me now) and let the bellman know that we had dinner reservations and would need the car later this evening.  “Just come down 5 minutes before you need to leave,” the Bellman said.  So many lies.

A 4-Diamond welcome never occurred as the front desk agent never even bothered to ask how we were or what we were doing staying at their “elegant” palace.  But she did use her finger to point to the escalator that would take us to the elevator.  Thanks, lady.

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Arriving in our room we got ready for our dinner and being the control-freak I am, we arrived TEN whole minutes early down at the valet.  And we watched the clock tick-tick-tick.  5 minutes…10 minutes…15 minutes…lots of valets running around but no Bybel car in sight.  Twenty minutes passes and now we’re calling the restaurant to tell them we’ll be late for our reservation.  Perfectly pissed = Devin. Continue reading

{The Blind Butcher}

We saw, we ate and…there was a lot to be desired.
{The Blind Butcher} has been one of “those” places on the media circuit lately.  Cool, located in the always hip Lower Greenville, crawling with good looking people, craft beer and specializing in one culinary sphere or another.  (In this case it’s pork and poutine fries).

With the endless articles and reviews popping up all over the interwebs, I thought we were in for the experience of a pig-eating lifetime.  By the time the check came, all this little piggie wanted to do was go freakin’ home.

We arrived at 5:00pm for an early dinner hoping to beat the crowd and instead found a packed house with not a seat in sight.  I wiggled my way to the back patio where the endless supply of single, 20-somethings were drinking local beers and tending to their dogs.  I quickly spotted a table and thought we’d get to enjoy dinner outside…quick catch – no eating on the patio until next month.  Other patios – 1, Blind Butcher – 0.

We enjoyed the relatively quiet patio that backs into Dallas’ {Truck Yard} while waiting for our friends to arrive.  Before the half hour ended we were alerted by text that our table was ready inside.  And that’s pretty much where the fun ended.

You don’t really realize until you’re sitting in the restaurant in the middle of the day and can’t read the menu that the building may be better suited for vampires than dinner.  That coupled with the deafening echo of the restaurant-goers’ lively drunken conversation and single, 20-something flirting made this probably the worst sensory experience I’ve ever had during a dining venture.

The spotty service and outdated drink menus made for a semi-frustrating ordering experience.  All that coupled with the fact that I had to yell at my fellow dinner guests to try to have conversation made me sing endless praises when the food made it to our table much faster than anticipated.  With a spread of bacon salad, sausage and the much-raved about poutine fries in front of our faces, we dug in…only to wonder what everyone had been raving about.

The food was…fine?  Yeah, I think “fine” is the right word.  Certainly not worth the jarring atmosphere and lofty bill.
I mean, we took our leftovers with us but through them in the dumpster when we got home.  The smell wasn’t even appealing at that point and had us scratching our heads about how this could be deemed one of Lower Greenville’s “must eat” treats.

I think next time we’ll stay kosher for dinner.

{Devin}

{Probably the Best Day of My Life…Ever}

Please excuse me while I cry overwhelming tears of radiant joy.

There are only a few days in one’s life that impacts a person so profoundly you can feel the trajectory of one’s life change.  A few examples I can think of:
– Graduating college
– Getting your first job
– Marriage
– Children
– Retirement
– Oh, and the day CHUY’S LITERALLY OPENS 5 MINUTES FROM YOUR HOUSE!!!!!

And that’s all I have time for because I’m literally stuffing my face with Creamy Jalapeño dressing, free queso and overall the best Tex-Mex ever to grace this planet.

You can find the Bybels at the new Chuy’s in Addison every night for the rest of eternity.

See you at the happy hour nacho bar, friends!
{Devin}

{Paint Nite}

On the list of “100 Things Devin is Not” – artist is about #3.  Don’t get me wrong, I love the idea of being an artist.  But getting the ideas into real life has been a risk not worth taking time-and-time again.

So when we got an awesome {Groupon} from my parents for our first anniversary, I was both totally pumped and secretly dreading my perfectionism rearing its ugly head in my pre-conceived art disaster.
Then I found out it was at a restaurant with margaritas and suddenly Perfectionism was wearing a sombrero and not giving a lick ’bout nothing. Continue reading

Anniversary Trip: {Arkansas – The Finale}

Part III Recap: Day of relaxation begins with delicious breakfast and a walk through pretty gardens.  Things may be looking up!

*Sigh of relief*

“This day isn’t starting off too bad at all,” you think to yourself.
You and Pete are now driving towards {Quapaw Bathhouse} for some steaming and bathing.

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Your trip starts off with a 20-minute sit in a natural steam cave.  Water comes into this natural cave at 147 degrees.  They have to cover the spring with glass to lower the temperature in the cave.  It’s pretty legit and you would recommend it to friends.
Next you go and sit in the thermal baths.  It’s like a community hot tub with varying temperatures.  It feels rather cold and unfulfilling after the peppermint-scented steam.

You and Pete decide to bounce early and go find some ice cream before your massage and facials.
Pete insists the ice cream is up the street to the left, you insist it’s down to the right.  Neither of you win and neither of you get ice cream.  Fail. Continue reading