Ahhh….I love a long, hot summer! Living in Germany the past two years, we’ve really missed out on the Texas heat during the summer months. And I really, really missed it! The German summer is full of cool breezes, temperatures from the 50s to the 80s, lots of daylight and a minimum of swimming opportunities. Oh sure, there are public pools, but who wants to do that? That’s just not my thing.
So, needless to say, our first trip back to Texas in two years brought so much excitement for me and my six year old son, Aiden, we could hardly contain ourselves! And we were not disappointed…Texas greeted us with its warm, sweltering heat rays as soon as we got off the plane. The temperatures had already arrived at the triple digit mark and showed no signs of wavering. It was heavenly to us. My mom has a huge pool in her backyard and my son couldn’t wait to get in it. I had the pool in mind, as well, but had other plans on my agenda. Mommy was ready for a little girl time!
Aiden spent the next several weeks barely leaving my folks’ house. I mean, why leave when everything he wanted was right there? All he had been talking about all winter is swimming in Mamaw’s pool. And that’s what he did practically every day. My mom sat on the patio and watched him as he jumped into the pool, crawled back out, walked over to the diving board and did it all again. Over and over. He was loving every minute of it. It didn’t matter when everyone else got out of the pool, he stayed in solo and continued to play. I loved seeing him so happy and content.
But my aim was to meet up with friends, throw back some cold ones and enjoy some of my favorite restaurants and test drive some new ones that had popped up in my absence. I met up with my girl, Ericca, who introduced me to Blue Sushi Sake Grill. O. M. G. That was the best lunch I had had in FOREVER!! We scarfed down dish after dish together while sipping cucumber-garnished ice water. Lovely! Next, we (my husband and I) had dinner with E and her husband at Lucile’s, one of my all-time favorite restaurants. And, of course, we had cocktails. Within the week, the girls and I went out for Sunday Funday, where they introduced me to many of the new locations in town. We stopped in, had a cocktail or two, and moved on to the next stop. Much like a sophisticated pub-crawl.
After my husband left Texas to come back to work, I endeavoured to spend more time with my girlfriends. E had a pool, too, and she didn’t have kids around playing in it all day. So, begging my parents to look after my little guy, I ventured out on the town more than a few nights and spent many an afternoon sipping Skinnygirl Margaritas by E’s pool. Oh, how the heat, pool, sun, and lovely cocktails did make for a glorious vacation!
And I haven’t even mentioned the Mexican food yet! I ate lunch and dinner at practically EVERY ONE of my favorite Mexican restaurants while I was in town. I had been deprived of some of my staple foods in Germany with the exception of what I can make for myself. But there’s just something about having someone else do the making that makes a meal taste that much better. I overloaded on fresh made tortillas (something I don’t make and can’t really get anywhere else) guacamole and fresh salsa, enchiladas, fajitas, nachos, burritos and tacos! YUM! I can’t help it, I grew up in Texas where this stuff is abundant and I ate it often. Being away from good Tex-Mex actually gave me the DTs. I had to get my fill while I was home.
And then there was the beer. I realize I live in Germany where the beer is world-renowned. And I live within half an hour of Luxembourg and Belgium, where the beers are even better. You can drive directly to an abbey and buy beer from the monks that make it. What a lovely thing! I agree with all of that. BUT, there’s just something about a nice, ice cold American beer while you’re chillin’ by the pool. I had dreams of doing this while I was counting down the days before we arrived in Texas. I could NOT WAIT to have a regular, everyday Bud Light. My mouth salivated over the thought of it. And that’s when it happened…my brother showed up at my Mom’s house with a cooler full of Landshark lager. I had heard of it but never tried it. And that’s when he reached into the icy cold cooler fully stocked with ice and frosty beverages, pulled one from the bottom of the ice and said, “Here! Try one! You’ll love ’em!” And I did. The rest of the time I spent in Texas I purchased and drank many six-packs of this refreshing, perfect-for-laying-by-the-pool/beach-in-the-summer-heat beer. It was divine! So light! So refreshing! It’s BETTER than any of the other American lagers I had had in the past. It is now my new favorite. Ahhhh….Landshark!
After four weeks of pure and utter gluttony, Aiden and I had to return home. I was really ready to be home with my husband, sleeping in our bed. Something about your own bed…nothing else ever really comes close. I was exhausted and ready to get back to everyday life. Our trip had been good, but I had had enough.
The next morning I stepped on my scale…oh, the horror. I had gained 12 lbs. while I was playing in Texas. I knew it would be bad, but that was even worse than I had expected. I didn’t get much exercise in the whole time I had been staying with my Mom. I ate like I was on vacation (because I was) and drank quite a bit during my time with friends and family. And today I am paying the price for that. Now I will have to work a lot harder than I expected to get that extra weight off of me. Dang.
It was a fun trip, but I really wish I had prepared myself a little better. If I had kept up my exercising even though I was indulging it may not have been so bad. But I didn’t. I didn’t do myself any favors by not taking better care of myself. And I really didn’t set a very good example to my family who need to take better care of themselves, too. I did prepare some fantastic meals for them while I was there, but it just wasn’t enough to expose them to a lifestyle. I showed them what not to do.
So, soon I will be getting back to a clean eating plan. And then it’s game on!
To a healthier, happier and longer life.