Mini-Vacation in Branson

Mini-Vacation in Branson

We took a little weekend getaway to Branson/Big Cedar Lodge last weekend.  We took the moms- it was part of their mother’s day gift. It almost didn’t happen because Remi was running fever. We were originally supposed to go Thursday evening, but we waited until Friday morning to go.

Thankfully, Remi did ok on the drive up. A double ear infection can make you feel crummy, but she did pretty great.

We started our trip at Tyler’s pick- Shorty Smalls.

The grandmas helped keep her entertained during meals. She does ok, but goodness, she’s a squirmy bug.

After lunch, we did some shopping at the outlet mall. Remi mostly napped in her carrier until I wanted to try on clothes (priorities? ha!) and she woke up when I tried to transfer her.  Oh well.

We left Branson and headed down to Big Cedar. We got checked in and settled and then went to have dinner at their new Fun Mountain. It was great! We had a couple different pizzas and enjoyed dinner. They were so accommodating for food for Remi- I asked for some tomatoes and avocado since they had both on the menu- and they brought out big side bowls of both. She loved it!

After dinner, we stayed and played. They had a TON of stuff- go karts, rock climbing wall, arcade, virtual golf…but we chose bowling. It looked like it was underwater and was so fun! It was Remi’s bedtime, so I wore her and she slept through our first game.

The next morning, we were up early (thanks baby girl!) and we had breakfast in our cabin. We brought Krispy Kreme donuts back from Branson, so we enjoyed those and hung out.  Around 7:30, we headed out for some putt putt. Again, it was her nap time, so I wore her on my back for the first time.

The course is gorgeous! They do a great job landscaping everything.

It’s a fun course, especially to be included in our room.  We loved the big bass!

After golf, we walked around, down to the lake and around the resort. The weather was beautiful!

We ended up at the shop and loved playing with Remi there!

While we waited on the shuttle, daddy and R got some play time!

We got back to the room and got ready to swim.  Sweet girl didn’t keep her hat on for long, but she looked cute while it lasted! ha!

We headed to the lazy river and kid’s pool.  Remi LOVED the water.

After pool time, it was nap and lunch.  Remi passed out, we had leftovers for lunch, and while she napped, the grandmas hung out at the room. Tyler and I went back to Fun Mountain for some arcade fun. I may have beat him at a motorcycle game! ha!

We went to Top of the Rock for a wonderful Mexican dinner at Arnie’s Barn.  The views were gorgeous!

Remi had her first corn on the cob.  She was a fan.

Grammy got a little Remi lovings

And it’s safe to say she explored every corner of the condo while playing.

Sunday, we went on a golf cart tour at Top of the Rock. Lots of beautiful water falls.  Remi wasn’t impressed. ha!

We had a wonderful trip!

Weekend Recap: Babymoon!

Weekend Recap: Babymoon!

This past weekend we had a little getaway to the Branson area for our “babymoon.”  We didn’t want to do anything too long to extravagant. Babies need lots of things (read: we’re spending a lot!) and I’m saving most of my vacation time for maternity leave…but we could swing a few days in Branson.

Tyler is off W, TH, and F right now, so I took off Thursday and Friday and he took off Saturday and Sunday so we would have 4 days together.

We left home early Thursday and headed to Branson. We got to town a little before 11, so we drove up to the Chateau to enjoy the view.

Then we headed down to the Showboat Branson Belle for a lunch cruise and show.

We love the Showboat. We went several times when we were dating and enjoy the eating, sightseeing, and the show.

It was a bright, sunny day.

The water was beautiful! We had a great lunch and then had time to walk around the boat before the show. We enjoyed the breeze from the shade.

After the show, we headed into Branson and checked into our hotel. We were staying one night at the Hilton Branson Landing. I had won a free night at the Arkansas Women Bloggers conference, and we were just now able to use it.

The room was HUGE and so comfortable. And the best part? It was so quiet- we never heard anyone there. 

The view overlooked the shops at the Branson Landing. So after we got checked in, we did some walking around and had dinner at Joe’s Crab Shack.Before we did too much shopping, Tyler wanted a snack – so we stopped in the Rocky Mountain Chocolate Shop for a chocolate covered brownie. He was happy!

We spent the night, got up, had a yummy late breakfast at the Belgium Pancake and Waffle House, then we did some shopping at the outlet mall. We spent the afternoon at the Sight and Sound theater seeing their “Moses” show. It was incredible. What they can do with special effects is unreal.

After the show, we headed down to get checked into our room at Big Cedar. We bought a timeshare room from Craigslist for the weekend and it was GREAT.

We got all settled in and then we drove up to Top of the Rock for dinner at Arnie’s Barn.  It’s an old barn from Pennsylvania that was moved down to the Ozarks. The view and the sunset are spectacular!

We had a great meal of Mexican food (with AMAZING bacon guacamole!! yum!!) and then settled into our cabin for the night.

The next morning, we got up and played a round of putt putt at Big Cedar and then hit the pool/lazy river.

We got pretty sunburnt and came back for a nap. A glorious nap.  Naps are my love language.

That evening, we trekked back into Branson to meet our fishing guides for a bowfishing tour. I booked it through the Big Cedar marina, but the guide said fishing was better on Bull Shoals just outside of Branson….so that’s where we went.

You bowfish at night, so it was getting dark as we hit the water.

Tyler takes quickly to anything, and this was no exception. He jumped right in.  I opted to just sit and watch. Too many moving parts to go wrong for me. I didn’t want to break a bow or injure anyone! ha!

The sunset on the water was beautiful!

The moon started coming up. The guys said if we were regularly fishing, a full moon isn’t great because the fish don’t bite. But we weren’t waiting for them to bite. We were hunting them!

It didn’t take long to spot a sizeable gar in the water.

Tyler shot and hit it! 

We didn’t see a TON of fish, but a good amount. He got a big 25+ pound buffalo carp and two gars. He was proud of himself. 

It was a late night back to the cabin, but we slept in Sunday morning and then were back at Top of the Rock for brunch.

Before brunch, we took a good look at their sinkhole, which happened just over a year ago.  They are excavating hoping to find the cave.

We had a gorgeous view for brunch and enjoyed some wonderful food- prime rib, french toast, a great salad bar…but the dessert was the best! I got pretty much all the fruity stuff, and Tyler got everything chocolate. We were STUFFED.

After brunch, we drove up to the College of the Ozarks for a walk around their Father’s Day car show. It was neat to see all the old cars. Tyler was in heaven!

We had planned on returning to Top of the Rock for their golf cart cave tours, but it was pretty hot and we were tired, so we just headed back home.

A great weekend! We were greeted at home with a clean house thanks to my MIL- which was a wonderful surprise!

Now to do the laundry and get unpacked. 🙂

Weekend Recap: Branson!

We got to Branson around 1:30 AM Friday night…so we checked into our condo and crashed.  (Well, I crashed.  Our moms and Tyler are night owls and stayed up laughing and being silly.  Not me…I need my beauty sleep!)
We got up around 8 on Saturday and got ready.  We made a stop at a store that we used to love…but the stock was super low (and it seemed like they were going out of business) so that was a bust.
We stopped by our favorite Branson breakfast spot- Billy Gail’s.  Pancakes that are HUGE!  Mom and Tyler had pancakes (and I had an egg white omelet…#healthyeating).
After breakfast, we got to Silver Dollar City right when it opened at noon.  It was a little chilly, so we were all layered up.  We started with a little shopping and then saw Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol.  Oh my!  SDC has totally stepped up their game with the shows. This was Broadway quality and totally great!
We rode several rides (including the new Outlaw Run….a wooden coaster that goes upside down several times! woah!)…did some more shopping and then got lunch.  I was TOTALLY excited for my chicken succotash!  It’s my favorite thing in the City!
Fall was in full bloom there…so pretty in the Ozarks!
We did some more fun stuff- lots of shopping and tasting and demonstrations (our favorites were watching the potter making coffee cups in the pottery shop…or the glass blower making bowls)…and we made our way back to the square for the Christmas tree lighting.  I was a happy girl because I had some hot wassail.  I wait ALL year for this yummy drink!
The tree lighting is set to music and just beautiful!  Christmas is upon us!
After the lighting, we made ANOTHER trip to the candy store because they wanted more candy! ha!  Then we found a spot and watched the parade.  It was short, but fun.
We left the park after the parade and picked up dinner on the way home.  After we ate, we hit up the pool and hot tub in the condo.  It was a relaxing way to end the day!
Sunday, we had breakfast at the Belgian Waffle and Pancake House.  Then we dropped Tyler and Nancy off at the Payne Stewart golf course.  They played 18 holes while mom and I shopped.  It was great.
We had dinner at Fudrucker’s and then headed home.

It was a WONDERFULLY fun weekend.  I just love Branson.

Weekend Recap: The Weekend I Ate WAY Too Much

So mom and I headed to Branson this weekend.  Branson is special to us…we spent 3 years on and off living there.  We set out to have a fun, relaxing weekend..but really we set out to eat our way through Branson. 🙂
Friday, we left after work and headed to Branson.  We stopped in Alpena (a tiny town about 1 hour from Branson) to buy some cute concrete piggies. 🙂  The man was ADAMANT they were not Razorbacks, they were Alpena Pigs (copyright law anyone?) but we both bought one…and I also got a turtle with OU on his back.  We are a divided household. 
*edit* I get lots of search traffic regarding these concrete pigs.  They can be found in Alpena, AR and the owner calls them Alpena pigs.  They retailed for between $10-100 depending on the size and detail involved.  The owner said they made their own molds, pour them, and paint them in house.  Alpena is close to Harrison. If you ever get to Branson, it’s about an hour south and west. 

When we got to Branson, we chose to go straight to the Landing.  We shopped and had dinner at Joe’s Crab Shack. We LOVE Joe’s.  Mom and I split some crab dip (yum), each had crab legs, and we both had a drink.  The drink made us both tipsy.  We are such lightweights.  We shopped a bit after dinner and just laughed because we were a little buzzed! ha!  Nothing like getting tipsy with your momma after only one drink!

We stayed at the Stone Castle.  The rooms were soo nice!  We slept like babies. It is perfectly located too.  You gotta stay there if you go to Branson.  They have a great hot breakfast included as well!
Saturday, we went to a special place for us- Silver Dollar City.  I worked at SDC for two summers performing.  We love the shows, the food and the atmosphere.  We really ate our way through the city.  We had breakfast when we got there, shopped around, rode a ride, and then we took a cooking class!  The class was so neat!  They did a cooking demonstration and we got to try some goodies. 
After the class, we got lunch. One of my favorite foods of all time is the Harvest Time Succotash from SDC.  It is close to the Echo Hollow Ampitheather.  It has chicken, corn, ocra, peppers, onions, and some other stuff.  It is made in these giant cast iron skillets and its amazing.
I would never admit it, but this stuff might be the reason we actually went to Branson.  I may have been wanting a bowl of this amazingness.
After lunch, we watched a show.  It was AMAZING.  The Wallenda family tight rope walkers.  (one of the brothers is doing the special on ABC on Friday where he is tight rope walking over Niagra Falls!).  This is two guys on a tight rope (no nets or harnesses), on bikes, with their mom balancing on a chair in between them!  Incredible!

After that show, we got a lemonade and saw another neat show with a bubble artist.  Then we got a snack (so much food!), and shopped around a little more.  Then we went back to the hotel for a glorious nap.  Then we went to Fudruckers for burgers.  I had never been and the burgers were GREAT!
We got froyo after dinner (again….so much eating!), and crashed.  We got up and had belgian waffles at our favorite spot before doing a little last minute shopping and heading home. 
I got home, cleaned and unpacked, and Tyler’s mom and cousins came over.  We had dinner and chatted.  But once the Tony’s came on, I wasn’t much company.  This Broadway Baby has got to watch the Tonys! 🙂

I LOVED spending my fun birthday weekend with mom.  Even if I gained 5 pounds (I’m Shakeology cleansing for the next couple of days!), it was so fun, so relaxing, and fun memories.!