A Quick Trip through Houston and Galveston Island, Texas

Last week we visited Galveston Island for a couple of days, followed by a weekend in Houston. Whether you’re there for a week or just a few days, both cities have lots of fun and off-the-beaten-path things to do that won’t break your budget! Whether you’re a NASA fan or love lying on the beach, this area has you covered.

Johnson Space Center, Houston

Galveston Island

The Beach

Of course most people come to Galveston Island to have fun on the beach, and the good news is that most of Galveston’s beaches are free! Of the 32 miles of soft, sandy beaches, only Stewart Beach and East Beach charge a Continue reading “A Quick Trip through Houston and Galveston Island, Texas”

Big Bend National Park

Since we are returning residents to the state of Texas, we planned to go to Big Bend National Park over my Spring Break. With some reports of the Covid-19 contagion coming in, we decided to pack our own food for the trip and to camp, so as to be able to isolate ourselves as much as possible. We left the Austin area and drove across the beautiful central hill country, where the sides of the highways and byways are carpeted with bluebonnets during the month of March.

Ever since Lady Bird Johnson was First Lady, the Texas Department of Transportation has sown more than 30,000 pounds of bluebonnet seeds around the state annually.

Continue reading “Big Bend National Park”

Christmas on the Coast: the Gulf Seashores of Mississippi

If you’re dreaming of a white Christmas, but don’t like snow- then I suggest a trip to the US Gulf Coast. Stretching from Florida to Texas, the white sand beaches and quaint coastal towns, coupled with 70 degree days, are a delight in the off-peak winter months.

A “sandman” greets us at Christian Pass, Mississippi

The Gulf Coast isn’t complete without a ‘Pascagoula Run’, so avoid I-10 and take Highway 90 instead to Pascagoula. Are you a Parrothead? Look for the Buffet Bridge near Buffet Beach, a 2015 honor for local-boy-made-good Continue reading “Christmas on the Coast: the Gulf Seashores of Mississippi”

How do you say goodbye to your hometown?

christmas tree at reston town center pavilion virginia

Six years ago, Chris and I left Africa and returned to the US. In just one short month, we lived in a hotel, got married, bought a house, got a job (Deah), and got deployment orders for nine months (Chris). It was a crazy month, and in that time, we found ourselves living in Reston, Virginia- which turned out to be our home for the next few years.

Reston has a very interesting history. It was one of the original Continue reading “How do you say goodbye to your hometown?”

A Day in DC: Embassy Row, the National Cathedral and Georgetown

washington dc georgetown

My friend Kelly came into town, and on one of the days I took her to see an area of DC I hadn’t spent enough time in: the northern part, which features Embassy Row, the National Cathedral, and Georgetown.

Embassy Row

Since we were in a car, it was easy enough for us to just slowly drive around the Kalorama neighborhood, near Massachusetts Avenue and Sheridan Circle. You could also take a Zip car- I noticed quite a few Zip cars in the area, and there were Capital Bike docks nearby as well, so a bike ride in nice weather would be a lovely way to see the embassies. DC has more than 175 foreign embassies, residences, and diplomatic missions, so don’t expect to see them all. But focusing on Massachusetts Avenue and nearby streets should let you see close to 30 of them, including Philippines, Portugal, Togo, Luxembourg, Ireland, Cyprus, Latvia, and Japan. My favorite is the imposing Kazakhstan Continue reading “A Day in DC: Embassy Row, the National Cathedral and Georgetown”