Sunday, August 3, 2014

'14 Summer Vacay Part #1

The Smart Family Vacation of 2014 began the week after the kiddos finished up school. We left on Tuesday morning, heading towards Gulf Shores, Alabama. Kyle got his work situated as much as he could, we packed our suburban with everything we might possibly need for the next week, and headed out. We had several stops planned along the way, the first one being to pick my mom up in Colorado City. We stopped and loaded up her bags and headed to Dallas. We had a quick, but delicious late lunch somewhere around Ft. Worth at one of Kyle's favs, Saltgrass. Then we hit the Louisiana border that afternoon and stopped at the first place on our list.......

 Hello, West Monroe, Louisiana, home of Willie and the rest of the bunch at Duck Dynasty. Yes, we had a short photo opt at the DD warehouse.

 It looked just like what you see on television, only seemed smaller to us.

 Here's the loading dock. We did not see any of the Robertson family, seeing that it was after hours, we did not actually expect to. Although to run into Cy might have been quite funny. West Monroe-check! And we were off again. The beautiful land of Louisiana was just so awesome! Grass and trees everywhere! I will say that our favorite places to see beautiful landscaping during the entire trip was Louisiana. Kyle and I decided that we would like to visit La again and stay a little while longer.

 That night we crossed the state line into Mississippi and the Mississippi River. Kyle found us a room at a casino on the river in Vicksburg, MS, where we stayed the first night. Ummm, the casino was quite interesting to say the least. Lots of folks enjoying some gambling. The next morning the kids had a photo opt outside the hotel/casino in front of the river. We were able to see the huge barges traveling down the river from our hotel rooms. It is amazing how large the river truly is!

 Since we crossed the river at night, the next morning I made Kyle drive back across so I could take a photo.
The Mighty Mississippi!!!

Day 2-Vicksburg Military Park

 We took the driving tour through the park. Gunnar was our chauffeur. He was not as thrilled to be in the car as we were but he did his best.

Beautiful monuments throughout the park. It's a beautiful place. It was quiet and we could not even imagine fighting in those woods during the Civil War.

 Cita was taking lots of photos, too. Mom and I had not been to the park since probably the 1980's. I was in elementary school.

 The Illinois Monument was the best. It was amazing what they were able to construct in the late 1800's.
 Slade and Gunnar inside the building at the top of the stairs. Slade is way interested in war history. We planned this stop especially for him.

Photo bomb by Slade.

 Look at the GREEN GRASS!!!! Kyle and Slade walking around.

Cita and her Smarts.

 We were able to see a gun boat they salvaged out of the river.

 The Military Cemetery
 It was a beautiful resting place for so many men.

Around lunch, we were ready to head towards the Alabama State line. On our way, we also traveled through Jackson, MS. All I could think about was The Help!!!  Part #2 of the trip to be continued.......

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