12/20/15

The Birthday Girl … ME! #FelizCumpleaños

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One, two, three, four, five …  (fast forward) 2015 : )). Keep calm, it’s the birthday girl!

I keep telling myself that I am only as young as my heart tells me and that special number appears to have fixated itself in the 20’s. I will never let a silly number dictate what I can or cannot do. I do what makes my soul happy and this year in particular I wished for a horse ride.

 

When I was a little girl my dad bought me a horse. I asked him years later, WHY? My dad had the perfect answer…because you wanted one : )).  photo 1 (35)

I ended up falling off my horse one time and never rode her again. Her name was Big Red and my granddad ended up taking care of her. I felt that it was time to conquer my fear and giddy up!

December 3rd every year was a big deal. The coolest cakes, themes, presents and the most important, familia. The day of my birth reminds me of birthdays past and the love that was put into them. Every year now is a day to live just a little extra. I am happy to be alive and yes I am reminded that time goes by so quickly. I don’t want to live fearful, I want to live fearlessly : ). 

 

I decided to try Hollow Tree Ranch  in New Braunfels, Tx. Their motto is “Horses training riders”. Jeff Oliver is the founder and owner of Hollow Tree Ranch. I spoke with Jeff when making my reservation and he was so sweet and easy to work with. He answered all of my questions and when we arrived took care of more concerns from my group. I feed off positive energy and that is all I ever felt from the moment I called. My daughter hadn’t gone on a horse ride in years and mentioned that she was a little scared. His response, “what in particular scared you so I can make it better for you”? The one hour ride was just enough to get our giddy on but left us wanting more.

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Was it what I hoped for…YES! Will I be back…YES! Next up, the Moonlight ride and I can hardly wait : ).

The day was not just for me but for me to share this special adventure with the people I love. Life is better with family and friends. Thank you Jeff for being a part in making this memory memorable for all of us. Words cannot describe the what the ride meant to us individually. Empowered we became as we conquered our fears.

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We left the ranch on such a high and discovering that right down the rode was Dry Comal Creek Winery was an even bigger surprise, could my birthday get any better?

This would be my daughter and her best friends first wine tasting and who better to share this with than with her MOM. The girls had a blast and we were even treated to a special tour of the place.

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The sangria was delicious and the wine tasting was a huge success for the girls.

 

 

 

My beautiful evening ended with a family dinner at The Little Red Barn, my granddaughters favorite steak house. I believe it’s because the waitresses dress up in cowboy hats and boots. My Madelyn loves a great themed anything and I adore this. Do more than just exist, when you can and while you can!!

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For more information here are the links on Hollow Tree Ranch & Dry Comal Creek Winery. The trip took less than an hour from San Antonio and we all know any hill country road will lead to an awesome adventure.

CHEERS to finding the Giddy up in your step : ). Grab your boots and just go!!

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Fitfunand … Happy Birthday to me!!

 

09/20/15

A 10 mile Texas Hill Country Run.

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I am not a big fan of trail running but I do love me some Texas hill country so I signed up for a 10 mile outdoor run. The other options were a 20 miler or a 50K so my choice seemed like the best : ).

If you want to run off the beaten path then run in Texas. The Lighthouse Hill Ranch sounded like the perfect location to explore with an abundance of wildlife, 2 swimming pools, a waterfall grotto, ponds, numerous springs, 50 miles of trails and a creek side hot tub. The ranch has individual properties for rental and the Lighthouse happens to be one of them. The “Arc de Texas” is a unique wine tasting stop located in the ranch combined with unique accommodations. I was able to enjoy some wine there a few weeks prior on a girl’s day trip. It was inspired by the Arc de Triomphe in Paris. A must wine stop with incredible views and you can easily pull up to it from highway 281 in Johnson City,TX.

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I think you can see why I wanted to run there and I wasn’t going to let the trails scare me away. I figured worse case scenario my buddy Elaine and I would turn it into a hike.

The event was put on by Run in Texas and it was properly marked and had plenty of stops with nutrition & hydration just the way they promised. I have gotten lost before on easier and smaller courses … LOL

A 10 mile run/walk/hike in the tough Texas hill country with a friend by your side, priceless!

Fitfunand ………. Ten Country miles Y’all!!!

 

 

08/30/15

Keep Calm & Road Trip.

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I love spending time in the outdoors and this summer I took a week off to do random day trip’s. Summer’s in Texas tend to get a little heated so I decided to head to some watering holes that I hadn’t been to.

Krause Springs in Spicewood,Tx is about 95 miles from San Antonio,Tx. The honey was my travel partner for the day and with our destination picked out all we had to do was hit the road.

I knew my day would be full of adventure so my heart was full of happiness.

Krause Springs is a well-known camping & swimming site located in the beautiful Hill Country of Texas. The 115 acre property is listed on the National Registry of Historical Sites and has been privately owned by the Krause Family for over 50 years and has many natural sites to explore. There are 32 springs on the property, and several feed the man-made pool and the natural pool which flows into Lake Travis. There is primitive camping & RV site’s w/electricity & water.

A nice little surprise was the Butterfly Garden filled with beautiful flowers,chimes and a hammock big enough for two.

The place is perfect for families with younger children and is filled with many places to picnic with the bathrooms within walking distance.

My favorite part was driving in. A sign saying be careful of cattle was the first thing I noticed and I thought of course, it’s Texas! We kept driving and we went right past a herd of cows : )).

The honey and I hiked for about an hour and we came across a couple of gorgeous waterfalls.  A pool is located not too far from the watering hole. I felt as  a whole that his place had just a little bit of everything but not too much. We went on a weekday in July and we still had plenty of space to be alone on the trails. The pool and watering hole were full but not packed. It is not a huge park so just be picky in deciding when to visit. We left happy and I would definitely come back. The reviews were mixed when I did my research but I would say that my experience as a whole was a good one. I feel that with the right people and the right attitude your day will be great no matter what you find.

 (things to know before you go) Krause Springs

  • Cash only
  • No pets allowed
  • Bathroom w/shower stalls
  • You can fish on lower parts of their property
  • Open year round
  • No glass containers
  • No life guard on duty
  • $7.00 per adult (12 + years) Day fee
  • $5.00 per child (5-11 years) Day fee

 

Fitfunand ….. JUST GO!

 

08/14/15

Stay Wild …. Go Camping!!

Screenshot_2015-08-11-23-18-32_wm-1I have always had a connection with the outdoors. One can never have too much happiness and mine is found in the beauty of the WILDerness.

 

I partnered with REI recently for their #LETSCAMP & #HAZLOEPIC Summer Campaign. I was so excited to be a part of all the “coolness” that is REI and as a partner REI sent me an REI InCamp 4 Tent, a super light  Backpack and a really neat Campfire Rocker

 

It was going to be our granddaughter’s first camping adventure and in order to make it a memorable one for her we only had one place in mind….CONCAN,TX. It was the place the honey and I had taken our girls most summers growing up and it holds many special memories for us as a family. Madelyn has often heard us talk about camping and now that she was older the time was right. I am not sure who was most excited : ). 20150712_124056-1

 

I was so thrilled to be a part of making her experience a fun one and may it only be the beginning to many more with her.

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The hardest part was picking a weekend we would all be available since the girls are older now.  It had been some time since we had all gone camping together and we were all most excited for Madelyn. I had hopes that she would enjoy it as much as my girls did.

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Just like old times …. but with one more!! Friday couldn’t come soon enough. The honey and I went up a day early to set up the campsite. The girls arrived the following day and we headed straight for the river located just a few feet from our campsite at Mager’s River Campphoto 2 (21)

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Swimming and hiking are a perfect way to stay fit while having fun. The temperature soared and so did our appetites so after much swimming and exploring we decided to have Dad do what he does best….barbecue!!! Dinner was served and we headed back to the river once more (because we could) before settling in for the night : ). We had promised Madelyn a special treat once it got darkshe guessed it…S’mores : ).IMG_2638

 

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We had one more task to complete before calling it a night…..spooky stories, with a PG rating for our little 4 yr old.  Madelyn decided she would go first and we would all take turns holding her Hello Kitty lantern. The title of her story she told us was “The Midnight Creeper” LOL! We knew at that moment that Madelyn was officially a Camper Girl and I beamed with pride as she headed into the tent for the night.  The next day as were slowly getting ready to leave Madelyn said “I wish I could live here forever”,  MISSION ACCOMPLISHED.

I sat back and took it all in. I had shared my LOVE of camping with the girls and to know that they were happy and almost childlike again in that environment was a beautiful thing. The stars did shine brighter in the Texas Hill Country!

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Camping Do’s & Don’ts

  • Do call ahead to make reservations, especially if the place your going to is a popular one.
  • Do ask questions and let them know how “seasoned” you are …. or not! Most places are helpful in finding the campsite that is right for you.
  • Do your research ahead of time on what amenities and facilities the parks offer.
  • Do check the weather for the time you will be camping so that you will not be stuck in a crazy weather storm (unless you like living on the edge).
  • Do allow yourself to connect with the outdoors and always be courteous of your fellow campers.
  • Don’t LITTER!
  • Don’t go unprepared. Food,water,shelter and a great attitude.

REI PRODUCT REVIEWS

I was very impressed with the tent and how quickly it set up & the instructions are on the bag. Super light and very roomy.

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The campfire rocker instantly became Madelyn’s and she claimed it the moment we took it out of the box. It was love at first sight and it even made it to the river.

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My favorite turned out to be the backpack. It was extremely comfortable and light, perfect for the day and girly enough for me!IMG_2453 (2)

My REI journey has been AMAZING!! I have met people that I know will be in my outdoor future for a lifetime. I will be announcing an exciting opportunity that has come my way very soon  so stay tuned : )).

Fitfunand ….. the outdoors!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

07/29/15

I Haven’t Been Everywhere, But It’s On My List! + #LetsCamp Giveaway #FitFunandCamp

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Krause Springs (Spicewood,TX)

I love the outdoors and I took this past week off to visit some Texas Parks & Watering Holes that I had yet to explore. My goal was to just have some fun. I chose different adventures for my family and friends. It was impossible to gather my family (last minute) all at the same time but splitting them up gave me more quality time with them. Texas is home to many beautiful parks/rivers/lakes and breathtaking scenery.

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Landa Park (New Braunfels,TX)

You have to take time to make your soul happy and for me that means spending time outdoors with the people that mean the most to me, my family and friends. This week I did just that. I am more than willing to share my love of the outdoors and to encourage these experiences. Think OUTSIDE the box!

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Hamilton Pool Preserve (Dripping Springs,TX)

I have recently partnered with Recreational Equipment Inc. REI The Nation’s Leading Outdoor Retailer to help make their #LETSCAMP campaign EPIC! Last week I was able to do a tour at my local REI store and it left me wanting to take my outdoor adventures to the next level. Caleb was my guide and his enthusiasm for the outdoors was evident in his excitement to explain all of the necessary camping gear and he even fitted me with a Backpacking Pack. PhotoGrid_1437696267594 (1)

I was so impressed with what REI stood for and represented.  To inspire, educate and outfit for a lifetime of outdoor adventure and stewardship. My favorite surprise was learning that they have outdoor classes for pretty much anything you can imagine to help make your camping/hiking/biking/and even running experience a fabulous one. They even have a bike shop in the store ….. SERIOUS! The only thing missing was a bakery : )).

DREAM IT!

LEARN IT!

DO IT!

Let REI help you with instruction,enthusiasm,transportation and gear, it’s that simple! Did I mention that REI will invest almost $8 million in non-profits and new projects to create access to inspirational outdoor places. How can you not want to be a part of the REI family? I was under no obligation to become an REI member and for a one-time fee of $20.00 I receive a lifetime of benefits. A start to a beautiful relationship. 

REI MEMBERSHIP BENEFITS      20150722_191328

  • Members Only Coupons and Discounts
  • 10% Annual Member Dividend
  • Special pricing On REI Trips & Classes
  • Access to REI’s Famous Garage Sales (40-80% off scratch and dent items)
  • Bike & Ski Discounts
  • Access To The REI MasterCard
  • $20.00 Lifetime Membership With No Annual Fee     

 

The first camping trip that I recall was in my very early twenties. I had a friend introduce me to Garner State Park and the rest was history. The family and I went any chance we got. A weekend trip or just for the day. We kept it simple. A tent, air mattresses, ice chest, food, drinks, chairs and some basic necessities. Garner has different sites and we always chose the ones with electricity and water. The bathroom and shower are within walking distance and the river is just a few feet away. During the day we swam,tubed and hiked and at night was our time to just feel connected. Sitting around a campfire with our girls as we laughed and told silly stories while we charred the marshmallows…  : )). The sound of the Frio River lulled us to sleep. This has been my type of camping experiences. Family,fun and the OUTDOORS, simple right? 

Do you have any favorite camping stories?

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LET’S CAMP GIVEAWAY! (In Partnership with REI #sponsored)

Thanks to our friends at REI, fellow San Antonio blogger, Melanie from Que Means What and I are happy to host a giveaway for a 4-Person REI Tent from each of us! Enter below and then head over to QueMeansWhat.com to double your chances of winning.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

FITUNAND … WANDERLUST!

 

 

07/19/15

Girls Just Wanna Have Fun!

 

 

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I found out a couple of my co-workers were planning a day trip to Concan,TX and I of course invited myself. Concan  holds many memories for me and I was more than thrilled to share my love of the outdoors with the girls. I was able to show them some of my favorite watering holes and sweet camping spots.

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We decided to go with Josh’s Frio River Outfitters for our tubes & shuttle. The place was super adorable with pretty much everything you would need to make your day or weekend a success in Concan. They also had pink tubes and the girls and I of course were super excited about that. We decided to do the almost 4 hr ride.  They drop you off at the beginning and pick you up when your done. There is plenty of parking at Josh’s but I do recommend calling before to check the river flow and try to be on the water no later than 11:00 due to possible crowding.

The girls and I had a blast as we tubed/swam and laughed our way down the Frio. The scenery along the way is breathtaking and there are many gorgeous spots to just pull over and have a picnic. I highly suggest packing your cooler with water/snack/fruit and your favorite beverages. NO GLASS CONTAINERS or STYROFOAM! NO LITTERING! PhotoGrid_1437324599343

The ride was over and we were ready to eat. We decided on Neal’s because of the location. It is about 1 minute away from Josh’s and we heard good things about it as well. The chicken fried chicken & the chicken fried steak were very tasty and the price was reasonable. Neal’s overlooks the Frio RIver and it was a great way to end the day, in the middle of the Hill Country.

Everything’s bigger and better in Texas so when we saw these huge Sunflowers on our way home we just had to stop and snap some pictures.

 

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I am thankful for the amazing day spent with wonderful friends making beautiful memories : ).

 

Gas for the day $20.00 (if that).

Pink Tube rental $10.00 (with head rest & cupholder).

Snacks/beverages $10.00.

Tube shuttle $4.00.

Lunch $15.00.

Memories PRICELESS!!

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Fitfunand ……..LIVE FOR TODAY.