Thanksgiving in Austin

We are home from Austin and our hearts {and bellies} are so full! I didn’t realize how much Cory and I needed a little break to escape the craziness of everyday life and couldn’t think of a better place to retreat than Austin with Caleb and Anna.

Even though we picked the worst possible time to visit, what with their busy work and school schedules, we are so thankful for the time we had.


We headed to Atlanta Wednesday afternoon to catch a flight and what better way to pass the time  than with a little Elf, which is my favorite Christmas movie.


We landed in Austin late that night and the airport was deserted! We couldn’t believe how empty it was the night before Thanksgiving.


We didn’t check any luggage {Queen of Over-Packing over here} and somehow I got everything in my carry-on! I was extremely proud of myself and had to share my packing skills.


We woke up Thursday morning and I Facetimed with my family while Cory and Anna started cooking.


This picture just cracks me up. My Nana wanted to show me the new carpet in her bedroom and apparently Taylor was enjoying the softness. I promise it’s not a dead body!


Cory and Anna did the majority of the cooking sooo…Caleb and I were just in the way a lot.


Our poor ugly hard boiled eggs. None of us had ever made deviled eggs but apparently, we did something very wrong.


But Cory did a great job on the ham…it was as tasty as it looked!


Our impressive spread! Makes me want a plate just looking at it.

IMG_1186 IMG_1191

The deviled eggs were actually really good, even though they look horrendous.


Caleb, you had ONE job. Just slice the cranberry sauce. One job!


But he totally redeemed himself with his awesome center piece.


Caleb’s friend Josh joined us for dinner, since none of his family lived close. The guys had a good time discussing comic books and movies with him and he fit right in!

IMG_2453 IMG_1207

I must say that I really enjoyed not going to five different places on Thanksgiving. We love all our family and hate not seeing them on holidays but as you can see, I didn’t even fix my hair because I knew we’d be hanging around their apartment all day.

I wouldn’t hate it if every Thanksgiving was as laid back as this one.

IMG_1208 IMG_1210

After dinner, the boys went outside to play a little football City-Style–in an empty parking lot down the street.


We ended the night with a little football watching until Cory and I decided to venture out for a little early Black Friday shopping. I was so excited for Cory to get to “experience” Black Friday but when we walked into Target at 10:30pm, there were no lines, no crowds and plenty of items still on sale.

What the heck?


Friday morning Cory and I slept in while Caleb and Anna headed their separate ways for work and school projects {Anna’s in grad school at the University of Texas, in case I haven’t mentioned that}. Cory and I headed for lunch at Ross’ Old Austin Cafe for some chicken-fried steak on my Dad’s recommendation.


Well thanks, Dad–it didn’t disappoint!

Funny story, Cory had filled up on leftovers before we left so he wasn’t that hungry and got a grilled cheese. When the server bought out our food, he said “I’m just gonna guess here” and set my plate in front of Cory.

Negative, Ghostrider–I’m the big eater today! It was as good as it looks and I finished the whole plate.


We took a plate to Caleb for lunch then headed to downtown Austin to see the Capitol.

IMG_1213 IMG_2457

I busted Cory taking a selfie.


Said selfie.

IMG_2458 IMG_2460 IMG_1222 IMG_1224 IMG_1226 IMG_1228 IMG_1229 IMG_4734 IMG_1233 IMG_1243

Paige the Pioneer woman. Ha!
IMG_1246 IMG_2466 IMG_1257 IMG_1255 IMG_1258 IMG_1261 IMG_1262 IMG_1264 IMG_2472 IMG_1265 IMG_1267 IMG_1268 IMG_1272 IMG_1274 IMG_1277 IMG_1276 IMG_1280 IMG_1281 IMG_1282 IMG_1283 IMG_1284 IMG_1286 IMG_1291

We spent the rest of the afternoon driving around and getting lost because Google maps did not want to work in Austin. I can’t tell you how many U-turns we made over the course of four days.

IMG_1294 IMG_1295

After Caleb got off work on Friday night, we headed for mexican at Amaya’s.


And I had the best tacos of my life.

IMG_4738 IMG_4739

The next day, Cory got up early to hit some comic book shops around town that Caleb recommended. Apparently they turned out to be some kind of nerd Mecca like Cory had never seen. Also, please note the 27 selfies {not really} that my husband took. He said he wanted to “document” his part of the trip for the blog.

IMG_2484 IMG_2490

Well done, Cory. Well done.


Now we may not have bought season tickets this year, but that doesn’t mean we stopped bleeding orange. Clemson was playing their arch-rival and bitter enemy South Carolina on Saturday so no matter where we were, we had to find it on TV. Cory and Caleb had made plans to watch it online, but Cory couldn’t get the ESPN website to work.

Insert Panic Attack Here.

After fighting it for what seemed like hours, we gave in a went to a sports bar around the corner from the apartment. It turned out well though, because we were able to watch three games at once with all the TVs around us. Plus I got some killer wings and Cory had what he called the “best chicken and waffles he’d ever had”.

IMG_4746 IMG_4747 IMG_4749 IMG_4750

The best part was that Clemson FINALLY won after a five-year losing streak to USC {last time we beat them, I was on the field cheering}! Seeing a win like that made all the frustration worth it.


Our “Clemson finally beat USC” faces.


Cory got a call from Caleb saying that his boss was letting him leave work early, so we picked him up and went out to his favorite street in downtown Austin for the evening. Everywhere we went was so unique and fun! The environment was so relaxed with live bands and fire pits and we had a blast just walking around, enjoying the evening with Caleb. Poor Anna had to stay behind and work on a project she had due.


Please excuse the grainy iPhone photos.

IMG_2497 IMG_4759

I was with boys the majority of the weekend and they could care less what I had on. I had to take advantage of a full length mirror even if it is a bathroom selfie. #noshame


I promised myself years ago that as long as Cory keeps making stupid faces in photos, I’ll keep posting them hoping he will stop with embarrassment. It hasn’t worked yet, obviously.


IMG_4762 IMG_4788

One of the best things about Austin: FOOD TRUCKS. Everywhere you go, there are food trucks and the food is phenomenal. If you ever make it out there, be sure to try some.



Caleb’s degree is in Film, so he always knows the best place to see a movie. He told us we had to catch a movie at the Alamo Drafthouse, so on Sunday afternoon we went to the matinee to see the new Hunger Games movie. The Alamo Drafthouse is a really cool 50’s retro-styled place that shows current movies as well as older movies and independent films. While you watch, they serve food and drinks from a really professional menu. Definitely on the recommend list as well!

IMG_1300 IMG_4773 IMG_1301

This guy was selling ugly Christmas sweaters by the side of the road. Yes, please!


We took the rest of the afternoon just strolling around and hanging out in Zilker Park, which is where the Austin City Limits Music Festival is held. It’s a beautiful park where people go to play frisbee, rugby, soccer, or just hang out and the dogs roam free!

IMG_4776 IMG_1307 IMG_1311 IMG_1313

Don’t tell Einstein but Cory made a new friend named Petunia. And now I want a French bulldog.


IMG_1323 IMG_1328

I’d never trust my crazy dogs to just run free without a fence. I’d be in constant fear that they would run into the street but all the dogs were so well behaved.

IMG_1332 IMG_4784

We spent most of our time just people watching and saw some crazy yoga happening.


I think they were showing off at this point.

IMG_1338 IMG_1341

Pink ears- we’ve got to dye Einsteins ears sometime.

IMG_1345 IMG_1349

We went out for our last dinner with Caleb and Anna at another cool place called The Punch Bowl in a shopping district called The Domain. Inside the restaurant/bar is an eight-lane bowling alley, arcade, pool tables, ping-pong tables, and a few other games.


And of course I did some more extraordinary packing.

IMG_4791 IMG_4793

So there you have our Thanksgiving trip to Austin! We had a fun time and it was great to get to see Caleb and Anna, but I’m glad to be home in my own bed with my pups!

Thanksgiving Break Roundup

Happy December, y’all! Has Thanksgiving really come and gone? My break flew by and I kinda feel like I need a break from break. We had a crazy busy one filled with family, food, shopping, and decorating. For some strange reason, I got almost no photos on Thanksgiving. I think my brain was overloaded with everything I needed to accomplish that trying to remember to take pictures, went out the window. So this roundup may be kinda boring…my bad.


I honestly can’t remember what we did on Wednesday other than taking Einstein to the vet for his yearly checkup and rabies shot. I’m pretty sure I went to the grocery store and worked on wreaths.

Let me just say, I will never do five wreaths over Thanksgiving break again. I’ve spent a lot of time trying to get them finished and I’m almost done! Thank you, Jesus.


We always have busy, busy holidays because as I mentioned here,  Cory and I both have big families. We started the day cooking, watching the parade, and snuggling with the pups for a little while before our first meal at Cory’s grandparents house. Normally, between me and Cory’s Aunt Debbie, we make get everyone’s pictures but we both failed. I blame her. She can blame me. After we ate, some of the women browsed through the paper checking out the Black Friday ads and planned where we go and what we’d get. As you can see, some of the men slept. Like big babies. Big cute babies, I must add. Those Sloan men do have some good genes.

We left Cory’s grandparents and had to stop by the house for me to grab some clothes for Friday and the pumpkin roll I made. It cracked, of course. I’v never made one that didn’t. I’m an ugly baker, I tell ya. As in, my food may look ugly but it still taste good. And that’s all that matters, right?

This is the only picture I got of me and Cory and of course it was on my phone, on the way to my aunts house. It’s better than nothing, I guess. Once we got to my aunts house, Cory napped. On the floor.

He can sleep anywhere, I swear. While he was napping, I had dessert and my Mom, Aunt Leisa and I were talking about how the deals they wanted from Wal-Mart started at 6:00 pm. At this point, it was already after 5:00 pm so we checked to see if the items were included in the in-stock guarantee and they were but only from 6:00-7:00 pm. Without telling anyone bye, we dropped what we were doing, jumped in the car, and headed to Wal-Mart. We were out of Wal-Mart by 7:15 with everything we went in for! Mission accomplished.

Once we got back to Leisa’s, Cory and my Dad had already left and me, my mom, and Gracie headed to Greenville to my grandparents house.


For the past couple years, we’ve stayed with my grandparents so we can get up early and be close to the good shopping. We decided against shopping all night because last year we were zombies by day break so we got about four hours of sleep and started shopping at 3:00am. To our surprise, we didn’t encounter a lot of crowds or traffic. We figured that everyone started shopping so early the night before and had cleared out by the time we started.

We got to the mall around 6:00 am and we both wanted pizza and it hit the spot!

I forgot to clean my car out {which always has the most random stuff in it like a box full of glass vases and a guitar amp} so we had to squeeze Gracie in when leaving my grandparents house. Once I got home it was close to 4:00 pm and Cory had some errands to run so I loaded up the dogs and rode with him.

You would think they would be all over me since I was the one who had been away all night. Nope. They rode like this the entire time. I’ve been anxiously awaiting to see “Catching Fire” so we dropped the dogs off once we were done, grabbed some dinner and Starbucks {to keep me awake}, and headed to see it. Oh. my. gosh. was it good!


We hosted Thanksgiving for Cory’s mom side of the family and Cory’s cousin Leevon came with his two babies, Braxton and Adalynn but he left his better half, Erin, at home. They were hosting her family later that day and she was at home cooking. We missed you, Erin!

Cory had to bring out the big guns of his toy collection and as you can see, Braxton was amazed. Music is a family affair on the Bramlett side and everyone came prepared to play some tunes.

Everyone was clapping and dancing {we think Braxton was dancing} with the music including Granny Betty. Is she not the cutest?

Hosting Thanksgiving wears Hampton out.

After everyone left on Saturday, we turned on football and I started on the rest of my Christmas decorations {I already had my tree up}. It was a pretty disappointing evening as a Clemson fan since Clemson lost for the 5th year in a row to Carolina. And that’s all I’m gonna say about that.


I skipped church on Sunday because my back was bothering me and I was so tired. I hated to miss but really needed the rest {physically and mentally!}. I worked on my Christmas decorations and the wreaths for most of the afternoon and than Cory and I headed to dinner to celebrate Jessica’s birthday! We met the Henson’s {Jessica, Matt and Kaylen}, the Melton’s {Ben, Amanda, Riley and sweet baby Harper} and the Fletcher’s {Will, Jamie and Emerson} at Outback for a yummy dinner!

Can I just say how much I love this cutie? And those cheeks. She’s just too much.

Cory always manages to get children riled up and last night was no different. Sorry Jamie and Will! Hope Emme wasn’t too hard to get to bed.

I had to share both of these because of how cute Emme is in the first one!

So…there you have the longest Thanksgiving break roundup of all times! It was a good one but I’m looking forward to a weekend with nothing to do.