Friday, August 20, 2010

Where They Eat All They Can and Sell the Rest

(*Note: the next couple of posts are recaps of our family mini-cation, so I can have something to show my children several years from now as proof that yes, we did, leave the house on occasion. Vacation pictures tend to be boring for everyone who wasn't there, so proceed at your own risk.)

Wednesday of this past week our mini-cation proceeded to Mecca. The mother ship. The Holy Land of Texas ice cream. When I was growing up at the Sloan house, Blue Bell was King. Of the freezer anyway. Blue Bell ice cream originated in a little creamery in Brenham many years ago, and the factory offers a tour for visitors all day every day. They take 50 people every 10 minutes for a walk-thru of the plant, ending with a scoop of ice cream. I had a scoop of Southern Blackberry Cobbler flavor, and it has changed my life forever. Ice cream has actually gone bad because it has sat too long in my freezer on more than one occasion, but I think the Southern Blackberry Cobbler would be safe from that untimely demise.

(Sidenote: a friend of ours moved from Texas to California, aka Land Where Blue Bell Doesn't Go. However, Outback Steakhouse has Blue Bell on their dessert menu, and un-named friend talked the manager into selling him a three-gallon barrel of Homemade Vanilla so he could get his ice cream fix in Cali. I know some Sloan family members who think my friend is an absolute genius.)

They don't allow pictures on the tour, but fortunately we arrived a few minutes early and wandered around their this-would-be-beautiful-if-it-wasn't-110-degrees outdoor grounds.

Fortunately, we found a cow statue that Dane wanted to sit on.

Until he realized that the statue hadn't been frozen in Blue Bell's deep freeze, and it, too, was 110 degrees.
But can you see the wheels turning in Brandon's head? It's like he was just waiting for the old ladies behind us looking at the statue to move along now, there's nothing to see here.
The father of my children, folks.
A forced picture of me and the boys, who were SO OVER the picture taking by this point:
Yes, that is a lei on Dane's neck. Before we left on our trip a few days ago, Dane put it on and proclaimed it to be his "Vacation Necklace" and wore it just about everywhere for the entire time we were gone. Also, I'm never overly concerned with what clothes the boys are wearing, and I let them pack their own bags for the trip. That's why they may look a little homeless in a lot of our pictures.

And look who else went with us! Another little ice cream fan came along for the tour, and she had herself a big time sharing our ice cream and modeling the free paper hats.

Stay tuned for Part 3 of Family Mini-Cation picture taking extravaganza, alternatively titled: They Really Shouldn't Have the AC Controls Low Enough for Harper to Reach Them.


Jenni C. said...

You might want to inform your readers, just in case they want to also venture to Brenham, that the Blue Bell factory is indeed closed for two very important holidays... Veteran's Day and Pearl Harbor Day. Just in case their significant other is wanting to take them there to, say, celebrate a birthday or possibly have a cute date before proposing... just in case!