Famille Du Pentium

Another Day, Another Llama Video

Friday, August 29, 2008

Texas Trip Day 6: Hurricane Harbor

On day 6 of our trip, we went to Six Flags Hurricane Habor, a water park owned by Six Flags but (in Texas) separate from the main park.  This was fine with us, because we only wanted to go to the water park and we paid less to get into HH than we would have for a full Six Flags admission.

The pictures are HERE, More after the jump.


posted by Michael Humphries-Dolnick at 3:58 pm  

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Texas Vacation Pictures

All Texas vacation pictures have been posted here. One note: there are two pages of indexes; be sure to scroll down to the bottom of the page and click on "last" to see more albums after you’ve looked at all the albums on the first page.

posted by Michael Humphries-Dolnick at 8:25 pm  

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Slop Line BBQ

So what is "Slop Line BBQ"? 

You enter.  You grab a tray.  You ask for your food: BBQ of course, it’s usually either Pork, Beef (brisket), Turkey, or sausages.  "The Guy" slices off what you want, puts it on a plate, and you move on.  Then you pick your sides.  


You shouldn’t have to go through a line to get sides.  THe BBQ should be good enough, that the sides are just a… hmm, second thought?  Dunno, but certainly the "slop line" should not justify the good or bad BBQ that the establishment serves.  Unfortunately, in most cases, it does (or at least, they hope it does.)


Everyone who we asked for suggestions always said we should try the local slop line BBQ house.  We usually did, and we were always disappointed.  The BBQ is the key, and the slop line restaurants are more interested in providing a variety of sides than a great BBQ experience.  The table service restaraunts were much better, provided better BBQ, and delivered whatever sides you wanted to your table anyway.


posted by Michael Humphries-Dolnick at 6:37 pm  

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Rib Crib Restaraunt Review

On our stopover in Springfield, MO we inquired as to the best place to eat some good MO BBQ.  We were initially referred to "Buckinghams" – a slop-line BBQ joint (I’ll explain what that means later) that the hotel staff rated "the best BBQ in MO".  But we wanted a table-service restaurant.  So we went to Rib Crib in Springfield.  We were not disappointed.

On our recent trip, we had our choice of BBQ restaurants along the road and by far the best was a MO chain called Rib Crib.  The sliced brisket was absolutely perfect: slightly red in the middle with plenty of smoke flavor and a nice crust on the outside.  

Their sauce was absolutely to die for.  Both the mild and the hot had the appropriate mix of flavors, smoke, and heat to keep your lips burning with that "I want to remember this dinner for hours" flavor, whether you are a BBQ veteran or a newbie.  

The service was great, and I tipped our server well.   I hope to find a Rib Crib near us (even if I have to drive four hours to St. Louis) soon, so we can enjoy it all over again.  I strongly recommend Rib Crib for anyone who wants to try authentic southern BBQ for the first time, or veterans like me.

posted by Michael Humphries-Dolnick at 6:26 pm  

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Holiday Inn Express Lewisville TX Hotel Review

Now before I start my review of the Holiday Inn Express in Lewisville, Texas let me say that despite one problem we had, which was resolved, the hotel was "as expected" and it was a great stay.

The full review after the jump.


posted by Michael Humphries-Dolnick at 2:26 pm  

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

We’re Home!

We made it home, the kids are in school now, and I have a lot of work to do!

I’ll catch up posting about days 6 through 10, however here are some statistics from the Humphries-Dolnick Summer Vacation 2008:

  • We drove a grand total of 2598.5 curb-to-curb;
  • About 600 miles were in Texas and Branson, MO
  • We stayed in three hotels (Springfield, MO; Lewisville, TX; and Lebanon, MO)
  • We got a free breakfast for the entire family 8 out of 10 days
  • We ate barbeque at least once per day

As I said, more stories from the road (and pictures) soon.

posted by Michael Humphries-Dolnick at 11:27 am  

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Some Quick Photos

Here are a couple of funny pictures from the road.

First, "and you thought you paid a lot for gas"

And this one: Lord Vader.

posted by Michael Humphries-Dolnick at 9:32 pm  

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Day 3, 4, & 5 – Lewisville TX

Well we made it.  Day 3 (Monday) was a driving day that took us through the rest of MO, then Oklahoma and into Texas.  Several times signs along the freeway in Oklahoma warned us not to "drive into smoke", but none was seen so we’re safe.  Smile

Yesterday, day 4, Tuesday – we got together with Morgan, Aaron’s best friend from school who moved to Keller Texas (near Fort Worth) last year.  Finding this place in the boondocks was interesting, but then we went to a place called "Main Event" near our hotel which has laser tag, games, glow-in-the-dark mini golf, and of course Pizza.  A good time was had by all.  After that, we drove to my cousin Lisa’s house in Coppell and hung out for the evening.

Today we got together with Lisa and Rory again and went to see Clone Wars.  That brings us up to now, we’re resting up and getting ready to go swimming.  Ah, rest.  Soon the whole Humphries clan will be here and it will be just a sweet memory.  Surprised

Some preliminary pictures are up here.   The pictures in a playground are from the Limestone (Illinois) rest stop near Normal, where we also stopped off at the beginning of the summer on our trip to Normal for the Special Olympics.  Yeah, I still owe you pictures for that one too.  For those of you joining us in Dallas this week, we’ll see you soon.

posted by Michael Humphries-Dolnick at 3:24 pm  

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Holiday Inn Springfield MO Review

We’re staying at the Holiday Inn in Springfield, MO near Branson. 

Upon check-in, the hotel staff were friendly and very quick.  We have a family suite on the 2nd floor, and our room is very clean and well maintained.  There is a large room with two beds and a tube TV, plus the only bathroom (but with a whirlpool tub) and separate room with toilet and shower.  Unlike other Holiday Inn "family suites", they actually expect a family to stay here – and provide enough towels for everyone. 

The small-ish separate room for the parents has one "king" bed, although I’ve never trusted the bed sizes anyone quotes — this one is definately more like a queen, and the two "queens" in the other room are more like double beds.  But hey, I’m used to that.  There’s a microwave, fridge, and sink in the parents room.  The only complaint I have about the room is that there is not enough light – a couple of lamps but you can’t see in the closet at night, even with all the lights on.

We really need a pool when we travel.  The kids are very good about travelling, but they do end up sitting in the car six to eight hours per day, and they need this to burn off some energy.  This hotel has a pool and Jaccuzzi, although the Jaccuzzi is pretty lame.  It’s very small – OK, I can live with that, but the jets aren’t very powerfull and the water is lukewarm at best.  They need to warm up the Jaccuzzi a bit.  Fortunately, I have a whirlpool in my room, so I can sit in a proper soak after driving all day.

The restaurant is OK … the greeter sort of ignored our kids, who were very excited to try to talk to her.  The waitress was better.  The food was standard Holiday Inn fare – nothing great but not bad – and was served promptly and hot.   They made a big deal about having to "check" on whether we were guests, in order to give us our discount (kids eat free!)

Overall I like the hotel and might stay here again, although I would first look around for a hotel with a better Jaccuzzi Smile .

posted by Michael Humphries-Dolnick at 10:07 pm  

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Day 1 Driving Maps

Here’s a link to a Google map of what were we’ve been over the last two days:


posted by Michael Humphries-Dolnick at 10:04 pm  
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