Live Music, Good Eats, Delectable Libations, and Breathtaking Views – All in One Place

Ray and I went out with a friend last night to check out The House of Songs’ new concert series in downtown Austin. The House of Songs has partnered with the Westin to bring local and international artists in for a few hours every Wednesday night. Sahara Smith, from Girl Pilot, played for us last night, with a special guest appearance by Thorbjorn from Denmark.

The House of Songs

Sahara is a native Texan who has always had a passion for singing and songwriting with a delightful sound. Each of her songs were written from her own experiences and she plays from the soul. She is mesmerizing and her bluesy voice is calming and relaxing.

This was definitely a great way to spend an evening. What can be better than enjoying a glass of wine and some of the best biscuits and brussel sprouts around from Stella San Jac, all the while listening to some amazing artists!

Stella San Jac's Flaky Biscuits photo Stella San Jac's Flaky Bicuits

Brussel Sprouts with Candied Jalapenos photo Stella San Jacs Brussel Sprouts with Candied Jalepenos

There is a fabulous lineup of artists set to appear over the next couple of months. I am most excited about the concert on August 19th – Phoebe Hunt and One Village music project. I got the inside secret scoop on this particular concert and, trust me, you don’t want to miss it!

Now, I want to share a bit about this brand new hotel where these concerts are being held — First of all, the Westin Downtown is gorgeous! It has only been open for five days, but the staff is friendly, helpful, and more than willing to give you a grand tour.

We discovered on our tour that the rooftop pool and bar is open to the public on the weekdays. All are welcome to cool off and enjoy a drink made by one of the talented mix masters at this “highest rooftop bar in Austin.”

The views from this rooftop are incredible! You can see 6th Street, Zilker Park, Ladybird Lake, and more. Watching the sun set over the buildings of downtown Austin was just breathtaking.

6th St View from Rooftop Bar at Westin Downtown Austin

View of Downtown Austin from the Rooftop Bar at the Westin

Let me know if you’d like to join us next week for a good time!

Trying to Stay Cool?

Are you looking for something to do with the little ones in the Austin area these next couple of weeks? If you have small children and want to stay cool, the Quarry Splash Pad in Leander at Southwest Williamson County Regional Park is just the ticket! At just just $1 per child, it’s a super fun outing and incredibly affordable.

We heard about this great splash pad from a new friend, through our good friend Andrew. All of us met at Quarry Splash Pad last weekend, and loved it so much I just had to tell you about it! 

Leander, TX - Quarry Splash Pad

In addition to lots of areas in which you can get soaked (including a waterfall I forgot to snap a pic of), there are picnic tables, synthetic grass, a sand pit, and a climbing wall. The slide was a big hit, although my boys wanted deperately to climb up it, as they do most slides. They also wanted to climb all of the rocks around the splash pad. Both a big no-no. After being redirected a few times, they easliy kept themselves occupied for the rest of our visit.

Quarry Splash Pad - Leander, TX

There are a couple of areas that you can reserve – both in the shade – one near the sand pit, and one near the splash pad, so either be sure to do so, or check the posted schedule for the day before throwing your stuff in these areas. Otherwise, there is plenty of space to set up camp elsewhere.

reservations - Quarry Splash Pad

The splash pad is currently open 7 days a week, from 10am to 7pm, but the last day of operation is Sunday, September 29, 2013, so don’t wait! I heard mornings are pretty crowded, so maybe plan to visit after lunch. Even us “big kids” got drenched so, wear your suit, mom and dad. And, remember to bring something to drink and maybe a few snacks… If your kids are anything like mine, they WILL need a bit of something!

Summertime Fun At The Austin Ice Cream Festival

There are certainly no shortage of fun things for the whole family to do in Austin…

We were excited to discover that this weekend was the 7th Annual Austin Ice Cream Festival. Ray and I thought it would be a great way to spend one of the last Saturdays before school starts, so we decided to check it out!

There was definitely plenty of ice cream, as well as lots of activities for kids of all ages – A petting zoo, pony rides, bounce houses and slides and vendors. There were also some fun contests to enter, including “guess the ice cream cones”, and an ice cream eating contest.

Our favorite, though, was the EuroBungy. All seven of the kiddos tried it!

The Hot Sauce Festival is next weekend!

I’m in Austin for SxSW!

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Not sure if I told ya’ll, but thanks to Walmart and Johnson’s Baby I am in Austin for the HUGE, and wildly popular, South by Southwest (aka SxSW or SouthBy) conference. I’m not sure I can really call it a conference, but I digress…

I am attending the Interactive track with 17 of my fellow ElevenMoms, our sponsors, a couple of good friends, and a few bloggy associates. Since this is my first year here, I am completely overwhelmed by the number of people present and the wide array of sessions available for us to attend… I really feel lost.

Thank God for my friends! Lori, Tara and I had some errands to run (also known as shopping) that took us away from the action, this morning, but we tried to make up for lost time by browsing through the mile-long schedule of sessions, only to give up and decide to walk around to see who we could meet. We started with the Trade Show and began passing around our cards and cute little 11Moms stickers to anyone who would take them.

Our aimless wandering this afternoon paid off… We met a ton of great people and even scored some fun skins for our iPhones from MusicSkins. I can’t wait to apply my Flower Girl to my phone (ahem, yes I know I don’t actually have an iPhone yet, thankyouverymuch…).

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Tomorrow will be a big day, so I’m heading off to bed now. If you’re here I would love to meet you, so come find me ~ I’m the one wandering around with the bewildered look on my face.