Daddy Mosby's Birthday Weekend

DSC02855This year we are so excited to be home for our close friends and families' birthdays! We were so happy to celebrate Zachary's fathers' 56th birthday this year! The last birthday we celebrated in person with him was his 51st! Geesh, that's way too long ago, right?! DSC02830Dallas had some snow this March (his birthday month) so we had a nice white birthday for him. :) I loved that. :) DSC02831For his birthday we got him a beginner bow & a target. Zachary was so excited to give it to him, he gave it to him the morning of his birthday instead of waiting until that night like everyone else did. haha. Like a little kid! DSC02834DSC02839
It made for a fun birthday day & gave them something to do together, though. The guys played over and over and over & got pretty good! Chara-girl and Abby (Zachary's childhood dog) loved being outside with the boys but we had to stop them from chasing the arrows!DSC02841DSC02842For his birthday dinner we went to Abuelo's in Arlington. It was delicious & a beautiful restaurant. DSC02843DSC02845DSC02846DSC02849DSC02850This was ammmmmazing. I want it right now.

Enchiladas De Cozumel: Delicate crepes filled with fresh guacamole, covered in a white wine sauce with seasoned shrimp, sea scallops, mushrooms, fresh spinach and roasted peppers.DSC02851DSC02852By the end of dinner the snow was melting. Noooo! DSC02854
We went back to the house to open presents & enjoy the delicious cake Brittany made.

DSC02856In the Mosby house birthdays are a big deal. They go all out, as you can see.
DSC02871DSC02872DSC02876No shirts, a cozy blanket, a watch, fishing gear, the present list goes on and on. DSC02881Besides for his bow & arrow, we also got him a Yeti cup. My brother and future sister in law rave about these things! They say they keep things hot or cold for 12 hours plus. DSC02882
We also got him a bomb. Basically. Well an exploding target. My brother works at the Academy where we bought Zachary's dad's gifts and he insisted that we buy him on of these. I'm not gonna lie, I want to be there when they shoot it!DSC02883DSC02860DSC02863After the candles were blown out, the cake was had & the presents were opened Zachary had a "surprise" planned for his daddy. DSC02858Egg Roulette! And Water War. He got both ideas from the Jimmy Fallon show.

To prepare for Egg Roulette you take a dozen eggs and boil 8 of them, leaving 4 raw. After they cool down you can play Egg Roulette. Basically, you take turns choosing an egg and cracking it over your head. It produces tons of hilarity. Lots of raw egg all over & lots of suspense. 

To prepare for water war you get a deck of cards, 8 cups of water & a bucket of water. You play war (the card game), the loser getting a cup of ice water thrown on them. Whoever uses up all their cups of waters first gets the bucket thrown on them. Again, lots of laughing & man squeels.

Both games were hilarious to watch. Overall I think Steve had a great birthday. We were so thankful to be there, too! Love you Dad! post signature


Snake Slaughter

Photo By Casey Kanode // Source

In my parents neighborhood snakes are kind of a big deal. When I say snakes, I mean rattle snakes really. And when I say a big deal I mean they're showing up everywhere and we hate them. Basically. 

They live in a fairly new development that's still being developed, so it's pushing all those crazy Texas rattlesnakes out of the brush and into people's garages. Yuck. 

My grandparents who live down the street have found 2 in their garage.
My grandma stepped over one of them to get to the outdoor fridge and when she turned back there it was, coiled up, ready to strike. 

So anyways, the other night after a late night rendezvous to the ER, we were driving back to the house, about to turn onto our street when our head lights reflected off a 3 1/2 foot rattle snake. 3 1/2 feet. Give or take. Which doesn't sound very big but it's roughly the length of a 5 year old. Give or take. I actually have no idea how long a 5 year old is. But in snake, it was long enough to provoke in us the desire to run that sucker over. Which does not happen when we see 5 year olds the same length. Just to make that clear. 

So we see the snake ahead and Jeff, my step dad, drives super fast, runs it over and slams on his brakes so as to really smoosh it. Mean while, all of us, seat belt less, (I know. I know.) almost flew through the wind shield. We basically almost died just to kill the snake. So anyways, Jeff quickly turns around and we all stick our heads out the window to get a good look at it and saw he had been half crushed but he was still moving. So we ran over him 2 more times. Then Zachary got out of the car to make sure it was actually a rattle snake (haha. Had he of been a garden snake we might have felt bad.). As he got closer, the snake, started moving again (crazy demon snake!! We ran over him 3x!!!!!!) and he started opening his mouth and lunging (with his head) at Zachary like he was going to bite him. We yelled for Zach to get back in the car quick and we ran it over a few more times. 

Then for good measure, with our Christian radio station playing in the back ground, (haha, my mom pointed that out at one point, "oh no! And we have Christian music playing!!" Ha! I'm not really sure what her point was because everyone knows rattle snakes are evil ;)  (and maggots! Gross. Also, not all snakes! Obviously Pronty is def not.))  Jeff parked on it and turned the steering wheel back and forth to really squish him good. I will admit that that part gave me the heeby jeebies. 

After that we drove around the block just to make sure there weren't anymore rattlers sneaking about because we were on a roll. It's funny how when you're looking for snakes EVERYTHING looks like one. We didn't find another but we still went home rejoicing in our super heroic act of rattle snake killing. I mean, they can kill you or your dog. So we were doing our neighborly duty really. 

And now, a direct message to the rattlesnakes of La Conterra neighborhood, if you come in front of our car again, we will squash you. So stay back. This is your only warning.

And that's the story of the snake slaughter. The end. 

So what do you think? Are we terrible for killing it? What would you have done? Let me know!! Comment below! 


Loboc Land Critters

When we went to the Philippines last summer, we knew, with our critter filled trip, we were out of China. Before travelling to the Philippines we had lived in China for 3 years. Not just China but a Chinese city. A big city. Chinese cities mean lots of tall buildings & lots of planned "green." There's not a whole lot of country side to be enjoyed near where we lived. We had mountains, but they were hiked often & filled with people most days, which isn't ideal for wild life. There was a point one time that Zachary and I both realized we rarely saw birds! That was so weird to us, coming from the States where we have birds everywhere! Not just birds but lots of deer and other wild life. I mean, just counting road kill (haha), we probably daily see a skunk, armadillo or possum! Not so in China! Crazy thing, my city grown students had never seen a frog in real life!!! That's insane to this Texas girl who grew up catching frogs & lizards. Anyways, back to our time in the Philippines where we saw TONS of critters! DSC_0362
Every morning the Loboc river would flow over it's banks and under our bamboo raise lodge. By noon, the water flowed back out & things dried out a little, leaving tons & TONS of little crabs. I loved sitting outside on our balcony and watching them. Mostly, I'd just spit down at them to see them scurry away scared of what was falling but then bravely go up to my spit and eat it. I know, I'm classy. It was interesting, what can I say.
The Loboc fireflies were probably the coolest critters we saw, not because we've never seen fire flies before, we grew up catching them during Texas summers, but because of how they'd fill trees along the river at night. They'd light up trees like Christmas lights. 
Another favorite and bucket list critter, were the monkeys living on a little island at our resort. The resort some how got them all on this little island. They are afraid of water so they never leave the island, therefore they never bother guests. Monkeys, I've heard, are actually terrible pests! They're so cute to us Americans but many who live near them don't think they're very cute because of all their antics. Anyways, don't feel too sorry for these stranded-on-a-little-Island monkeys, the resort takes lots of fruit and food out to them twice a day.  DSC_0379DSC_0378One night this huge gecko was putting on a show for us. By show I mean just hanging out on the ceiling & being a really cool and interesting gecko, therefore the topic of our conversation & entertainment  for awhile.
I loved this guy, too. Every morning we'd look out our window and see him lounging in the marsh.
This guy is a Bohol tarsier. Tarsiers are only found in a few places in the world & one of those places happens to be the Philippines.  Visiting them at the Tarsier Conservation Center is on the top of the list of things to do in Bohol. They are timid & adorable. DSC_0257Huge butterflies can be seen at Simply Butterflies Conservation Center. You can even hold some of them! There are tons of beautiful species in Bohol & many are being protected at the Conservation Center. DSC_0216DSC_0143This is Prony the python! She's also famous in Bohol. She, above, is actually the replacement Prony after Prony died, but she's huge & looks basically the same. You can hold her, too! DSC_0117
I know, ducks are everywhere, but why leave them out? DSC_0127There are tons of extremely cute dogs wandering around Bohol, too! I know, I know you have to be careful when playing with off leash dogs. (Though this guys was on a rope.) But most have wagging tails & are super friendly. DSC_0121The following guys were in cages at Prony the Phython
s park, so technically they are not really wild life critters, but they are animals local to Bohol, so I'll include them. Except, isn't seeing animals in cages, especially small cages, so sad? The worst is seeing a bird in a small cage! Sorry little guy!
That's all for now. We saw quite a few animals in just a few days, didn't we?! And these were just the land animals. Leaving the concrete jungle opens up a whole new world of experiences with nature. :) I love it!
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Where to Stay: Nanjing

 For my birthday (last November!) Zachary had a surprise trip for me to Nanjing! His dad generously booked us a room at the Intercontinental, which is housed at the top of the tallest building in Nanjing & a symbol of the city. The hotel is gorgeous on the inside and out, hosts a full service spa & indoor and outdoor pools. :)
And now for my very un-professional pictures & maybe some off topic pictures, too. :) DSC00288We loved our stay there. Especially, when after a few hours from check in we heard a knock on the door, answered, and received a sweet little birthday cake and card from the hotel. I love the small touches that make you feel welcomed at hotels! The Intercontinental definitely had those touches. :) DSC00289 photo DSC00290_zps742ac12a.jpgDSC00340
There's the Intercontinental, against the smoggy sky,  from the Nanjing Wall.  photo DSC00330_zpsb324513e.jpgLook how crazy high up these window cleaners are!  photo DSC00328_zpsb4f5a5e0.jpg
We ordered breakfast in our room one day and it was AMAZING! We felt so very fancy.   photo DSC00326_zpsc7a4bc0b.jpg  photo DSC00322_zps176150e1.jpgOne night we went to the 45th floor to the Sky Bar Lounge to enjoy some drinks and the view. It was a great view and so peaceful. :) We ordered desserts from the lobby cafe downstairs and brought them up to the lounge to enjoy with our drinks. :)   photo DSC00319_zpsf547eb53.jpg  photo DSC00317_zps75add087.jpg  Photo & Video Sharing by SmugMug
I kind of loved the little coffee shop & dessert cafe on the first floor. I loved their coffee & with the windows, it was the perfect place to plan for our day.
Nanjing had one of the best city guides I've seen. It was so helpful! You can pick yours up at the Nanjing airport.
It had activities by area, which was extremely helpful.
It even listed the top 10 Iconic Nanjing foods to try & where to find them. We tried tangbao (obsessed!), pan-fried beef dumpling, sesame pancakes & pidu noodles while in Nanjing.
I loved the beautiful flowers at the tables, too! Though this has nothing to do with the hotel, I thought it was worthy of discussion. In the Nanjing airport, on the way home to Qingdao, I saw that McDonald's had a pumpkin spice latte!!!! What?!?! I was shocked! Had McDonald's in China always had that and I'd been missing out all that time?! I was sure to get one!They even had a little cinnamon stencil to make a pumpkin on top. Cute!
It was no Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Latte but it was still delicious and I was thankful! It was a perfect way to end my birthday weekend. Also, worth talking about, China Eastern Airlines 'Orphan Health Program.' They always include one of these little envelopes on the Asian airlines flights we've flown. They're not always the same program, but we have usually got them on our plate at one of our meals, all great initiatives the airlines are supporting. I think it's pretty great. :) Who knows how much actually goes to orphans, though. Also, check out our planes shadow in the ocean? I think it's cool. :)
Love, love flying at sunrise or sunset. It's so beautiful! Flying in to Qingdao at night. Home sweet home. (then. :( we miss you Qingdao!)

So. The moral of this post was to go to Nanjing & when you do, check out the Intercontinental. :)

Thank you Da-da Mosby ;) for the wonderful weekend at the Intercontinental! And thank you again Zachary for the surprise! I love you!!
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