Walking around ATX & Tacos! 🌮

Good morning, everyone! Hope you all had a great weekend. This last week just flew by! Zooming right through 2020 (some would say quite literally), we find ourselves at the end of May. It was my sister, Halston’s, bday, so we decided to meet outdoors at Keller Park to celebrate her while keeping safe distance.

We played some cornhole (I am still terrible), exploding kittens (I hate the name, love the game) and just caught up! It was really special and easily one of my favorite days of the whole year.

We ordered some awesome eats from Devivo Brothers along with a yummy carrot cake. I know with carrot cake, you love it or you don’t, but our fam loves it. This one was good, but if you want the best carrot cake EVER it is from Gasoline Alley in Bath, Ohio.

Later on our drive back to Austin, DJ and I decided Sonic looked really good (as if we hadn’t had enough sugar already, ha!), so we veered off and grabbed a milkshake to split. It was a great choice (I cannot remember the last time I had Sonic!).

The next day I had to go get my car cleaned- it was just long overdue. During summers in Texas our cars can get dusty pretty quickly. Does anyone get slightly nervous in car washes? I am always irrationally worried my wheels aren’t aligned and that the spinner cleaner thing is just gonna just come through my windows or that my car will get crushed by it. Or maybe it is the claustrophobia of it all. IDK! Anyone else? Just me?

By the beginning of June we were in the thick of school, DJ’s internship, and for me, clinicals. I started out the first half of the summer at an Integrative health site! I learned quite a bit about diseases/illnesses I would not have elsewhere. Some of the complex diseases we managed were Lyme disease, PANDAS/PANS in kids, mold toxicity and chronic pain. I am grateful for the experience. I had a super long drive to get there, but it was a gorgeous route, and I looked forward to the drive each day.

Austin never ceases to amaze me with its beauty. I have said before, but this is the one thing I didn’t not know about Austin before moving here- just how stunning this city is! We have this huge green area pictured below smack dab in the middle of the city that people will exercise on, do work/homework or just hangout with friends. DJ and I have been meaning to do a picnic here. Hopefully we get around to that soon on a warmer day! (For reference, cold= anything under 70). We have grown WEAK!

Walks were our way of getting out of the house and clearing our heads over the summer. We took a lot. It’s funny because when you are so bogged down by school work/work you look forward to anything that isn’t studying- so for example, we would jokingly argue over who got to do the dishes, because doing the dishes meant time to listen to a podcast while doing some mindless task and not be studying for a moment, lol.

On June 4th, I wanted to show Deej this gorgeous bridge on Ladybird lake below at night I had discovered a few days prior. We had been on it many times during the day, but at night the way it’s illuminated with the city in the background is just magical. I remember on this walk we debated the existence of aliens. WoooOOOoOOoo.

When things started opening back up, we did some research into what would be a safe place to eat. We had been to El Alma’s before (after skydiving) and knew they had massive outdoor seating, so we decided to try it out. It was great, and we felt very safe. We were tucked far away from anyone else.

To replace exchange of menus, they used this QR code to access the menu. I think this would actually be a great replacement for material menus moving forward!

I still think they have my favorite queso around. It is so. good. 

DJ had their tacos, and I had their tostadas. Last time, I didn’t love the dish I ordered, but this time it was great!

We weren’t going to make going out to eat a habit, but it was sooooo nice to get out of the house for one night.

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On another walk during June we noticed these turtles doing some morning yoga. I’ll tell ya what, the critters around here have such personality.

On June 13th we watched The Matrix. I had never seen it before, can you believe that?!

I love when I drive down South Congress at night and see the regal capital lit up.

So, part of the reason this passed summer was so stressful is because clinical sites were extremely hard to find given COVID. I felt majority of my time was just trying to figure out my fall rotations rather than focusing on my school work, which was incredibly frustrating. I was scheduled for my pediatrics rotation for the fall, which was already one of the more challenging sites to get in the program, throw in a pandemic- and woof! I actually heard about this idea on a podcast, so I stole it to confirm a placement: I bought a pack of little mini shoe keychains from Amazon, and in a folder included my resume, cover letter, preceptor benefits and this little shoe. I mailed it out to different sites, and I stated I was “trying to get my foot in the door”.

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It was so well received and the practices loved the idea, but none of them were taking students at the time (understandably so). I am SO thankful my school was able to help me find the site in Fort Worth.

More of Austin in all its glory!

One of the nights I made some chili to serve with Siete chips. We discovered the brand Siete after moving to Austin (they are an Austin based company), and all their products are delish!

Have a great week, and thanks for reading! 🙂

Question for you:

  • Feelings about carrot cake?

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22 thoughts on “Walking around ATX & Tacos! 🌮

  1. looks like you adjusted to the crazy of this past summer.

    we go to a touchless car wash… you drive in (like driving into a garage) and just have to go straight… nothing to line up with. then a bar runs around your car doing everything including drying. I too do not like regular car washes for fear of not being able to get everything aligned to start.

    1. We definitely did our best to make the most of this year where we could! And ohhhhh so smart with the touch less car wash!!! I have to find one like that!

  2. Ahhh a Mack post! Yassss! Oh my gosh girl your pictures are stunning that bridge! Oh my! I also feel the same way you do about carwashes. I AHTED them as a kid (probably because my brothers terrorized me about them lol) Corn hole is always so much fun! I am so happy you got to see your sister! Oh my gosh that taco place sounds amazing! I know a lot of restaurants are using those codes and it is such a great idea! I hope it sticks to! It is so funny because I took a lot of walks as well! Just to get out of the house and get some space. Especially in the spring time. I hope you are hanging in their sweets! Sending you SO much love!
    Also you and DJ are the cutes I love that you were talking about aliens! <3

    1. Hi Kate!!! Awww glad you like the pics ☺️ I feel like you are queen of the bridge pictures all around NY and your travels, so that is a huge compliment from you!!

      Haha I am so glad I’m not alone about the car wash 😂 but oh no! Lol. Siblings can have a way of feeding off fear 🤣

      Yesss walks were our saving grace this past year. We lived for them!! It makes such a difference just getting a little fresh air every day.

      Hope you are so well too ☺️💕 thank you tons for stopping in! Your comment brightened my morning!!!

      1. Girl your POSTS brighten my day! And awe thank you! I do love a good bridge or just water in general pic! Lol. Siblings are the bst, but also the worst LOL. It definitely doe! Even in NY I would just go for walks regardless of what the weather was. Of course sweets! Sending you so much love and a joyful Christmas season! <3

      2. thank you soo much, Kate- Your comments brighten mine!! <3 Sending you SO much love right back. I hope you had the most wonderful holiday season. XO

  3. A big ol’ yes to carrot cake! Yum! I had to laugh at cold being anything under 70. That’s was our line in the sand during my entire life in Florida. While I haven’t fully adapted to winters in Virginia, I have definitely learned to handle it colder. lol. That night skyline is just stunning!! The Matrix trilogy ranks up there in some of my favorite movies. Did you enjoy it?

    1. Yesss glad you agree on the 🥕 cake!!!

      Haha oh yes, you would understand after living in Florida 😆

      So I actually did not know it was a trilogy!!! LOL. So thank you for telling me! I am definitely going to watch the others soon. I thought the first was awesome!!

  4. The reflections on the water are so beautiful Mackenzie and like you, I had no idea that Austin was so beautiful. I can’t say I ever knew anyone who lived or visited there. The food all looked wonderful – I wanted to reach across the screen and grab a chip and dip it. I am laughing at ATX’ version of what is cold – anything under 70. 🙂 I like carrot cake though it has been years since I had it. My mom used to make it with a cream cheese frosting – it was good. As to the car wash, I have a story to share. My parents brought me my first car before I started college. It was a blue VW Super Beetle. The difference between a VW Beetle and the Super Beetle is that the latter had a stick shift you used if you went above 55 mph. There was no clutch like a regular stick shift. So one time I went thru the car wash. I put it in neutral and it was rolling along on the tracks when there was a malfunction with the car wash. They didn’t know what to do and told me I could not simply drive it out as it may damage the car, the car wash mechanism and/or I might be hurt. So it was a busy Saturday and they had about 4-5 guys on duty and they picked the car up and carried it out. Never went back to that car wash with that car!

    1. Thanks, Linda!!

      I wish I could share the chips and queso with ya! Oh my goodness- that is the craziest story about the car wash! See, I think I am justified in my fear 🤣 I’m glad they were able to lift your car out and you were okay- that had to be scary!

      1. Yes, I wish you could too … right now as I had a very early dinner and it’s down in my toes now. Yes, you are justified thinking that Mackenzie, but I am sure that is a rare occurrence. But it was scary, as is getting stuck in the car wash. We had a car wash business that just closed down a few years ago. It was in business for decades and Pat’s Car Wash took up almost a city block; you had to leave your car but you could watch through a glassed-in area as your car went through the entire wash/wax/dry, etc. cycle. Adults as well as kids would be walking along and watching their car getting washed. Sounds kind of silly now that I think of it.

      2. I do think I’ve seen something like that before from growing up! Reminds me of the high school teams putting on various car wash fundraisers too

  5. Thanks again for your wonderful posts! I live here in Bath, OH and never knew Gasoline Alley had the best carrot cake, I need to try some today!! Love seeing Austin at night, such a beautiful city! And that little shoe with the get your foot in the door is so clever!! In better times that seems like it would be an excellent way to get noticed! You are the best and keep these coming as we all love to read them! Love, your Ohio Mom

    1. Oh it is so good!!! I cannot wait for you to try! Rachel’s mom is actually the one who bakes them ☺️

  6. Hi Mackenzie, I love that idea of zooming through 2020 ! We can soon turn the page on the calendar! Very belated happy birthday to Halston! I am sure it was really nice meeting up in the park and everyone was at ease being outdoors. We call cornhole beanbags! The name exploding kittens is a a little hard to get used to I am sure , I must look for the game. Glad you got to enjoy some cake too. That shake looks so yummy ! I am totally with you on the car wash stations, I often wonder if our car is aligned too. It is a little uneasy as the windows get covered in soap! Learning about diseases seems interesting , I would like a course in it, but a great benefit for you. Sorry about the long drive! I can see how beautiful Austin is , I love the skyline! I am happy you have a nice greenspace. Surely an Ohio girl can’t think 70 is cold!!! I guess doing the dishes was a real break in your case . The bridge is very pretty , I can see why you wanted to show DJ ! The colorful city background is awesome! For peace of mind it was good to get out of the house and go to El Alma ! It all looks so yummy. You can make photos of the city so amazing , love the regal Capital. Aww the little shoe, getting your foot in the door is so cute!!! I am sure it was figuring stuff out with covid , I am happy for you that you got a site in Fort Worth. I think I am on the fence about carrot cake ! I will eat it , but if there is a choice i would explore that avenue , haha! Glad to get back to YOUR blog, Take care Mackenzie, Terri xo. {say hi to DJ!)

    1. Hi Terri!!! I love that you all have a different name for cornhole too- I have heard bags, but not beanbags yet!

      I am so glad to not be alone in the feeling about car washes 😂

      I have grown so weak with my ability to tolerate the cold! Lol. It is pretty pathetic!

      Aw so glad you like the photos ☺️

      I think many people feel the same way about 🥕 🍰!

      Aw he says hi back! We are here watching the Browns game now 🙂 Have a great week Terri! Hope you are doing so well & staying warm! Thanks for stopping in 💕

      1. I am doing well Mackenzie, You are not weak or Pathetic !! So happy for you the browns won, It was on here but i fell asleep late on, oops! Take care, Terri xo.

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