Sunday, November 6, 2016

The Coming King Sculpture Prayer Garden - Kerrville Texas

A few months ago Frankie and I took a drive to Kerrville, Texas just because.  If you go to Kerrville via Interstate-10, you can't help but see the 77 foot 7 inch cross on the hill, called the "Empty Cross".  We knew it was there, because we have seen it many times, but we decided to actually go to the cross and find out more about it.  It was created by The Coming King Foundation and there was controversy from the beginning.  It all worked out though, since there it stands today!

Here we go, let's follow the sign!

Welcoming Sign The Coming King Sculpture Prayer Garden Kerrville Texas

Near one of the parking lots there was a statue of Mary, the mother of Jesus.  

Mary Sculpture Close at The Coming King Sculpture Prayer Garden Kerrville Texas

Also near the parking lot was this sculpture of nails that held Jesus to the cross (not these actual nails, just in case you were not sure...).

Nails Sculpture at The Coming King Sculpture Prayer Garden Kerrville Texas

We made our way to the top and started our exploration.  You really need to see this place from a bird's eye view.  It is pretty amazing.  Click here to see it on Google maps.

As we walked around the cross-shaped walkway we saw many statues.  Most of them, appropriately, were of  Jesus (at least some artist's interpretation since we have no actual photos of Jesus and somehow I doubt he had blonde hair and blue eyes seeing he was from the Middle East).  The ones you see below are Jesus, fisher of men, and in the background, Jesus, the coming King.

Jesus and Cross at The Coming King Sculpture Prayer Garden Kerrville Texas

Notice the tiles with words.  They were all Bible scriptures written in Spanish, English, and German. I am still wondering about the German part, but hey, whatever.    

There were Jewish leaders constantly trying to trip Jesus up and they had asked him what the greatest commandment was.  Jesus answered them by saying that it was to love the Lord God with all their hearts, souls, and minds and then he added that the second commandment was to love.  This second commandment is shown below.   There were many many more verses throughout the garden.

Love Verse at The Coming King Sculpture Prayer Garden Kerrville Texas


We kept walking but couldn't get too close to the cross and still be able to fit it in a photo, so here is what a 77 foot 7 inch cross looks like as close as we could!

The Cross at The Coming King Sculpture Prayer Garden Kerrville Texas

Near the cross, were dirt pathways lined with rocks.  All of these rocks had prayers written on them.  

Prayer Rocks at The Coming King Sculpture Prayer Garden Kerrville Texas

Some of them were very personal but then there were some that were more broad like this one.

Prayer Rock Bless Our Nation at The Coming King Sculpture Prayer Garden Kerrville Texas

There was much more to see, but I am going to share one more photo.  This was my favorite out of all.  I love the verse and I am sure the globe swayed my vote as well.

Great Commision Verse at The Coming King Sculpture Prayer Garden Kerrville Texas

I hope you enjoyed our walk through the garden, which by the way, the landscaping is very nice and the country side of the hill country is beautiful!  It is worth a short detour if you are nearby!

In my next post I will tell you about Casa Navarro in San Antonio, TX that we visited one Saturday last month.

Until then!

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Baghdad Restaurant - San Antonio, Texas

Frankie and I are always on the lookout for good food but we get really excited when we find food that is foreign to us! It must come from all our travels, where you just never truly know what you will be getting.

It is game to us and here is the process we normally go through:

"What is that?"  "I don't know, smell it."  "I don't recognize that smell."  "Taste it." We watch each other for signs of poisoning.  None seen. "You taste it."  Chew slowly.  "Hey! This is good!" "I know, right!?"  "Where has this been our whole lives??"

Enter Baghdad Restaurant in San Antonio, Texas. (Click the link for a map of the place.)

Baghdad Restaurant San Antonio Texas

We actually saw it first when we were eating at another restaurant across the street called Moroccan Bites, which is also really good!  We eventually made our way back in that direction on another trip to San Antonio and we are glad we did!

This is just one portion of the menu give you an idea of what they have to offer. I decided to try the chicken shawarma plate.

Part of Menu Baghdad Restaurant San Antonio Texas

After ordering we had time to look around.  The atmosphere isn't much.  If you want good food and a more decorated atmosphere try Moroccan Bites across the street.  Otherwise, stay where you are!  The food is worth a lack of decoration!

On every table there were three jars.  One was sugar and then there were these two.  

Sumac and Pepper Baghdad Restaurant San Antonio Texas

It wasn't clear what they were.  So I played our game that I outlined above.  I smelled each one.  The one on the right smelled like black pepper.  The one on the left, I didn't recognize.  I tasted both of them, and yep pepper but I still didn't know the other one.

The waiter came out and brought us this Persian flatbread that was the size of a medium pizza and a dipping sauce! I asked him what was in the left hand jar and he said sumac.  There was one mystery down.  

Persian Flatbread with Zaatar Oil Dip Baghdad Restaurant San Antonio Texas

Then of course, we didn't know what was in the dipping sauce besides olive oil.  Again, I asked.  Turns out it is a mix of spices called za'atar, which is very good.  I now have jars of both sumac and za'atar in my kitchen!

So we had all this newness and goodness and the main dish hadn't even arrived!  When it did, wow, just wow!  I had the chicken shawarma as seen below and Frankie had ordered the beef shawarma.  Both were wonderful!  The seasoning was perfect, the sauce was tangy, the rice was delicious, and the salad, well it's a salad, what can I say.

Chicken Schwarma Baghdad Restaurant San Antonio Texas

After our meal, the waiter came back out and offered us some Persian tea.  It was complimentary, so there was no hesitation on our part!  The waiter warned us that it was very strong and we would probably want to add sugar.   

Persian Tea Baghdad Restaurant San Antonio Texas

Both of us are trying to cut out sugar from our diet so we tried it first.  He wasn't kidding about the strength!  We both added a little sugar to tame the wild beast and then sat back and enjoyed.  It was a satisfying meal and experience. 

I leave you with one parting shot of a panting hanging in the restaurant.  The owner saw me looking at it and told me that this is what Baghdad looks like.  I would have never guessed!  It reminds me of some place else that I just can't place.

Baghdad Painting at Baghdad Restaurant San Antonio Texas

When we pulled out of the parking lot to leave we saw another place called Sinbad Cafe (apparently it use to be called Syrian Kitchen).  We went there on a different day and was impressed by the food there as well.  We have found our food happy place in San Antonio!!

I hope if you get the chance you will check out Baghdad Restaurant!  Maybe you will see us there!

Until then!

Friday, September 30, 2016

Museum of Contemporary Arts - Houston Texas

At the end of July my husband and I took a road trip to Houston.  We really have hated Houston all the other times we have gone, but all the other times we were just trying to pass through but stuck on Interstate 20 or going to a doctor's appointment in the crowded confusing medical center.  Plus, it was ALWAYS hot and humid and raining and crowded and smelly and road construction...well you get the point.

We decided to give it another chance and actually check out some of the sights.  Amazingly enough the weather was fabulous while we were there.  I am talking high 70's to low 80's.  This is unheard of in Houston in late July!  It felt like we were in a whole different country!

We really did enjoy our trip to Houston after all and saw some pretty neat things.  This last post about Houston is about the Museum of Contemporary Arts.  It is very close to the Museum of Fine Arts which we visited first then walked over to the Museum of Contemporary Arts.

After going through the fine arts museum this one was very different!  Let me share some of the things we saw.

There were 5000 of these "LIKE" signs that people could pick up and put them by the art pieces they liked.  A physical Facebook, if you will.

Like Signs at Museum of Contemporary Art Houston Texas

There were a lot of stenciled word art.  I am not sure it was all the same artists or not, but there was a lot and it was all weird.  See what I mean??

Ask Me About Death Museum of Contemporary Art Houston Texas

More stenciling and more strangeness but it made me laugh.

Elect A Powerful Leeder Museum of Contemporary Art Houston Texas

These deserve a closer look!  Go ahead and read the morbidness! 

Children No Straw Elect A Powerful Leeder Museum of Contemporary Art Houston Texas

Fertilize Lawn Elect A Powerful Leeder Museum of Contemporary Art Houston Texas

Camping Elect A Powerful Leeder Museum of Contemporary Art Houston Texas

Together Elect A Powerful Leeder Museum of Contemporary Art Houston Texas

Birthday Elect A Powerful Leeder Museum of Contemporary Art Houston Texas

Feed Family Elect A Powerful Leeder Museum of Contemporary Art Houston Texas

All of that was upstairs.  Having no idea what to expect we then headed downstairs.

The entire downstairs was filled with the piece called "Flow" by Jae Ko.  It was massive and actually very impressive.  It wrapped all around the room along the walls with many places higher than I am tall and spilled out onto the floor. There was no way I could get it in one shot.  Here are two photos for your viewing pleasure.

One Part of Flow by Jae Ko Museum of Contemporary Art Houston Texas

Closeup of Flow by Jae Ko Museum of Contemporary Art Houston Texas

Before leaving, we stopped by the gift shop.  There wasn't anything there we couldn't live without but this little bunny light was adorable!

Bunny Light in the Gift Shop Museum of Contemporary Art Houston Texas

That concludes the posts about our trip to Houston and I hope you enjoyed them.  We aren't sure where we are heading to for Christmas yet, but know that I will post about it!  Stay tuned for my next post.

Until then!

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Museum of Fine Arts - Houston Texas

On our trip to Houston we visited the Museum of Fine Arts.  We go to art museums on just about all of our trips.  I actually can't think of one place where we haven't.  So you would think that after all those museums I would be a little more art savvy.  But nope, I'm still art ignorant. 

The Museum of Fine Arts in Houston is a great museum, despite my shortcomings on the topic.  It has mix of super famous artists, meaning, I have heard of them, art across the centuries including contemporary/modern (the ones I have a love/hate relationship with), and art from across the globe.  Then there is my favorite topic, the stuff I can make fun of because I am so entirely art ignorant that I can't see the beauty or symbolism in what I am looking at.  These pieces can fall in any category, be from any place, or come from any time in history.

With that in mind, let's start with some of the super famous artists that the museum had.

First off, they had this painting called "The Cottage" by Vincent van Gogh.

The Cottage Vincent van Gogh Museum of Fine Art Houston Texas

There was this one called "The Windmill on the Onbekende Gracht" by Claude Monet.

The Windmill on the Onbekende Gracht Monet Museum of Fine Art Houston Texas

This last one, you can probably guess who is it by before I tell you.  Look at it and take a guess.  Go ahead and take a guess, I'll wait....

Bust of a Woman Picasso Museum of Fine Art Houston Texas

...I am going to assume you said Pablo Picasso, because you are a genius. You are of course, correct.  It is titled "Bust of a Woman", so not the most original title, but that is okay.  Picasso painted and sculpted so many pieces that he truly must have run out of unique titles.  We have seen many of his works titled, "Bust of a Woman".

So those were some of the famous artists.  Let me share some pieces from around the world that struck my fancy.

First up, is an alam from Iran.  An alam is a steel ornamental piece used in ceremonies marking the battle of Karbala that happened in 680 AD!  The detail in them are truly amazing and the shadow really highlights them.

Alam from Iran Museum of Fine Art Houston Texas

From Turkey we have this stringed musical instrument called an ud.

Ud from Turkey Museum of Fine Art Houston Texas

The final international piece I want to share is this earthenware from Peru.  I am not sure what it is so I will make up something for you.....um....candle holder.  Yes, this is an early some century candle holder. 

Peru Earthenware Museum of Fine Art Houston Texas

Now time for my favorite topic, let's make fun of the art!  Yay!

The guy in the bottom right corner is VERY concerned with the guy in the top left corner.  But Old Red Cape on Backwards doesn't seem to give a flip about the other guy.  Then there is the kid. Man, kids are nosy!!  I hate when they just stare.

Whats He Looking At Museum of Fine Art Houston Texas

This is how all kids should be dealt with at all times.  Seen but not heard!  I would tell them that this statue can see and hear them and reports all their actions to Santa Claus, that should keep them in line!

Silence Museum of Fine Art Houston Texas

I am NOT making fun of Mary and Jesus. I AM making fun of the artist who decided they needed to look like doofwads.

Virgin and Child Museum of Fine Art Houston Texas

I mean, seriously....

Face of Virgin and Child Museum of Fine Art Houston Texas

In this one Mary looks a little better, but what was the artist thinking when he chiseled the face of Jesus??  He looks like a tired slightly intoxicated middle aged man!  Again, I am NOT making fun of Jesus or Mary, I revere them in the utmost high, but I AM making fun of the artist's decision of how they should look.  

Colorful Virgin and Child Museum of Fine Art Houston Texas

This guy. His hat aside, this guy's last name was Baños.  Baños!  As in, "¿Dónde está el baño?".  Where is the bathroom?  This dude's last name is Bathrooms!!  ¡Pobrecito!  (Poor thing!)

Antonio Banos Museum of Fine Art Houston Texas

This one has nothing to do with the art. You can try to justify this all you want by calling it a kilt, but seriously?  (Especially, when a Hawaiian shirt is thrown in the mix.)

Man in Skirt at Museum of Fine Art Houston Texas

My final category is the modern art.  It is still mostly there for me to make fun of at least that is what I truly believe is its purpose.

I think this artist went into his granny's house and took all her rugs that she had for decades to create this.  I can guarantee you that his granny was NOT happy about it any of it!

Soundsuit Museum of Fine Art Houston Texas

I saw this piece at the junkyard the other day!

Old Anson Impact Museum of Fine Art Houston Texas

I didn't get this one until I saw the title.  It is called "Giant Soft Fan".  Oh!  Now I see it!  Being from Texas I really appreciate any and all fans!

Gaint Soft Fan Museum of Fine Art Houston Texas

Andy Warhol, don't feel bad, my hair can look like that in the morning as well.

Andy Warhol Museum of Fine Art Houston Texas

These last two pieces of art are ones that I really liked.  They are both by Roy Lichtenstein.  He is a pop artists and so far, everything I have seen by him, I have liked.

I wouldn't mind having this in my house.  Not sure where I would put it, but I am sure I could find a place.

Archaic Head VI Lichtenstein Museum of Fine Art Houston Texas

This last one I am sure with very little imagination you can say it is a naked woman, but I really just like the red and white stripes and the yellow flame at the top.  I like to keep things clean and simple.

Galates Lichtenstein Museum of Fine Art Houston Texas

Finally, before we leave this post and before you leave any museum, you HAVE to take a stroll through the gift shop.  You just never know what you will find.  Giant flamingos anyone?  They are only $450 each.  Buy the pair!!  You know you want to!

Gigantic Inflatable Flamingo Museum of Fine Art Houston Texas

I hope you enjoyed the tour of the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston with me.  In my next post we will visit the Museum of Contemporary Art.  It was....different.  I hope you will return to read all about it.

Until then!

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Texas Art Asylum - Houston Texas

It is finally here!  A post about our trip to Houston, just as I promised.  One place that we went is called Texas Art Asylum.  I will let them tell you what exactly there place is:
Part craft store, part thrift store, part salvage yard and part antique store, our inventory is collected from businesses, institutions and individuals who recognize that their materials are suitable for reuse, repurposing or upcycling.  In the right creative hands, many materials can live second or third useful lives.
Let's take a gander and see what we can find!

There isn't a whole lot marking the door and it doesn't look like a regular store front.  But then again can it really be called a regular store??

Door to Art Asylum Houston Texas

Once in, we were welcomed by a sign.  There was literally nobody in sight for a good portion of our time in there.  Eventually we did see two workers lurking about.  I guess when you are selling what they are selling they aren't too terribly worried about theft.

Sign for Art Asylum Houston Texas

In fact, I saw Johnny Cash, the cat, before I saw any person.  (Once I finally saw a person I asked the cat's name, just like you are suppose to.) And yes, those are doll parts for sale.

Johnny Cash the Cat and Doll Parts at Art Asylum Houston Texas

I saw Shugg as well, but she wasn't still enough to get a photo of her.

There are some i.n.t.e.r.e.s.t.i.n.g. things in this place.  Some extremely weird, which I liked!

Take this deer head for example.  I don't think it was for sale though.

Deer Head at Art Asylum Houston Texas

Then there was this kite and doll combination.

Kite with Doll at Art Asylum Houston Texas

There was "normal" crafty stuff as well, like this alphabet beads.

Letter Beads at Art Asylum Houston Texas

But then there were some not so normal "crafty" items.

Scratched off lottery tickets, anyone?

Scratched Lottery Tickets at Art Asylum Houston Texas

Or how about empty toilet paper rolls?  (I actually have seen some arts and crafts projects on Pintrest that use these!)

Toilet Paper Rolls at Art Asylum Houston Texas

There is actually tons more stuff there, this is just a few and I do mean a few, highlights.  If I had a project in mind this would be my go to place, but just like Hobby Lobby, with no project in mind it was just a fun time to browse but I wouldn't go there often.

Of course, if I were as artistic as the person who made this, maybe I would be there all the time!

Robot Made From Junk at Art Asylum Houston Texas

I hope you enjoyed this post and discovered a new place you would like to visit!  My next post will be about the Museum of Fine Art in Houston.  I hope you will return to read all about it!

Until then!