Saturday, August 20, 2016

CANDY!

Traveling along HWY 62, near Garfield AR, I came across a candy cane  on the side of the road.

This was the sign for the Martin Greer Candy Company, a several generation store, using candy recipes that have been passed down through the ages.

The candy company itself is housed is a loving landscaped, but otherwise, nondescript little building.

Garfield AR has about 500 residents, so you wouldn't imagine that it also contains this remarkable treasure of a candy company.

The candy is excellent, there is delicate fudge, beautifully melty truffles, sea salt caramels that will make you cry with happiness, and of course, my favorite of all, pralines so good that I devoured the entire box in two days (and then drove back and got more).

This is a candy company worthy of a road trip.


Thursday, August 11, 2016

Promised Land Zoo - Eagle Rock MO




This was a fun little adventure.

The Promised Land Zoo is a family owned zoo and two locations,  one in Eagle Rock MO and one in Branson MO.  We went to the Eagle Rock location.

The zoo features a drive though safari experience, where occasionally, the animals get quite up close and personal with your car. (Like this deer, who quite intimidated my son who was riding in the passenger seat)







It also has a fun little petting/feeding zoo, with goats, minature horses, donkeys and of course... my personal  favorite, baby pot bellied pigs.

Definately worth the visit, particularly with children (or those with a young heart) and anyone who loves animals.









Monday, August 1, 2016

Itsy Bitsy Spider


A  couple of days ago, this little guy moved in to the space between the screen and the window.

I am not entirely sure how he got there, but last night it was obvious that he couldn't get out.

I couldn't sit here and watch him starve to death, so I made my husband rescue him and put him outside.



I woke up this morning to this..... a beautiful  web, on my patio, right in front of our chairs.  The perfect evening mosquito catcher.

Sometimes, everything just works out nicely.







Tuesday, July 19, 2016

The Old Spanish Treasure Cave




This was a fun little cavern to explore, one with a great back story, filled with drama.

According to legend, when the Spanish Conquistadors visited the Sulphur Springs area of NW Arkansas, they stayed with what had, traditionally, the Conquistadors method of exploration,  including brutalizing and pillaging the local Native American Communities.

These particular Conquistadors, were also carrying a huge treasure with them.

After their chaos causing with the Native Americans, they hid themselves, and the treasure, within this cave.

Unbeknownst to the Conquistadors, this particular cavern had a chimney, and once they began lighting fires in the cave for supper, their position was given away to the Native Americans, who promptly repelled themselves down the chimney and slaughtered all but one (of course), who was able to escape back to Spain (of course) with a treasure map of the cave (of course).

It wouldn't be a good story without a treasure map right?

The treasure map itself has been lost to time.


Occasionally the current owners of the cave take some spelunking adventures through out the cave, but as yet, the treasure is lost to the depths of the cave.

It is a very lovely cave, with a cool feature - including several columns and Spanish artifacts,  the cave also contains a heart.

As far as adventures go, this is one that is worth the walk through.  It is a smaller operation, so be prepared to wait outside the cabin for a bit if only one tour guide is working that day.

The owners of the cave have a Facebook page  and love to hear comments about their cave.

Friday, July 15, 2016

Pea Ridge National Military Park


I took an adventure to the Pea Ridge Battlefield (also known as the location of the Battle of Elk Horn Tavern).

This is the battle that allowed the Federal troops to take Missouri and NW Arkansas from the Confederates.

This was the first Civil War battleground that I have been to, as I have spent most of my life in the Southwestern U.S.


The park is set up nicely, with a driving tour explaining all of the major sites and points and was a surprisingly beautiful place.

I was shocked by that,  I didn't expect it to be pretty and peaceful.  I was expecting something a little more creepy, particularly since 3,384 Americans died here (1,384 Federal and 2,000 Confederate).





I recommend a visit, particularly if you are a history and/or military buff or if you  just want a pretty drive.




Wednesday, July 6, 2016

War Eagle Cavern


War Eagle Cavern, located near Beaver lake,  was the first time I have tried to shoot in low light and underground, without a tripod.

I couldn't have found a more deserving cavern (a cave is only one room, per the guide), to pick.

We were there early and was able to get a private tour for just our group, so I wasn't trying to dodge heads in such a confined space.

The cavern has been used as a hide out for Jesse James and his crew, moonshine making, as well as a sort of a back country music club during the high humidity days of summer.






There are two species of bats that live here, the Eastern Pipestrelle, which are the common little brown bats found all over in the Ozarks, and the Gray Bat, which is currently on the endangered species list.

We came face to face with one bat, still flying around, not quite ready for bed. We also saw a few salamanders.

Below is one of my favorite rock formations found in the cave - the buffalo of War Eagle.

Sunday, July 3, 2016

Hot Springs Arkansas


We took a weekend get away to Hot Springs AR.

The city, formed around  natural hot springs turned into a spa town in the 1850's, and was a popular place for professional baseball players to recoup.

The city was also full of illegal gambling and speakeasy's during prohibition.  Al Capone himself came here to enjoy the waters.





I loved the buildings along the bath-house row and the downtown area.  I wish that we could still build buildings like this, with the ornate detail work, the awnings, and the mosaic's.

Outside of the bath-houses, there are a few curiosity attractions, a small aquarium and a Madame Trousseau's wax museum.  There are also many shops that sell spa products.

Although there is a fairly large amusement park near by (Magic Springs and Crystal Falls),  the real reason to come here is to spend three hours getting pampered at a spa, and I must admit, it was worth it.