Thursday, May 26, 2011

New Orleans In Pictures

Mark and I, when we got married, said we would do something special for our anniversary every five years.  Meaning a trip, not anything huge, but something to reconnect us because marriage can be hard sometimes.  Well five years came and we thought, hey lets go to New Orleans!  It's one of the places we really wanted to go, but then I (or more specifically, my friend Stephanie) found a great deal for Disney World and we ended up doing that instead.  We were a little nervous about leaving Annabelle for so many days.  Disney was a nice compromise even though we went 5 months after our actual anniversary.  Then we ended up at Disney again a year and a half later and this time we ended up with Southwest credits, $210.  Those credits had to be used before May 13 of this year or we'd lose them.  Now Annabelle's school had thrown a big stink when we took her out for the 6 days back in October, so we weren't going to take her out again and face the wrath, so it was just a mommy and daddy trip. 

We (or really I) was nervous again about leaving our bug.  Plus we left on Mother's Day and believe me, I was a mess because of it!  Especially after Mark gave me my Mother's Day card and I talked to Annabelle on the phone on our lay over.  We called her every night before bed to say good night and hear about her day.  Her first night without us was hard for her.  My wonderful mother-in-law was up most of the night with her while she sobbed for her mama, but after that she was fine.  I will always be hugely thankful that I have such wonderful and loving in-laws.  The 5 days we were gone were hard on them, I know.  But they always say they realize how important it is for Mark and I to have alone time together.  Many of my girlfriends have poor relationships with their in-laws and while mine can annoy me at times, I know they truly love me and I them.

OK off the tangent.  Here are the pictures.  :)

St. Louis Cathedral in Jackson Square
Artists and bands and palm readers, would set up all around the pedestrian mall around here.

Anne Rice pictured this building as the Louis and Lestat's home in Interview with a Vampire.

We took a tour of St. Louis Cemetery #1.  This Marie Laveau's tomb.

Just some of the tombs.  The history of the cemeteries is really very interesting.

Anne Rice lived in this house, in the Garden District, and used this house as the model for the home in The Witching Hour trilogy.

The oak trees in New Orleans look nothing like the ones back home in Buffalo!  They have some weird looking roots!

We took a plantation tour of two different plantations.  This is Laura Plantation, a typical Creole style building.  It still runs as a sugar plantation, but I was expecting something grander.

Then we toured Oak Alley.  This was more along the lines of what I wanted to see.  Pure opulance, plus the 28 oaks running up to the house were just gorgeous!

These are the trees in the back yard.

This is the only photo of Mark and I together from the whole trip!  I kept reading about how people will rip you off so easily in New Orleans that I didn't want to let anyone else use our camera for some together pictures.

Then after touring the two plantations we went on a swamp tour.  It was a very long day but so much fun!

Honey Island Swamp, the Pearl River.

A real live alligator!!!! The captain of the boat was feeding her hot dogs and marshmellows off of a stick.  She was full of eggs because it is breeding season and about 7-8 feet long!

Here she is jumping out of the water while a different boat was feeding her.

This is everyone's favorite little alligator, Froggy.  He has no tail!

You can not go to New Orleans without going to Cafe Du Monde for some beignets.  They are like a donut and fried dough all wrapped up in a heaping mound of powdered sugar:)

Right after I took this picture, Mark ate the sample and his eyes bugged out of his head because it was so hot.  He looked like a cartoon, I wish I had gotten a picture of his face!

We went to the Mardi Gras museum inside the Cabildo.  We were having  a great time fooling around in there.

The costumes were awesome!  Huge and glittery.

The bathrooms in the museum were porta potty doors.  We thought it was funny, so Mark did a quick pose for me before heading inside:)

Do you come here often?

So I found me a meat man. :)

Bourbon Street at night

We obviously had to go to see a jazz band.  We went to Preservation Hall and the band was amazing!  I'm not a huge jazz fan but I was in love with them!  You are there to listen to jazz, not socialize.  They don't sell drinks or food.  There are some bunches set up to sit on or you stand.  We were lucky enough to get a front row seat, on the ground sitting on pillows.

Mark played the trombone in high school and was in the jazz band.  I took many pictures on him for Mark.

The band leader and trumpetist.

On our last day in NOLA I had my palm and tarot cards read.  I had never done that before.  She told me that I'm be making some big money in the next 7-12 months and be getting something physical that I've wanted in the next 4 months.  She also said that I'm passionate and stubborn.  She had to have said I was stubborn at least 10 times.  Stubborn about everything basically.  Then she said that I  will be having at least 1 maybe 2 more kids!  I don't think so!!!

Over all our trip was great.  We missed Annabelle like crazy but it was nice to have 5 whole days just the two of us, even though we did end up at Ugrent Care one day.  It turns out Mark had bronchitis which was oh so pleasant.  Overall the city is much more kid friendly than I thought it would be (except for Bourbon St, Mark got hit on by a prostitute).  The city though has a smell that I will always associate with New Orleans from now on.  One part rotten garbage, one part vomitous alcohol, with a touch of weed.  Yeah, it wasn't pleasant to say the least, but it is memorable!

I think that if you have the chance to go, do it.

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