Monday, July 31, 2017

Life With the Lees: Trip to St. Louis

Happy Monday! I hope you had a great weekend and managed to stay cool! We just returned from our trip to St. Louis, and I wanted to share our family vacation with you today.

My mom is from St. Louis, and my aunts, uncles, and cousins still live there. We left Tuesday morning just before 5 a.m. I'm super proud of Robert who was the king of the road and refused to let me drive. We didn't hit any traffic and got there in 13 hours. Which also makes me proud of the kids for being so good on the drive- we only stopped 3 times! You can read about my packing list HERE.

I was so excited to make travel binders for the kids and used a ton of Pinterest resources. Guess who was the only one who played the license plate game?!


I was asked to babysit the entire way.


We made it safely to my aunt and uncle's house and headed out for ravioli and pasta and a fun game of musical bingo at TJ Wings. The next morning, my aunt took us to the zoo. The St. Louis Zoo is amazing! It is huge and free! There are a few paid experiences but we chose to just walk and enjoy the animals. We absolutely LOVED the penguins and polar bear! It was really hot that day, so there weren't many people there, but even if there were, the zoo is so spread out that you don't get too many people crowded in one area. We got in over 10,000 steps while we were there!




For lunch, we hit up our favorite diner, Steak 'n Shake! I made THIS lemon dessert, and then we headed to my other aunt and uncle's house for dinner. We had Imo's Pizza and salad with Zia's Dressing - STL staples! 


The next day, my aunt took Trip and Ari to The Magic House which is a children's museum. Ari loved that they had a Clifford exhibit! 


While the kids were having a blast with Amy, Robert and I stopped by the Missouri History Museum, the hill at Forest Park, and the St. Louis Art Museum. The history museum was a favorite of mine as a kid but was underwhelming this time. It is free and features an exhibit on the World's Fair. The art museum was definitely our favorite! It is also free and is super huge. Like the zoo, I felt like the spacing kept it from getting too jammed up in any particular exhibits which was really nice. 




After a few hours at the museums, we met up with my aunt and the kids to have another round of toasted raviolis at Rich & Charlie's. I could eat toasted ravs for every meal, every day! 


My aunt and I cooked at home and had my other aunt and uncle and cousin's family over while Robert took advantage of the birthday present I gave him back in May- a ticket to the Guns 'N Roses concert! Here's a video he made while at the concert: 


On our last day, my aunt and uncle took us to Grant's Farm. This was also free, but you do have to pay for parking and some of the attractions. As soon as we parked, we went to see some of the Budweiser clydesdales. Obviously, this was Ari's favorite part! My aunt got the kids fun passes for just $5 each and it got you 2 milk bottles to feed the goats, a ride on the carousel, and a snowcone! The kids also got to ride a camel! If you drink, you can get free beer to take a break in the bauernhof. Everyone had a great time, but it definitely was a long day. We think we made the mistake of going on a Friday, so if you go on a Friday, you might wait until 2 or 3 to save time in the long lines. 




We went home, showered, and rested before hitting up Rock & Brews for dinner. This is Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons' restaurant, and Ari was PUMPED to be there! The theming is amazing but the food is just okay. I'd still go for the experience if you love rock and roll! 


We wrapped up our trip with a visit to Ted Drewes for frozen custard. Don't be discouraged when you drive by and see long lines. They move insanely fast! 


We hit the road on Saturday morning and had an easy trip back to Texas. Everyone had a blast on our visit to St. Louis, and we are so grateful to my family for letting us stay with them and for taking us around town! We'll definitely be back!


Have you been to St. Louis? Share your favorite restaurants and attractions in the comments below please! I'm headed back to work this morning and meeting my new teammates! Wish me luck! I'll see you back here tomorrow for Tuesday Training. Have a wonderful start to your week! 

34 comments:

  1. You guys sure did make the most of your fun trip!!! I could eat toasted ravioli every day too, looks yummy!! Wow, great gift, My hubs would love seeing GNR!! I'm with Ari, I'd be pumped to get to Rock n Brews too! how fun!! Glad you guys had a blast!!

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    1. They had a free KISS pinball machine that made Ari's whole visit to the restaurant! She was a little bummed that Paul and Gene weren't our waiters! :)

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  2. Good luck with the new job! I love all your St. Louis pictures. The one with the polar bear is so cool. Looks like a great road trip with lots of fun and yummy food! Now back to reality! :)

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    1. Thanks, Tanya! It was definitely hard to go back to the real world today- wish I had some raviolis for lunch instead of oatmeal! Loved getting to see cold weather animals at the zoo since we don't get to do that often in Texas!

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  3. What a fun trip! Hope your day goes well!

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  4. Looks like y'all had an awesome vacation!! Wayne and I were off last week, too, but we had a staycation. Ha! I've always wanted to go to ST. Louis to see a baseball game!

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    1. No! Don't be a Cardinals fan- you've gotta cheer for your Astros neighbors! Hope you had a great staycation!

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  5. You fit in so many fun things! We want to go to St. Louis with our kids at some point. I think its about a 6 hour drive for us! xoxo ERIN

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    1. Totally do it! I've heard great things about the science museum which is free as well, and you have to do the zoo- it's spectacular!

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  6. OMG it looks like you had so much fun- sounds like the perfect family vaca :)

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    1. It was a blast! Hope your beach vacation was fun!

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  7. Great vacation!!! I love that you and Robert had a day to spend together and the kids got to do something fun with their great aunt. The lemon lasagne looks delish. I'm sure everyone loved it. I can't remember if you are a Reba watcher or not. (you'd probably like it if you haven't watched the series). I couldn't help but think about Barbara Jean's trip to STL while reading this. LOL. Glad you made it there and back safely and without losing a kid due to complaining along the way ;) Have a great week! (Is this your last week of summer?😭)

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    1. They SLEPT so much in the car that there wasn't time for complaining! I was shocked! I do love Reba but forgot a lot of the story line- I need to rewatch. The girl that played Barbara Jean was on a rerun of Valerie Bertinelli's cooking show the other day- she's hysterical! I get 2 more weeks off after a training tomorrow!

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  8. What a great trip, I bet it's one your kids will never forget! It looks like everyone had a blast and you packed in a lot of fun activities! The food looks amazing too! Yum!

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    1. It was so fun, and I am definitely back on track with My Fitness Pal! :)

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  9. So fun! You all look like you had a great time. I'm drooling over those raviolis.

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    1. They are so good! I wish they were sold here in Houston!

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  10. What a great trip! I love a good road trip and this one looks like so much fun with so many fun stops. Those toasted ravs...never had them but REALLY want them now! :) Have a great Monday!

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    1. Oh my gosh- yes! You need to go to the midwest to get them and they are delicious!

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  11. What a fun trip! I went to STL once back when I was about 12 years old, so I don't remember a lot about it. By the looks of your post, we need to plan another trip! I love that KISS restaurant! I bet that was so cool!

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    1. Definitely go in the summer- I hate cold and snow! Plus, their heat is nothing compared to the humidity and insane temps we have in the southern states!

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  12. I LOVE that picture with the polar bear! I literally gasped looking at that photo!

    -Sarah
    whatsheexclaimed.blogspot.com

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    1. Thanks, Sarah- he was so neat to see, especially since we don't have many cold weather animals in Texas!

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  13. I am planning a trip to St. Louis in the Spring and you've given me a ton of "must see" places to add to my list. And the food? Thank you for that :)

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    1. For sure do Ted Drewes for ice cream one night- and you will find plenty of authentic Italian restaurants on "The Hill." We stayed mostly in suburbia, but STL is known for its Italian.

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  14. I never knew STL had so much to offer! Very cool! I'm on board with Toasted Ravioli. I've never had them but next time I see them on the menu. I'm all in :) Hope you had a great first day at your new job. Thats very exciting!

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    1. Thanks, Nicole! You'll have to travel west to get some toasted ravs- I know of only 2 restaurants in Texas that serve them, and the one restaurant doesn't bread them the STL way.

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  15. Sounds like you packed in just enough fun! It's always nice to have a familiar place to stay and be able to cook some meals at home. What a great polar bear exhibit...I love when my kids can feel up and personal with the animals. We love going to the zoo. Hope you had a great first day!

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    1. Thanks, Shelly! Yes- and I'm so thankful to my family for letting us stay- it definitely saved us money, too!

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  16. What a fun get away! GNR is headed here in a couple weeks. I didn't get tix but some friends did (I will be beachin' it) and I know they will have a blast. All the zoos and museums - be still my heart! I am sucker for a history museum! Let us know how the job started off...after a few days. I'm praying it is perfection! xo

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    1. Yep, I'm a museum and restaurant girl- show me pretty or cool stuff and then feed me delicious food, and I'm happy!

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  17. I've never been to St. Louis, but the food looks so good! Lemon lasagna and toasted raviolis can't be good for you, but it sure looks yummy!

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    1. The food is awesome, but I definitely befriended My Fitness Pal the day we got home!

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Hi friends! Let me know what you think! I'd love to hear from you!