Snow, Movies and Pavement - The Story of a Holiday Road Trip

Today I want to tell you all about the adventure my family and I had during our first road trip from Houston to Red River, New Mexico.

Let me tell you that the trip was an amazing experience, but the romantic idea we had of playing games and singing songs all along the way, only lasted like half an hour and I think we hadn’t even left Houston.

Scared by how long the journey was going to be and thanks to the recommendation from one of my best friends, my husband and I decided to pack every single electronic we owned. On short trips, I would never recommend this. On the contrary, kids should have their eyes wide open so they can be aware and appreciate everything around them, but on any trip that lasts more than six hours, anything is permitted on my kids’ educational code.

Since all my kids are six years old and up, there wasn’t much fuzz to deal with. The special requests or complaints were minimal. They were true champions as they braved the long hours on the road; actually I think I was the one who complained the most.

On the way there, we spent the night in Amarillo, Texas. And even though the GPS said it would take us ten hours to get there, it took us more than twelve since we did a pit stop in Waco so we could check out the Magnolia Market.

If you haven’t been there, you have to go! Chip and Joanna Gaines, stars of the famous Fixer Upper program on HGTV remodeled some abandoned silos and they transformed them into an amazing place. The area is divided in three; the market, where they sell all the products from the famous designer, a café and an open space where families can get together. Everything was amazing and it all had Joanna’s special touch.

When we woke up the next day, after resting and a good cup of Joe, we drove the remaining five hours from Amarillo to New Mexico but with a renewed mood, everyone was excited of getting there and we all enjoyed the change of scenery as we started seeing mountains, rivers, lakes and even some deer along the way.

So we finally made it to Red River, New Mexico! There, a very small but charming town greeted us. I think this place is ideal to ski if you have kids since it’s way cheaper than Colorado or Utah, plus all the logistics of making it to the lift chairs with all the equipment is easier since everything is so close by. The mountain has trails for all ski levels, but I recommend you to go after Thanksgiving because since the ski season was just opening that week, only a few trails were open.

The amazing thing about New Mexico, is that besides being able to ski there, we were also able to visit the unique city of Santa Fe and its distinctive architecture.

Santa Fe is just two hours south from Red River so we decided to go have lunch there and come back on the same day. I recommend you stroll through the plaza and its surroundings and visit the St. Francis Cathedral, the very original stores they have on every corner and its various museums such as the Georgia O'keefe, the Modern Art and the Native Arts one. For lunch, a lot of places looked amazing, but we just ended having a delicious burger and some local beer at The Burger Stand.

After skiing and staying in Red River and its surroundings for a whole week, we packed our things and started our trip back to Houston. This part of the trip was completely different than the way there. All the thrill of getting there, disappears on the way back. Of course I loved seeing the never-ending cotton fields along the road, but what we all wanted was to be back home as soon as possible.

On the way back, we spent the night in Dallas, but I would highly recommend you drive all the way to Houston. We had to stop since one of the car’s tires kept loosing pressure and we didn’t want to be left stranded in the middle of the night, but if that hadn’t been the case, we would have kept on driving for four more hours so we could wake up in our house the next morning.

I’m sure you’re wondering if I would do it again, and the answer is of course! If you are considering doing a family road trip, do it. It’s really worth it, but remember to pack all the electronics in your house and rent several movies for the road.

Before going on a road trip I recommend you to check that your car is in good condition, respect all speed limits, check the safest and fastest route to get to your destination and reserve the hotels in the cities you are planning to spend the night.

If you’ve done a road trip recently, let me know how it went, I love getting your emails and comments on social media.

Since the Holidays are starting, Yo Mariana will be back on the blog in January. I want to thank everyone for reading me and for following me. I want to sincerely wish you all a very merry Christmas. Hope your Holidays are filled with love and of course with delicious food.

Happy Holidays!