November Happenings

With its cooler temperatures and festive traditions, fall is such a fun time of year! Although fall in Texas may be fleeting, there are plenty of things you can do to make the most of this beautiful season.


  November 8

Airfest – Georgetown Municipal Airport – Free – 12-5

Come see the Ford Tri-Motor, a 1929 metal aircraft that was the first mass-produced airliner. Tour several other WW II-era warbirds, book a ride, and watch Falcon Flight, a precision formation flying team perform. Event is free, however attendees are encouraged to bring a canned food donation.

November 27 – Thanksgiving Day


Earn that slice of pumpkin pie by participating in the 2nd Annual Georgetown Turkey Trot! Choose between a 1 mile family fun run or a 5 mile run; they both start at 8am at 701 S. Main Street. To register and guarantee yourself a shirt, click here.


An easy and delicious side dish is candied yams.

1 (40 ounce) can cut sweet potatoes

½ cup white sugar

2 eggs

1/3 cup butter

1/3 cup milk

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 cup packed brown sugar

1 cup chopped pecans

1/3 cup all-purpose flour

1/3 cup butter, melted


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Butter a 2 quart baking dish.
Drain and mash the sweet potatoes.
In a medium bowl, mix the mashed sweet potatoes, white sugar, eggs, 1/3 cup butter, milk, and vanilla extract. Spread evenly into the prepared baking dish.
In a separate bowl, mix the brown sugar, chopped pecans, flour, and 1/3 cup melted butter. Sprinkle over the sweet potato mixture.
Bake 45 minutes in the preheated oven, or until a knife inserted near the center comes out clean.

Serve Others

Thanksgiving is a great opportunity to help the less fortunate. One way you can help is to donate items to a local food pantry. The Capital Area Food Bank is the largest hunger-relief charity in Central Texas and they offer many opportunities to serve. The Caring Place also has a food pantry. To find out what items they are currently in most need of, click here. If you would like to serve at the Caring Place on Thanksgiving, call them at 869-4735 or visit


Central Texas Daytrips

I hope you are enjoying your summer! Last month I shared some fun things to do around the Georgetown area, but perhaps you want to try something new. Fortunately, Central Texans are just a short drive away from many amazing places. Here are some ideas for your next Day Trip.

 Enchanted Rock

Fredericksburg and Enchanted Rock

2 hour drive from Georgetown

Fredericksburg is a small city with unique German flavor. You can walk down Main Street and visit boutiques and generations-old peach orchards or drive over to Enchanted Rock, where you can hike, backpack, camp, rock climb, picnic, bird watch, geocache, or stargaze. Climb the massive pink granite dome for amazing Hill Country views.


New Braunfels and Gruene

1.5 hour drive from Georgetown

New Braunfels is home to Schlitterbahn, voted the World’s Best Waterpark for 16 years in a row. Come explore this massive water park (over seventy acres!) nestled along the beautiful banks of the Comal River. It features world-famous attractions, epic river adventures, kid’s water playgrounds, and beautiful spots to relax and share a picnic – there is truly something for everyone!

Just down the street, in the historic district, you’ll find Gruene. There is so much to do in this tiny town including shopping and wine tasting. The Gristmill River Restaurant and Bar is amazing. Your trip won’t be complete until you visit Gruene Hall. Built in 1878, it is Texas’ oldest continually operating and most famous dance hall. By design, not much has physically changed since the Hall was first built. The 6,000 square foot dance hall with a high pitched tin roof still has the original layout with side flaps for open air dancing, a bar in the front, a small lighted stage in the back and a huge outdoor garden.




1.5 hour drive from Georgetown

The Salt Lick in Driftwood has appeared on The Food Network, as well as The Travel Channel. The scenic drive to this legendary BBQ joint will take you through rolling hills and century-old oak trees to an open pit where they have been smoking meat since 1967. It’s BYOB and they have live music on the patio. Driftwood Estate Winery sits on a bluff from which visitors can enjoy a fine wine from a majestic perch overlooking the Driftwood Vineyards below.

I hope this gives you some good ideas and, as always, if there is anything I can do for you or someone you know please don’t hesitate to call or email me anytime.

Edwin Lui, Realtor

GRI, Certified Negotiation Expert


Keeping Your Cool This Summer

With temperatures already in the 90s it’s sure to be a hot summer! Here are some tips to help you keep cool in the upcoming months:


Inside your home: The average home spends hundreds of dollars a year on energy costs. But there are ways you can lower your energy bills. Cutting back unnecessary energy use is an easy way to reduce energy consumption while saving money. Here are some suggestions you can do at home at absolutely no cost to you.

  • Turn up your thermostat

Set your thermostat to 78 degrees when you are home and 85 degrees or off when you are away. Using ceiling or room fans allows you to set the thermostat higher because the air movement will cool the room. Always take into account health considerations and be sure to drink plenty of fluids in warm weather.


  • Use your appliances wisely

Avoid running your appliances during peak hours, 4 p.m. to 6 p.m.


  • Replace air conditioner filters

Dirty filters restrict airflow and can cause the system to run longer, increasing energy use. Replace filters monthly for maximum benefit.


  • Plug your home’s leaks

Weather-strip, seal, and caulk leaky doors and windows and install foam gaskets behind outlet covers.


Outside your home:  Community pools and splash pads can be a fun, kid-friendly, and cost-effective way to get out of the house and cool off.  There are plenty of community pools available where you live.



  • Georgetown

Purchase a season pass and have unlimited access to all five Georgetown pools. For more information call the Georgetown Parks and Recreation Department at 512-930-3596, visit, or go to the Rec Center located at 1003 N. Austin Ave, Georgetown, 78626.


  • Round Rock

The Quarry Splash Pad opened May 17 and admission is $2/person.  It’s also a great place to hold birthday parties, but reserve the pavilions early!


  • Pflugerville/Austin

You may have noticed the construction near the southwest corner of SH 130 and FM 685 in Pflugerville. It’s a new water park and it’s scheduled to open Memorial Day weekend!  For more information contact Hawaiian Falls Pflugerville at (972) 232-2918.

Austin’s Best Water Hangouts

For a landlocked city such as Austin, there are a handful of great places to take a dip, cool off, drop anchor and enjoy the waterfront. Many of Austin’s aquatic attractions are located in the heart the city.

Austin is blessed to have one of the only naturally fed springs in Central Texas. Barton Springs is fed by water from the Edwards Aquifer, which – over time – fills up with rainwater from cracks in the limestone below. In the 1920s the City of Austin constructed what is now Barton Springs Pool at the site. Barton Springs along with several other smaller springs remain at 68 degrees year round and are home to the endangered Barton Springs Salamander, a species that is unique only to Barton Springs.

From there, if you go a little north, you’ll arrive at the heavily populated local attraction, Lady Bird Lake. Sitting just south of downtown Austin, Lady Bird Lake is actually slow-moving dammed section of the Colorado River, which flows southwest through downtown Austin. Lady Bird Lake is famous for its locale and the ample rowing, paddle-boarding and barge tours that take place there every day.



If you float further down the Colorado, Lady Bird Lake opens up to the tree-lined Lake Austin, which is surrounded by hilltop estates, towering cottonwood trees and several tiny islands that dot the river. The most infamous of Lake Austin’s attractions is the picturesque Red Bud Isle. This miniature peninsula juts out into Lake Austin just south of the Tom Miller Dam (pictured below). In 1900, the McDonald Dam collapsed in a flood and the limestone boulders settled at the bottom of the Colorado River underneath flood debris. Over time, the area re-vegetated and now it is a go-to place for locals to fish, swim, and enjoy the natural areas surrounding Upper Town Lake.



Further north, Lake Austin weaves in and out of canyons and under bridges up into the hill country. It eventually hits Mansfield Dam, which is the retaining wall for Austin’s largest water reservoir: Lake Travis. The Lake Travis area is home to some of Austin’s top attractions and recreation opportunities. Surrounded by rolling hills and lush greenery, Lake Travis offers breathtaking Hill Country views. Of course, its major attraction is the lake itself. Part of the Colorado River, Lake Travis is the most popular of the Highland Lakes. It draws both tourists and locals during the warm months for its ample water attractions (boating, fishing, jet-skis) and it’s food and shopping.


For more info on some of Austin’s great attractions, visit Realty Austin’s relocation guide for up-date-information on Austin real estate near the city’s major attractions.



A Lesson on Community: Homestead Heritage in Elm Mott, Texas

While many people stood in line with a Black Friday-induced determination to pick up a few deals, the Lui family threw our tent, sleeping bags and cots into the minivan and headed 1 hour north to Elm Mott, Texas. We had a different determination: Eat lots of good food and enjoy the the Homestead Fair while camping with a few friends.

The weather was awesome when we left and I threw up the tent while wearing shorts and a t-shirt.  However, by the time we left, the weather was in the 30’s and I had as many smokey campfire-smelling layers of clothes as I could put on.  Good thing we also packed our friend, Mr. Buddy, to keep us warm at night.

The Homestead Fair showcases a community who want to preserve the timeless values and sustainability principles that used to be soprevalent in our society.  It’s like going back to the “Little House on the Prairie” Days.  I’ve never seen so many people take pride in the things they make:  Fresh cheeses, handcrafted wrought iron and wooden furniture, pottery, quilts and anything else you can think of…all homemade and done in a way that is sustainable.  The thing I like the most is their rain water collection system and gristmill that is powered by a waterfall.

I like the idea of sustainability because it plays an important role in disaster preparation.  The one lesson that is easily missed when visiting the Homestead Heritage is that the community of people is what makes sustainability work.  All of the delicious organically grown food and items made from Master craftsman are only possible because families come together to serve one another.

We came to camp here with some friends in our small group at church.  It’s great that we have a community in our small group and to a larger extent, our church, that will rally around us when a crisis hits.  And if a local emergency affects us all, we won’t be surviving alone.  What’s more important than being able to live “off the grid” and have storehouses of food and water is a community of people that love and care for you.


Would you be prepared in an emergency?  Do you have this type of community in your life?

All the believers were together and had everything in common.  Selling their possessions and goods, they gave to anyone as he had need. Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts,praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved. Acts 2:44-47

My Community in Georgetown, Texas:  Hill Country Bible Church Small Group

Got more ideas?  Start a discussion on our facebook page: and share them!

Your Favorite HOMEboy, Edward


Read more articles on the topic “It’s the End of the World as We Know It”

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A Lesson on Community:  Homestead Heritage in Elm Mott, Texas


Campout Comparison: Jim Hogg Park VS Berry Springs Park


Camping in Georgetown, Texas

Every year the Lui Family has a family reunion that we usually fly to.  This year we decided that we would take the money we usually spend on 5 airline tickets and a rental car and invest it in camping gear.  Our plan was to finally use our minivan for a long distance trip and camp along the way now that the kids are a bit older.  It is also a chance for us to create some memories and adventure with our children.

So to prepare for the camping trip, over the past 2 months we’ve camped locally to “test drive” our camping equipment (and the kids) and find out where we come up short.



Jim Hogg Park in Georgetown, Texas

lake-georgetown-synder-familylake-georgetown-sabrinaWe went to Jim Hogg Park two months ago and it was sweltering hot.  The scenery was nice, lots of trees, but also lots of cedar, and I found myself sneezing my nose

off.  Our friends rented a kayak and we spent some time in the water with the kayak to cool off a bit.  We also made it a point to camp next to the bathrooms since the kiddos would be making trips quite frequently.

Surprisingly the bathrooms were decently clean and every campsite had overhead cover over a picnic table.  The convenient thing about Jim Hogg Park is that you can have a water pump and an electrical outlet at your campsite.  Having electricity is nice for small luxuries like having a fan inside your tent.  Or if you’re like 90% of the campers out there, for plugging in your yuppie RV and pretend to camp.

Bathroom Cleanliness:  7 – clean, but lots of bugs hanging out just waiting to be squashed

Kid Friendly:  8 – Quite a bit of traffic since the campsite was so large; but having electricity and water close-by was a huge plus; Lake Georgetown also provides a great venue for many different activities

Overall:  7 – Although a convenient campsite (close to HEB in case you forget anything), it seemed more geared towards RVs, 5th wheels and pop up campers and not for tent camping.  I felt like I was in an RV park more then a campsite.



Berry Springs Park in Georgetown, Texas


A month after that trip, we went out again with our camping buddies, Brett and Lorree, but this time to the eastside of Georgetown at Berry Springs Park.  Although it was later in the summer, the weather was benefitting from a cool front and amazingly we were the only campers that day! Autumn and I liked this location better, it didn’t have the ruggedness that Jim Hogg had, nor did it have the cedars.  More of a park-like setting, but still with plenty of large Pecan trees to provide some nice shade.  The bathrooms were hotel-caliber clean (not motel 6 hotel).  The only downside to these sites, was that there was not a water and electricity source at each campsite.  Not a big deal, and just another excuse to buy cool camping gadgets and tools to compensate.



Bathroom Cleanliness:  9 – Almost Ritz-Carlton hotel caliber; I can’t give it a 10 though because I’ve never been to the Ritz.

Kid Friendly:  8 – Not as much traffic, since there aren’t as many campsites as Jim Hogg…maybe it was also because we were the only campers there.  However, there is a playground close by and a donkeys that you can feed your leftovers to.  Lack of electricity and water….big deal, the bathroom is so close by and that’s what lanterns are for.

Overall:  8 – We really liked the picturesque setting, and it just felt really peaceful and relaxing out here.  Lots of shade trees and seemed more “tent-friendly” due to the lack of electricity at each campsite.

Looking for information on Georgetown Texas Homes For Sale? Visit my website or call me anytime!! Want the latest updates on Georgetown Texas Real Estate, news and latest developments? Sign up for the blog by clicking the link below:

Coopers Old Time Pit BBQ in Llano, TX

We made a family trip out to Coopers Old Time Pit BBQ in Llano, TX a few weeks ago and our friends Brett and Lisa came with us.  We decided to go easy and not over-order like we normally do.  We picked a variety of their meats for comparison purposes and overall the meal was pretty good, sausage was better then Snow’s BBQ, but nothing was really “out of the ballpark” for me.  No disappointments, but no “wow” factor either…just good ‘ole dependable BBQ.  Afterwards, we hung out at the Llano River Bridge for some rock-throwing and picture-taking.

Coopers is just about 1 hour and a few minutes away from Georgetown and is an easy drive down Hwy 29.  Check it out and feel free to share your comments on how you feel this place compares with others!  The readers of this blog would love to hear your opinion!  Check out the pictures below:

Looking for information on Georgetown Texas Homes For Sale? Visit my website or call me anytime!! Want the latest updates on Georgetown Texas Real Estate, news and latest developments? Sign up for the blog by clicking the link below:

Snow’s Barbeque – We love it for the BBQ Pork and Ribs

dsc_8489At 9:30am I called Snow’s Barbeque to find out their hours and the guy on the phone says, “They’re going fast!”  The restaurant closes whenever they run out of BBQ, which is usually noon at the latest.  I tell him that I’m coming with 3 kids and ask him to save me some BBQ and so he takes  a quick order and tells me to see Sarah when I get there.   We pile in the minivan and head off to our weekend day trip:  Snow’s BBQ in Lexington, Texas for what Texas Monthly in 2008 calls the “Best BBQ in Texas.”

At 10:15am we got to Taylor and took a rinky dink “shortcut” called FM 112 towards Lexington.  The whole trip is about an hour from Georgetown, Texas so it makes for an easy day trip.

When we got there, the line was already formed but the wait really wasn’t too bad.  We stocked up on our order to make sure we could try everything they had on the menu.  We sat down outdoors and stuffed ourselves with pure, smokey goodness.  Fatty brisket, pork ribs, sausage….and some side dishes to reduce the “meat-guilt” of eating too much barbeque.  Autumn and I loved the way they cooked their pork.  As a 10 year resident of Germany, I’m very picky about the way pork is cooked and how it tastes.  This may not be your typical compliment, but the guys at Snow’s cook pork like Germans!  Das is Gut!


We had plenty of leftovers to take home, wrapped up beautifully in some large pieces of foil.  I also got to take a picture with Pitmaster Tootsie:)


Afterwards, we were told about a cattle auction right around the corner, so we had some fun listening to the auctioneer talk a mile a minute and then went out on the catwalk to see more cows then I’ve ever seen in my life.


We had a great time and the food was excellent.  If you want to know what makes Texas famous for BBQ, make sure you stop by Snow’s ya hear!?

Check out this Smoker!


Williamson County Texas – No more “Sans” thanks to “Three Legged Willie”

Williamson County, Texas – No more “Sans” thanks to “Three Legged Willie”

Ever wonder why our home county is named “Williamson”? Most people would guess that it was named after some prominent resident who resided here or did some great thing in the county’s history. In fact, it was named after a man who never even lived here! Our county’s namesake is Robert McAlpin Williamson and although his connection to Williamson County doesn’t go much further than the name, his life makes for quite a story.

He was born in Georgia sometime between 1804 and 1806. Orphanrobert-mcalpin-williamsoned by the death of his mother and the abandonment of his father before his first birthday, he was raised by his grandmother in Milledgeville, Georgia. He studied law and was admitted to the bar by the time he was twenty. He must have been a peculiar site in Georgia courtrooms, as five years earlier, he had contracted a form of arthritis that left his right knee locked at a 90 degree angle for the rest of his life. Since the leg was perfectly healthy (other than the fact the knee wouldn’t unbend) the decision was made not to amputate the useless appendage. Instead a wooden leg was attached to the knee, giving him the nickname “Three-Legged-Willie.” Apparently he didn’t much care for the name since no one was willing to use it to his face.

Despite his odd deformity, something he obviously never saw as a limitation, he joined Stephen F. Austin’s colony in 1827. Some stories claim that the move was not of his own choosing. By those accounts, he was on the run after injuring a rival suitor in a duel over a young lady. Once in Texas, Williamson expended his considerable energy in founding and editing several newspapers and serving as the first public prosecutor for what later became Travis County. Never held back by his deformed leg, Williamson was an excellent rider and marksman and was soon appointed a Major in the Texas Rangers. He fought Comanches on the frontier and the Mexican Army at Gonzalez and San Jacinto. He helped to write the first constitution of the Republic of Texas and served as a Supreme Court Justice and Circuit Judge. (District Judges rode circuits within their districts and simultaneously served as Supreme Court justices.)

After ending his career in the Texas judiciary, he ran for and won office in the House of Representatives and later in the Senate in the Republic of Texas. After the annexation of Texas, he served as a representative in the state government and it is here that we come to the story of how Williamson County came to bear his name. In 1848 the state legislature, responding to a petition from 107 residents of western Milam County, decided to split off what is now Williamson County. The question came up as to what they should call what is now our home county. The most favored name seemed to be “San Gabriel” for the river that runs through it and was an early center of settlement. An objection was raised by Representative Williamson who stood up and irreverently exclaimed that, “We’ve already got enough San’s in Texas!” One of his legislative colleagues responded by proposing that since he disagreed with the name San Gabriel, they should just name the new county for Judge Williamson himself. The motion carried and today we live in Williamson County rather than San Gabriel County.

Happy 4th of July! – Where to See Fireworks in Austin, Texas

The good folks at Independence Title in Georgetown, Texas put together a list of 4th of July Firework Celebrations around the Texas Hill Country. You can make a fun day trip to Lakeway, Dripping Springs, or just hang out with me at San Gabriel Park in Georgetown, Texas! Here are the “hotspots” this year:

The H-E-B Austin Symphony July 4th Concert & Fireworks

Friday, July 4, 2008 – 8:30 pm
Auditorium Shores at The Long Center
The Austin Symphony will be under the apt baton of ASO Music Director Peter Bay. The H-E-B Austin Symphony July 4th Concert and Fireworks will feature patriotic music and the ever-popular 1812 Overture–the latter punctuated by 75-millimeter Howitzer cannons, courtesy of Texas National Guard Salute Battery, and spectacular fireworks over Lady Bird Lake

Cedar Park Fourth of July Celebration Friday, July 4, 2008 – 4:00 pm
Milburn Park, Cedar Park, TX
Come celebrate with us and enjoy live music, food concessions, air castles, prizes, video games & lazer tag adventures, a washer tournament, games for all ages, and enjoy free watermelon sponsored by H-E-B. The fabulous day of celebreation will end with a magnificent fireworks display sponsored by H-E-B.

Fire in the Sky
Friday, July 4, 2008 – 6:00 pm
The Sports Park an RR12 South, Dripping Springs, TX
Includes spectacular fireworks display, food booths and live music. DS Sports and Recreation Park.

Sertoma 4th of July in the Park
Friday, July 4, 2008 – 11:00 am
San Gabriel Park, Georgetown, TX
With more than 80 booths, a petting zoo, parade, live entertainment, train rides, fireworks and more (all located on the beautiful San Gabriel River) there’s only one place you should be this 4th of July.

Lago Vista Celebrates the 4th
Friday, July 4, 2008 – 6:30 am
Bar K Park, Lago Vista, TX
It is a time to remember those who have served to protect us all, to celebrate our freedom, and to enjoy each other’s company. It starts off with the Firecracker 5K Race and 1 Mile Fun Run. This is an opportunity to give your children the same type of memories you had of parades, barbecues, music, and paddling around in the local swimming hole.

Lakeway 4th of July Celebration Friday, July 4, 2008 – 8:30 am
City Park, Lakeway, TX
Fourth of July all day event starting with a fanciful sponsored parade/floats that make their way down Lakeway Drive. Locals then head to the park for a picnic, games for kids, music and the announcement of the float award winners. The rest of the afternoon is usually filled with games, food, drinks and many more surprises. The day is rounded out with fireworks set to music at night.

Leander LibertyFest
Friday, July 4, 2008 – 5:00 pm
Crystal Falls Golf Course, 3400 Crystal Falls Pkwy
Join the residents of Leander celebrate our nation’s birthday at Leander LibertyFest.

July 4th Frontier Days Celebration
Friday, July 4, 2008 – 10:00 am
Old Settler’s Park, Round Rock, TX
A freedom walk, parade, jalapeno pepper contest, children’s games, Ballet Folklorico dancers, Sam Bass Shootout and fireworks are all part of the City of Round Rock’s July 4 Frontier Days Celebration 2008.

27th annual San Marcos Summerfest Friday, July 4, 2008 – 11:00 am
San Marcos Plaza Park, 202 N. CM Allen Pkwy
The City of San Marcos is hosting the most exciting community independence celebration at a new location this year. This FREE event will feature live entertainment, food booths, children’s activities, a patriotic program and a fireworks exhibition.

New Braunfels Annual 4th of July Parade and Patriotic Celebration Friday, July 4, 2008
Landa Park, New Braunfels
A wonderful family tradition for many years in New Braunfels. Bring a picnic and enjoy the park, along with a special free concert and a spectacular fireworks display!

Taylor Jaycee’s 4th of July Firework Display and Fajita Cook Off
Friday, July 4, 2008 – 10:00 am
Murphy Park on Lake Drive, Taylor, TX
Festival includes Carnival, Fajita Cook Off, Bicycle Parade, tennis tournament, and fireworks at dark.

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