Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Our Long Weekend Adventures!

Louis Dean and I spent all of Saturday anticipating and preparing for Amber, Mike and the kids arrival! I had made potato salad, baked beans and all the fixings for chili dogs and Louis Dean had a campfire going. The camper was clean and the new room - still under construction - was spruced up.
Louis Dean had spent all day working on the utility room and was feeling pretty good about getting the floor down in there.

It was a perfect Saturday. The morning gray clouds had given way to blue skies and white ones.
We were sitting on the front deck making up pictures from those wispy clouds when Amber sent me a text that they were on the gravel road.

Right at 6:00 they came in the gate!!
I do believe we were every bit as excited as the kids were!

Kailey went right straight for her Granddad!
She inspected his arms and found all the blood spots and proceeded to lecture him on NOT hurting himself! 

Dean came in from work not long after they arrived so he and Sherry visited with us all for awhile.
There was a lot of talk and laughter going on around here!

We were surprised ro see Thumper at our door!
I guess he wanted to see what was going on up here and tore himself loose from his picket.
Of course, the kids loved it!

I took the kids down to gather some eggs for Sunday morning breakfast and they got to check out the chickens! 

Trystan decided to chase the big goose and she took off and flew to the little tank!
I'd never seen her fly that far before!

Amber loves the horses and was the first one to go out there and visit them.
She brought whole bags of carrots as treats!

I cooked the hot dogs in a wire basket over the campfire.
 We had a wonderful meal and after wards, I popped corn in an old fashioned popper - once again - over the campfire. 

By 9:30 they were all bedded down in the tent and Louis Dean and I lingered long by the fire with our wine and enjoyed the blessings of our day.

We knew there was a weather change coming but we were surprised at the sudden drop in temperatures and the fierce winds that accompanied it!

The wind was wildly buffeting the tent!
 Mike is an Eagle Scout so it was no surprise that the tent held its own against it.
Plus Sherry helped him when he was setting it up.

Still! It must have been pretty crazy sleeping in there!
What little sleep they got!

I sent Amber a text when I got up and by 9:00 all four kids were in our camper and the parents finally got to get a couple of hours sleep.

While Granddad and I had coffee, the kids found markers, pencils and pads of paper and spent an hour or more drawing pictures and writing stories.
I toasted some Pop Tarts for them and that held them in good stead while I prepared a hearty country breakfast!

I think the kids ate more than their usual amount of eggs that morning.
Perhaps because they had a vested interest in them.
After all, they had gathered them with their own little hands.

Sherry had arranged a tour of a local peacock farm for 4:00 Sunday afternoon.
Alas, the wild winds had stirred the birds up and the farm sent a message that the tour had to be cancelled.

No worries,
On to Plan B!
We left Louis Dean to work on his project and I rode with Amber and Mike to Mart.
We shopped Leon Junction which is a pretty savy little shop right on Texas Street.
People come from all over the DFW area to see what 'The Boys' have in the shop.
They create all sorts of cool things and refinish pieces in ways you would not think of!
I always find something there! This visit I bought 5 burlap bags - old coffee bags that still had a few beans in the bottom of each one. A bargain for just $2 each.

We came back to the ranch and, thankfully, the wind had died down some.

We went up to the Lake Tuguchi....the big tank!

I love nature walks!!

We went around the lake and walked toward the horses......

This time I had a bag of carrots and a jar of sugar cubes.

Amber has never lost her love for horses!

Sunday night supper was hamburgers and all the fixings and for dessert......

........toasted marshmallows!
Mike had taken the kids down to gather firewood and he had Logan help him lay the campfire so that all it took was one match! Mike did all the work and Logan got all the credit!
 I just LOVE this picture!!

And I love THIS one, too!!
My sweet Amber all nice and relaxed!

We loaded them up with extra blankets, sleeping bags and whatever we could find so they might fare better in the tent on Sunday night!

I was up again on Monday morning before anyone else!

The kids came in again and this time Amber set them up with snacks and yogurts and a DVD.
They stayed entertained at the tabke while Louis Dean and I had our coffee.
Then I made cinnamon coffee for the girls. Weak coffee with lots of milk and some cinnamon sugar.

Amber and Mike made breakfast that morning.
French Toast, eggs, bacon and orange juice - good eating at every meal!

We all got ready for our long awaited trip to Magnolia!
I rode with Amber and them so Louis Dean would have his truck.
His idea of a good time does not include the Silos. Silly man!!

Waco is just a short half hour from the ranch!
Sherry and I were one of the first 500 visitors during their soft opening a few years ago.
That's when I became infatuated with stalks of cotton bolls.
At $9 a stem, I decided to wait until I could pick the real thing - which I did last fall!

As we drove by the store to find a place to park, we were amazed at the number of people just in line to get into the store not to mention the ones in line for the bakery and the restaurant!
Still, Mike found us a parking spot in the free lot and we were on our way in!

Amber and I were so excited to be here together!!!
We have different styles and yet similar tastes in our decorating.
Does that make sense?

It was crowded! No denying that!

But it was fun!

Lots of good people watching!
I especially liked looking at the expressions on the guys faces!
Now Mike was an exception! He loves Chip Gaines and Demo Day as do the quads.

I noticed that everyone was nice and well mannered. Shoppers and employees alike.
No pushing and shoving but lots of smiles and chatting among the people in lines.
I think this was a check out line which went remarkably fast.
When we got ready to pay - and yes! both Amber and I found a few bargains - we stood in line less than 10 minutes.

These are the silos!
In front of them is the courtyard where you can buy meals from the food trucks.
There are picnic tables and a green lawn area to sit and/or play....wooden blocks are provided for building things.
It is, indeed, all that Chip and Joanna Gaines wants it to be......
"......more than a place to shop, but a place where family and friends can gather together."

We were delighted with the food trucks!


Amber and I chose the Club Sandwich truck.....which features Rice Bowls.
NO sandwiches. Go figure! Seriously delicious!!
This one was Amber's......

this one is mine.
Same dish - different sauces.
I chose the one recommended by the guy taking our order - and there was NO LINE by the way!
GREAT food and GREAT service!
It was a fun experience just ordering!

Magnolia Market Potting Shed was our last stop before leaving the market.

I was especially interested in this since Dean and his dad are talking about building a potting shed here at the ranch next year.

The quads love all things Chip and Joanna Gaines!!!

When we were in line, I loved listening to the shoppers around me.
One stylish young mother - much like my own Amber - had two school age children on either side of her and I heard her say, "Remember, Kids? When I said after our new home was built that we would go to Waco and Magnolia Market to buy things to decorate it?" 
People were all carrying bags full of merchandise with smiles on their faces!

I thought this was such an interesting tree.
No clue what it is but, like so many things at Magnolia Market, it IS unique!

I would have loved to buy one of each of these tea towels......
but at $12 a pop......I decided against it.

It was a fun day with lots of pretty things to look at.

Been there! Done that! Will do it again!!!

We decided to make one more stop before going back to the ranch.....

just a short block up the street from Magnolia you will find The Findery!

This shop is a sister cousin in feel to what we saw at Magnolia.
Those little papers on the chairs are telling us NOT to sit on them!
Now this is a 'hmmmmmm....' to me.
How can one know if it's comfortable enough to BUY if you can't SIT on them?
Just a thought but I think I know where they're coming from.

Pretty things....

Reminds me of the Farm House style that is all the rage now.

I do love how they feature Waco and Texas!

This is the area between the bathrooms.....
I didn't take a picture of them but I should have.
The one of the left said 'Ladies.'
The one on the right said, "Ladies....(and in smaller slanted letters) Gents!"

The displays here were beautiful and interesting.

In my dreams I could have taken the entire store store home with me and redone my whole house!
LOVE the copper!

Every nook and cranny was filled with PRETTY!

The store is two levels. We took the stairs up and the elevator down.

Waco! It has become a destination!!

We arrived back at the ranch in time for Mike to take the kids fishing before dinner.

It was beautiful up on the big tank!

This is the little tank.....

The quads LOVED fishing and it was their #1 answer to 'what did you like the most about this trip!'
When I walked up to see how they were doing, Kailey informed me she had caught 'ZERO fish!"
Well, that changed just 2 minutes later! They ALL caught several. Catch and release!
This summer during MeeMaw Camp - perhaps Granddad and Uncle Dean will fry up the fish!

While they fished, I went back to the camper and set out the appetizer table.
Amber and Mike cooked the main meal that night......smoked sausage, rosemary corn, Green Pesto Pasta, watermelon and cantaloupe salad. Aunt Sherry brought dessert - fresh sweet sliced strawberries and shortcake cups. 
Once the meal was done.....Aunt Sherry and Uncle Dean announced they had a surprise!
A Grand Finale to the weekend!
Everyone stayed inside the camper while Sherry set it up and I turned out all the lights outside.
Then we all went out to sit on the deck.
What was the surprise???


Up close and personal!!!
This was undoubtedly the best finale possible!!!
The kids - and adults! - clapped and cheered!!!
Dean and Sherry are ever generous!
They love children and they love us and we are all so blessed by them!

It was late when all the kids and parents and grandparents went to bed Monday night.

After breakdast this morning, I took the kids down to tell the critters goodbye while their parents broke camp and loaded the Suburban.

We walked up to the big tank to see the ducks and feed the fish.

I love to hear what the children say......

We stopped to smell the flowers and I was reminded to never be too busy to do that!

I was impressed when the girls said that it would not be right to pick Aunt Sherry's flowers!
I think they said this out loud to keep from doing it!

We fed the goats one last time.
This is Meme.....but Harrison fed BBQ - his favorite - and the girls fed fed Thumper - thier favorite.

And just like that - our visit was over and they were gone.
I rode my nike up to the date and inlocked it to let them out.
As they drove through, they all said, "GOODBYE!" just as they do when they leave our house at home. Then I heard a bonus as I was closing the gate......
Mike had rolled all the windows down and counted down.....
and, in unison, they ALL yelled out - as they were driving away.......

"MeeMaw! MeeMAW! MEEMAW!!"


Joy@aVintageGreen said...

What a wonderful time Linda - loved reading and seeing everything. I knew you were going to have a GREAT time. Hugs.

Vee said...

Delightful! (Perhaps not the buffeted tent part...I know something about that from long years ago.) I watched the latest episode of Fixer Upper last least favorite ever...but seeing the Silos, I can understand the industrial Waco vibe. Ha!

The children have those duck sounds down to a science. I had fun trying to imagine what Trystan was up to.

Keep having fun down there! Stay warm and cozy. With two feet of new snow, I’ll try to do the same.

Susie said...

Linda, I just loved this post. What a fun time family time. I am sure Mike and Amber calmed the children in the tent. Sounds like some wonderful meals while everyone was there. I think Sherry and Dean doing fireworks was the greatest ending of a beautiful fun day. I would love to visit the silos myself. One of my blog friends just did that with her husband . What a fun trip. Hope LD is doing better each day. Blessings to all, love you guys, xoxo, Susie

Arlene Grimm said...

Sounds like the perfect weekend to me. I hate your tour was cancelled. When I was in Cracker Barrel looking at all the Peacock displays, I thought of you and your crew.

Estelle's said...

It's a grand time down on the ranch. I was very interested to hear about your trip to Magnolia....the crowds are over the top aren't they? My kitchen and living area are now featuring some beautiful items from their line. It feels so good to actually know Waco and not just an impression you have from Hgtv.....So enjoyed your sharing of their visit...delightful!

I'm mostly known as 'MA' said...

what a wonderful and fun packed weekend. Looks like everyone enjoyed it and the meals sound wonderful...even the toasted marshmallows for dessert. It's been far too long since I've had one. Hope you have a great week and not to tired out from the weekend.

Sandra said...

oh my all these gorgeous pics of people and things and my comment is bring on the hot dogs in the wire basket. oh ym.... love the thumper visit and the quads look fantastic in all the photos. great pic of you and amber... you outdid your self withphotos today

Changes in the wind said...

Wow! I would need a week to recoup from your week-end but it does sound fun.

Bluebird49 said...

It sounds wonderful, and what great memories of good times you will all share! I'm so glad!!

Ginny Hartzler said...

What a WONDERFUL weekend! In fact, NO weekend could be better! I had been wondering why you hadn't posted in so I KNOW! SO cool that they got their own eggs, and then ATE them!! I have not heard of these stores. So Chip Joanna own them? I have never seen their show, what is it called? Now I want to watch it, I don't know much about them. I would have bought both stores totally out! You didn't show us what you got? Maybe next post? I am very curious, I always love seeing your finds. I love the Thumper and Happy Amber picture. You cannot buy a chair without sitting on it! I can see where they do not want it getting dirty, but they could put a towel or something on it for serious buyers. All the food looks divine. Great food, country and clean air, the Quads and shopping. How could it get any more perfect!

Cranberry Morning said...

They've all just got to LOVE visiting y'all!! I loved this post. What kids wouldn't love seeing all the animals and having so much fun. I loved all the photos, but especially the one that's your favorite too, of the kids standing beside the fire. What a great photo! How wonderful and idyllic is all seems! One of these days all your blogger pals are going to show up on your doorstep!! :-)

Carole said...

Those kids are getting so tall! glad you all had a fabulous time. That shop was a bit crowded for me. Even though Auckland is quite a big city (1.5 million people) I very rarely feel crowded - which is lucky! Take care and cheers to all

Eva said...

Sounds like a fun weekend for all! I haven't been to Magnolia since they moved to the silos--not sure I want to fight the crowds! I think that interesting tree is a fruit tree of some sort--it looks to me like it may be a fig, but I can't see it well. It's trained as an espaliered tree. It just means that the branches are cut away except for the primary ones chosen that you see. People do it for decorative purposes or to make it easier to harvest the fruit.

Judy ~ My Front Porch said...

How fun to visit Magnolia! I'm hoping to get there one day. We too love all things Chip and Joanna over here. Thanks for giving us a sneak peek!

Carla said...

Looks like a fun filled time. I hope to go to Magnolia silos soon. Wish we could have had them come build for us. That would have been fun. Thumper wanted his share of loving.