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Roadtrips make for excellent opportunities to try new restaurants and cuisine from cultures we may not always have access to. Texas was the place for Spanish Tapas at Toro Kitchen & Bar for scrumptious small plates and paella and a food journey to Santa Diabla Cochino Mexicano featuring the exquisite flavors created by Chef Gabriel Jimenez



A visit to the Alamo gave me the perspective of just how much the area had developed

since my first visits to San Antonio in the eighties. My recollection of the Alamo at that time was much more desolate than the abundance of restaurants and hotels that have flourished since then.



The Ever Blossoming Magnolia



On the way to San Antonio from Arkansas there are plenty of options to explore- whether you're looking for urban destinations like Austin, Dallas or Fort Worth. The luxe suburbs of McKinney and Southlake or the reinvigorated town of Waco. The positive impact that Chip and Joanna Gaines have had were magnified since our first visit to the area a few years ago. Build it and they will come is seen firsthand as the development of Magnolia Market at the Silos has flowed into the heart of the downtown area. The Gaines family projects of expanding Magnolia Home, a local castle renovation, the addition of Press Coffeehouse

and the 1928 Hotel renovation that includes a library, gift shop, coffee bar, gift shop and ground floor restaurant and more are a feast for the eyes in terms of design and decor and not to be missed.

We enjoy a good breakfast at Magnolia Table where friendly service comes with a smile and stories shared with pride of the tremendous impact Chip and Joanna have had on the image of Waco.


A few highlights from the Magnolia Market visit:




At Magnolia Home you can feather your nest or simply enjoy the moments spent soaking up the good vibes and simply elegant spaces that transport you into a state of calm energy.



When you step into Hotel 1928 you are transcending in both time and space. Fully present amidst both the history and quiet decadence of a bygone era. The difference is in the design details that evoke a period in time that has passed and yet is still entirely significant today.


All that travel has an impact on us as well- sometimes it inspires a new approach to dinner, a reconfiguration of our living space, an idea for renovation or just how we start the day.



FACETIME

Sometimes travel has the added benefit of including an impromptu visit with family and friends. Here we are catching up in real time present day and a black and white photograph captured a visit of days gone by with friends Candace and Anthony Luciano and her mom, Sandy. A fun loving couple whose relationship began right around the time ours did. Debbie Bergschicker from back in the junior high school days was traveling through from Texas and stopped in Benton for a visit.



AMORE

This month I hope hearts will skip

a beat as Valentines Day closes in. I found this photograph recently and thought of past musings on how we could incorporate all that we love into our marriage and daily life. The creative process and projects have surpassed my wildest dreams and we're only 10 years in. While I look to the future with wistful anticipation I'm in the here and now with so much gratitude for all we've accomplished together.


Fancy Things- Ruffling Those Feathers

A recent creative project - a bed ensemble completed for a design client interested in having a dust ruffle to match a beautiful garden inspired bedding ensemble. Stay tuned for custom sewn pillows.

Simplicity Domesticity Necessity

One of our favorite local shops is the Front Porch Market in Benton. Mary Admire and Justin Mitchell have created a community minded marketplace similar to the general mercantiles of the past. Clad with wood burning stove from the 1800's, produce, local dairy products, baked goods and a unique array of small batch artisanal products abound.

Dario The Dog

We can't say enough about how well behaved this gent of a dog was on our last trip. I think I owe it to the quilt lovingly made for me by an auntie, all I can figure is that the scent of family comforted this good guy along the journey to Texas. He slept almost all the way there and back!


When's the last time you watched an animated movie? Well if you have children probably not that long ago but if not perhaps it's been a while. Lady and the Tramp is a sweet romantic love story perfect for Valentines Day and filled with Dario's canine friends.




The Riverwalk - Art, restaurants and nature can be found along the way. 11,000 steps later and we hadn't seen it all.



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