Post AUTHOR: GRACE
It's the most wonderful time of the year! Autumn and the State Fair of Texas! If you have never been, you truly are missing out.
What could be better than a trip home to Dallas during October to enjoy family AND an afternoon at the fair?
Rach and I were both in town for my baby shower, the weather finally cleared up (it’s been raining for weeks in Texas!) and so it was the perfect day for strolling around the fair.
There is SO much to see and do! From the farm animals, to the shows, to the food, to the rides...you really can't go wrong. There is definitely something for everyone, young and old! And, did you know, it’s the longest running fair in the nation as well as one of the largest? Everything’s bigger in Texas!
Our first stop was to get a Fletcher's Corny Dog. It’s a once a year treat and, you guys, this is hands down my favorite food at the fair. It is SO good! Pregnant Grace was in absolute heaven. I paired that with fresh squeezed lemonade (also a must) and it was pure bliss.
There are some wild food and drink choices at the fair. The 2018 Big Tex Choice Award winners were Fernie’s Hoppin’ John Cake with Jackpot Sauce, Arroz con Leche (Sweet Crispy Rice) and Cotton Candy Taco. New drinks to try this year were Corn Dog Ale, Orange Julia’s Beermosa, Frosty’s Frozen Hot Chocolate, Cherish Erbert Champagne and Kool-Aid Pickle-Dilly Sangria.
For me, I’ll stick with the tried and true favorites!
It's always a blast to try your hand at the various games on the midway and they have SO many to choose from. I don’t even need to play, I have as much fun watching other people spend a ton of tickets just to try their luck at winning an oversized teddy bear. And sometimes, they do!
Your day at the fair will NOT be complete if you don't treat yourself to a good old fashioned funnel cake! I could eat an entire one by myself, but since fried food doesn't always make me feel great after, we all decided to share one. It was perfect! They are so light and delicious, I have to have one at least once a year!
The barns! One of my favorite places to stop. From the farm animals, to the crunch of the of hay underfoot, to the pride on the 4-H kids’ faces as they show off their livestock. I love it!
We couldn't get over the size of the cattle. They were HUGE! And they cannot be bothered, trust me, I tried to pet them. Not my best idea. 😉
There are multiple stages around the fairgrounds with live music everyday - something for everyone. There’s also hundreds of daily activities, exhibits and shows for the whole family.
I love getting to be with family as much as possible, so this was a special day for me. My feet may have been killing me by the end of the day, but my heart and belly were full of good food and wonderful family memories made!
If you have never been to the State Fair of Texas, mark your calendar now and plan a weekend trip to Dallas next year.
The fair runs for just over 3 weeks (usually opens the last Friday of September) and is open 7 days a week from 10 am to 9 pm Sunday thru Thursday and 10 am to 10 pm Friday and Saturday.
Some interesting things to now before you head out to the fairgrounds -
* Children under age 3 are free
* Admission for children under 48” is $14
* Admission for seniors (60+) is $14
* There are various discounts available for general admission, so check online before you go
* Strollers are available for rent
* You can bring wagons, coolers and food
* State Fair coupons are $.50 each and can be used for midway rides and food
* Coupons can be purchased at the coupon booths throughout the fairgrounds
* The Red River Showdown football game between the University Of Oklahoma Sooners and the University of Texas Longhorns takes place at the Cotton Bowl Stadium at Fair Park during this time - a ticket to the game includes admission to the fair, making it an exceptionally busy day at the fairgrounds!
Be sure to mark your calendar for next year so you can join the fun and spend a day exploring the great State Fair of Texas!
My sister is getting married and I could not be more excited for her as she walks thru this beautiful season of life with her groom. Shortly after she got engaged, she blessed me with her request that I stand by her side on that very important day and serve as her Matron of Honor. Of course, I said yes! I have dreamed of this special day my entire life and to get to spoil my sister, who always spoils me, is a true joy. We decided a girls' weekend in Fredericksburg, Texas (wine country) would be the perfect place for a bachelorette weekend. My sister is pretty easy going, so as I started planning, I wanted to balance a mix of relaxation with fun outings.
My first task was finding the perfect home to stay in while we were in Fredericksburg. We had 18 girls (crazy, I know!) commit to the weekend, so finding a house that was both affordable AND big enough would be a huge undertaking. BUT, thankfully I found THE perfect house. The owner was super easy to work with, the beds were incredibly comfortable, the decor was adorable and the location was spot on. I hit the jackpot!
Even better, we were also able to rent the cutest little cottage located behind the main farmhouse. The main house had beds for 14 guests and the cottage was very comfortable for the additional 4 guests. Both are just a couple hundred feet from each other and beautifully decorated. When I say it was perfect, I mean it. I could not have asked for a better opportunity to fall into my lap. If you are interested in renting these out for a trip to Fredericksburg, the VRBO homes are French Country Farmhouse and Charming Carriage House. You will not be disappointed!
I arrived on Friday night and had planned a pretty relaxing evening since everyone was arriving at different times. After the first few arrived, we headed over to Jennie's Smoked Burgers and Tornado Fries. One of my sisters (I have 3) had raved about how good this place was and we were anxious to give it a try. From the outside, the restaurant doesn't look like much, but don't let that fool you. It was one of the best burgers I have EVER had. The tornado fries are kind of like potato chips but are cooked to perfection and come on a stick. There were no complaints from this bunch and it was the perfect way to end a day of traveling. Five star recommendation from me, for sure.
We headed back to the house, continued to welcome the late arrivals, and had tons of fun playing lots of games. My abs got an intense workout from all the laughing! Best of all though, my heart was full seeing my sister surrounded by a group of women that love and care for her.
Saturday morning started with a huge brunch and mimosas before we headed out to two vineyard tastings. We went to 4.0 Cellars and Messina Hof. Both were incredible! The tastings are very affordable ($10-$15/person) and you get to try a variety of wines. They also have great outdoor seating to be able to snack and sip on wine after you select your bottle of choice from the tastings. The weather was fairly nice for January and it was surprisingly packed at both tastings! I'm so glad we only did two because we were really able to take our time and enjoy the wine, not rush through each tasting.
After the tastings, we headed back to the house. A little free time before dinner was the much appreciated by all. Some of us took an afternoon nap, while others explored downtown or went for a walk.
For dinner, a friend had recommended the Farm Haus Bistro at Fredericksburg Herb Farms. The farm is a quaint bed and breakfast with several adorable, woodsy cottages that surround the bistro. The Farm Haus is farm to table service and the menu offers a seasonal array of appetizers, entrees and oh-so-delicious desserts. Everything was melt in your mouth wonderful! The 230 year old farmhouse has 3 unique dining rooms and we were charmed by a sweet lady that came by and shared the history of this establishment with us. It was fascinating and we discovered the history in Fredericksburg is rich.
I was very pleased with the dinner, the service and the ambiance, and highly recommend you give it a try the next time you are in Fredericksburg! You will be glad you did.
The night would not be complete without a little lingerie shower for the bride. This is always my favorite part of bachelorette parties! It's so fun to name the lingerie, giggle about the gifts the bride received, and, of course, share special memories we have with the bride. It was a great time to affirm my sister and show her how loved she is.
I'm so glad we chose Fredericksburg and this beautiful home as our destination for this gathering because it was perfect. We ate, we drank, we explored, we laughed and we loved showering the beautiful bride with hugs, gifts and a weekend full of wonderful memories.
Have you been to Fredericksburg? If so, what is your favorite spot? Leave a comment below, I'd love to hear your thoughts!