Friday, April 8, 2011


Bubble and Quack! (my first quilt) Sunset on the tarmac. I did sleep like a baby at the Hanger Hotel!

Yahoo! We're in Texas! Two days of busses, planes & a big yellow truck and we're in beautiful Fredericksburg, Texas. The weather is hot and humid and going to be more so for the week of the trip. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate! I hope this tribe is drinking gallons of water right now.

We arrived a couple of days early; took advantage and spent a relaxing day exploring Fredericksburg. This included beer and fried pickles at the brew pub, breakfast and pastries at the Rather Sweet Bakery, more beer and fried pickles, (can't get enough of those fried pickles!) and a tour of a couple of local quilt shops. Ok, so one was local. I made Jack drive 30 miles to the other one in Kerrville. But what a quilt shop it is! We hit it during their "quilt hop". Jack's fortunate that the big yellow truck is too expensive to drive around the county chasing quilts. Yes, cousin Mike, your wife has helped to create a quilt maniac. (I finished the duck quilt on the drive down here! I have named it bubble and quack.)

Speaking of the Rather Sweet Bakery; I have mentioned it a couple of times in the past as "THE" bakery to visit when you're in Texas. The pastries and cakes are amazing: Texas big and delicious. Tribe members feast on the Texas Pecan Pie Bars from one of the cook books that owner Rebecca Rather has published. We were honored to meet Rebecca yesterday morning and spend an hour talking "shop" with her. She was intrigued by the tours and feeding the tribe day after day on the road. I am awed by her talent as a chef and love all three of her books. If you can get your hands on one I highly suggest it! She well deserves the title of "Pastry Queen"! We have invited her to dinner on Tuesday; I shall obsess over this for the next four days! What to cook?!? She encouraged me to get my act together and get a book of my own going. I can do this.

We stayed last night at the coolest hotel in Fredericksburg! The Hanger Hotel sits on the tarmac of the local airport. It is fashioned out of an old hanger and the hotel is styled from the 1940's. There is an officer's club that is open for cocktails every evening and a great diner in the hanger next door open for lunch. We were fortunate to be here during an expo of WW2 bombers. Spent the evening browsing the planes and drinking chardonnay while rocking in the chairs at the edge of the tarmac, watching a fabulous sunset. Life is rough. Yes, I will make it up this next week.

We also got our hands on some of the yummiest German sausages you have ever tasted. Rebecca steered us to Opa's Smoke House here in Fredericksburg when I inquired about the best local fare to feed my tribe. The products that are produced there are incredibly delicious AND are available for shipping! Check them out on line and treat yourself to some great sausages, hams, and smoked meats. Guess what's for dinner Saturday night!

There is also a small, local Artisan Cheesemaker that I am hoping to procure some goat cheeses from as a treat for my new tribe. Again, a recommendation from Rebecca Rather! Cheesemaker Chrissy Omo gained a passion for goat cheese at the age of 16 and now produces hundreds of pounds of feta, chevre, and other fine goat cheeses. We'll see what I can get!

So on to Austin to grocery shop, then out to McKinney Falls State Park to meet up with Kevin and the crew. (Kevin; we found a new nome! He shall grace our doorstep every day of your tour!) I'll expound on this in future blogs. Hydrate, tribe members! We'll see you on Saturday.

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