texas: friends + food + magnolia

brian and i celebrate our anniversary every year away from home. year two was at Disney World, year four in Kansas City, year three in Africa and year one was in Puerto Vallarta. while on our one-year wedding anniversary (or one-y-moon as i like to call it), we met a couple who were celebrating their one year anniversary, as well. from California, christian and amanda quickly became some of our closest friends!

after only being able to spend two days together at the tiniest resort (the 42 room resort allowed us to recognize faces quickly)–because they were at the end of their vacation while we had just started ours–we made plans to stay in touch and visit one another in our home towns. we have since visited their home in California and they have visited ours. honestly, i like to think of the Arriaga’s as our “marriage soulmates.” 

they recently moved to Texas and once we found the perfect time to get together, we snatched up the opportunity and visited earlier this month. just as i had pictured in my head, their home was gorgeous in every way. while i loved their cozy white and grey colored themes, i especially loved amanda’s touches of decor for her guests.

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while i felt at home the minute we entered, i knew i didn’t want to leave the second i spotted their pit . . . i mean couch. i do not think brian and i left that couch the entire time. okay, that’s a lie. we visited Magnolia. more on that later.

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because christian and amanda are sooooo extra good to us, they treated us like royalty with their cooking skills. we each gained five pounds throughout our visit and i am not exaggerating when i say some of the best food i have ever had has been at their home. absolutely amazing. christian has instructed us (christian, if you read this, go ahead and laugh at my choice of words haha) on how to grill the perfect steak but just like his guac, our versions are never the same. his chef skills are worth more than any meal i could ever pay for at a four star restaurant and so is his guacamole. i hope his guac is served in heaven.

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when we weren’t eating or playing mario party (how come yoshi fails me every single time?), we were chatting about our quick visit to Magnolia! okay, just amanda and i were chatting.

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while i consider myself one of the 4819472510936812 Fixer Upper fans, i am more of a fan of the hearts of Chip & Jo. i admire how they talk about one another, how connected they are to their faith and family, and how much they simply love. just as i expected after multiple Fixer Upper episodes and reading their book, Magnolia was full of thought, purpose, and community. while it was a cloudy and chilly afternoon, i couldn’t help but love being outside and just watching those around us spend time with those close to them, whether it was shopping, eating, playing games, sitting in the swing, or waiting in the bakery line.

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while the silos stood out, it was the generosity and kindness of their employees that stood out the most. literally, they almost made Chick Fil A look bad. almost. i asked the girl at the seed co. register if she was treated as well as one would assume and she said, “oh yes, i have been here two years now and i am still in love with my job.” wish we all could say that.

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while i shopped around in their market, brian stayed content in an open corner (if he could, he would avoid crowds for the rest of his life) and found out from an employee that Chip & Jo rarely make appearances, but do spend much time in their offices above the market.

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even the food trucks did not disappoint. all four of us tried a different truck and left with the happiest tummies. seriously, i would drive back just for food. i personally loved the bowl i had at Club Sandwich which actually is an Asian fusion food truck that specializes in the “trashcan bowls.” just as the employee (and Jo) recommended, you must try their chicken rice bowl with cilantro lime and sriracha ranch sauces. if you go, please try Chuck’s Gourmet Popcorn for me because it smelled sooooooo good. if i were to suggest anything for your time at Magnolia, go two hours earlier and arrive hungry. i wish i would have so that i could have had a bite from every truck. you can read all about the trucks here.

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to finish our time at Magnolia, we waited in line for the anticipated Silos Baking Co . . . a cupcake for me and a cookie for brian. while we had heard about how long the line could be, we were not told about how efficient and fast the line moves. literally, Chip & Jo and their team thought of everything. we were given cards to fill out while waiting; an employee confirmed the order and processed the payment while another filled the order, and the last handed them out! what was even more impressive was the taste of their treats. brian is picky with his cookies; he judges them too easily. he loved his chocolate chip cookie. and well, the Nuts & Bolts cupcake was my favorite cupcake i have ever had.

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spending time with our closest friends makes for some of our fondest and most cherished memories. when asked about where some of our favorite vacations have been,  our time with christian and amanda is always at the top.

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love always, kylie

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