This past weekend, I took two days off work and travelled to Waco, Texas to witness one of my friends, Holly, get married to her best friend, Robb.
I first met Holly through her sister Heather in 2012 on a drunken summer vacation in New Orleans. Twelve of my friends decided to go down over Memorial Day weekend to take in historical Bourbon Street, and the beautiful French Quarter...and I have to admit, besides an accidental ferry ride to Algiers, I didn't see much else of the city. Although fueled by hurricanes and hand-grenades, I thought she was the prettiest and smartest woman I had ever met. She was a no-nonsense Texas girl and I fell in love with her the moment I met her.
Holly and I have remained friends over the years, seeing each other periodically at weddings and exchanging Christmas cards, the occasional comment or "like" on eachother's Facebook Pages. I was actually surprised to receive a wedding invitation! Of course I wouldn't miss it!
On Friday, I flew out of MSP to catch a connecting flight via Dallas-Fort Worth. Luckily, my layover was in Terminal D (which apparently is the new fancy terminal at DFW, according to a young woman I met on the train, complete with an Apple Store, wine boutique, and an artisan soap shop). I took this opportunity to spend WAY too much money on gourmet candy and rode my sugar high all the way to Houston.
In HouTex, I met up with my friends, Stephen, Kyle, and Jordan and we went to check into a hotel downtown. After checking in, Stephen, the resident Texan, took us to the most heavenly store: Spec's.
Now, I'm going to do a little bit of some un-sponsored plugging here. SPEC'S IS AMAZING. I don't know if we have anything like it in Wisconsin. We walk in and there is a bakery, and then beyond that, aisles and aisles of party supplies, mixers, imports, liquors, and wine. To give you some perspective, there is an entire aisle devoted to Chilean wines. WHAT.
After freaking out over this warehouse of booze, we went to this Mexican restaurant called Little Pappasito's Cantina and had a much needed margarita and shared a family-style order of fajitas. The best part about this place was the fajitas came with LITTLE RAMEKINS OF BUTTER. I swear to God, if I was able to take home 32 oz. of this whipped, melted, garlic buttery goodness and take it home and put it on everything, I would have.
I just looked up the recipe, and no wonder it's amazingly good:
PAPPASITO'S BUTTER DIP SAUCE
Source: Texas Monthly
1 lb butter
1 lb margarine
1 big heaping tablespoon granule chicken bouillon (Knorr's is the BEST)
2 tablespoons finely chopped garlic (fresh is better but can use fresh chopped in jars)
1 cup white wine (Chardonnay is best)
Get butter and margarine room temp.
Mix all but the wine together(can use an electric mixer).
This will be a peanut butter texture.
Slowly blend in the wine.
Empty, tube style, onto saran wrap and roll up.
This freezes well and sections can be cut off for use.
GREAT on all meats for dipping or basting.
When you get ready to use, cut off sections (the smaller the sections the better it nukes). Put in bowl to nuke. Nuke 10 seconds at a time until you see it froth. Stop and serve there as if you allow to go further, the butter will separate.
That night, we partied in our hotel and got up bright and early to travel the three-hours it would take to get to Waco. The ceremony was at Holly's family's Catholic church and it was beautiful. They had a large bridal party - I think about 20 people! Holly's dress was GORGEOUS. Just like a fairytale, and the bridesmaid's (including my lovely friend Erin) all were wearing "Cinderella Blue" floor-length strapless gowns and the flower girl was wearing this poufy skirt made of tulle - the most adorable little thing ever.
Okay. Here's an admission: I'm a wedding crier. I tear up almost immediately upon seeing the bride, and instantly when hearing the bride and groom's vows. Ugh I can't help it!
The reception was held at the Phoenix Ballroom, which I had been to before for Holly's sister's wedding a few years ago. It's this amazing rustic refurbished warehouse with crazy high ceilings and just a perfect venue for Holly. There were painted pumpkins all around - a Cinderlla-themed reception for a Disney-obsessed couple!
The next morning, (after a brunch, where the bar we were at RAN OUT OF CLAMATO FOR BLOODY MARYS...WHAT!?) we went to Baylor college because we were told by Katie, a Texas wedding friend of ours, that there was an actual bear habitat for the bear mascots Lady and Joy, in the middle of campus. And to be honest, I kind of shuddered and thought, oh how horrible, it's probably some smelly gross cage and college kids just yell at the bears. How sad.
When we went to visit, I was pleasantly surprised! It was this beautifully landscaped spacious bear habitat that had these nice clean glassed/fenced in area, and this bubbling stream running through it. It was SO COOL!
Then, on the road trip home, we stopped at a famous Texas gas station chain called BUC-EE'S and it was the most surreal experience of my life.
Buc-ee's is basically a Texas-sized convenience store with about 40+ pumps, and a gift shop, deli, salad bar, grocery store, and drugstore. And the thing is, it was hopping. There were about 100 people in the store, and I was told by my Texan friend Christine to use their bathrooms - apparently they win awards and are famous for having the cleanest restrooms in America. It was intense and all I ended doing was creeping on the bathrooms and buying a water.
The rest of my stay in Houston consisted of playing One Night Werewolf. Of which it is decided that I know how to work a Tanner card and Kyle is always the Werewolf. That's what's up.
Congrats Holly & Robb - the most magical couple I know! <3