A Weekend in Waco: Silobration 2018!

Y’ALL. (Yep, a weekend in Texas and I can’t stop).

I don’t even know where to begin.

Honestly, I don’t. I’m sitting here at my computer, still in shock that just a couple days ago, my husband and I were shopping around Magnolia Market, eating Silo Bakery cupcakes, LISTENING TO CHIP AND JOANNA GAINES…IN REAL LIFE.


It was so much more than a fun weekend. I’ll get to that in a bit. First, I’ll tell you how it all went down!

We arrived in Dallas on Thursday afternoon, got a rental car, and started the drive to Waco. At this point, we were so excited – ok, me probably more so than my husband, but he still was all smiles. We checked into the hotel around 4:30, unpacked, and decided to drive to the silos just to check it out before we grabbed some dinner. When I spotted the silos, I can’t even put into words the level of excitement. To see it all in person was magical. The market, the silos, the bakery – it is STUNNING. I just felt so so lucky to be here. And then the sweetest reader came up to me and made the day even better – which I didn’t think was possible!

Everything closes at 6, so we left to grab some dinner at Twisted Root Burger Co. Had some delicious burgers (and a Dr. Pepper float, because when in Rome…!) and headed back to the hotel to Facetime the kiddos and get ready for a BIG day Friday.

We woke up, had breakfast at the hotel, and headed over to the lobby of Hotel Indigo for a Waco Tour. I cannot recommend this enough if you go to Waco for a weekend. It was started by David Ridley (remember the bachelor episode of Fixer Upper? The two kitchen islands guy?). He saw a need for visitors who come to look at all the Magnolia stuff, and then wonder what else there is to do? (I mean, shopping and eating cupcakes all weekend long doesn’t sound like such a bad idea to me, but some might tire of that after a day or two;). Turns out, there’s a lot of other fun to be had in Waco! But what else is very cool, is how they incorporate a lot of the Fixer Upper fun stuff into the tour as well. We stopped at Harp Design Co – didn’t get to see my buddy Clint – though he’d probably run after meeting him in Georgia last summer – ha! I kid, he’s the nicest guy that ever was – he was there earlier, but left for a school function. But it was really cool to see the shop, and where the magic happens. Everyone that worked there was so sweet. And Clint’s house (they don’t live there anymore, but still own it) is right next door.


We stopped by the Heritage Creamery – which I kid you not – the greatest ice cream I’ve ever had in my life. Everything is locally sourced, and it has such a fresh taste it’s unbelievable. No additives, no preservatives – so so fresh. And holy cuteness inside!!! I was totally flipping out over the decor. (Paul and I had to come back the next night for one more scoop!)

You must must MUST stop here if you come to Waco.

Right next door is the cutest coffee shop – Common Grounds. You might recognize it from the show – along with Heritage – both appear on episodes of Fixer Upper. We popped in there as well on our tour.

This is a big Baylor University hangout and I think I would live here if I were a college student! They even have live music in this really cool backyard area. (We also drove around Baylor University but didn’t stop for pics – it’s a gorgeous campus!!

We drove through Cameron Park, saw the Bosque and Bravos rivers, Lovers Leap, (but it was on and off rain that day, so the views weren’t as breathtaking as they appear on the show;) Still amazing to see.

Drove around and saw a bunch of the homes on Fixer Upper – just the ones who have agreed to it, or have been on the market or Air BNB. We saw the Shotgun house, David’s house, the mid-century modern, a few others – including one of my very favorites ever – the German Schmear house!

After the tour was over, it was then time to grab a late lunch, so we stopped at Jake’s. Really great food, and the owner was walking around, and came over to talk to us. Turns out, he’s friends with Chip and Jo, and is ‘the guy’ in the book who gave Chip grief for being an hour and a half late to his first date with Jo! Too funny.

Time to get ready for the concert!! The rain – which had held off most of the day – picked up big time just in time for us to stand in line for a while! So glad we got an email from Magnolia to bring ponchos – best money we ever spent!

But the second the concert started, the rain was gone for GOOD and let me tell you – Drew Holcomb and Johnnyswim are AMAZING. We are ginormous fans now – my husband hasn’t stopped listening to them and singing songs around the house – kid you not. And of course, when Chip and Jo came out, it was the coolest thing to experience. To see these people you admire so much, right there, not far from you at all, it was so so cool. I get so easily starstruck to begin with, so I was totally geeking out! They were so gracious and lovely, and of course, Chip with his marathon gear on and short shorts had us all in stitches. You can just feel love and goodness radiate off of them – you truly can. I loved that they both talked about God’s plan for them, and in fact, the whole weekend had God-prints all over it. 

They talked for a good 30 minutes or so, in between Drew and Johnnyswim, and when Johnnyswim ended with Home (the theme song from Fixer Upper), and confetti exploded in the air, it was goosebumps all over.

The grounds at night are so pretty. White lights for days…

We stopped by the Silo Bakery food truck for some cupcakes to eat when we got back to the hotel and honestly, I thought they’d be too pretty to eat. You know how sometimes the prettier the food, the worse it tastes? Like, how can it be THAT GOOD?

Friends. THEY SO ARE.

Best cupcakes – hands down – I’ve ever eaten. Over the course of the weekend, we tasted the pumpkin spice, the shiplap, and the campfire – and I swear, I can’t pick a favorite. We looked to see if they ship them because we were dying for the kids to taste them, but they do not. 🙁 Maybe one day!

We decided the next morning to set the alarm for 6:30 to hit the Magnolia Table. It opens at 6 everyday, and we were told, even then, there’s a line. So we rolled out of bed, threw some clothes on and were there by 6:50…and there was a RECORD BREAKING LINE already!! We waited about 45 minutes to put our name in, then an hour and a half for our name to be called. But you know what? It really wasn’t bad – we struck up conversations with great people, and they really take into consideration the fact that this place would have a lot of people coming by. The outside waiting area had a little bar to get some coffee or goodies while you wait (which we did!), and lots of seating. Everyone is in good spirits – the people who work for Magnolia are like Disney employees – they’re all smiles and sweetness, and “where y’all from?”

Got there when it was still dark!

When it was time to head inside, we were so excited. One, because it was time to eat, and two, because it is breathtaking in there!! That episode is one of my all time favorites, so I was just in awe that I was there. I couldn’t stop looking at every detail.

The leather pouches for your phones!

“The good ol’ days are still to come.” Don’t you just LOVE THAT? Every single detail is so well thought out. Even when the waiter brought us our check, it was in the coolest leather booklet thing! That was certainly the vibe of Magnolia – the attention to every detail is just beyond. And the food was out of this world. Lemon lavender donut holes?? YES PLEASE.

After breakfast, we had set aside Saturday to just enjoy and soak it all in – go shopping at the Market, go inside the Bakery, the Seed and Supply store, check out all the vendors…

When we were in line at the bakery, this woman comes up to me and says, “you’re going to just love the cupcakes!” and I realize it’s Jo’s mom, Mrs. Stevens! She is THE CUTEST and I said, “Mrs. Stevens! Can I take a picture with you?” And she said cheerily, “Of course!” She even suggested the backdrop. She’s such a happy lady, walking around, taking pictures and talking to the people in line. No wonder Joanna is so lovely!

P.S. Same jacket I was wearing when I met Clint Harp – I think it’s my lucky jacket! 😉

We really didn’t want to leave until closing time – this was the last day of Silobration (things seriously shut down all over Texas on Sundays – I love it) – so Paul suggested we sit down with our sweet tea, our shopping goodies, and listen to the live music that plays all day. It’s such a festive atmosphere – kids are playing, people are laughing, just enjoying themselves.

So we’re just sitting there when a guy comes on stage in a hat, and starts playing the Fixer Upper song – immediately we realized it was Johnnyswim (the hat threw me off at first!), so we grab our stuff and BOOK IT, along with everyone else who just realized what was happening as well, to the front of the stage and he gave us a mini impromptu concert!!! It was so cool! He pulled his wife (the other half of Johnnyswim, who was playing with their son and had a Captain America mask still on!), on stage, as well as Drew Holcomb, and we all couldn’t believe our luck that we were in the right place at the right time.


We had just a little time left before it all closed, so we tried to just soak it all in. I think the grounds at Magnolia is our new happy place. 😉 The sun was shining so brightly, and we really truly didn’t want to go.




Finally, it was time. It sounds silly, but I actually got teary-eyed. Never did I imagine ever making it here for Silobration, and here we were. Not only that, but it was the time of our lives. You ever have those moments, where you just can’t believe your blessings that you just cry? It was one of those. And I couldn’t get over my husband, who had planned this trip solely because I had always wanted to go, and I honestly thought he’d just get a kick out of seeing me in my element, but not really truly getting it, you know? I don’t think he has ever watched an episode of Fixer Upper from start to finish, and here he was, being so moved by the whole experience and loving it completely as much as I did. I mean, he wants to read Chip’s book now, and was legit upset when he turned on the tv in the hotel room and Fixer Upper wasn’t on HGTV! He had a smile on his face driving to breakfast at 6:30 in the morning. He had a smile on his face waiting hours and hours in lines. In the pouring rain. Through everything. It was so special to share this with him and more than I could’ve ever asked for.

We decided before grabbing dinner, that we would go for a drive. We spent a lot of time downtown and really wanted to see some of the rural beauty that Texas has to offer. And we found it:)

We also took a drive to see the Bed and Breakfast, which is actually about 25 minutes away from the silos and market.

We had Torchy’s Tacos for dinner – recommended by some people we met in line and were told we must get the chorizo queso – and they were SO RIGHT. Best queso ever. We hit the creamery to end the night, and when we got up the next day, we had breakfast, and went for another drive. Checked out the suburbs and some more Fixer Upper houses…it was just so nice to drive around, and we left feeling like we made the most of every minute.

On the drive to the airport, we had so many really good conversations. The thing about Chip and Jo that I love the most isn’t their superhero design skills – which are beyond anything I’ve seen – but how they live. Just being in this town made us aware of the need to slow down sometimes. To love on your people, listen to your babies, and don’t stretch yourself so thin that you can’t give them the time they deserve. If there’s something you need to change, change it. Life is so precious, and we only get one.  And we talked about the importance of taking moments every single day to be still so we can listen to God and thank him for the insane amount of blessings in front of us. Because they are always there.

Also, how exciting it can be to step outside our comfort zone and take a chance. We are both so inspired by this weekend, and it’s already got us talking about the future, and what we want to do and how we can achieve it.  We went to Waco for Silobration, and we left with so much more.

We joked how this weekend turned out to be more like a pilgrimage, a retreat in a way. What we thought would be just a fun check off the bucket list for my birthday turned out to be one of the best weekends for both of us, our marriage, and in turn, our family. We are determined to hold a piece of that weekend in our hearts always, even when – especially when – life’s stresses start rearing their ugly heads. God has blessed us with something so sacred and beautiful, and sometimes in the day to day, we’re too exhausted or busy to appreciate it. I think that’s why I lost it when I saw this just as we were walking away…

God’s timing…never ceases to amaze me.

Yesterday, my husband sent me this text from work:

“I can’t believe the effect that trip had on me.”

And I honestly can’t either.



  1. Peg Fisher says:

    Lovely article. Good for Waco business, but as Wacoan whose grands were in school with their kids and knew them before they were tv celebs, it is still beyond us how this has taken off as it has. I pass silos almost daily as girls’ school is next door. Wish we could comprehend how it is so popular. Mind boggling.

    • Caroline Hang Hong says:

      Sometimes familiarity blinds us to the special in something. For example I lived in London for 10 years and never visited Buckingham palace or any of the sights because I was happily busy doing the stuff I was there for; blinded to the special! Funny how that happens 🙂

  2. You need to write a book! You are good!
    And you also inspired me to take a trip to Waco!

  3. I loved your article and all the photos! I almost felt like I was there with you. You face in those photos, it look like you were smiling from your heart. Thank you for sharing your trip with us and I’m sure I will be re-reading this whole article again and again because it make me feel happy too!

  4. What an amazing final image! So glad you took time as a couple to have such a unique experience.

  5. Melanie Kelly says:

    Angel’s wings! Tears hit me right as I looked at that pic! <3 So glad you had a great time away with hubby! I also just love that sign you took a pic that states "what would happen if we prayed?" I just love that SO much and love that you saw as you said "God's footprints" all over Magnolia Silo area, not surprising but happy to hear that! You've inspired me to look into going!

  6. I think this is one of my favorite blog posts of yours to date! And the fact that my hubby and I were there last September I totally understood everything you said about your visit – the happy tears, joy, not wanting to leave, etc. It really does offer such a calmness while at the same time such excitement and fun! I’m so glad you enjoyed the Waco Tours (knew you would!). Mrs. Stevens is such a cute little lady and of course you guys lucked out with actually seeing Chip/Jo and the band in person – how cool! I’m happy that you were able to eat at Magnolia Table – it was under construction when we were there. And as you said – those cupcakes – SOOOOOO good! I don’t even like sweets but I LOVED the pumpkin cupcake! Thanks for the walk down memory lane. Btw, Happy Birthday and your sweet hubby is awesome!

  7. Elena Camerieri says:

    Loved your photos and especially the last one and your description of your experience. I felt the impact it had on both you and your husband. I think you will always remember this birthday….such wonderful memories.

  8. Thank you for sharing your trip to Waco with us. You’ve inspired me to make sure I get there soon as it’s been on my bucket list for a few years. You’ve got a gift with your writing and your spirituality. Glad you both had such an incredible weekend together.

  9. Great blog and the pics were beautiful. It’s like I was there with you. Hope to get there soon

  10. Lori Walker says:

    I loved reading your posts and I know Chip and Joanna would be so inspired by them too. I hope to go to Waco one day and I will use your posts (and my sister Lynn’s) as a guide 🙂

  11. LOVE this post! My husband is planning our trip for my 40th in a month or so. This post has been so helpful in planning! TY!

  12. Bonnie Wojcik says:

    I had a similar experience in Waco last summer, did almost the same itinerary you did! Loved the tour! Magnolia Table wasn’t open yet, so I’ll need to go back again,

  13. Caroline Hang Hong says:

    I am now craving pumpkin spice cupcakes….. and I live in the UK….. NOOOOOOOO!!!! :O(

  14. Christa Brockway says:

    What a special trip for the both of you! Thanks for sharing the details. I hope to go there too.

  15. cindy mellendick says:

    If you ever think about leaving and moving to Waco, I can see a u-haul truck with Paul (your Dad) and Jane running shotgun not far behind!

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