A little over a week ago, I went to visit Magnolia Market down in Waco, TX with two of my oldest and dearest friends…I kind of hate using that term, oldest and dearest….makes me feel like I’m calling my friends old, however, when you’ve been friends with someone for 30-ish of your 40 years of life…it just is what it is…old and dear! I think I can safely say that this road trip down I-35 was way more about just hopping in the car for road time with no distractions and less about the actual destination. I’m not immune to the “love all things Joanna Gaines” movement in America…I am just not her…so, as much as I’d like to pretend that I could possibly just go and buy a few items from the Magnolia Market, place the items in my home and magically think that I can pull her esthetic off…well, I’m not that good…and I’m ok with that. We all have our strengths…decorating is not mine! But, the trip was just the excuse that us girls needed to get together, celebrate a birthday, and just reconnect with each other. I’m telling you right now, it’s therapeutic to be with your people…the ones who have been witness to ALL the parts of your life…that know you at your core. Our friendships and relationships get lost in our day to day hustle and bustle, or in being a mom, or a wife, or girlfriend, or being a (fill in the blank with your profession). I will shout it until my dying day…travel gives you the opportunity to step away from all of that and just be. You don’t have to go to some far away magical place (although it doesn’t hurt)…you just need a break from your daily distractions and time to focus on the things that are important to you…like your friendships, your family, your relationships. Ok, I’ll hop off my soapbox and get down to the reason your here…All things Magnolia Market!
I mean, super fan or not super fan, the Market is just cool!!! And in typical Joanna Gaines fashion, every detail has been meticulously thought of! It’s a beautiful shop, the esthetic of the whole compound is amazing, and all of it has good flow! It’s everything that you would want to make the drive to Waco for. On the property is the Market, a bakery, the famous silos, Magnolia Seed & Supply, and a large lawn with picnic tables and front porch swings. Magnolia Market is in Waco, Tx, which about an hour south of Dallas. Waco is a college town, so basically, you go to Waco either to visit Baylor University or Magnolia Market. I think the Gaines’ knew this and they wanted make your trip to see them worth your while…so, like the amazing hosts I assume that they are, they invite you into their market, feed you, and give you a place to sit down and partake in a meal, a snack, or just enjoy being there…because honestly, it’d be a bummer to make the drive to see them, be in and out of the store in 20-30 minutes and then be back on your way.
The market is crowded! Amazing, but definitely crowded. The research I gathered before the trip advised to either be there right when they open or just about an hour or two before they close. The bakery opens at 7:30am, the market opens at 9am, and everything closes at 6pm. And, nothing is open on Sundays! My friends and I got there at about 3:30pm on a Saturday. Everything was still hopping at this time…the store was shoulder to shoulder and the bakery line was wrapped way around the building and down the block. I think the way to do this trip properly…is to come in the middle of the week, and start early. Do breakfast at the bakery (there are very few other options in town, more on that later) and then hit the market as soon as it opens. The market is fabulous and rather large. There is just so much to see, and if you’re like me…I like to take things in as a whole. Like I said, I’m not a decorating guru by any means. I can’t just look at one item that I like and go…yeah, I can do something with that. I need to see the whole vignette, and then try to figure out if I can afford the whole thing! Ha! One super cool feature in the Market though is that they have a shipping station right inside the building! Talk about convenient!! No detail left out!
As for the rest of the Magnolia experience, I was not about to stand in line for 40 minutes for a lemon lavender cupcake or chocolate chip cookies at the bakery. I am fans of both of these items, and from what I understand these are the two most popular items in the store…but I wouldn’t wait 40 minutes on anything…so we passed up the Silo Baking Co. We did, however, hit up the food trucks. My research pointed all signs to Co-Town Crepes…it was “meh” at best. We didn’t want to spoil our appetites for dinner so this was the only truck out of the 7 possibilities that we tried. I was underwhelmed to say the least, but the idea that you can grab a quick bite and enjoy the Magnolia experience at a picnic table on the lawn is quite nice.
So, here’s my real take on it. Am I glad that we visited Magnolia Market? Yes, I was curious enough to want to visit, and I’m glad we did. Would I go back? I would go back if someone invited me to go with them. I would not go back because I thought it was the greatest place in Texas and just had to go visit again. Is there anything else to do in Waco? There were a handful of really cute boutiques. Most close at 6pm just like Magnolia Market, and very few are open on Sundays. What would I do differently? As I stated earlier, my best guess would be visiting right when they open on a week day. I probably would stay in Dallas for a couple of days instead of staying in Waco. Then just tack Magnolia Market as a quick day trip or outing. Anything surprise me about Waco or Magnolia Market? Waco has some super cool art murals on their buildings downtown…like an absurd amount for the type of town I think it is. And, I was impressed with the amount of jobs that I’m sure that Magnolia Market has brought to the area. How was parking? We were able to find parking really easily…not sure if that is normal or not…but there were plenty of parking lots around, and there is also a hop-on/hop-off trolley that is super easy to use. There is info here on parking and the trolley.
As for the rest of our girls trip weekend, it was so fun! We had big plans for Waco…I mean any town that basically shuts down at 6pm is perfect for a group of mommas, right??? We checked in to our hotel after we left Magnolia Market…the plan…rest and freshen up just a bit, grab some tacos and margaritas and just see where the night takes us. And, with this group, there is no telling where that might be! Well, let me tell you, it took us to CVS…in our comfies. In our younger days, it would have taken us country line dancing or cruising or truth be told, a softball field…but we are moms now….we are tired…and we covet our downtime where we are not making 1,000 decisions for everyone in our household including ourselves! So, we hit the CVS for facial masks, and readers (ya know, those cheater glasses they sell at drug stores), and girl scout cookies…tis the season! We went back to our room got in our pjs and proceeded to put on our masks and munch on girl scout cookies and laugh until we cried! We got caught up on apps we didn’t know we needed like “LiketoKnow”, and people we should be following on Youtube and Instagram and shows we should be watching on Netflix…it was all make-up how-to’s and the newest skin care treatment that we should be using to get rid of all the impending wrinkles. It was like we were 16 again…all things hair, make-up, and boys, or in our case…husbands. Hehe!
The next morning we got up and tried to have coffee at Common Grounds. It looked super cute and rustic. But….it wasn’t open! What kind of a coffee shop isn’t open in the morning???? So confusing! We scratched that idea for good ol’ IHOP because there were no other options…like none! We did hit a Starbucks on the way out of town for coffee to go. Our trip felt a little short sided on the shopping end of things…so on our way back home we made a pitstop at NorthPark Mall in Dallas. We don’t have a Nordstrom in Oklahoma, so of course we had to go there! A couple of hours and a couple hundred dollars later and we were back on the road. Girl time, In and Out Burger, and a little shopping…that was pretty much the perfect girls trip for us! We have vowed to try to take a quick girls trip at least twice a year….such good therapy!!! I can’t wait for our next trip!
What’s your perfect girls trip look like?