Monday, July 4, 2016

Summer Travels = Article Ideas

Summer is in full swing at our house as I've tried to get into a writing groove during the months that my kids are out of school. I love summer because I get to vacation with my family, spend quality time with my kids, and get a welcome break from the daily commute of driving my kids to school. It is harder, though, because my normal schedule is thrown off with the kids sleeping later and having to juggle the driving/carpooling to camps and other activities.

June flew by. The kids got out of school at the beginning of June and we had a trip planned to visit family in Central Texas. I scrambled a bit before we left because I have a full list of contract work right now (yay!) but as I wrote in this post for WOW! Women on Writing, being a freelance writer/editor means you never really get a break from deadlines. I scheduled some things to post ahead of time, and I'm lucky no real emergencies popped up because I had limited access to Wi-Fi n the airports and at the places I was visiting in Texas.

We did plenty of fun things on our trip and it was great to see family again. I got to check one thing off my "bucket list" of places to visit. As a big fan of the HGTV show "Fixer Upper,"  we were in close proximity to Waco, so we made a visit to Chip and Joanna Gaines' Magnolia Market Silos complex.

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I loved the layout of the place, with it's mix of a bakery (not opened yet, but we got to sample some cupcakes!), retail space, plenty of places for photos ops, feed and seed store, and a large, centrally-located green space with lawn games and swings for children to take a break on. There was a big crowd of people but because the property is so spread out, you never felt cramped.

A variety of food trucks border the property, with a shaded picnic area, which was welcome, because Texas is extremely hot and humid and there aren't any trees to provide natural shade. (However, we didn't need to pick up lunch because we stumbled upon an In-and-Out Burger at the exit for Magnolia Market.) Score!

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I picked up a few t-shirts and a tote bag and was impressed by the number of friendly employees on the property, all who were happy to snap photos of the visitors upon request.

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Two blocks away from Magnolia Market is the Dr. Pepper Museum, which is housed in the first building built to manufacture Dr. Pepper. Not only was the architecture of the old building beautiful, but the items curated in the museum were well worth the admission price, with the history of the company, collectibles, videos, memorabilia, and more. There's even more to find in an adjacent building, along with a gift shop and soda fountain for treats.

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Like any good freelancer, I've put this list of places on my "to-do" list of article ideas and submissions. Summer isn't over yet, and on top of juggling assignments, we've also got a few more trips planned before school starts back up. I'm especially looking forward to touring Washington, DC with the kids at the end of July. Stay tuned!

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