Over a year ago, my friend Angela sent me some flatties (flat laminated images of their family members inspired by Flat Stanley) to take a little Texas adventure with our crew. We had high hopes of taking them to the Capitol Building, the Texas History Museum, the Texas-shaped corn maze in Marble Falls at Sweet Berry Farm, Enchanted Rock, or anywhere interesting and Texasy.
Instead of doing something incredibly fun, the F Family Flatties ended up living with us… and getting burried under a huge stack of papers in my in-box just hanging out at our house. Angela reminded me that her Flatties had been our house guests for eternity quite some time, so we dug them out took them with us to the grocery store last week. Hey, that’s an adventure, right? With four kids?
Along the way, the Fs enjoyed checking out the scenery. Austin is part of the Texas Hill Country – some of the most beautiful and rugged terrain in the state. Century plants, cacti, and twisty-trunked cedar trees dotted our path to the store. We stopped to catch a few sunset shots of our guests, making sure to warn them not to play sports in those thorns.
There’s a lot of false info floating around about the ‘mountain cedar’ trees in the Texas Hill Country. People say they weren’t native to the area – but that’s a lie. They say they compete with other trees for water. There’s no evidence to support this. They say it causes erosion – which the opposite is true. They say its pollen is toxic – but it is just an allergen to many people. Ranchers dislike it because it grows so quickly and competes with grasses for their grazing herds. Tiny cedars make super Christmas trees if you aren’t allergic. I find their bark and trunks very rugged and beautiful. Some of us find larger cedars very pretty… despite many believing the local Mountain Cedars to be “trash trees” that need clearing out.
The F baby enjoyed a ride in our grocery cart as we rolled in to HEB. HEB stands for Howard E. Butt. Can you imagine the teasing he got in school? I love HEB. They have been around as a company for over a hundred years and they are a Texas grocery store tradition. My local HEB is a Plus store, which has a Sushi Bar, Olive Bar, Tortilleria, a Florist and almost anything a girl could want in her pantry and fridge (aside from Chocolate Hobnobs – from England – which they quit carrying, for some unknown reason).
… that reminds me… I need to get some air filters the next time I’m at the store…
We love shopping local and buying Texas brands. The F family loved visiting our grocery store and seeing how we shop. More importantly, they enjoyed how we EAT. Tex-Mex anyone?
What an amazing thing to have a FRESH tortilla-maker in your grocery store. I guess the next step would be buying your own tortilla press and making them at home. But who has time for that?! (Shut up, Lana.) Especially not a homeschool mom of 4.
[Please don’t comment and tell me you make your own tortillas, or I might get depressed and binge on some sort of chocolate pudding dessert. I might do that anyway. Sounds hard to resist. Come to think of it, there’s a serving of “worm pie” left in the outside refrigerator right now….]
OH, WAIT. I have to finish this post first…. Um, oh, yeah. The Texas cowboy hat section at HEB gave us the perfect photo op for the littlest F. He looks dashing, yes? A real regular rodeo man. Almost makes you want to shout, “Yeeeehaw!”
Don’t worry, Angela. I’ll be sending your flat travelers home this summer. I’m planning to take them to the THSC Texas Homeschool Convention with me in August before they hit the dusty trail. I hear they are planning a fantastic family field trip to the Houston Downtown Aquarium. Be watching here in early August to see what fun your flatties will have in H-Town!