Well, first, you start with the essentials:
I had recently finished reading The Magnolia Story and enjoyed it SO much! I related to Joanna in so many ways, and I realized Rob and Chip have a very similar way of thinking. It was so neat to read their story and see how they persevered through so much. I think many times people look at success and assume it’s so easy. That is almost never the case. Easily gained, easily lost. If you haven’t already read their book I highly recommend it. I laughed out loud more than once and also gained some good soul feeding insights at the same time.
A very big part of me did not want to leave town this close to opening! Getting ready for the fall feels like 6-8 months worth of work squeezed into a month. So to “lose” 4 days is like losing a month in normal time. The other part of me was super excited to go away - any mom is excited to go away for a few days! I was looking forward to having quiet time with my oldest two, Ty and Paris, and with Rob. It was Ty and Paris’ first time flying so I was happy to experience that with them.
We landed in Dallas and the first thing I wanted to do is go eat Mexican! I am not a spicy food person, but I am still head over heals for good Mexican! Taco Cabana - YES. So, after we got the food priorities taken care of, we moved on to the second reason we came to Texas, the Maze Reveal!
We came to Magnolia with a gift for Chip and Joanna (mainly geared to Joanna) and a hand-written thank you card from us. A side note on the gift: I have to give a shout out Jill at Vintage Vogue in Volant, PA, home of @Milkhouse24 handmade ribbon! She totally hooked me up with this gorgeous display which was perfect for my gift to Jo!
We had gotten the maze printed as large as we could and we drove over to Magnolia…. We were greeted by two close friends of the Gaines’ and now employees, Ellen and Dannielle. They were so kind to us, gave us a tour of the entire place, the back stock room, the Joanna-designed offices upstairs, and even the rooftop! It was an experience I will never forget, we felt like total VIPs there! At the end we gave hugs and off they went. Now, it was time to conjure up a crowd and make this maze reveal thing really happen! We taped our big maze to the railing and went around and asked people to be involved. Everyone was so excited to come cheer and loved the whole idea of Chip and Jo’s face in a corn maze! Leah and I went live on Facebook and wa-la! We did it! It was such a fun day - we ate at the food trucks and milled around through the market and of course shopped! The atmosphere was special, it was really unique. I think when someone has a dream, pours their heart and soul into making that dream come true, and then opens the doors so the public can experience it too, you can feel it! That type of atmosphere doesn’t just happen. It’s not something you buy. I think this is one of the ways we can really relate to Chip and Jo, because that is very similar to what we have done on the farm. We had a dream, risked it all and dove into it and have hopefully created an experience like no other. A Day that Lasts Forever!
In the end, the trip was so worth it! We had a blast, got to spend time away with Leah (one of my absolute BFF’s) and the family. We got to experience Magnolia to the fullest and get a double dose of everything Chip and Jo! We are so excited to open the farm this year and honor Chip abd Jo with our corn maze. Don’t miss your opportunity to experience IMF this season. Opening Day is Saturday, September 16th!