Kansas State Fair!

Kansas State Fair!

I made an entire post for the Kansas State Fair (without the concert) because we spent several hours there and ate a LOT of food I want to talk about. 🙂

When we arrived, we were in awe of how big it is.  Our local Arkansas/Oklahoma State Fair is more like a county fair, but this is bigger than the one in Little Rock. It was HUGE.

We parked pretty far away and got pretty hot walking in and we were hungry- ready for food and a cold drink.

I got an ear of roasted corn (yum!) and Tyler got philly cheese steak fries- and we shared some cajun fried pickles.

We ate them inside the swine barn- because it was shaded and we found a table and chairs along a wall.  Nothing like eating with the pigs- but it didn’t bother us! ha!


We walked around and saw the animals and then watched them showing some tiny goats. They were so cute!


As we walked around, we decided we needed ice cream, so we got some! This place was making homemade cones and dipping scoops of delicious homemade ice cream.


We walked through art entrees, saw them auction off carved wooden furniture, explored the trade show hall, and watched people playing fair games.

After the concert, we were hungry again, so I got a Pronto Pup. Everyone said this is the fair staple- it’s NOT a corn dog. The breading isn’t made of corn. It was a wheat, more like an unsweet pancake. I liked it, but I think I liked a corn dog better.


Tyler sought out an item new to the fair this year- a Roni dog- hot dog topped with macaroni and cheese and bacon.

He also tried some chocolate covered bacon and I got a Dole Whip for dessert. #treatyoself


We had a great time at the fair! It was a fun way to spend the day. Now I need to run a marathon for all the calories. ha!


Going to Wichita

Going to Wichita

Right before my birthday back in June, tickets went on sale to see Hanson at the Kansas State Fair. I googled, and it was outside of Wichita, which is like 5 hours away.

Tyler bought me tickets for the concert (at my request) and then he decided he would go with me (instead of me taking a friend or my mom).

We set off on Friday after work and enjoyed the drive.

We stopped in Tulsa for his favorite dinner at Los Cabos, then kept driving.


One downside was ALL the tolls: like $11 each way!

But the upside was staring at this sunset for hours. It was gorgeous to drive into it until the sun set.


We stayed at a super nice, new Hampton Inn. Tyler commented that it was one of the first hotels where he felt as comfortable as our house. The breakfast was AMAZING- more than usual. They had multiple types of waffles (banana bread, chocolate chocolate chip), fresh made yogurt smoothies, cold-pressed juices….it was delish!

Before we did the fair, we hit up Strataca, a salt mine museum that was 650 feet underground!

It was super neat- exceeded our expectations. You took a long elevator down (in complete darkness!) and then entered salt. Salt above you, salt around you- so much salt!

We learned about the process, the history, and the process of making rock salt. This is the same kind of salt you eat, but they don’t do the process to make this eating salt.

We got to take a little train ride and a tram ride around as well, seeing old mining areas and equipment.

And you had to wear a hard hat the entire time you were underground.


This was showing where the salt actually fell off the roof because of a layer of sediment separating. It sort of looked like the moon!


This was an old mining train. They say “What comes into the mine, stays in the mine” because it’s too expensive and time-consuming to remove stuff, so everything old is still down there.


Turns out the salt mines are the perfect temperature and no humidity, so they are great for storage. They store lots movie memorabilia, old tapes and digital files.


These were files of Friends tapes!


And they also have The Dorothy from Twister!


I would totally recommend this for anyone who was old enough to read and enjoy the exhibits. Super interesting!

Remi’s First Wedding!

Remi’s First Wedding!

My bestie Alden’s sister, Reed, was getting married. And she’s been like family for a while (that’s what happens when it’s your besties sister!), so we were so excited to be invited.

It was just a few hours away- so we decided to go on a little family trip to the wedding. And I’m SO GLAD WE DID.

We headed down Saturday afternoon and checked into the hotel to jump on the beds and get ready for the wedding.

Look at my cute wedding dates!


I didn’t take any pics of the wedding but it was beautiful. Reed was gorgeous, the venue was beautiful and the decor was just so classy.

But I was mostly just in love with this sweet girl enjoying the day!  She did SO WELL during the ceremony and was CRACKING US UP talking to the other little kids and lots of people there.


We had a blast at the reception, too…eating dinner and popsicles.


Remi was READY to hit the dance floor.  But once the party really got going, the music was loud and she preferred to be outside. 🙂


Probably the best and funniest part was when Alden RAN over to me. I reallllly thought she had spotted me during the ceremony (she was the MOH) but I thought we had this locking-eyes-moment.  Turns out she didn’t realize we were there and was sort of sad we didn’t come. But then her husband (who we had talked to before the ceremony) was like “Um…she’s right over there.” And she RAN to me squealing. 🙂

Hugging her neck and dancing with our girls was so fun.


Alden’s little girl Avery was living her BEST LIFE on the dance floor, surrounded by so many people who loved her.


I’m so grateful Tyler says “yes” when I’m like- hey let’s go away for the night to this wedding!  He’s always up for fun.


Sunday morning, we got hotel breakfast and then spent time in the pool….because the fun of a hotel is jumping on the beds and jumping into the pool!


We got to visit and play some more with Alden, Mike and Avery before we left- which just fills my heart with love.

Before we left Conway, we got pizza and gelato at ZAZA (yum) and then we headed home. Thankfully, Remi slept GREAT at the hotel and napped almost the entire drive home. It was a fun trip together!

And crazy enough, it was our first trip as just the 3 of us. Every other trip has had one of our moms with us. It was fun to be just us together.

Big Cedar Vacation: Day 3

Big Cedar Vacation: Day 3

On our next day, we decided to venture about 30 minutes away to another Big Cedar property: Dogwood Canyon. We really didn’t know what to expect because their website doesn’t give a great idea….but I’m SO GLAD we went. It was gorgeous!

There’s a big building with a gift shop/museum and restaurant…but the treasure is in the trails behind.


We decided to tackle the land via a tram ride. You can rent bikes, walk, do a segway or take a tram. And the tram is the only way to see the animals in the back- and we thought Remi would like that.

We had to wait a bit. We arrived at like 10:30 and we had to wait for a 1 pm tram. Totally worth it!

Beautiful waterfalls everywhere! Amazing streams. Beautiful tree covered canyon. Seriously serene and awesome.


We took some photos in front of the big waterfall behind the restaurant and started exploring.


There’s a huge treehouse (from the TV show Treehouse Masters) that we had fun playing in and around.


And then Tyler and Nancy paid to try fly fishing for about an hour or so. They enjoyed it.


And Remi enjoyed playing around the stream.


I cringed a bit when she sat in the mud, but ya gotta let her explore, right? She played with sticks, rocks and watched the water for a while.


On the tram, we got to get out at a few stops, but we mostly just enjoyed the amazing views (including watching TONS of trout swimming around) from the comfort and shade of our tram.


This was behind the beautiful chapel. You can’t see it, but there’s another waterfall behind us.


Trout right next to our tram. SO MANY TROUT.


It was just lovely back there to see the formations, caves, streams and more.


At one spot we got to walk up higher to take a look at the natural pool down below. Remi loves to walk up stairs.


At the back of the trip, there were herds of bison, elk, deer and some longhorns.

I liked the bison. There were even young babies!


The female elks were having a “spa day” in the mud.


When we got back, we played in the tree house for a long time until we were all tired of climbing the stairs.


After a little nap (which to be honest was a STRUGGLE but she took one) and then a dinner, we went to the nearest pool to our condo (which is up pretty high) for a sunset swim. It was lovely out!


I’m so thankful for this beautiful day!