Okay, so Texans are particular about the crease in their jeans, along with the amount of starch used. I didn't think this was that big a deal until I asked my friend Paula where I could get my Dad's jeans altered. Without hesitation she told me about Texas Cleaners and Laundry. My Dad, who lately doesn't make a fuss about much of anything anymore, made such a big deal about his perfectly creased jeans that I'm putting this place at the top of my list. Located in old Longview at 201 West Tyler Street, Longview Texas
Gotta admit, when I left CA one of the first things I was concerned about was...my hair. I'd been with the same hairdresser 30+ years! But for a decade or so I'd been watching my high school friend, Gina Humphrey, on Facebook. She'd been traveling back and forth to New York training to become certified with Redkin. I watched her tiny shop in our hometown grow and expand, and watched her eventually hire 9 independent contractors! I mean, talk about a woman who empowers other women! So not only did I go to Gina for my hair, I let her cut off 6 inches and have never been happier with my hair in my entire life. If you want the best hair on planet earth, book Gina right this minute. But she's super busy, and don't even try to get her during a weekend when she and our "Honeybee" group are at Amy's lake. Just sayin.
Yes, I'm calling this a business--the business of GREAT MUSIC, that is! This band/group is awesome, as good as any I've seen in the gazillion LA clubs I've been to. And I'm not just saying that because I'm good friends with two of the most talented lead singers in East Texas, Melanie Latham and Linda Shaddox.
All the pictures of me that are featured on this website are from the wonderful Tammy Ferguson. She's another of my favorite East Texans, as lovely on the inside as the out. These days Tammy and her husband mostly manage their pool cleaning business so I'm including a link to that in the 'Find Out More' button below.
I'm SO excited to share a new place my son, DIL & I visited with y'all! It's a place not only for A-MAAZING food and shopping but also for fun and adventure for the entire family! AND to top it off, this place represents just about everything EAST TEXAS is all about!
It's Bear Creek Smokehouse in Marshall, Texas, a FIVE GENERATION-run family business that was begun as a tiny little smokehouse (see in photos) and has grown into this ginormous structure they built in SIX MONTHS last year, as well as their world-wide shipping business. I could go on & on about all of that, and probably should, but let's get on with the food. And shopping. And did I mention you get to feed TURKEYS?? AND LONGHORN CATTLE??? Well yes, you do!!! (See the pictures & VIDEO of me doing that, too!)
So the food. They serve lunch specials Mon-Thurs from 11-1pm but serve their scrumptious smoked brisket sandwiches throughout the day. I'm not sure why but they don't want to be known as a "restaurant" per se but that's what I'm partially going to think of them as since I love to eat lol. But wow--their smoked brisket y'all--um, YES! They served us their special, brisket on a giant potato with their famous garlic pickles AND they opened up & sliced one of smoked peppered pork tenderloins which they sell like hotcakes, along with tons of varieties of BACON and cranberry turkey and a fridge full of everything you can imagine. See the picture of @Stormy showing us all their smoked meats. They sell around 500 turkeys every holiday season--and after sampling some of their food, I understand why. (Btw--their smoked jalapeño sausage, which is featured on Cajun Tex Hallsville poboy sandwich is what brought us here!)
Bear Creak Smokehouse is located just a few miles down the road from Enoch's Stomp Winery and Vineyard so as you can see in the pictures the views from here are stunning. They do beautiful weddings, they have wonderful bridal registry gifts, and there's LOTS of room and things to do for the little ones, both indoors and out! They host charity events, concerts, and lots of fun things coming up.
Don't even get me started on how amazing the women's bathroom is! Seriously! lol
OH and another fun fact, Robbie Shoults, (who helped build the place btw!!) has been featured on several Food Network cooking shows including Rachel Ray, Martha Stewart, and has been a judge multiple times on Beat Bobby Flay.
So y'all come out to this beautiful hidden jewel in Marshall, Texas. If you've got out-of-state guests who want a REAL Texas experience, you're not going to get much "realer" than this. 10857 State Hwy 154
#SupportLocalBusiness #FamilyOwned #SupportEastTexas #EatLocal#ShopLocal #TexasDayTrip
Greater Marshall Chamber of Commerce
Right next door to the Belle Pepper Cafe is an awesome #EastTexasSmallBusiness called RCB Gardens Longview Texas where you can not only get great fresh-picked #LocalProduce but also indoor and outdoor plants, succulents, even a few very rare Instagram-ready plants. My DIL has a major green thumb so she’ll be coming here lots. Great prices and knowledgeable service. (Btw, when giving plant gifts it’s best to go to this type of super-caring garden store instead of those gigantic hardware/whatever ones. Just sayin’.😊) 4238 East US Hwy 80, Longview
(PS Also please know—I always pay for my meals and service etc. Not doing this for “goodies” or freebies, just supporting my community! ❤️❤️❤️)
Don't be jealous other East Texas towns, but Jefferson, Texas is one of the loveliest of all. Founded in 1836 and still featuring some of the mostly-original brick streets, Jefferson is filled with beautiful historic homes, great restaurants, epic antique shopping, riverboat rides and even haunted tours through the city.
And now to make this little jewel a little brighter, Jefferson has Enoch's Wine & Coffee House at 116 N Polk Street (right around the corner from that awesome General Store). This place is an off-shoot of Enoch's Stomp Winery and Vineyard so they're featuring all of Enoch's wines (and delicious ports!) on one side of the building, and on the other side is their coffee bar featuring Katz coffee.
Enoch's Jefferson reminded me of so many lovely wine/coffee shops scattered throughout California, like along the streets of downtown Napa, Santa Barbara, and my beloved Santa Ynes Valley. I was hoping SOMEONE out here would have a place like this where you could walk around, shop, and then stop in to have a glass of wine and maybe a bite to eat. They also have a charcuterie plate filled with meats and cheeses, so it's just perfect!
Owner K' Ken Kral says they are going to be conducting all kinds of fun events and classes here, teaching folks about wines and having tastings and lots of fun things. If you aren't a wine aficionado, he told us about a 'blind taste test' in which they'll place several glasses of wine in front of you from super cheap to very expensive and see if you can taste the difference.
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