I’m very proud to be a Texan. That comes as a surprise to exactly no one, I’m sure, as I’m pretty vocal about it. But sometimes reminders of why I’m so proud come rolling in and bowl me right on over.

We left Austin early yesterday morning, and headed to Lake Austin Spa for a massage appointment. Set serenely on exquisite grounds, and surrounded by native landscape, we were given friendly Texas service. It was sublime.

Then we started our journey toward Fredericksburg, via some small, winding roads, with rugged outcroppings and stunning vistas. Finally opening up to Hwy 290, we began to spot the many local wineries located along what is known as the Texas Wine Trail. We stopped at William – Chris, whose tasting room is a century farmhouse, and met the wonderfully sweet Mary, who walked us through their wines like an old friend. No pomp or fluff; just someone who humbly and honestly loved what they were doing.

Afterward, we sat outside and looked over their beautiful property, discussing deep, important things while throwing a chew toy for the owner’s dog.

Simple. Beautiful. Texas.

We made our way, from there, to Torre di Pietra, where we met Aaron. A young man with an extraordinary nose for wine, chatted like a friend of our girls’ might, while three winery cats snoozed by the roaring fire. Friendly and respectful, he made recommendations for Fredericksburg, while making our time pleasant and relaxed.

Finally, we rolled into adorable Fredericksburg, picked up our keys and headed just out of town to the rolling property of our guesthouse. We drove over the breathtaking hills, past the grazing deer and other assorted wildlife, to Red Barn at Pepper Creek. Stunned at the blessing of this place, we squealed like little girls at every delight.

Right now, I’m sitting in bed, watching the warm Texas sun cast a golden glow over acres of oaks, as deer pass beneath them, and birds soar above. It’s my Texas…to me, God’s country; not because it’s His favorite, but because it’s one of my favorite gifts from Him. Its beauty, its people, its…well, it’s mine.

What a joy to share it with a friend.

Yes, I’m proud to be a Texan. I think we all are, if you consider the state song.

Texas, Our Texas! All hail the mighty State!
Texas, Our Texas! So wonderful so great!
Boldest and grandest, withstanding ev’ry test
O Empire wide and glorious, you stand supremely blest.”

Yes. Yes we do.

Oh, and, incidentally, I think it could be God’s favorite. I intend to ask when I get there. He can trust me not to boast to the people from other states, bless their hearts.



“Every desirable and beneficial gift comes out of heaven. The gifts are rivers of light cascading down from the Father of Light.” James 1:17 MSG