It’s always exciting to travel when you live in the remote Alpine, TX

innerSpirit Rattles story card

We are excited to announce we’ll be exhibiting with hundreds of other artist at ACRE Philadelphia, an American craft tradeshow produced by IndieMe™ is the premier online marketplace for retailers to source 1,200 juried American and Canadian wholesale artists featuring jewelry, gifts, fashion accessories, home decor, garden accessories and more, in a variety of price points and styles. Enrollment is free for retailers.

It’s always fun to travel from Alpine, TX to Philadelphia. John’s been traveling to Philadelphia in the chill of February for one show or another for over 20 years, and not were more eventful than the one in 2010 when he and our daughter Hannah, found an unexpected surprise. You can read about it in our blog Blizzard, Philadelphia, and Handel’s Messiah.

Even though it’s almost always snowing there this time of the year, it’s always fun! We hope to see you in Philadelphia!


FEBRUARY 18 -20, 2017


Exploring the Past on Your Vacation Spots Cibolo Creek Ranch South of Marfa

(Beyoncé | I Am) Prada Marfa

Beyoncé’s West Texas Road Trip

By Anna Woodward

If you’re looking for vacation spots for your family there are certainly plenty of options available. But if you’re interested in exploring historic adobe forts from the 1850s, making your way through deserted silver mining towns that are now only occupied by the ghost that forgot to leave, and looking up at the stars at night tucked away in the heart of the most beautiful part of the country you’d ever seen, you might want to try a little town near the Chianti mountains called Marfa.

This is an area that could take you weeks to explore and you’ll never grow bored with what you find. There’s something here for everyone, which is why it such a wonderful family retreat. There are a lot of vacation spots in the world, but there are not very many places like this.

The area around the Chianti Mountains is full of Native American rock art surrounded by land that is for the most part untouched by man. When you come here you feel like you’re back in time. You almost expect to see a Native American standing in the high grassland watching you with the steep orange and brown canyon walls looming above, and the deep fast flowing rivers cutting through the canyons. The only sounds you expect to hear are the water flowing and the wind rustling the grass around you as you fall back into the past.

This is one of the few vacation spots when you can explore abandoned adobe forts and imagine what life was like not that long ago in the 1850s when this area was first settled. These unexpected forts appear suddenly, looming out of the rocks, and tall grass and the canyons and are reminders of our past, full of forgotten battles. Now they just seem to be full of the shadows of a soldierly ghost waiting for battles that will never come.

And how many vacation spots can offer a ghost town to make your visit complete? Located not too far away from Marfa, is a little silver mining town that was once known as Shafter. As you explore the empty buildings and deserted streets that once housed the hopes, dreams and ambitions of silver miners and their families long since gone, you may hear a whisper or feel something brushed past you on the street. Is it a ghost of a miner still intent on finding the mother lode or is it just the wind blowing through this deserted little town?

And when you’re done exploring at the end of the day you can look up at the nighttime sky that goes for ever into the heavens, and try to count the stars sparkle like silver diamonds above you. You will probably never be able to count them all, but you can spend a quiet restful night trying surrounded by the ghost of the past who may be looking up at the same stars trying to do the same thing.

Texas vacation spots in the sprawling, gorgeous TX landscape can make your next getaway a memory to treasure forever. Don’t settle for a generic beach or overpriced theme part: learn more at Cibolo Creek Ranch.


Marfa, Texas: Land Of Creatives

Our neighbor, Marfa, Texas, once a hustling and bustling ranching community, eventually became just another small fading west Texas town along the Southern Pacific railroad tracks. But over the last decade, thanks to the minimal artist, Donald Judd, Marfa has had a renaissance. Now it is a hip and happin’ spot. In her latest magazine, Martha Stewart (who featured the town in an article the mid 90’s) did a “how to” article on making vacation memory jars. [Read more…]