Liz Talley: The Texas I Know

Several weeks ago, the family and I traveled to the Dallas Metroplex to see our beloved LSU Tigers taken on the Oregon Ducks. Most of our friends went sans children because the tickets were expensive, and, really, who doesn’t want a weekend alone in a fun city with a significant other? But long ago, we’d promised our children (boys 12 yrs and 9yrs) that if we were lucky enough to score tickets, we’d take them along.

Well, we got tickets.

So, I booked a hotel in Irving because the others hotels booked quickly and set about planning our little weekend together. First up – what would we do Friday night? We’re not particularly familiar with Dallas. We go maybe once a year, usually for the Texas Rangers game, so I don’t know the best places to eat, etc. And the Dallas area is very spread out…and the traffic is beastly at times. We decided to play the trip by ear. Whatever sounded good at the time, we’d go with.

I’ll admit to being one of those moms who wants to bring culture into the equation. I also like good food (as my clothes can attest). I clamored for a restaurant with a few stars behind its name. I got Medieval Times.

Yeah, the place with the jousting and courtly drama.

And know what? It was fun.

And that made me think of my childhood and what Texas meant to me. It meant the wax museum, Texas Rangers and holiest of holies – Six Flags over Texas! When I was young, these were the best things ever. Texas Giant after a very expensive hotdog? Check. Being freaked out by the horror section of the wax museum? Check. Marveling over shrunken heads at Ripley’s Believe It or Not? Check. Eating ice cream out of a Texas Rangers mini batting helmet? Check. Yet, somehow I’d forgot what it was like to be a kid in Texas. Um, it’s awesome!

So I put away my uppity plans of shopping in Ft. Worth and visiting the cowboy’s museum (I thought my boys would like seeing the cattle drive) and toasted the yellow knight with my expensive golden goblet. I took pictures of my boys in the dugout at the Texas Rangers Stadium tour, and tried to find my way out of the hall of mirrors at the wax museum. I squashed the adult and allowed my inner child to pose with wax figures and gawk at mermaid skeletons.

And then after a memory-making day doing silly touristy stuff, we went to Jerry’s World (aka Cowboys Stadium) and watched the Tigers give those Ducks a beatdown.

Remembering the Texas I knew gave me the best weekend I’ve had with my family to date.

But next time we’re going to see that cattle drive in Ft. Worth!

What about you? Ever been to Texas? Or do you have a favorite childhood memory of a trip you took with your family?

And speaking of Texas…the last book in my five book Oak Stand, Texas series comes out this October. So if you’re looking to put a little Texas in your fall, you know where to find me.

Bio: From the time she learned to read to the present, Liz Talley has always had a fascination with books.  Of course, it never occurred to Liz to write a book until her college roommate said, “You read so many of those things, why don’t you write one?”  The idea stuck with her. After a stint as an English teacher and stay at home mom, Liz found writing a great way to avoid an ever-growing pile of laundry.  After a Golden Heart final with a Regency romance, Liz started her career in contemporary romance on the same day she met her editor.  Coincidence? She prefers to call it fate.

Currently Liz lives in North Louisiana with her high school sweetheart, two beautiful children and a menagerie of animals. Liz serves as the president of her local RWA chapter and Vice-president of the Golden Network. She loves strawberries, fishing, retail therapy, and is always game for a spa day. To find out more about Liz, visit her at www.liztalleybooks.com or follow her on twitter@amyliztalley.

I will be glad to give away a copy of my October book A Touch of Scarlet to one luckycommenter.
Guest Blogger
Updated: September 14, 2011 — 4:30 pm

29 Comments

  1. Already have your book which I hope to read soon. Dang my daughter for wanting to get married four weeks from today. She’s spoiling all my reading time.

    I have family and friends in Texas but fell in love with the state when I visited San Antonio years ago. Just love it. I want to go in the spring to see the wildflowers.

    My “dream visit” would be to go to Fredericksburg also known as Little Germany in Texas, and stay in one of the many stone houses. If I remember correctly, there is some property there or in another part of Texas where the owner has transplanted different types of Texas architecture on to one site and you can stay in any of these little houses.

    You will definitely be in my Fall plans!

    Peace, Julie

  2. No, I haven’t been to Texas, but it sure is a dream. I have had friends from Texas and the lure of the state draws them back like the siren’s song. I envy you. Instead of a New York State of mind, I’d love to hear George Strait do something about a Texas State of Mind. Congratulations on your up coming release. I hope you have many sales!

    GTT ( Gone to Texas)

    Nan ;o)

  3. Julie –

    I often see Fredricksberg listed in Southern Living (one of my go-to magazines) so it must be a special place. Actually my hometown in Louisiana is rich in German heritage – it was originally settled by Germans and their settlement is right outside the city limits of Minden. Maybe you can make it down there after the wedding. You in one of those little houses with lots of books, chocolate and free time 🙂

    Nan – I hope you’ll be able to make it down. And George Strait should totally do that song. Perfect for him. A Texas State of Mind is a perfect title for a book, too :)Hmmmm…I’ll have to remember that one.

  4. Hi Liz! I’ve been through Texas but not to it, meaning we drove through Amarillo on a cross-country trip. I want to go back! My grandparents were married in New Braunfels, and that’s where my mom was born. Come to think of it, I’ve been to the airports, both Dallas and Houston. That definitely doesn’t count!

    Sounds like you had a wonderful family time. Love the picture of your boys 🙂

  5. I don’t think I’ve been in Texas. When I was 17, my family took a trailer from Ontario to Alberta to visit my sister and her new family, then we worked our way down to California (stood at Hollywood and Vine but didn’t see any movie stars), dipped into Mexico and straight back so we could say we’d been there (before passports were necessary), headed into Nevada (where we went to the Desert Inn to see Foster Brooks and Juliet Prowse perform – alcoholic drinks were included in the $10 admission, and nobody questioned me having a Tom Collins back then, probably because family members were in their late fifties, sixties, and seventies!), and then whipped back up to Canada.
    Now that I have a passport, methinks my husband and I should finally check out Texas! I won’t see “JR Ewing”, right? LOL.

  6. Hi Liz, I have been to Texas several times, but haven’t been to the town your books are based off of. But I am so wanting to go!!! Would love to see it first hand!!! I love your books, and I loved getting to meet you at the Bossier City College back in june this year. I have really fallen in love with your books. I am hoping to get my book in any day!!! I can’t wait to start reading it!!! thanks!!!!

  7. Victoria – I never count airports, but technically I guess you have been in Texas. LOL. Sounds like you have some family connections, so that’s definitely a good excuse to want to visit. I’ll admit, I’ve never been to Amarillo, but it’s a place I’d like to see. Since I’ve now got George Strait on my mind, I’m thinking of Amarillo by morning.

    Laney – I’ve never been to Canada but it’s on my list. My husband and I both have the bug to visit that country. I’ve also never been to California, though I hope to change that this summer and make it to RWA Nationals. I’m really hankering to do San Fran and wine country. Nothing I love more than a good glass of wine, so I really want to check out the vineyards and do the tastings.

    BTW, you may not see JR but you’ll see lots of guys in cowboy hats 🙂

  8. My husband whisked me off to Dallas for a “romantic” dinner at Medieval Times. Loads of fun. Romantic…

    This is why I’m am avid reader.

  9. Enjoyed reading your comments. I have visited Texas several times. I enjoy its wide open spaces and diverse landscapes. The people are the friendliest in the West.
    Your book sounds really good.

  10. Kim – oddly enough, though Medieval Times is a bit hokey, it really is romantic. And they do a good job. All four of us enjoyed it immensely.

    Joye – Thanks, I really think this new book is a true romantic comedy. Over the top actress pushing the buttons of a straight-laced cop? Lots of fun. Oh, and landscape, yes, Texas is very diverse from the lush hills of East Texas to the arid West Texas…and lest we not forget the coastline with its marshes and bays. Lots of different landscapes to contemplate there 🙂

  11. I went to the RWA conference when it was held in Dallas a few years go. Unfortunately, I spent my time at the hotel and didn’t get to explore. I went to EpiCon when it was held in San Antonio a few years ago as well.

    Have a great weekend everyone,

    Cher

  12. I have never been to Texas but would love to go. The close as I have ever gotten was in books. I love reading books about Texas and maybe some day I will get to visit.

  13. Liz, welcome to P&P. We’re thrilled to have you guest blog with us.

    Since I live in Texas I’m pretty partial to the state. Tidbits of history are found in every nook and cranny. You only have to look to something new.

    My favorite childhood memory is a road trip we took once a year to California. My dad loved museums, ghost towns, trading posts, and tourist sites so we stopped to take it all in. I loved seeing all the things from the past. Once we stopped in Holbrook, Arizona for the night and stayed in a tee-pee. As kids that was right up me and my sister’s alley. A very special time. And now that my parents have passed away, the memories mean even more.

  14. Cher- I tend to do that quite often which is why I made a point to go early to NYC this past conference. It was well worth my time. I’m excited about RWA being in San Antonio soon.

    Lady Quilt – I hope you get the chance to visit, too. I love traveling and as soon as my boys get older we’re going to expand beyond the beach and Disney World.

  15. Thanks for the warm welcome, Linda. I’m always happy to visit with you ladies. Those are some terrific memories, very similar to the ones I had with my grandparents who often took us up into Arkansas and Missouri. Loved me some Dogpatch. Anyone remember that place?

  16. I was in Texas… I went to South Padre Island.. I loved it.. But it was not the Texas I really wanted to see. I have always wanted to go to San Antonio and I will get there one day..

  17. Hi Liz – really tickled to have you here at Wildflower Junction today. You know how much I love your books – can’t wait to read this new one.

    One of my very favorite childhood vacation memories is of taking the road trip to Six Flags in Dallas when I was about 12. It was a 10 hour drive from where I lived at the time so it was a real adventure. And since our family didn’t do formal vacations much, this was a double treat.

    The whole trip is still a very vivid and very cherished memory.

  18. Great post,loved reading it,thanks for coming

  19. I drove through a bit of Texas many years ago… just passed through… As for a fav trip… when I was turning 11, my family went on our very first cruise together… it was a Disney cruise with time at the park too… it was such a grand experience… the cruise ended up near a hurricane… so it kept raining… but the food and fun was memorable! Then the Disny World… oh my that was the best!

  20. Thanks for the memories, Amy. I grew up in Texas–winters/school in Austin, summers in rural Eastexas/Goodrich (even had a ranch to visit).\

    My memories are pretty difference. And a lot older. 😉

  21. Have visited Texas several times.The Houston area and also Eastern Texas. Saw an Astros game in Houston years ago and visited the Oil Museum in Kilgore(Eastern Texas) a couple of years ago.

  22. I think as children the most memorable trips are the ones to theme parks. Well, for the most part. Mine never appreciate the vistas. Its all about the coasters.

    Thanks for inviting me, Winnie. Love coming here!

  23. I have never been to Texas, but I have read enough stories set in Texas or inspired by it to want to one day. I love everything from the exas twang, the culture and its distinct personality. If I go there I would want to try the Texas food (see if there’s a certain flavor or not) and maybe try to ride a horse.

  24. I love traveling to Texas. Have been there twice and enjoyed every minute. Was especially fond of San Antonio and the Missions and would love going there another time! South Padre Island was especially fun!

  25. Liz,
    I live in Oklahoma City, and have more than a passing acquaintance with Texas since my ancestors came “here” from “there” and many of them still live in Durant, OK. I remember growing up, a HUGE field trip for us was to be able to go to Six Flags Over Texas. HUGE! LOL To this day I still have wonderful memories of that. It was so big and fantastic to a small-town Oklahoma girl that it made a lasting impression for sure. Texas is a great state–lots of awesome things to do there, and such beautiful, rugged country.Another wonderful memory as an adult was being able to FINALLY go see The Alamo, and then go on down to Corpus Christi.

    Thanks for being our guest here at Petticoats and Pistols today!

    Cheryl P.

  26. I’d love to visit Texas. What I’ve seen of it in pictures is beautiful. As for music, Glen Campbell’s ‘Galveston’ is my favourite Texas song.

  27. We finally did make it to Texas two years ago. Our Air Force group held its biannual reunion in Dallas/Ft. Worth. We held our banquet in the FRONTIERS OF FLIGHT MUSEUM. Several of our members are involved with it. If you ever get a chance to go, do. They have some really amazing stuff interesting for both kids and adults.
    We did go to the old town section of Ft. Worth and watch the cattle drive one day. We spent a week in the Austin/San Antonio area too. We saw a lot, but there is so much more to see. We look forward to going back.

    Unfortunately, our family didn’t travel when I was a child. The one trip we did take was just a day trip a couple of hours away. It was when they had the grand opening of the St. Lawrence Seaway which forms part of the US- Canadian border. Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip were there. We parked along the motorcade route. My mother had a thing for Prince Philip (this was in June of 1959). Unfortunately, the motorcade sped up when it got to the stretch where we were, so it was sort of a blur when it went by, but she was happy. I thing we picnicked and then drove back home.

    Enjoyed your post. I am so glad you and the boys had such a good time. I enjoy traveling with just my husband, but the trips with our kids were fun. Half the enjoyment was seeing their reactions and watching them enjoy themselves. Even now when we see something I often think how much one of them would have enjoyed it. Now we get to take our grandchildren with us and enjoy them.

  28. Thanks so much for having me today. I so enjoyed all your comments. Looks like Texas is a wonderful state to travel to – lots to see and do. And I loved hearing about your trips and vacation memories.

    There’s something so fun about planning and taking a trip. The husband and I are going to Vegas for the first time in November and then we’re taking the kids to Disney in March. Just having those things to look forward to is fun in itself.

    Thanks for visiting today and thanks, Fillies, for inviting me 🙂

  29. TEXAN: BORN & BRED! Have lived in Houston ALL my
    life! When I take my last drive through my home-
    town, it will be here in Houston! There is so much
    to see in the state that I still haven’t been to
    West Texas!

    Pat Cochran

Comments are closed.