Pioneer Woman Goals.

So for the past few days, Behind-The-Scenes-Tech Guru Jason and I have been on a short spring break getaway with the kids.  I've been gone from PJP Buttonwood since last Friday afternoon and it has been a much welcomed break.  (No worries, I'm back tomorrow and Jeanne will take some days off next week.) Each year we try to take a few days to do something fun and different with the kids, but this year we really struggled with coming up with a destination that wasn't killer expensive (our big family vacation is always in the summer), super far away (ain't nobody got time for that), or geared mainly toward adults or small kids (our kids are 11 and 14).  So we ended up in...OKLAHOMA CITY.  And I really must say, it is a beautiful city and we had plenty to do and we generally just had fun together, which was really the goal.  And also?  Oklahoma City is only about two hours from Pawhuska, Oklahoma.  And if you read any blogs besides this one, then you know who lives there...THE PIONEER WOMAN.

And if you have no clue who I'm talking about, here's your brief rundown.  The Pioneer Woman is Ree Drummond.  She lives on a massive cattle ranch with her husband and four kids and she got her start by blogging about creating food that is delicious, but also suitable for kids and "hungry cowboys".  That turned into a number of cookbooks, a fiction book, children's books, a Food Network television show, an entire line of bake wear and kitchenware at Wal-Mart, and a massively loyal blog reading audience...including me...I've probably been a reader for at least the past six years.  Most of all when I think about her, I think about how relatable she is...and I would guess that is what has made her a legit Pioneer Woman enterprise.  Everyone wants to be her...or at least her best friend.

Four years ago, she and her husband bought a building in their town of Pawhuska and painstakingly restored it.  She blogged the entire experience, even asking her readers to weigh in on light fixtures and the restoration of the floors and more.  Her goal was a retail space and a restaurant...which finally opened last fall.  And since then, it has been on my to-do list.  Which is how on Monday afternoon, I finally ended up in the space I've read about for the last few years...

And let's just cut to the point and say it was AHHHHHMMMMAAAZZZZING.  Pawhuska is a tiny town of 3,000 or so people and apparently an average of 6,000 people a day visit the Pioneer Woman Mercantile, so it was no surprise when we arrived to see a line of people down the sidewalk waiting to get in.

We were told the wait to be seated for lunch would be two hours, so the girls went in to shop while the boys waited in line.  (Sidenote:  asking boys to stand in line for two hours for food from a blogger they have never read while you go in and spend a lot of money is a HUGE ASK.  Here is a picture they texted me about one hour into the wait...)

Meanwhile, inside...

I basically wanted all of the things.  I exercised some serious restraint (probably only because Jason was right outside and he was going to ask me about everything that I bought and he never would understand why I needed a $148 embroidered couch pillow that our dog will probably drool on...)  That said, my favorite purchase of the day...

And in the end, we finally ate lunch around 3:30 (it was great...even the boys said that the whole experience was completely redeemed by how much they enjoyed their food).  And as we drove away, I could only think two things...1) I want to be Pioneer Woman, except PJP as a destination, and 2) I'm going back for that pillow.

PJP Party Bus to Pawhuska, anyone?