While visiting family in Oklahoma this weekend, I learned that we were only 45 minutes away from the Pioneer Woman Merchantile, so we had to make a day trip. There are several stops you can make while visiting Pawhuska, Oklahoma-known for being the home and ranch of Ree Drummond: the Merchantile (which is home to the shop, deli, coffee shop, and bakery), The Pioneer Women Collection storefront, P-Town Pizza, Charlies Sweet Shop, take a tour of the Lodge where Ree films her cooking show, or just walk around and explore the collection of unique boutiques downtown.
(If you plan to eat lunch in the deli, be sure to stop in early and add your name to the waitlist before you start shopping! It can be an hour or more wait for a table.)
Scroll down to find links to some fun finds!
Merchantile (& Inspired) Favorites:
It seems that Ree likes to keep her mercantile merch reserved for those who make the trek to the shop! They are still adding merchandise to the website, so I’ve included some similar items to some of my favorites.
Below are some of my favorites or items similar to those I bought at the Pioneer Woman Merchantile!
This year my mother and I took a trip down to Round Top, TX for their Fall antique show. I will admit this trip was extremely last minute, but we decided to go after receiving the news of our permit release for our house build, and the idea of purchasing some pieces for the house made me all warm and fuzzy inside. So, we went.
You can find more updates on my Instagram: @theroostingplace.
Funny (not funny) story: I rented a Uhaul for this trip. The plan was to drive down to Round Top, shop for the day, drive to College Station (to use hotel points and pick up the Uhaul), then drive back to Round Top for day 2 and pick up any purchases made day 1. This was a great plan until the morning I went to pick up the Uhaul. I drive across town, get my 8′ long covered Uhaul, then grab breakfast and drive back to the hotel to pick up my mom. It was then that my mom looked at the Uhaul, and looked at me, and said “is that buffet table you bought yesterday going to fit?”…the answer was no, no it was not. I bought an over-nine-foot-long buffet table and it was definitely NOT fitting. So I call Uhaul, return the trailer, then drive the other direction to the other store to pick up THE LAST 12-foot long trailer in town. Blessed is an understatement. Thank the Lord we realized that mistake before we drove to Round Top and I started crying because I had to pay the shipping on a giant piece of furniture.
Round Top is broken into sections where vendors and dealers have their tents set up. Some areas are nicer, some you have to really do your own dirty work and “hunt”. We did a little bit of both. Below you can find breakdowns of two “fields” we went to, and then below that, I’ll talk a little bit about the pieces I brought home.
DAY 1: Blue Hills, Round Top
This is a nicer spot. Beautiful layout, food, drinks, restrooms, coffee, and carefully curated vignettes design to make you spend some major $$$. Here is where you will find more upscale sellers, and rightfully so. Here, the curators put in work behind the scenes finds, cleaning, restoring, and placing their pieces in ways that are beautiful. Many of these sellers have picked up their whole shop and recreated them down in Round Top for their time spent. Here you find gorgeous pieces, but you definitely will pay the price for them.
DAY 2: Warrenton
Just outside of downtown Round Top is Warrenton. There are several “fields” full of tents that you can park and wander around in. Prepare yourself to “Rough” it here. No restrooms (porta-potties), very little food (we found a tent run by the local police station with wonderful burgers), and you’ll do some more digging here. There are some larger vendors here who stage their items but for the most part, it’s all a little more eclectic. This is where I found the majority of my “decor” and smaller ticket items.
Bring water and snacks when you come to Warrenton. It gets hot and you will be tired.
Seltzer Bottle: Gorgeous color still has some seltzer inside.
Wooden Serving Tray
Knock on Wood Antiques
David Fairbrother French Antiques
Shoe mold (on iron stand): originated from a shoemaker shop in Lille, France. The majority of molds had individual’s names written on them so that frequent customers had their mold on hand
Aztec jar: No backstory, found in France. The seller was unsure of its origin, which makes it more intriguing
Octopus traps: Handcrafted by fishermen, a rope was tied to the jar, then submerged in about 8-10′ of water (ocean). Octopus would make a home in here and then fishermen would pull them up.
(not pictured) Large woven basket
Clay pot: to me, this looks like a honey pot, and I loved it.
Antique feed scale
Stone Trough: This Dutch stone will forever have a home in our powder bathroom once we turn it into a sink!
Maps and Art
Misc print: the majority are sourced from books written in the 1920s-1930s
While I cannot remember the names of these shops, their treasures cannot go unnoticed
Green Leather top barstools: perfect for the basement vision
I also purchased a Dr. Pepper crate from the 40s that somehow missed its photoshoot.
I do not currently have images of my two large ticket items, as they were wrapped and placed directly in storage. But I will say they are gorgeous and I will share my 1800’s chest and 9 foot buffet table with you as soon as I can get them into Big House.
That is how I would describe our 5-day trip to Jackson Hole, Wyoming. The weather early September forecasts clear skies, chilly mornings (lows of 35 degrees), and beautiful sunny afternoons (highs of 75 degrees). We are the type of people who love a vacation with a healthy balance of activity, adventure, and relaxation; Jackson checked off all those boxes for us. Not to mention we had great company along the way!
CLICK HERE to jump to screen shot-able suggestion lists of this trip.
This past Labor Day, we took a trip with another one of our couple friends up to the beautiful state of Wyoming, and let me say, it did not disappoint! This was an adult-only trip, so while there are kid-friendly activities mentioned, and though we did see a lot children shredding the trails, be forewarned that this is not a “How-to-Survive-Jackson-With-Children” post. (Jackson is definitely a place I will return with children-it would be a great time!)
Below you will find suggestive day-by-day itineraries based off how we spent our time, but there is so much more to Jackson that we didn’t get to see, so I highly suggest booking a couple things in advance, but overall letting the adventure and town guide you!
Sidenote: The Yellowstone National Park entrance is approximately 1.25 hours from Jackson; however we opted to save that trip for another time because it takes an additional hour driving inside the park before you reach any points of interest. Be aware that a day trip to Yellowstone is possible, but you need to start your day EARLY.
COVID-19: As of our trip dates, the state did not require masks in public/outdoor spaces unless decided by the business; however, majority of businesses and restaurants require masks upon entry, and will provide them if you do not have one with you.
Fly out in the morning or early afternoon.
There are two options when it comes to airports near Jackson: Jackson Hole Airport/JAC (15 min drive into town) and Idaho Falls Airport/IDA (1.75 hours into town). JAC is a smaller airport, while IDA is the larger airport. JAC is more expensive to fly into; however, we chose to fly into JAC strictly because this was such a short trip for us and we did not want to spend a good portion of our day driving from the airport.
Be sure to bring a mask, because federal requirements state that you must wear one at all times in the airports/on the airplane.
Pick up a rental car at the airport
Jackson does utilize Lyft and Taxi’s (Uber is here, but not as prevalent), many hotels provide shuttle services, and downtown is extremely walker friendly, so you definitely can get around without a rental car-but if you are planning on taking any day trips, get a rental. (For reference, a 30 min taxi ride from downtown up to Teton Village will run you about $45 one way). We used Enterprise and were able to pick up our car right at the airport, which was a super easy/quick process given that we flew into the smaller airport and had virtually no wait time.
Check into your hotel
I highly recommend staying in a hotel/resort downtown during the summer months in Jackson. It’s extremely walker friendly, the shops/restauraunts are localized here, and its adorable. I think Teton village would be perfect for a winter stay (ski in and ski out resorts), but downtown during this time of year could not be beat.
Because we are Marriott members, we stayed at the Cloudveil, which is an Autograph Collection hotel just built off the square. It was very nice, but do not waste any “free suite upgrades” on this hotel—at this location the only upgrade they gave us was a standard king room with a view vs the courtyard view, which was nice, but since we were on the second floor overlooking one of the very popular ice cream shops, we kept the curtains drawn majority of the time for privacy.
The aesthetic of the hotel is beautiful: the location is perfect, each “king” bedroom has a fireplace, the bathrooms were roomy/clean, the Bistro (hotel restaurant/bar) was great, and it does have an outdoor pool/hot tub, as well as a rooftop terrace with fire pits. Our concierge Matt was stellar, and was able to get us exclusive reservations on several occasions. This is a beautiful hotel if you are willing to splurge, it is one of the more pricier hotels in the area. If not, there are several other options to choose from (hotels and AirBnB), but again, I highly recommend staying close to downtown for ease of access, especially if you are taking a shorter trip.
We got into town around 3pm and spent our first afternoon roaming the town and shops. There are several local galleries, bookstores, souvenir shops, plus so much more. And don’t forget to take your picture under one of the iconic antler sculptures located around the Veterans Memorial park.
Eat Dinner at Snake River Grill
You will want a reservation for this restaurant, as it is one of the most sought out places in Jackson (many celebrities will eat here when visiting). Come hungry and willing to spend some $$$, because they pride themselves on “over 25 years on the Town Square… [and being] the locals’ favorite fine dining experience… featuring 300 wines and signature cocktails…SRG is a must for fresh, uniquely-crafted New American cuisine.”
The food was pretty good, and my personal favorite item we ordered was the salmon potato pancakes (just try it, its great). Unfortunately, we had a couple of “meh” cocktail moments here, so I would stick to wine.
Grab Ice Cream at Moo’s Gormet Ice Cream
If you happen to have room for more, pop over to Moo’s! Known for their natural sourcing, be sure to try the huckleberry ice cream! In Jackson, you can find huckleberry-flavored everything, so be sure to try it all!
Grab Breakfast/Coffee at Persephone’s
Wake up early (or don’t, we know I don’t do early mornings) and head out to coffee/breakfast. If you like characteristic, cute coffee places, Persephone’s is a must. They have amazing baked goods and croissant sandwhiches which you can eat in an outdoor courtyard that makes my garden dreams swoon.
Head up to Teton Village for the Day
Teton Village is a smaller town at the base of the mountain and is popular in the winter month for the convenient lift access, but there is plenty to explore during the summer months as well! It is a 30 min drive from downtown and has beautiful views along the way (you may even be lucky enough to see some moose!) There is plenty to do in this village, and below are some activities members of our party participated in during our day at Teton Village:
Ride the Gondola to the top of the mountatain
I personally don’t like gondola’s, but the views are amazing during the ride and at the top. There is a restaurant that overlooks the valley, and unfortunately it was closed for a private event the day we went. I would suggest trying to eat there on a weekday to avoid crowds/events.
Click here to purchase gondola tickets. (When you buy online you save $7).
Hike a trail
Once you reach the “top” of the mountain, there are several trails at varying diffculties that will take you to the tip top of the mountain, or all the way to the bottom! We chose to hike Casper Ridge Loop, which was a beginner/moderate loop that took us about 1.5 hours to complete. It was challenging with steep inclines at the beginning, but is doable without any hiking gear. This was hands down the most best view, and worth every second.
They have really good guacamole/salsa/queso, and great cocktails- Try a spicy margarita-you’ll find these on the menu most places because they’re very popular in Jackson! (If you aren’t a “spicy” fan, get it with half regular tequila and half infused tequila to knock the spice down!) Be prepared that this is another finer dining experience and will be a little pricier. If you can, sit outside on the balcony, but don’t worry-the indoor seating also showcases beautiful views.
The base of the mountain has several seating options to just sit, sip a drink, and just take it all in!
Dinner at Local Restaurant and Bar
Located downtown, Local was by far my favorite restaurant of the entire trip. The menu features both classic and specialty cuts of locally-ranched meats and game alongside fresh seafood, shellfish, house-ground burgers, and seasonally-inspired food. (Oysters were amazing!)
Drinks and Dancing at Million Dollar Cowboy Bar
Next door to Local is the town honkytonk hotspot: Million Dollar Cowboy. This is a great time if you love two stepping (they have live performances on the weekends), cowboy hats, and people watching while drinking a cold one. There is a cover fee of $10 to enter.
Grab a bite to eat and wander around the local farmer’s market that is set up downtown every Wednesday and Saturday from 8-12. Here you can see I bought a cinnamon roll the size of my face, and it was delicious.
If you need an adventure, go whitewater rafting down Snake River! We booked through Jackson Hole White Water and we had the best guide! He was very knowledgable, and couldn’t have given us a better experience (I got to “ride the bull” which means you get to sit on the front of the raft and hold on for dear life, laughing and getting soaked the whole time you’re up there!)I do recommend renting a wet suit, the water this time of year is about 60 degrees farenheit, which sounds doable, but it’s COLD. Also bring a set of towels/dry clothes to change into after your float! (Forgive my screenshot, I didn’t want to purchase an unwatermarked photo for $50…)
Burgers and Milkshakes at Jackson Drug
Located on the square, this “drug store” first opened its doors in 1919! You can find the rest of their story here.
Visit the Local Rodeo
The rodeo grounds are located right outside of downtown, and I think they have the best rodeo clown I’ve ever seen. During season, rodeos are every Wednesday and Saturday (with additional dates during July and August) starting at 8pm, with tickets for purchase starting at $34. (Reserve/purchase your tickets from jhrodeo.comto avoid major third party upcharging).
Breakfast at Cafe Genevieve
Great coffee, great food, cute atmosphere and quick service.
Race Down Snow King Mountain
Located just outside downtown at Snow King Resort, there is Snow King Mountain, where in the summer is full of activities including an alpine slide, mountain coaster, mini golf, ropes courses, and much more!
Round of Golf at Snake River Sporting Club
This is a private club that our concierge was able to work magic to land a tee time for the guys, but if you are able to pull some strings, definitely check this course out. It was beautiful, but I’m also sure that any golf course in this area would be a perfect end to a trip!
Massages and Spa at SpaTerre
This spa is located in Teton Village inside Teton Mountain Lodge. They provide facials, massages, and several other services to choose from as a way to relax before returning to “real life”. *Reserve in advance if possible*
Order in Pizza from Hand Fire Pizza
Rumored to be the best pizza in downtown, and I agree it was pretty good. Our crew decided to stay in, order pizza (picked up by the guys at the storefront) and play boardgames. We ordered a classic pepperoni and a pesto chicken pizza, but you honestly you can’t go wrong with anything from their menu. I couldn’t have imagined a better last night.
Grab a quick breakfast at the hotel Bistro, soak up the mountain views, and head up to the airport, crying because you are leaving but looking forward to the day you return. You also could fly out later and squeeze another one of the numerous activities in the Jackson has to offer.
You’ve just skimmed through a snapshot summary of our 5 day visit to Jackson, Wyoming. In between these lines live so many good memories, and I cannot even begin to cover all the great things Jackson Hole has to offer. I even learned that these mountains are highly sought after for their winter slopes, so maybe there will be a snowy return for us in the near future?
*I am not affiliated with or endorsed by Great Wolf Lodge*
Great Wolf Lodge is a indoor water park and hotel known for its woodland lodge themes and family-friendly activites for all ages! Little known to me, GWL has multiple locations around the United States including: MA, PA, IL, KS, OH, MN, MI, WI, NC, GA, TX, VA, AZ, CO, WA, CA and one location in Ontario, Canada!
We have visted Great Wolf Lodge, Grapevine as a “staycation” spot several times over the years, all with varying ages of kiddos, and always have had a blast! Most recently, we visited and stayed 24 hours for my younger sister’s 13th birthday. So this post will be a bit of a double whammy covering how we curated a special birthday treat for her, as well as covering activities and other features of the hotel. *Note: I learned that all locations vary a little in activites and style, so check in on your local GWL website for full details about each lodge.*
Located in Grapevine, Texas, right across from the Gaylord Texan, you will be transported into a woodland wonderland designed to keep families entertained and immersed in a total vacation mode during your stay. Upon driving in, you are met by large wolve sculptures guarding the entrance to your enchanted getaway. Park your car in the unlaoding zone under the awning and let your pack loose as you are greeted by friendly staff and an easy check in system (be sure to use the Great Wolf App and take advantage of mobile check in (available 24 hours before your arrival)) which guide you to the counter where you are given waterpark bands and an invite to pick up your complimentary wolf ears. Unload your luggage and head up to your room to settle in or head straight to the water park to get your feet wet!
When you stay at the hotel, water park fees are included and you can access the park from 1:00pm on the day of your arrival (even before check-in) to 9:00pm on the date of your departure.
We stayed in the Kid Cabin, which sleeps 6 with a queen mattress, sleeper sofa and features a “kid cabin” equipped with a bunk bed, a twin bed, and woodland characters that will allow your kids to feel like they are camping under the stars!
Here’s where we changed it up a bit to give our birthday girl a special surprise-decorations! I was able to get early check-in by using the app, and our room was ready by the time I arrived at 2pm. Then, using command strips and tape so we didn’t tear up any walls, we hung streamers and balloons to give the room a flirty, fun twist! And yes, my mom made that amazing backdrop prior to arrival so it was quick and easy to put up day of!**Always use temporary/removable items when decorating anywhere that is not your home! Chalk and dry erase markers are a super easy way to personalize a surface without making any permant damage.**
There are so many ways to enjoy a stay at Great Wolf Lodge!
Indoor Water Park
Half Day Pass $40; Full Day Pass $50; Children 2 and under free
Open from 9:00am-9:00pm, the waterpark is kept 80 degrees year round and includes: “big kid” playscape and slides, “toddler” playscape and slides, tubed waterslides, wave pool, and a lazy river
Outdoor Water Park
Includes an activity pool and more slides, reopening Memorial Day weekend 2021.
Howler’s Peak Ropes Course
Rope Course Single Climb $14.99 + tax
Rope Course All Day Climb: $19.99 + tax
Outdoor ropes course that is several stories tall. Explore via a safety harness.
Game “open” 9:00am-11:00pm
Wand: $15.99 – $22.99 + tax* Game: $14.99 + tax
“Explore the lodge and take part in the adventure of a lifetime! MagiQuest turns Great Wolf Lodge into a live-action game where you’re the star. You’ll choose a special magic wand, top it with extra powers, and set off on a quest. Play for a few minutes or all day. Be sure to take your wand home and continue your adventure on your next trip to Great Wolf Lodge.”
Multiple quests are available, honestly this is really fun at any age. There are interactive items throughout the lodge that are “unlocked” by waving the wand in front of the sensor. Very immersive, and highly reccomend if you are staying for a couple of days to give the kids something to do when you need a water break or after the park closes!
There is also ShadowQuest, and CompassQuest to complete for more experienced visitors.
Best for: children, teens, adults
Oliver’s Mining Co.
“Feel the rush in uncovering what’s hiding in your paydirt. Pan and sift your way to finding the beautiful gemstones and minerals waiting to be discovered. Take them home in keepsake collection bag, complete with a gemstone identification card and personalized labels.”
Best for: Children and Teens
Northern Lights Arcade
Located on the bottom floor outside the waterpark entrance, this arcade gives another option for a dry activity.
Build-a-Wolf in Great Wolf’s very own custom stuffed animal workshop
Best for: Children and Toddlers
Entertain the kids with scheduled events like: character meet and greets, story time, cub club, the Great Clock Tower Show (put on by animatronics), yoga tails, dance parties, and art and crafts!
Don’t worry mom, there’s a special place for you too! Leave the kids with dad and get some time away to relax. (unfortunately it is currently closed due to COVID, but hopefully will reopen soon.)
There are several dining/sweet options at the Lodge available during your stay, including the Loose Moose Cottage (cafeteria style serving breakfast and dinner) Bucket’s (in waterpark food stand), Lodge Wood Fired Grille (upscale dining), Hungry as a Wolf (quick service pizza), Grizzly Jack’s Bar and Grill (poolside cocktail and bites), The Watering Hole (waterpark bar) Bear Paw Sweets (bakery and ice cream), Starbucks, and the candy shop inside the gift shop!
There are also tons of restaurants and dining around the Lodge if you are comfortble with driving 10-15 minutes. My sister is Gluten Sensative, so we opted to pick up pizza outside the hotel at Palio’s Cafe, and brought our own food in for breakfast and lunch at the Lodge. There is no outside food or drinks allowed inside the water park itself, but there are tables and chairs around the hotel where you can stop to munch (if you don’t wan’t to go back up to your room.)
We always have a great time at Great Wolf Lodge, and over the years our family has created a lot of memories here. It was so much fun to celebrate 13 years of life for my younger sister who has the sweetest heart and the most gentle soul, she’s the perfect finalizing piece of our family. She brought 2 other friends and they had an absolulte blast going down water slides, trying to stay above the waves in the wavepool, and blasting through credits in the arcade. All while my mom and I enjoyed dodging water fountains and spinning around in our tubes floating the wavepool. In short, there is something for everyone here, and I highly encourage using Great Wolf Lodge as your next “staycation getaway”.