Saturday, June 12, 2010

Farm Chicks Show ROCKS

I've been back for a few days and this working thing sure gets in the way of a whole LOT of fun!  Our flight to Spokane, WA was "diverted" to Seattle and then back to Spokane, making for a much dragged out flight.  But, once we arrived and got settled in a very nice little Holiday Inn Express in Downtown Spokane, we were ready to immerse ourselves in all things Farm Chicky!

We began, naturally, with dinner at Chaps and what a great experience it was.  The restaurant was total eye candy for us vintage, shabby chic, farmhouse loving folks.  Lots of rustic, paint chipped wooden furniture, chandeliers with colored baubles, prayer candles mixed with chotchke on a hand-painted mantle...and lots of western touches sprinkled in for good measure.  They were preparing for a special dinner party on Saturday for Farm Chicks event and the decor was absolutely phenomenal!  Their new bakery, Cake, wasn't officially opened yet so we HAVE to get back there soon to check it out because the space is unbelievable.  And there are more reasons to head back to Spokane in the near future...all will be revealed soon.  Oh yeah, the food itself was deLISH!  I had the stuffed pork chop and my mother had the tilapia.  Both were very, very tasty.  And of course, there was the hugely scrumptious chocolate cake we shared for dessert.  Mmmmmmm is the best way to describe our visit and meal.

The hotel offered a breakfast buffet, and while the food wasn't anywhere comparable to Chaps, we were lucky enough to meet fellow Farm Chick gals.  It was truly a pleasure to chat with Jeannette and Peggy, and to learn how to pronounce Puyallup.  Then, as the thousands of us were standing in line waiting to be admitted to the show at the Spokane County Fair and Expo Center, we enjoyed a creative conversation with Catherine from Bremerton and made a wonderful connection.  Luckily, we were one of the first 1000 to purchase a weekend pass, so we walked in with a handy Farm Chicks shopping bag.  We were all flabbergasted at the sheer number of shoppers chomping at the bit to get in and grab lots of the fabulous vintage finds.

Once inside it was hard to decide just which way to shuffle!  Our first stop was the Farm Chicks shop and we picked up some great souvenirs.  Then I found an old Mason jar filled with Scrabble tiles and other old game pieces, a vintage pillow case I'll turn into an apron and Mom picked up 10 old doorknobs for $10.  Wait until you see what she plans to do with them!  I found the perfect pair of old red cowboy boots that fit perfectly -- I felt like Cinderella!  Oh yeah, then I nearly bumped in to Stacey Julian of Big Picture Scrapbooking.  There were sooooo many vendors with such wonderful treasures, it's simply impossible to describe it all.  I did take a few photos, so check out the slideshow.

That evening we had dinner at the famous Frank's Diner, an old train car once commissioned to transport the president of the Union Pacific Railroad.  It was a great replica and the food was pretty good, too.  We enjoyed a peach huckleberry cobbler for dessert.  Are you beginning to see a pattern here?  It was unfortunate that our hotel didn't have HGTV or the Food Network on TV, but somehow we managed to get plenty of rest during the weekend.  Sunday found us enjoying Chaps' world famous breakfast and we met a couple gals from Texas who convinced us that we HAD to visit Round Top, TX for the extravaganza of antiques and junk on offer in the usually sleepy little town with a population of 77.  Perhaps you'll see a story about that in the fall.  The breakfast at Chaps was even better than the dinner, if that's possible.  I picked up a Cake mug to remind me to come back to visit.

After another, less harried, round at the Farm Chicks Show, we organized our finds and planned a little excursion for Monday, our very last day in the Spokane area.  We discovered a fabulous store in the middle of nowhere (and I don't mean to bruise anyone's town pride) in a "town" called Rockford.  Hurd's Mercantile was truly a gem!  Teresa was a gracious hostess and told us all about the history of the building, the business and the wonderful wares for sale all displayed in outstanding vignettes.  We then visited another shop in Spokane Valley called the Trellis Marketplace with lots of great kitchen goodies.

So we gathered our wares and trundled to the airport to return to the "real world".  It was a wonderful long weekend that offered lots of new experiences.  The Farm Chicks Show was great! Meeting lots of new people and getting to know the world of vintage/antique goods was very entertaining.  Oh yes, and the reasons I'd visit Spokane again very soon are (1) to enjoy what's sure to be totally yummy cakes and goodies at Chaps' bakery called Cake, (2) to see what's new at Hurd Mercantile and (3) to visit Serena Thompson's Farm Chicks Store slated to open in Spokane in July!  She'll have lots of vintage treasures and her own line of home decor.  You should watch those Southwest airfare specials and book a long weekend in Spokane, WA with your favorite gal pals -- you won't regret it!
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