Marfa, TX: Food Guide

Recently, Mr. Yell and I went on our first year anniversary trip (yay!) to Marfa, Texas (By the wonderful recommendation of a Marriage Roots post). Marfa is in the Southwestern part of Texas, so if you have ever wanted a great mix of art, desert, and continually saying “hmm, that’s interesting…” then Marfa is the place for you.

Before I get deep into this post, there are a few things that need mentioning. The first thing is that Marfa is a bit of a slow-moving town. Seriously, the business hours on many of the food places, shops, and art exhibits are basically just guidelines. There were several times we would plan out a day’s worth of meals just to be scrambling because the times were merely suggestions.

Second, Marfa is for those who enjoy already-developed artists. This was only one of a few disappointments that I experienced. I was expecting a town with more street art and “starving artists”. Instead, Marfa has developed in the last 15 years to be more upscale in many aspects including food and retail prices. While this isn’t necessarily a negative thing (unless you are a local—a post for another time), it came as mapa bit of a surprise. So if you are planning on going to Marfa, plan to spend $15-$20 on food for every meal, or try to bring some PB&J’s.

 

Marpho

Mr. Yell’s (and mine!) absolutely favorite place to eat was Marpho. This was not only the most reasonably priced, but also had a wonderful atmosphere and some amazing pho! While the pho is obviously the specialty, they also serve Vietnamese sandwiches and have finger foods during Happy Hour.

 

Frama

There is really only one place in town for the best locally brewed coffee and somewhat locally made ice cream, and that is Frama! This place is very cozy and has SO MANY options! There are hot and iced drinks, smoothies and juices, and of course ice cream with unique flavors (I had the Rosemary and Olive Oil… DELISH.)

 

Food Shark Museum of Electronic Wonders and Late Night Grilled Cheese Parlour

This place was AMAZING. On the outside (like most things in Marfa) it doesn’t look like much, but the interior was pretty cool. The only lighting used in the tiny restaurant is the glow of antique TV screens and music is played on an eight-track player. Not only is the atmosphere killer, the grilled cheeses are INSANE. You can choose from four different selections, which rotate out as ingredients run low, and each cheese is grilled to perfection. It was definitely a fun, quirky, experience; and I would definitely love to go back.

Planet Marfa

Outdoor games, snacks, creative seating, and a bar… Planet Marfa is the place to be on the weekend. With a teepee, renovated school bus, and a loft, there are so many places to sit and chat, and cool areas to experience little pieces of the Marfa Magic. Live music and dancing adds a bit of a party to the place as well as ping-pong tables and other “lawn” games. Even if just to check out the atmosphere, Planet Marfa is a must-see while in town.

 

Cochineal

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From: WestTexasWeekly.com

While in Marfa, Mr. Yell and I decided to do at least one “fancy” dinner for our anniversary, this dinner being at Cochineal. Located in downtown Marfa, Cochineal was the perfect place to enjoy the desert air and fine dining all at the same time. They have a large selection of delicious dishes, just be aware that the menu changes often and reservations are needed.

 

These are just a FEW of the many places in Marfa to eat, but these were by far mine and Mr. Yell’s favorites. These places had very consistent, and LABELED, hours of operation as well as delicious food and creative atmospheres.

Much love. Much grace.

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What Would A Rational Person Do?

Let’s be real. The past few months have been a struggle for me. I have had some anxiety issues that I have been dealing with. Often I have found myself asking the question: “What would a rational person do?” during times of irrational amounts of stress and anxiety.

Naturally, the book How To Live In Fear caught my attention because of these moments in my life. I started this book not just to look into anxiety for myself, but also to see how I can help others cope with everyday struggles or panic attacks. I always felt so helpless not knowing how to help someone dealing with anxiety, and this book really addresses how to be more aware of anxiety symptoms and triggers.

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The first thing that struck my attention about this book  was that the author himself lives with anxiety. He is a pastor, father, and husband… and has dealt with anxiety his entire life. Most books I have read have been from people who have studied anxiety, or are popular “Self-Help” speakers, but have never personally dealt with such panic. Just having the author be an advocate and personally experience anxiety made this book all the more interesting to me.

Overall, this book is great for those dealing with mild to severe anxiety or people who know someone who is dealing with these issues. While I learned many new techniques, was encouraged, and gained a new understanding when dealing with anxiety, I did feel that the book was a bit long in page length.

I loved the personal stories and practical knowledge given by the author and other outside sources. He shared stories from his childhood, early-adulthood, and even his recent life that really allow the reader to understand anxiety triggers and his fears in general.

I would recommend this book to those interested in gaining a personal insight about anxiety but do wish there was more psychological and Biblical evidence throughout the book.

 

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Have you read this book by Lance Hahn? What did you think?

Much love. Much grace.

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A Beautiful Song

This song came on the radio this past week and I was reminded of many things.

I was reminded how the first time I ever heard this song was when I was 17 years old as a senior in high school. It was a hard year full of growth and pain, but this song was one of the things that encouraged me deeply. That first time I really listened to the lyrics it couldn’t have come at a more perfect time… I felt so alone and so unwanted. The lyrics of this song made me weep as I began to let them encourage me and realize what they meant.

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Just in case you haven’t heard it today: you are beautiful. You are so loved and so beautiful. Just know you are not alone in your struggles. Know that you are so desired and loved.

“Beautiful”

Days will come when you don’t have the strength
When all you hear is you’re not worth anything
Wondering if you ever could be loved
And if they truly saw your heart they’d see too muchYou’re beautiful
You’re beautiful
You are made for so much more than all of this
You’re beautiful
You’re beautiful
You are treasured, you are sacred, you are His
You’re beautiful

And praying that you have the heart to fight
Cause you are more than what is hurting you tonight
For all the lies you’ve held inside so long
And they are nothing in the shadow of the cross

You’re beautiful
You’re beautiful
You are made for so much more than all of this
You’re beautiful
You’re beautiful
You are treasured, you are sacred, you are His
You’re beautiful

Before you ever took a breath
Long before the world began
Of all the wonders He possessed
There was one more precious
Of all the earth and skies above
You’re the one He madly loves
Enough to die

You’re beautiful
You’re beautiful
In His eyes

You’re beautiful
You were meant for so much more than all of this
You’re beautiful
You are treasured, you are sacred, you are His
You’re beautiful
You’re beautiful
You’re meant for so much more than all of this
You’re beautiful
You’re beautiful
You are treasured, you are sacred, you are His

Much love. Much grace.
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Why I Wear Black

“Why do you wear so much black?”

This is the most common statement I have been hearing in the last few months as I have transitioned from bright colors to black, grays, and other neutrals.*

Some people have found this to be a little different, but others have made the change  before me to neutral colored clothes for a variety of reasons. To help explain my transition to darker colors I have put together a list of the reasons why I have started eliminating colors from my closet.

  • I can’t match colors. Let’s be real. I have a really hard time matching my clothes. I used to be better, but as I have started having less and less time, I can’t take a whole day to plan outfits that match perfectly together. Only having colors that all match each other helps me to match outfits. I no longer have to find the perfect shirt that matches that vest or my bright patterned pants (why did I think that I would ever have success with THOSE?) because all my clothes literally already match everything else. So basically… I am now a fashionista. (jk JK) Screen Shot 2016-01-08 at 9.53.38 AM

 

  • Saves me SO much time. I am student teaching and my mentor teacher was telling me about how people try to have uniforms with their everyday clothes. (Think Dwight on The Office– Mustard shirt, olive tie, brown suit… EVERY EPISODE.) Well I looked this crazy thing up, and it turns out that there is a study about how intelligent people in society all have uniforms. Apparently, getting rid of this one decision helps these people to get ready without stress and then they can focus on more important things other than clothes. I have to say this is totally true for me. Having to dress as a professional now vs like a college student makes me have to spend more time getting ready in the mornings. With all of my clothes being neutrals and already matching, I don’t have to plan outfits or spend time picking out my clothes at all. I can just throw them on and go. (Which I LOVE.)

 

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  • I am saving money. I am an impulse buyer. I love pretty things, and I love how the stores display them. I am any retailer’s dream because I totally buy into staging and lighting and atmosphere. When I made the decision to only buy neutrals, it totally changed my shopping habits. I no longer make impulse buys because the things I would be buying wouldn’t match anything that I already own. I don’t even look at bright clothes or patterns in stores because I don’t need them. I also don’t feel the need to buy a whole outfit when I buy a new shirt anymore, because I have tons of clothes that already match it at home.

 

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  • I like black. I really do. When I was in high school and middle school, my favorite outfits were the dark colors with black and white patterns. I love the overall style of dark clothes like skinny jeans, cat-eye makeup, and dark nails. When I got older I tried to experiment with more color, but now I am circling back to black because it just feels more like me. All the options that come with black clothing are amazing. An outfit could be classy, grungy, cutesy, vintage, etc. with just wearing black and other neutrals. Wearing black allows me to experiment with different outfits.

 

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I love this new lifestyle and I have to say, the transition was pretty simple for me. (But that is a post for the future!) What about you? Do you only wear certain colors or do you go all in? Be sure to let me know what you think!

Much love. Much grace.

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*One of the first blog posts I wrote about a year ago talked about why I wear flower crowns and cat tees. Let me just say that I still do, but I only wear them if it matches my “new” wardrobe.

 

 

What is the War You Want to Fight?

The recent events, in our country and around the globe, have caused me to want to know more about people’s lives.

It is always easy to make rash judgements about a person based on his or her religion, clothes, culture, or needs without actually seeing that person for who he or she actually is. While no one can truly know a person, we can come pretty close by reading about how that person feels, thinks, and makes decisions. Reading autobiographies can give us a glimpse into that person’s world and emotions.

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With the events of terror, death, and refugees needing homes; I find it has become a needed practice in my life to put faces and personal lives with the events and struggles. I refuse to take third person’s word about how another group of people is feeling without first seeking out the view of people from that people group.

If you seek to understand others in this way, have a desire for girls to be educated, or are curious about the Middle East as a region, I Am Malala is a great place to start.

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Nobel Peace Prize winner, Malala, tells her story of strength and determination to not only be educated as a girl in Swat, but also speaking out against those taking away education from girls. She tells of her life as a Muslim and how radicalism changed her beloved homeland and her life.

Reading this perspective of the change in the Middle East and the dangers of her choices really spoke to me. I struggle often with allowing myself to be carried away with apathy rather than compassion. Her story not only reminded me of the plights of others but also that I need to take these stories and issues to heart. There is so much danger, hate, and fear throughout her story and it is so heartbreaking to know people are forced to live in this everyday. We, as American’s, complain about our individual freedoms being compromised, when in reality we have so much freedom and so many rights.

“I know the importance of education because my pens and books were taken from me by force, but the girls of Swat are not afraid of anyone.”

Malala’s story is not just important because of her plights, but because she chose to fight this war. Her family, peers, and community showed her that there are certain things that are worth the fight.

Reading this book is not just an eye opening experience about what goes on in other culture’s eyes, but also calls readers to answer many questions. The most urgent question being, What is something worth fighting for? What is something that no matter what people say or do, you refuse to back down?

“I would do everything in my power to help educate girls… This was the war I was going to fight.”

These are questions that may seem easy to answer at first, but after reading this book the answers now seem petty.  Looking at the media today with elections and American beliefs in question, what are the things that you feel are worth not just a Tweet or a Facebook rant, but your potential death and wrath of your own country?

How do you answer these questions?

I am still working out many of these for myself as I process this book. Honestly, this will take me time to work through, although I hope to write about this in the future. The one thing I know as of now is that my faith in God is what is unwavering, no matter the circumstances.

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The way Malala writes is very smooth and clear, making her writing very easy to understand. She also does a great job of explaining how her country changed over time into the society it is today. Malala talks about her family, how she was raised a bit differently, and loved her life in her beautiful home of Swat.

I Am Malala is such a wonderful story. It is so full of information, sadness, but also a great hope for the future; as well as important questions for people to answer.

What is the war you are going to fight?

Much love. Much grace.

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Are you interested in helping Malala?

The Malala Fund helps make education a reality for girls in the Middle East. Malala is fighting for education rights of women and supporting her fund is the easiest way to join the fight.

Schoola is supporting the Malala Foundation with certain pieces that are sold from their website.

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