Archive for the ‘Unique Texas’ Category

Texas Our Texas, all hail the mighty state!

Thursday, February 4th, 2016



I love Texas!  I am a native Texan whose families are Texans for generations – ranchers and farmers to be exact.  I grew up with my mother telling me the story of the Alamo at bedtime and learning Texas songs not only in school but at home.  Some people have said that I am an extreme Texan.  When I lived abroad in St. Louis, Missouri, someone asked me why Texans are so proud of their state.  I responded with “why aren’t you as proud of your state?” Texas pride is hard to explain to someone who has never experienced the beauty, ingenuity, loyalty, independence and hospitality of Texas and its people!  Who couldn’t be proud of such a great land and people!

I grew up in Central Texas, Lampasas and Austin to be exact, but spent my childhood summers at my grandparents in Kerrville and Sonora.  I attended Texas Christian University (TCU) in Ft. Worth and settled in Arlington with my husband, Keith.  Our two native born children, Joyce and Tommy, are pretty hard core Texan themselves, although Joyce and her husband, Dan, are living abroad in St. Louis. I grew up going to the Texas coast – Galveston, Angelton, Surfside, South Padre and Corpus Christi.  In the 1990’s my children and I traveled with my mother, Betsy Ross, visiting as many county courthouses across the state as possible during Spring Breaks.  We saw the Paris tower, Gainsville circus, the red in the Red River and the beauty of Wichita Falls.  I have a purple pearl from the Concho River in San Angelo, wine from the hill country and decorative woodwork from the state capitol.   My favorite date in high school was going to the state capitol (seriously it is an impressive place).  I traveled across East and Central Texas playing tennis as a teenager and attending Tyler Junior College for tennis camp.  I have been to Del Rio and crossed the border to buy Mexican vanilla.  My point being, I have seen a lot of Texas.  But, there are places I haven’t seen – Big Bend National Park, the Marfa lights and Amarillo.  And there are places I saw twenty plus years ago that are different now!

This year, as president of the Texas Bed and Breakfast Association (TBBA) I have a once in a lifetime chance to see this great state of Texas by taking a self mandated “Tour of Texas” to visit our members and see their amazing and unique properties!   This tour of Texas will give me a chance to not only learn how these Texans share their “Great Stay of Texas” with travelers (Texans and foreigners alike) but to see a different side of Texas than I have seen before.  This time I will get to hear the stories of the historic homes and their current owners, see the small and large towns on foot and experience Texas hospitality at its finest!

To document my TBBA “Tour of Texas” I will be using this blog, FaceBook and Instagram with both my personal and TBBA accounts. Each month I will hop in my car and go visiting the great stays of Texas!  I hope you will join me!

Suzy Hankins

TBBA President 2015-2017

All About the Delicious Texas Pecan

Saturday, June 6th, 2015

History of the Texas PecanWe get the privilege on this blog to talk all things Texas—the good stuff that we want you to know about as you travel around this great state. Since the delicious pecan has quite a heritage here in Texas we thought it would be fun to give you a little history lesson on this little nut. You will have a bit more appreciation the next time you make a delicious pecan pie!

You may not know that it was in 1919 that the pecan tree was named the official tree for the state of Texas. It all started in 1906 when former Governor James Stephen Hogg wanted a pecan tree planted at his grave instead of a monument. He wanted pecan trees planted all over Texas and he got his wish! The pecan tree can survive nearly a thousand years and grow over 100 feet tall. American Indians relied on pecans as a staple food and in addition to providing the pecan nut, it may be news to you that the pecan tree provides wood for hammer handles, baseball bats, flooring, furniture, and much more.

Pecans are rich in fiber, free of sodium and cholesterol, and an excellent source of protein and Vitamin E. The United States alone produces around 80% of the world’s pecans and Georgia and Texas top the list for high producing states. An average crop for Texas is around 60 million pounds. It is no wonder that pecans don’t get any better than those grown in this great state! You can click here to find a list on all of the places you can buy pecans in the state.

If you are traveling around Texas this summer, make plans to enjoy one of the beautiful bed and breakfasts that we have as part of our association. Luxurious amenities, privacy, relaxation, and beautiful scenery all wrapped into one at any one that you might choose. Plus, you are likely to be close to a place selling pecans if you get the craving for baking or road trip snacking!

Custom Handcrafted Texas Cowboy Boots

Saturday, January 25th, 2014

Handcrafted Texas Cowboy BootsYou don’t have to be a cowboy to go to Texas, you don’t have to wear cowboy boots to be a cowboy, and your cowboy boots don’t have to be handmade – but if you decide you need some quality boots when you’re down here, you really oughta consider getting a pair of handcrafted, Texas cowboy boots.

We’re all so used to mass-produced products it’s hard to remember that everything used to be made by hand and a lot of it was much better quality. Sure, it’s not as efficient to do everything this way but something is lost when switching from handcrafted to machine made.