About six months ago I was introduced to The Pioneer Woman by my friend Lea. If you're not familiar with this blog, you should check it out. It is now one of my favorites. I check it every day, sometimes twice. It's kind of addicting. And from day one, I felt connected to Ree. I loved reading about her life on her ranch in Oklahoma. I loved looking at the photos of her family, her animals, her world. I loved the story of how she met her husband, Marlboro Man. I loved her recipes. I love her giveaways (and one day I'm gonna win one!). I just loved the Pioneer Woman.
And deep down I knew that someday we'd meet and something would click and she would feel exactly the same way. And today it happened. Ree was in Houston to sign her new cookbook, "The Pioneer Woman Cooks". I went, we met, and we are now BFFs.
Can you see the connection? I'm sure she'll be calling soon with an invite to visit the Lodge. I can't wait! I'll probably buy new boots for the trip.
But let me start from the beginning. When I found out PW was doing a book tour I decided that I had to go. I checked the tour schedule to see which cities Ree would be visiting. And lucky me, she was coming to Houston! I was so excited! So marked the date on my calendar and then I waited, and waited, and waited some more. I bought one cookbook, and then another (cookbooks make great gifts). And after finding out they had been handing out line cards all week, I called Blue Willow Books this morning I bought another. This was my way of getting a line card before they started handing them out at 11 at the signing. After all, they had around 1,000 people show up in Dallas. I really did not want to be at the end of a line like that!
So around noon I grabbed my youngest daughter and we drove to Georgia's Market for the signing. We picked up my book and our line cards around 12:30 and waited for PW to arrive at 1:00. I do need to state for the record that my daughter thinks I am a bit obsessed with the Pioneer Woman and also thinks it is pretty weird. But she is obviously a wonderful daughter since not only did she go with me, she put on her most excited face. That's her in the grey sweater.
Doesn't she look excited?
It was finally 1:00, and they announced PWs arrival. We all looked to the spot she was supposed to enter, but there was no sign of her. They actually had to call her twice more before she came out. She told us she was pulling up her Spanx. How funny is that?
Ree answered some preselected questions, and then took a few more from the audience. She is just as funny in person as she is on her blog.
The last question was asked by a mom who had her baby with her. Ree started her response by stating she believed she had forbidden people from bringing their babies to her signings. She then told us she had no idea what the question was because her hormones were raging and that baby was just so cute. I wanted to get a picture of the baby, but I wasn't brave enough to go ask if I could take one. That is my first regret for the day, since that it would be great to include that photo here. My second regret is that I really wanted to see Ree do her Ethel Merman impersonation, but when she asked for questions from the audience my mind went blank. I couldn't think of a single thing to ask her, so I didn't raise my hand. And it wasn't until we were in the car driving home before I realized I should have tried to ask her to sing for us. So I guess I'll have to wait for the book signing of "Black Heels to Tractor Wheels" for my chance see that. PW told us it should be published in about a year. Can't wait for that!
Since we were in the 7th line group, we had quite a wait before it would be our turn to meet PW. So we decided to make the most of our time. We had lunch and then headed to a nearby mall for a little Christmas shopping. We got back to the market just in time for our group to be called. I couldn't believe how perfect our timing was! So we got in line and started making our way towards the signing table.
And here we are:
It was so much fun to meet Ree. She has been on her book signing tour for about 5 1/2 weeks, and I am sure she must be getting tired of hopping from city to city. But you would have never known that. She was just so friendly. She chatted with each person, and allowed us to take several pictures. They even let me take this one Ree holding the stepping stone I gave her.
She told me she'd put it in her garden. How cool is that?
And she gave me this amazing t-shirt.
I told you we were BFF's. I'll let you know when I'm heading to the lodge!