Last Wednesday through Sunday Christina and I were off in the big city of Dallas, Texas, to attend our first American Christian Fiction Writers Conference. We've been told (by a reliable source) that this is the largest Christian writers conference in the world. With over 500 people there, I believe it.
Our adventure began before we even left Gaston. A fellow ACFWer had contacted us after subscribing to our newsletter (http://www.ashberrylane.net/) and after some correspondence back and forth Rebecca Barlow of Poetry, TX (isn't that a neat name?) invited us to spend Wednesday night with her. Can you imagine inviting a complete stranger (or in our case, strangers) to come spend the night in your home with your family? I love that as Christian writers there really is a deep feeling of family and connectedness even with those we've not met face-to-face.
Wednesday night happened to be Rebecca's husband's birthday. So after she picked us up at Dallas Love Field Airport, she drove about 40 minutes to the Southern Junction restaurant where we met her husband and another couple. I'll tell you, we don't have places like the Southern Junction in Gaston, OR! We walked in to this huge room with a dance floor and a live Country Western band. It was fun to watch people dance the two-step, line dances, etc. Almost made me want to get out there and join them!
This steak house was phenomenal. You actually go to a refrigerated display case and choose your hunk of meat, take it over to a seasoning station and doctor it up however you want, and then over to a huge grill where you cook it to your own liking. And don't forget the two pieces of Texas Toast you grill along with the steak. Then over to a baked potato bar before making your way back to the table. I've never had such succulent meat before. Yummmm.
Rebecca's house was absolutely lovely, as was her family. It's so encouraging to see Christian families who are really making a difference in the world. Thanks, Barlow's, for a great start to our stay in Texas. You rock!