Happy Monday. Another Sister Trip in the books. We had a really good time. It rained quite a bit but it was not a total washout.
Gatlinburg Tennessee in the Great Smoky Mountains in the fall is such a beautiful place. But let me tell you the traffic there is terrible. Add in Fall Break for a lot of schools around the area and it was crazy. We didn’t spend a lot of time on the roads. We stayed at the condo a lot of the time. We did venture into nearby Pigeon Forge a couple of days.
There’s four of us that goes every year. We left on Wednesday this year. And came back on Saturday. The sisters picked me up last. It took a few extra minutes to get out of the house because all of the babies got excited over different people being in the house. Molly and Scruffy kept running in and out of the doors. It is about an hour and a half drive for us but we always stop for lunch and to do a little shopping.
We stopped in Pigeon Forge for groceries on the way to the condo. We always swear we can’t get another thing in the car and there will not be a spot of room left for the groceries but there always is.
As soon as we get to the condo we unload. Usually we have already done a little shopping on the way up so it is late afternoon and we just get everything into the condo and chill out. The next few days are fun fun fun. We just like to be together and watch movies. I took the production of CATS for the sisters to watch. They were not too crazy about it. My sister Sandy and I always work a jigsaw puzzle. This one with the Christmas cookies was really hard. We eat out a lot at our favorite restaurants. I of course did have an opportunity to buy a little yarn. I also took a bunch of knitting but I didn’t really knit a lot on this trip.
A lot of fun every year. It seems like we have more fun each year. AHHH until next year sisters.
Last week the hubs and I took off for vacation. We love to go to Wrightsville Beach near Wilmington North Carolina. It is our favorite vacation spot. This is how it went:
We woke up last Tuesday, the first morning of vacation, realizing we had forgotten to buy coffee. What??? wait let me go back to the day before on Monday and our ten hour, terrible traffic, road work delays, torrential rain, butt numbing road trip. Normally when we do our beach vacation to our beloved beach, we start out on Sunday morning and the traffic is fairly light. We hadn’t been there in four years because of other trips and covid and etc etc. The last few times we had gone we chose to fly because it gave us more beach time. I guess we had forgotten how grueling and never ending the ten hour drive could be.
First we had to start on Monday because it was Mark’s long weekend to work. They are so short staffed he was barely able to get an entire week off. We didn’t choose to fly this time because we had heard of all the nightmare delays and no rental cars. So we decided to do the drive. We meant to leave out at 6:30 AM but we were delayed a little and didn’t get started until almost 7:30. I mean after all I did have to spend a little extra time snuggling the babies and arranging food for them. Molly and Scruffy had already been taken to a couple of family members for the week. Also Mark couldn’t find his wallet after we packed the car so we spent some time backtracking. He finally found it in the back seat. Take into account it was Monday and not Sunday and lots of traffic to deal with especially near Knoxville because it was morning rush hour. So it is no wonder when we rolled into the grocery store for supplies, after we arrived at the beach, we forgot the coffee. Not to mention we were in the middle of a terrible thunderstorm and coastal flooding was predicted. It rained and rained.
Luckily I brought a ton of knitting and my laptop and several books. So I was in heaven having nothing to do but read and watch movies and knit and knit and knit. We did brave the weather every night to grab some yummy seafood for dinner.
Finally the rain stopped and the sun came out. Just in the Nick of time I would say, too much closeness can lead to bickering. We walked into town, about a three mile walk round trip, and bought a few more supplies.
We did have a few good days on the beach. After all the rain the weather was perfect. The high temps were in the low eighties and the mornings were perfect for walking on the beach. It was a much needed fun and relaxing trip.
We headed back home on Saturday morning. We left out at 4:00 AM and picked up Molly from my nephew’s house and then Scruffy from my sister in law and then headed home. I don’t think you could have gotten another thing in that car.
We got home and all the kitties were so happy to see us. We had people who had been coming in every day to take care of the kitty babies. Going on vacation is quite an ordeal when you have eight babies.
I took an extra couple of days off and bought groceries, did laundry, took supplies to my mother in law at the village and cleaned house. It was good to have everything back in place and clean.
I had a great time with my husband but I was so happy to get back home to everyone and the babies. I guess that may be the very best part of vacation.
Wrightsville Beach is located about 70 miles north of Myrtle Beach near the town of Wilmington. When we fly in we always fly into the Wilmington Airport. We usually stay at Shell Island Resort or Surf Suites both of them are great places with friendly people. We love them both.
More beach pictures on tomorrows Wordless Wednesday.
Hello friends. As I mentioned in my last post I had to be gone from the family for a few days earlier this week. Our attraction was hosting the attractions association that we belong to. It was a very nice but tiring few days. I was so glad to get back home.
I got home late Wednesday evening. Scruffy was so happy to see me. He did his little frantic running in circles dance around me that he always does when he is happy and excited. Even Molly came over to nudge against me. Of course all the kitties were very aloof because that’s just the way kitties are. And of course hubs was glad to see me. Although that could have been because he knew I would be relieving him of some of his animal tending duties. Hee hee.
What a great time we had on the trip. Lots of information to exchange with the other attractions, great ideas about how to deal with the ever changing times that we are dealing with right now. I always come back from these meetings feeling energized and ready to tackle whatever comes along. It’s good and bad knowing that our attraction faces the same issues as lots of others and we are not alone.
Monday afternoon was all meetings with a special guest speaker from the Tennessee Department of Tourism. Monday night we went to the Iron Works Grill that I mentioned a few weeks ago. This is where I had the amazing rainbow trout, mashed potatoes and fried okra. We had given the grill our menu almost a month ago. They ran out of the rainbow trout after only six people ordered it. They had no mash potatoes and they ran out of several of the desserts. I was really disappointed. The poor waitresses apologized profusely and it wasn’t their fault but I felt like someone sort of dropped the ball there. Especially since we had given them our choices a month before. I had the pulled pork barbecue this time and it was delicious. No matter what you eat there even if it isn’t the trout it is delicious. The setting is on Tellico river and it is beautiful. So this with a glass of wine made things a lot easier. Our group was great with all of it and they had a great time anyway. That’s what I love about this group.
Be sure to check out all the links I have listed below.
I wanted to share with you some of the places we visited. We started out the second morning with an all day itinerary. Some of the highlights were Lost Sea, we did a cavern tour and underground boat ride. http://www.thelostsea.com
Tsali Notch Vineyard in Madisonville. http://www.tsalinotch.com This is a muscadine vineyard. We were able to taste the wines and juices and then do a tour of the vineyard and even pick muscadines from the vine and taste them.
Next we traveled to The Fort Loudoun State Historic Area. This is an old reconstructed British Fort http://www.fortLoudoun.com. You can actually see what the soldiers barracks and hospital looked like. It is a very interesting historical place. It reverted to the state parks in 1977. Along with touring the fort there is a museum, trails, picnic areas, fishing sites and places to launch your boat, kayak or canoe. It’s absolutely beautiful and one of my favorite places.
Next we visited The Sequoyah Birthplace Museum. When you visit this Cherokee Indian Museum you will learn about the man Sequoyah and creator of the Cherokee writing system. The museum is small but has so much history within it. http://www.Sequoyahmuseum.org
The last stop of the day was in Townsend where we had dinner at the Dancing Bear Appalachian Bistro. The appetizers, and drinks and meal was superb. I had the salmon and I tore into it before I got a picture. We also had a wonderful band that played for us. It was a beautiful setting in the woods with a fire pit and s’mores fixings at the fire pit. What a night and day!!! http://www.dancingbearlodge.com.
We got back to the hotel at 10:30 PM that night and we were exhausted. A fun but tiring day. The next day was meetings and then home. Well actually I did another Hobby Lobby stop on my way home to search for fall decorations. I found a few things and yes some more yarn.
It was so good to get back home. I think it’s good to venture out every now and then because it makes you realize just how special home is. I’m sitting here writing this and Scruffy is lying at my feet. Molly is in the living room cozied up next to Mark and Kitty Kitty has retired upstairs to find anywhere soft to sleep, she has a multitude of places. The outside kitties, well they are all curled up together outside on their blankies in the garage. It looks like one big fur ball out there. Ahhhhh my little family they are everything to me.