Gone to Carolina in my mind….

We had a blast in Asheville, NC for Thanksgiving this year. This was actually the first time we had ever been there since my parents recently moved there at the beginning of the summer. There’s just something about Asheville….even way down here in South Florida, whenever I mentioned that we were traveling to Asheville for Thanksgiving EVERYONE I spoke to seemed to know something about the city and would always remark on how gorgeous the city and surrounding area was. I started to think that I must be the only person alive who had never heard of this magical place up until my parents moved there!! So, after months and months of hearing only fabulous things about Asheville; from friends, strangers, and my parents alike, I had some pretty high expectations about this place and I can honestly say that the town did not disappoint.
My parents packed a lot into our short 4 day stay; trips to tour the Biltmore Estates and Grove Park Inn, exploring the downtown area with it’s many shops, and eating at all their favorite restaurants and bakeries. I think in order to do and see everything they wanted to show us we would have had to be there for 2 weeks! I was sold on the town in a second when we drove past a Trader Joe’s and Greenlife (Whole Foods Market) within a block of each other and within minutes to their home. I would seriously kill to have a Trader Joe’s close by so that alone pretty much convinced me to pack up and move north.
But seriously, this town? Amazing. It’s like a mini New York city except cleaner….and with more hippies. The downtown area has an artsy, urban feel to it, and yet, just outside town are villages with gorgeous historic homes and the awe-inspiring Biltmore Estate. We (along with a hundred other people with the same idea) decided to tour the Biltmore Estate on Friday and I couldn’t help imagining that I was in Downton Abbey the entire time. It’s so crazy because on the 2 hour tour you only get to see about 1/4 of the entire house. Seriously that place, with it’s 250 rooms, would take you an entire day to tour the whole house. My sister and I kept laughing as we imagined being guests in that house, back in it’s prime, and wandering around lost as you tried to make your way back to your room at night after dinner. That place seriously had stair cases up and down and all over.
Saturday my parents took us to explore Grove Park Inn and Brett and I went around trying to find some good locations for our Christmas card photos. I think we got a lot of cute ones to choose from, although little Miss Drama didn’t want to smile or hold still for most of them. Of course when we took her pictures alone, she posed and proudly said “cheeeeeeseee!!” for every one. She’s not one to shy away from the spot light.
The only negative part of our entire trip was the drive back on Sunday. Yes, we drove. Since my parents moved into a much smaller house than they had in Pennsylvania, they had a lot of wonderful furniture to give us that they no longer needed (including a dining room table and a complete wicker furniture set for our back porch!) Now, I’m not one to say no to free furniture, especially free expensive furniture, so it was a very easy decision to drive so we could rent a trailer for the way back. The drive there on Wednesday was quick and easy, even if it was 10 hours long. The ride home on Sunday, however, with all the Thanksgiving travelers, was a mess and it took us 14 1/2 hours to get home!! Leah did AMAZING though. I told Brett that I seriously think we have a magical baby, as I do not know many 15 month olds who could sit in the car for 14 1/2 hours and not lose their cool. We were way prepared though and I will definitely be writing a blog post on what worked for me when it came to traveling long distance with a toddler!
So Asheville….we loved it and I can see why everyone else seems to as well! We are so excited to go back in the spring or summer when we can hike those gorgeous mountains! Hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving!

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