Inauguration is over and I am so grateful for that experience, but I am also incredibly exhausted. I am happy with the outcome and I am happy to move on. This trip to the Asheville, NC area was for two reasons: 1-Get away and decompress 2-Anniversary trip! Sean found a great little cottage in Alexander, NC…only about 20 minutes from downtown Asheville!
I was overjoyed when I saw this place. It is down a couple windy roads with 2 scary blind one-car-can-fit turns. But you end up next to a small stream in the woods. I couldn’t have felt more at home if I was in Lake Front Royal. The cottage is called “Slow Living Cottage” and was built for guests. It’s about 400 sq. ft. and Sean and I agree that we want a vacation house very similar to this place (additions would include a dresser, small closet, and washer/dryer). We loved watching and listening to the birds, and watching the squirrels run around.
Our cottage has a hot tub which we only used one day due to crummy weather. It also has a TV/DVD player but we didn’t use it. There were board games and they came in handy during the downpour one evening. The small stove and oven came in really handy for my morning tea, our breakfast, and our pizza. It even has a microwave too! It was just the perfect size for everything! Outside there was a small grill and a fire pit. Unfortunately, we didn’t get to use the fire pit, but we did get to use the grill. One of my favorite parts is the window seat next to the bed. It faces the stream and I loved just listening to all the nature sounds there. I think next time we need to stay longer.
The first night we were at the cottage, we went into Weaverville for dinner at Blue Mountain Pizza (yummy!) and hit up Ingles (grocery store) for our few days worth of breakfast and the next day’s dinner (lunch was take-and-bake pizza from Blue Mountain Pizza!). We were able to not leave our windy road the next day. One pack of bagels, half-dozen eggs, small pack of cheese, small pack of bacon, and one bottle of Simply Orange is the perfect amount for 3 days of breakfast for two people :). So, that next night for dinner, we had 2 steaks on the charcoal grill! I seriously love grilled steak, add some green beans and a glass of wine, and that is an awesome dinner.
On our second full day we went into downtown Asheville. Our first stop was at the Asheville Convention and Visitors Bureau (Tourist Office). It has free parking and the trolley tours start from there. We took Grey Line’s Red Trolley for our tour. We had an awesome tour guide named Mary. So many pieces of history, and so many interesting things to know about that city. I highly recommend this tour to get you started! It’s also a hop-on-hop-off situation, so hop off for lunch and then hop back on. Your ticket is good for two days and we got a AAA discount!
For lunch we went to 12 Bones in the River District. We went in the off-season so the trolley came every two hours…that was a loooong lunch. Anyway, it was good BBQ, but I’m still loving BBQ Exchange more. After our tour we headed into the Grove Aracade. It’s a cluster of indoor and outdoor shops. Nothing really grabbed our attention. But what DID grab our attention was the Chocolate Fetish shop just a couple blocks away. ~Heaven~ Seriously, just look at that picture. Then we headed to the Chocolate Lounge. Thank you Asheville for your love of chocolate! They had bars of chocolate that I had never seen before, and I’m really beginning to see a lot. I got a slice of cake and Sean got some spicy drinking chocolate. We both would have loved more but we were pretty full and our meter was expiring. Later that evening, we had dinner at Tupelo Honey Cafe. Parking was free after 6pm (!) so we took our sweet time and even shared a delicious root beer float.
By the time we headed back to Virginia, we were listening to country music and I was reminded of how much I love my woods. I hope that Sean and I are fortunate enough one day to have a tiny vacation home on a mountain with a stream and a beautiful view (or just a view of the woods). I am so grateful for this time off and this time together with my husband. We haven’t seen much of each other lately and this was the perfect trip. We are both feeling renewed in our goals and hope to enrich our lives even more. We want to spend more time finding things we are passionate about, and also more time doing them.