Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Mountain Trip - Days 1 & 2

Another lovely trip to the mountains is in the books and I’m recapping the first half today! 

My aunt and uncle have a mountain house in Hayesville, NC, which is right on the North Carolina/Georgia border.  They are so kind to let our extended family use it for family vacations and we have been taking them up on that offer for the last couple of years.  It is in a truly picturesque location and we could not be more grateful that they allow us to stay there from time to time.

Our trip began last Thursday… we loaded up the babies and the loads of luggage that goes along with having two small kids and we were on the road a little after 9.  We stopped in a little town on the way up and had lunch at Chick-Fil-A.  The kids were ecstatic because they got to play on the playground and they were also ecstatic because a very kind lady was handing out Ring Pops to the kids in the restaurant.  Their favorite!

We made it up to the mountain house mid-afternoon where we unpacked the car and settled in.  Once we were settled in, it was time to head out to the deck and take in that gorgeous view.  It never gets old, my friends.  It never gets old.  It was disappointing how few colorful leaves there were... last year the colors were incredible, but this year everything was still green.  I snapped a few pictures of the house, but I’m not going to post them all here since they are all in my posts from last year's trip.

After we had rested and let the kids run around for a bit, we loaded up the car and headed to Crane Creek Vineyards, our favorite family-friendly winery.  B and I have a favorite wine from there so we decided to skip the tasting and instead we opened the bottle and settled in at one of the picnic tables in the shade by the vineyard.  We had brought some snacks for the kids to keep them occupied, but we also grabbed some cheese straws and caramel corn from the winery to pair with our wine and it was delish. 

The next hour was spent sipping our wine and eating our goodies by the vineyard while simultaneously shushing the kids.  Haha.  But seriously, they were pretty well behaved… we just didn’t want them to disturb the other wine drinkers since nobody else had kiddos with them.

Once our bottle was nearly empty, we explored the vineyards a bit.  There are a couple of lakes on the property as well as loads of cute fall decorations and we walked around and saw it all.  It is such a quaint and peaceful little place!

The next stop was for some real food because by that time we were ready for dinner.  We headed to a little Mexican restaurant and filled up on chips and salsa and cheese dip, and B and I shared a margarita.  After that wine, I wasn’t up for a whole marg! 

After dinner we had to do the necessary first-night-of-vacay-grocery-store-run, and then we made it back to the house just in time to watch the sun set.  We finished the evening off with a game of Life (Jacob is OBSESSED) and then it was bedtime for one and all.  We were whooped!

Friday morning we slept until a little after 7 and I made pumpkin chocolate chip muffins for breakfast.  The kids found the Boomerang channel that plays old Bugs Bunny and Tom and Jerry cartoons that we used to watch when we were little, and they watched that while we watched the fog lift from the valley below. 

We headed out mid-morning for the 45 minute drive to Unicoi State Park where we hiked to Anna Ruby Falls.  It was a gorgeous hike through the forest.  There was a little creek that ran down the entire length so we listened to the peaceful trickle all the way up.  I wasn’t expecting anything too impressive, y’all, but man, this waterfall blew me away!  I haven’t seen many waterfalls in my day, but this one was by far the tallest one I had ever seen.  It was gorgeous.  We hiked back down the mountain and stopped in the gift shop on the way out and I found the perfect frame to add to my travel gallery wall!

Unicoi State Park is just outside of Helen, GA, so we decided to stop there and grab some lunch.  Helen, is a teeny tiny touristy town that is known for their Oktoberfest celebration, so we obviously had to immerse ourselves in the culture with some authentic German food at Old Heidelberg German Restaurant and Pub.  B and I opted for some German beers and then I had a bratwurst while he had a schnitzel.  Jacob and Olivia had a hot dog and a grilled cheese respectively.  ;o)

We did a bit of shopping after that, and the kids each picked out souvenirs.  I grabbed a cute Georgia shirt, because being as how I’ll be a fan for life, I can never have too many!  ;o)

We headed to Cleveland, GA to do some gem grubbing next.  Jacob and Olivia both sifted through the bucket and they got some great gemstones.  Jacob found a giant amethyst! 

Jacob's rocks

Olivia's rocks

We were all exhausted after gem grubbing so we headed back to the house to relax for a bit before freshening up for dinner.

We tried a new-to-us place that evening called Sundance Grill.  The atmosphere was meh, but the food was good.  Not super exciting, but good.  The restaurant was right next to the Always Christmas store, so the kids, of course, had to snap a picture with the Santa statue outside!

For dessert we headed to the only ice cream place in the area (that we know of) – Dairy Queen – for some Blizzards before heading back to the house.

It was a FULL two days and we loved every second!  I’ll be back tomorrow with a different post, and the second half of our trip will be up Thursday!

And now it's time for the Tuesday Talk Link Up!

Hosted by:

Stephanie at Wife Mommy Me | Pinterest | Facebook | Instagram
Becky at BYBMG | Pinterest | Facebook | Instagram
Lindsay at Lindsay's Sweet World | Pinterest | Facebook | Instagram
Sarah at Sarah E. Frazer | Pinterest | Facebook | Instagram
Whitney at Polka-Dotty Place | Pinterest | Facebook | Instagram


  1. Your first two days of the trip sound like a success! That winery looks lovely and I think it's so fun how you guys have the tradition of gem grubbing!

  2. So nice that your aunt and uncle have that house! And that's really nice of them to let y'all use it! The mountains are always so nice when it's fall!
    Sarah at MeetTheShaneyfelts

  3. It looks like you had such a fun, relaxing trip! It's so beautiful there!

    1. It really is! The only thing we were lacking was the fall leaves!

  4. It looks like a really enjoyable trip :). So many fun activities! xoxo ERIN

  5. The Always Christmas Store, BEST store ever. What a sweet little get away with your family. It would be awesome to have some where pretty like this to retreat to each fall.

  6. Your first two days sound like so much fun! I love that they have family friendly wineries. I also love all of your outfits. Such a fun time!

  7. Omg this seriously looks AMAZING! You got awesome pictures! That waterfall, that adorable town, i want to go!!

  8. This looks amazing!! There is something so special about being in the mountains. I love all of the beautiful pics you got! That German restaurant looks so authentic! Beautifully Candid

  9. How great that your aunt and uncle extend the offer to the family to stay at their mountain house! That’s so awesome to have a place to retreat to. I would spend hours on that deck with that view! BEAUTIFUL! That winery is adorable and I love the fall touches. Those falls – oh my word! So picturesque. Love it. Looks like two days of fun!

  10. Look how much fun! Love the waterfalls and the views, oh my! Love that you even made pumpkin muffins.! So sweet to have a haven like that!

  11. This looks like such a great fall destination!

  12. Sounds like such a fun vacation; those falls look amazing. I loved the black bear stool that your daughter is sitting on; it just seems so perfect for that house.

    1. Isn't it perfect? The house is called "Dancing Bear Lodge" so there is a bear theme all throughout!

  13. I love the photos you got of the kids at the winery. What a picturesque setting. And, that is so cute how much Jacob loves LIFE. I loved that game so much when I was little too. Yay for pumpkin muffins. What recipe do you use? Glad you guys had such a great time. The house is such a perfect spot.

  14. Wow...this trip looks amazing! So many beautiful places to visit...my list just keeps getting longer!


Thank you for taking the time to comment... I read and respond to each and every one! However, if you are a no-reply blogger (meaning that your email address is not connected to your Blogger account), I will not be able to reply to you directly via email... you will have to check back on the blog post for a response!