Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Pancake Houses & Go Carts

My mini-vacation was absolutely glorious!  I've come back to the office to a not so glorious situation, but I'll fill you in on that later.

TEN and I packed up the car and took Louis to day care Thursday morning.  We were on the road by noon, and enjoyed a relaxing 5 hour drive (we did stop a few times) to the cabin in the woods!  I will say that the last 30 minutes of the trip were most entertaining.  We were told that we came in "the back way".  I'm not sure exactly what that means, but we definitely turned at a store called "AJ's 3-Way" and passed some very questionable characters :-o  By the time we arrived at the cabin we already had some fun stories!

(the drive up to the cabin)

(where we sat outside on the upper deck enjoying cocktails!)

(our room...please excuse the mess...)

(the bathroom sink!)

(a whirlpool tub in each master suite)

We knew two of the couples who were also on the trip, but the other two we had only met in passing.  They turned out to be so much fun, and I definitely consider them new friends :)

(the main living area in the cabin)

Thursday night we cooked dinner, got into the hot tub and basically just got to know each other.  We enjoyed the awesome 80 foot outdoor movie screen too! 


Friday we all went on a wine trek together.  TEN and I ended up buying bunches of wine from one of the wineries, and have already enjoyed two bottles!!

(this winery focused on very sweet fruit wines...BLECH.  we didn't buy any here)

(this winery focused on Italian style wine making, with a focus on champagne or "sparkling wine".  YUM.  we bought bunches here!!!!)

(check out the size of champagne corks before they are inserted into the bottles.  HUGE!)

(this winery was okay.  the woman who handled our tasting was called Tammy and she was rude, tacky, and mean.  she rushed us terribly, and was rude to S when he asked a silly question!  if you ever head to Mountain Valley winery in Gatlinburg and Tammy tries to help you, RUN!  or, at least request someone else.  she's scary.  true fact.)

(the boys were obsessed with these bottle holders.  personally, i found them a bit tacky...and i think everyone else did too.  BUT...for some reason i ended up with about 30 pictures of these things on my camera.  hmmm....)

(every time i see a bear now it makes me giggle.  more on that later...)

(TEN showing the bear who's boss)

(when pigs fly....)

(Titanic anyone?)

Friday was a big day for us.  We saw some very interesting things, and it was all we could do to get ourselves home and relaxed.  Needless to say, we've been laughing about Tammy, the flying pigs and The Titanic ever since :)

Friday night we cooked a huge surf & turf meal at the house, and continued to enjoy the hot tub and movie screen.  Let me just say....Rock Band on an 80 foot screen is something you just have to experience in person. 

The guys definitely enjoyed themselves Friday night, and the girls did all they could to keep them in order.



Saturday we broke up into groups to venture out on our own.  TEN and I had decided that we wanted to head to Ober Gatlinburg to ride the Alpine Slide AKA the bobsled. 

Also, I wanted to get one of those old timey black & white photos made.  Don't ask me's just something I've always wanted to do :)  Our friends S&J and L&S decided to join us.  This was by far the most fun I've had in a LONG TIME.  Everyone agreed!

On our way in to town we passed Hogg's & Honey's.  You know it's going to be a good day when you pass one of these :-o

We finally arrive at Ober Gatlinburg:

(everyone getting excited about riding the Alpine Slide!)

(the chair lift ride to the top of the mountain)

(good lord!!  this is serious people!!!!)

(the "team" getting ready to take off!)

(the boys met an old man in a bar who had one of these hats.  the boys needed them too.  obviously)

(extra large rocking chair anyone?)

(another bear makes an appearance.....more on that later...)

We finally have our old timey photo:

(can you find TEN and I?)

AND THEN..............

The Little Mountain Church Wedding Chapel!!!!

JUST KIDDING!!!!!!!!!!!

(see, they did it too :)

After a truly amazingly fun/funny day we headed back to the cabin for dinner with the group.  On the way to the car the boys found sunglasses to add to their disguises.  Looking back now it was all pretty ridiculous, but at the time I dare say I thought it was the funniest thing ever!

(TEN giving "the bear" a smoke.  sorry sweetie...i couldn't resist :)


It was so hard to believe the long weekend was over!  In some ways it seems like we were gone for two weeks.  We had so much fun, and did so many things.  On the other hand, TEN and I weren't quite ready to go home :)

We decided to stop at two wineries on our drive home.  One that we weren't able to visit back in September coming back from JLB's wedding, because it was closed, and another that was a favorite.

When we finally rolled back into Smalltown, VA Sunday evening it was time to pick up little Louis!  Boy was he glad to see us :)  At least I think he was?  You can never tell with that little pumpkin...he loves his day care so!

All in all....a very lovely long weekend.  Thank you S, for including us on this wonderful trip!!!



Now, about the bear(s).  When we first arrived at the cabin there were statues of black bears everywhere.  That made sense to us, as we were up in the mountains.  Probably just a great theme for a log cabin, right? 

Hmmmm....yea.  Especially when black bears regularly visit the cabin.  Along with raccoons, wolves, etc.  TRUE FACT!  Clearly none of us were exactly sure what to do with this wild life situation.  We got up Friday morning (after various bear sounds were heard outside the night before) to investigate.

Here is what we found:

(evidence that the bear broke into the garbage!)

(Can you imagine how big that bear's claws were to rip this wooden garbage container open?)

(Look here! The bear ate the garbage can with it's teeth, and drug it out into the driveway! EGADS!)

(Look at the doors two nights later. Do you see all of the paw prints? EEEKKKSS!)

We all decided that we were going to set a trap for this sneaky bear!!  No more standing upstairs in the bathroom looking out of the window for hours trying to catch him/her.  Oh no.  We were far too smart for that :)  I made TONS of bacon on Saturday morning.  We saved all of the grease and set it strategically outside the front door, across the driveway, up on a low limb of a tree. 

Have a look!



MCW said...

I am officially obsessed with your vacation. It looks like sooo much fun! And that cabin? Heaven!!!

Whitney and the Preppy Puppies said...

Thank you for all the pictures! I felt just like I was on vacation with you.

BonBon Rose Girls Kristin said...

Oh my goodness. What an amazing looking time. I want to plan a trip STAT!

Jess said...

I so want to go there!! I can't get over how beautiful it is!! And, I love the idea of the huge screen and a hot tub..what more can a girl on a vacation need??!

You got to go sliding!! That's awesome..looks like you had a great time. Welcome back :)

Jenny DB said...

Tell me for REALS - did you take that last pic of a bear up close??? if so it is EFFING awesome. if now i am still jealous of your AMAZING weekend.

SECONDLY, please stop using those stupid white squares on your lovely pictures. for reals, tho :)

and thirdly, i am drunky in new orleans and i cant remember. but i did read your WHOLE post and remember thinking how much you and ten must have had a grea time ande also that i wish i was there and also that meeeehhhh ok that is all xoxox

ps louis is adorable as always

pps leaving your dog elsewhere is always so effing hard

TudorCity Girl said...

oh my gosh...what an AMAZING weekend!!! Love the pics. (the white squares crack me up!!) Am living vicariously through you...Would so have loved a fun trip like that. Happy for you. :) As for that last freaking way were you really that close up????

Welcome back!

Jenny DB said...

Ok looking at this post again (sober) I realize I missed a TON of your pics -they are ALL so good - and also, I can't believe I thought that bear was possibly real. OMG haha

Jenny DB said...

ok now i'm really confused reading this again ha. 1st time drunk, 2nd time on my phone and now 3rd time on my computer. so there really WERE bears at the cabin tho? like thos other pics of the garbage can etc. are all real, just not the last one.. which i still can't beleive i thought was real. ha :-) anywayyy thats a naughty smoking bear ten was hanging out with!!