Pisgah National Forest- Birthday Outing

What a beautiful day in NC to celebrate another trip around the sun!!  Given the fact that I just moved here and don't really know many folks yet, I decided to spend my birthday visiting a few small towns around Asheville and drive out to the Pisgah National Forest.

Oh, wow!!  The drive to Pisgah was absolutely gorgeous, but on my way there... dark clouds moved in overhead and I knew I'd probably have to cut my outing short.

I'm still pinching myself.  I can't help thinking how lucky I am to be in one of the most beautiful places in the US!

After stopping at Looking Glass Falls and exploring a few trails in between rain showers; I headed out of the forest  to visit a gallery in Hendersonville.  Along the way, I stopped at a great little organic market in Brevard that had a deli upstairs and seating outside.  I love this place and plan to return again soon.  
A very cool market.  You can check out their Facebook page here.

After picking up a few items for enchiladas that I plan to make later in the week, I was back on the road... although I didn't get far before I spotted another little gem about 15 north.  Mills River Creamery.  I was just going to check it out.  hehe

Once inside this cute little shop, I HAD to buy a "Cow Trax" ice-cream cone made from their own organic products.  What's a birthday without ice-cream!  Right?  

OMGness!!  That vanilla ice-cream, chocolate syrup, and brownie chunks ice-cream was some of the best I've ever eaten!!  If you're ever in Mills River, NC, you must give the Mills River Creamery a try.  They carry all kinds of homemade organic dairy products, canned jellies, jams and local honey.    

After spending a little time in a few galleries, I stopped for my birthday dinner at Outback... also in Hendersonville.  


The waiter even brought a complimentary slice of cake with a candle in it for the birthday girl.  

 What a wonderful way to end a marvelous day!!

Big Bear Hugs to you all!
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Wasting No Time...

Oh my... I'm in LOVE with North Carolina!!!  Everything is so lush and yummy! 

There are many things that I'll miss about Texas (the heat... not being one), but I feel like I'm finally HOME in NC!  One of my favorite things about this area is that there are so many wonderful little artsy towns. Yesterday, I went to the Garden & Art Show in Hendersonville about 30 miles south of Asheville.

The weather was a comfy 78 degrees.  The wind was gently blowing and bluegrass music filled the air as I strolled past one outdoor cafe after another that lined Hendersonville's historic main street. 

My favorite finds were Kilwins candy shop (sweet!) where I bought raspberry chocolate fudge and washed it down with iced coffee from a quirky little art clad coffee shop called Jongo Java.  YUM!

As I sat in the shade to enjoy the music and my treats, I was joined my an entertaining young man, Evan, and his grandmother.  I quickly snapped a pic of his sugar covered face when he paused for a brief moment from devouring HIS favorite treat.

OMGness!  He was so adorable!  

When we parted company, I strolled to a booth selling REAL butterflies encased in resin. Lee Miller of Studio9ten out of Easley, SC was the only art vendor that I made a purchased from.  All of his pieces were absolutely beautiful which made it difficult to choose just one.  I finally settled on a delicate yellow Phoebis Trite "Sulphur" necklace.  Oh, I love it so much! 

Be sure to check out Lee's REAL Butterfly Effect Jewelry line Studio9ten.com

I'm so excited to start gardening in WNC.  I'll be able to enjoy so many lovely flowers that wouldn't survive in the brutal Texas heat.  When I'm settled in, the first purchase I'll make for my flower garden will be a pink and white Vanilla Strawberry Hydrangea that I discovered at the show. 

It will be just stunning in my future cottage garden.

Isn't it beautiful?!!!

I'll be sure to post pictures when my gardening commences.  (smile)

Big Bear Hugs to you all from Gammy's House in beautiful


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Follow Your Dreams... At Any Age!

It's simply GORGEOUS here in the Blue Ridge Mountain City!

A big thank you to all my family and friends who encouraged me and helped to make my dreams come true.
Happy Birthday to me!

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“It is never too late to be what you might have been.” – George Eliot

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The Big Crafty is coming up in July here in Asheville.
 Wish me luck.  (smile)

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What I'm Listening To:
Carolina In My Mind- James Taylor
(click to listen... or right click and choose "save link as" to download)

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Make it a Beautiful Sunshiny kind of Day!

Big Bear Hugs to you all!!!

Goodbye Texas, North Carolina... Here We Come

After 30+ years in Texas, I'm following a dream and moving to North Carolina!

I've always preferred to travel by auto.  You miss sooo much traveling by plane, but the older I get (and considering a bum spine), I knew this might be a challenge.

The drive was pretty straight forward.  I 30 out of Dallas to Little Rock, AK where I caught I 40 all the way into Asheville.

See ya later alligator!!

Dallas Skyline

I had heard horror stories about traveling with a cat, so before departing Texas for North Carolina, I did a little research on the subject and asked oodles of folks for advice.  I wanted to make the trip to NC as easy as possible for Kitty (Sour Puss).  I was prepared for the worst, but surprisingly, she traveled extremely well.

I split the 14 hour trip into 4 days, driving only 4 to 5 hours each day ( which included several breaks), so Kitty had several opportunities go get out of her carrier and check out our surroundings.

As suggested, I placed her litter box in the passenger side floor board, but she rarely used it until we settled into our hotel room each night.

She slept as I drove... most of the time.  I had hoped that placing familiar items and her blanket in her carrier would help ease her anxiety.  I'd say, it worked well.

She did wake up a few times as I drove but she sat quietly beside me until I stopped for another break.  She was such a good traveler.

An impressive site along our journey.

Bass Pro Shop in Memphis

I took several pictures of other sites... but they didn't come out.  My daughter is a professional photographer.  Perhaps I should take lessons.  (smile)

The further east we drove the more beautiful and lush the landscape became.

The only part of the drive that I worried about was the strip of highway atop the Smoky Mountains at the TN/NC border.  Tight 2 lane 25 mph curves in steep down sloping terrain scared me to death; so much so, that just one hour from my destination on the 4th day, I stopped early in Newport, TN to rest my back and build up the courage to drive the pass early the next day.  

I wouldn't have been so scared if I hadn't been driving a U-haul towing my "fun car" behind me on a carrier.  

The worst part of the pass were the 2 dark tunnels.  The second I entered, I could barely see the white stripe on the road.  Trying to keep the wheels of the car carrier behind me from scraping the side of the tunnel wall was extremely challenging. A little late... my vision finally adjusted as I crawled at a snails pace OUT the other side of the tunnels and back into the bright sunlight.  

The caravan of truckers chugging and churning behind me seemed glad to be out of those torturous treacherous tunnels too.   I could swear I saw a couple of them offer a congratulatory (middle finger) wave to me as I pulled off the road just beyond the pass and into the rest area to catch my breath and say a prayer of thanks.  (smile) 
OMGness!  One time in my lifetime was enough for me! Thanks for your prayers mom, which were heard that day!  


Hello Asheville!!
(sorry for the buggy windshield pics)

What a marvelous road trip!!

Home Sweet Home.

Wishing you wonderful dream filled days ahead!

Big Bear Hugs!

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