Friday, October 18, 2013

down south

i've taken another trip, the last one of the year. (i'm seriously ready to stay put for a good, long while, even if traveling does mean epp and visiting quilt shops.) the mr was traveling to visit company offices in the southeast and i was invited along to nanny the children he also brought, d2 (11) and d5 (nearly 2). well, maybe i'm not the nanny, but that's what it felt like because of the pace of the trip and his inability to help much while working (completely understandable). i brought epp with me, of course, but got a lot less done than anticipated. travelling with a 23 month old put a damper on the sewing. she was a very cute beast of a traveler. 

 don't let the photos fool you - she was not well behaved most of the time. but that's to be expected and we should have anticipated this after 6 older siblings.

we didn't spend very long at all in each city we visited, which is a shame because they were some really good stops: atlanta, ga; chattanooga & knoxville, tn; charlotte & raliegh, nc. but it was still wonderful to be in the south again after nearly a decade away from the land i once lived in and still love dearly.

 uhm, uhmmm! not health food, but some downhome cooking: smoked bbq, boiled green beans, coleslaw, fried okra, and fried dill pickles in the background. all the southern cooking, desserts, and sitting in cars half the day did nothing to help my recent push to eat better and be more active. quite the opposite.

photo downloaded from estate website - click to view larger
 we did have one day of complete pleasure, no business. we stopped in ashville, nc to visit the biltmore estate. it's an 8,000 acre property and home built by george vanderbilt in 1895. with 250 rooms, it's the  largest home in america, they say. photos are not allowed inside, so all i've got are a few exterior shots.
just a wing, less than 1/3 of the house

stable roof and clock

is this what your front door looks like?

the mr looking out over one of the verandas, beautifully covered in vines

one tiny end of the house seen from the garden
 the house was lovely, said to rival those in europe, but it's not the kind of place i'd like to live. the gardens and grounds, however, i'd take in a heartbeat. i was falling in love with the colors and textures in the late afternoon light. individual flowers and blooms had me completely smitten. here's a sampling:

 the baby may or may not have been helping deadhead fading blooms in the rose garden.

 a would-have-been cute photo of the baby and me, but the mr had the background in focus instead of us.

 the hotel room we stayed in in ashville had some inspiring colors and designs going on. and i don't even like purple! but this was cool.
all 4 of us in the hotel mirror

aside from the biltmore, the best part of the trip was the tupelo honey cafe in ashville. if you are ever in town, EAT THERE. seriously amazing updated southern cooking. the biscuits were to die for. with the homemade blueberry jam, they were like desert. i'm ordering the cookbook.

i also got to visit one southern quilt shop in charlotte. the girls just weren't interested (go figure) in seeing anymore fabric, so that was the extent of my touring. i got some fabric, but no photos because they were so busy running around the store, i had my hands full of combing through fabric and making sure they weren't destroying anything.

so now i'm home and ready to stay here for a good stretch. i'll have to find other times to epp but i'll also be getting some machine sewing done, too. it's good to be home.


  1. The photos look lovely even if the trip was trying at times! Welcome home and happy sewing.

  2. You were 2 hrs north of me when you were visiting Raleigh,NC:) That southern is hard to pass up round here just wish it would pass by my hips and stomach and not stop to take up residence;)

    The Biltmore looked GORGEOUS. We have lived driven by Asheville, but never stopped there.

    Enjoy being home!

  3. The Biltmore Gardens look spectacular - thanks for sharing the fab photos! My favorite is Baby by the tree in her bright pink shoes. So sweet.

  4. what a fun trip! You have some gorgeous photos. If you ever happen to pass through Memphis, let me know! I'd love to meet in person!

    :) Kelly @ My Quilt Infatuation


a kind word is always appreciated. thank you for your visit.