Michelle Smiles

Teaching my children to question authority, except mine.

John Denver ear worm


I’ve had various John Denver songs stuck in my head since we headed out for the mountains on Friday. Since my last update about Steve having to return to Pittsburgh, he accepted a new job here in Nashville. We are very fortunate that his skill set allows him to change jobs with relative ease. To celebrate, we decided to head to the Smokies for the weekend. We snagged Sabrina from school at lunch time on Friday and took off.

We are only 4 hours from Pigeon Forge/Gatlinburg but we only made the trip once since moving to TN…about 3 1/2 years ago. Everyone got sick on that trip except for me so perhaps that is why we haven’t returned. The amount of bodily fluids I had to deal with might have colored my memory. This time was much more successful. No one got sick and a good time was had by all.

We decided on a hotel instead of a cabin this time. Mostly because it was a last minute trip and I didn’t have time to obsess over cabins. And the hotel boasted a pool which is all that is required for a 5 year old and a 3 year old to have a good vacation. Traffic was horrendous, as always. We were trying to imagine how insane it must be at high season. Do you just rent a cabin and then not get in your car again until you leave at the end of the week?

A rare photo with mommy on the other side of the camera.

We drove up and down the mountain. We looked at scenic vistas. We ate BBQ. We took many photos. We took the girls walking in the woods. We swam with the girls (the pool water and pool room were FREEZING). The hotel was a nice solution for a quick weekend but we likely won’t do that again. Mostly because sleeping with Sabrina is torture. We had 2 queen beds and there is no way the girls would sleep together. They would giggle and fight and giggle and bicker and generally drive us insane. I slept with Sabrina the first night. She spent the entire night kicking me and trying to spin herself 90 degrees (by pushing off me with her feet) so that she could sleep sideways. She also hit me in the face 4 times and talked in her sleep and ground her teeth. I slept in 20 minute spurts. Thank goodness the hotel was nice enough to have decent coffee for the in room coffee maker.

The girls didn’t appreciate the beauty of the nature around us as much as they appreciated the pool and eating out. But they had fun. And they are great kids. The disruption to their schedules didn’t phase them much. They are good little road trippers.

We had gorgeous weather. It was cold and windy at the top of the mountain on Saturday but less so on Sunday. My hands were numb after snapping photos on Saturday but it was worth it. So many beautiful spots it was hard not to take some nice shots.

Tessa might be starting to get over her camera shy ways. Or maybe it was the thin mountain air?

posted under family, travel
8 Comments to

“John Denver ear worm”

  1. On February 27th, 2012 at 12:32 pm Brigid Says:

    Love the photo of you and the girls! Glad you are all staying put together. 😉

  2. On February 27th, 2012 at 4:00 pm Julie P Says:

    Woo woo woo. Awesome news about Steve’s new job. I am so happy you’re all together for good now in your dream house. You deserve that happiness.

  3. On February 27th, 2012 at 5:29 pm Kim Says:

    Glad that you’re all able to settle in your house together as a family! Beautiful pictures.

  4. On February 27th, 2012 at 6:58 pm Abuela Says:

    But Tessa seems to also have her tongue out a lot…that thin mountain air!! 🙂

    Would REALLY like a copy of the picture of you with the girls 🙂 🙂

  5. On February 27th, 2012 at 10:39 pm dana Says:

    I’m glad to hear you’re together as a family again and you don’t have to sell your home. A vacation was definetly in order after that good news. Looks like you had a nice time. I was going to say how Tessa seems more friendly with your camera. Hope it lasts. As far as Sabrina sleeping with you……welcome to the lovely world of sleeping with your child. Just when you get used to it they like to switch things up a bit by changing their M.O., then you have to get used to it again. There are perks to it though 🙂

  6. On February 28th, 2012 at 1:56 pm Shannon Says:

    HOORAY for Steve’s new job! That’s fantastic news!

    And the photos definitely are breathtaking. I’m glad you had such a fun getaway!

  7. On February 29th, 2012 at 8:59 pm Bobbi Says:

    Sounds like a great weekend!! Glad Steve has a new job that brings him home every night.
    The picture of you and the girls was precious!!!

  8. On March 1st, 2012 at 2:09 pm jane Says:

    SO happy to read the part about Steve’s job! And you should definitely get on the other side of the camera more often because that’s a great pic of you and your girls. Remember to send Abuela a copy so she can torture her friends with her beautiful daughter and adorable grandchildren 🙂