Michelle Smiles

Teaching my children to question authority, except mine.

Asheville aka what I did on my summer vacation


We decided to change the venue of our usual annual vacation with Steve’s side of the family. We normally head to Corolla in the Outer Banks but the traffic last year made everyone vote to try somewhere new. After much googling and discussion, we settled on Asheville, NC. We found a house at the top of a mountain that suited our needs and had a swimming pool for the kiddos to enjoy.

Steve and I were ridiculously excited to only have a 6 hour drive versus the 14+ hr to Corolla. We took the scenic route and enjoyed the sights through the Cherokee National Forest. We were pleased to find the vacation house was truly off the beaten path and at the top of a mountain. The views were AMAZING. I plopped myself in an adirondack chair on the deck and declared I wasn’t moving all week. (Spoiler alert: I did move. For 2 reasons: it rained and the bugs were horrible.) I loved the view from the deck. I spent a good bit of time out there until by the end of the week I couldn’t stand to add another bug bite to my growing collection. I loved watching the changing view. In the morning, the clouds were heavy and the city was obscured. By late morning it would burn off and we could see the city again.

Steve and I fell in love with Asheville. The people, the weather, the food, the laid back vibe, the artists, the mountains, the green-ness of the city – everything suited us. If we didn’t own a house and I didn’t shudder at the thought of moving again, we could happily live there. Since we won’t be residents, we hope to be frequent visitors.

 Proof my children aren’t orphans. Making an effort to be on the other side of the camera now and then.

I’m not sure the rest of the family love the city as much as we did. The weather certainly put a damper on the kids’ plans. They, of course, planned to spend most of the week in the pool. But the weather at the top of the mountain was so cool that they didn’t get much pool time. (Much warmer down in the city.) The grownups loved the cool breezes but the kids were getting bored by the end of the week since they couldn’t be fish. And the bugs were horrendous. Most of us left with dozens of bites all over us.

Steve and I took a walking food tour of downtown. It was very yummy and we would definitely recommend it to anyone who is visiting the city. We spent our days wandering around, eating good food, hanging out with family. It wasn’t the most relaxing vacation (on the go more than a beach trip) we’ve ever taken but it was very enjoyable. My mother in law and I went to an arts and craft show – lots of talented folks in and around Asheville.

Thanks to recommendations of friends we wandered into several places we probably wouldn’t have otherwise. Highly recommend the shrimp and grits and the fried green tomatoes at Tupelo Honey Cafe. Mast General Store is worth a stop – the barrels of candy brought back childhood memories. And the Woolworth lunch counter (old Woolworth building…now a place for artists to sell their wares…skip the downstairs that is where they stick the bad art) is very nostalgic.

 The girls and I at Tupelo Honey Cafe

 Woolworth lunch counter

We skipped the Biltmore. The girls wouldn’t have liked it and the admission was pretty steep ($59 per adult and I didn’t even look at kids admission). I would like to visit it some time – but there just wasn’t time this trip.

 Me on the other side of the camera again

 My sister in law, the photographer, took a family photo. Thanks Krista!

posted under family, travel
4 Comments to

“Asheville aka what I did on my summer vacation”

  1. On July 31st, 2012 at 6:28 am Andrea Says:

    That’s a great family pic!

  2. On August 9th, 2012 at 5:19 pm heather Says:

    This looks like such an awesome trip! And I absolutely love the family photo!!!!

  3. On August 15th, 2012 at 6:10 pm Bobbi Says:

    Sounds like a great time, and I adore the last photo…….and all the pictures of you!!! The girls are so big and gorgeous!!!

  4. On August 16th, 2012 at 4:35 pm Jamie Says:

    I love that family photo…you should use that on your Christmas card!

    p.s. hubby took me to Asheville for my 40th a few years (cough) and we stayed at a lovely B&B there…it was our first trip there and we loved it!