Our First Family Vacation
It’s been a rough 2020 seems to be the common intro for many things these days, but one thing's for sure... vacationing has been out of the question for many! After arriving home with our boys from the hospital, we’ve been locked-in at home with minimal trips out, except for work (Dennis) and the occasional grocery visit, but alas, it was time for our first family vacation, a socially distanced road trip to Beech Mountain, North Carolina.
We are on our way!
Before our departure we needed a bigger vehicle to travel in comfort with nearly our entire home of baby goods, luggage, our furry daughter Zoey and maybe enough space for dads as well. We rented an Expedition and took off for the mountains, hoping to arrive in time to see the leaves still changing. This usually happens around mid-October in Beech and we were a couple weeks late. Luckily the views were beautiful and we were able to see the changing leaves along the way because there were none to be seen on the mountains.
We arrived at our families chalet on Beech Mountain after about 15 hours of driving and a night pit-stop somewhere in South Carolina. Splitting the drive was a necessity with two babies that required feedings and diaper changes every 4 hours and our furry daughter Zoey needed an occasional potty-break as well. We were greeted by tons of wild deer while driving up the mountain, such a site to behold. We hadn't seen that many deer in one place I think, EVER. Daniel grew up going to the chalet and has many beautiful memories from his trips up, both during the fall and winter months. During the winter, you can ski, snowboard, sled, ice skate and take part in all the fun winter activities. The Chalet is on the ski slope so its just a few minutes drive to the tip of the slope. Coincidentally, Dennis went skiing at Beech Mountain when he was nine years old, and it was his first snow experience as well. Small world! During the summer months, you can horseback ride, white-water raft, zipline and more. They also have a few wineries nearby where you can partake in wine tasting all year long. The chalet is rented year-round for those interested and can be found on VRBO.com .
Peace and Tranquility
We definitely needed this getaway, more so to relax and be one with nature and just take it all in. The past few months with the babies have been a whirlwind and doing nothing was exactly what the body ordered. Well we did do a few things, but you know what I mean! The first thing we did, aside from feeding hangry babies, was buy tons of firewood to build our nightly fires. This is something we NEVER get to do in Miami, as the weather is 90 degrees year-round. We enjoyed this process and relaxing by the fire and drinking some hot chocolate and doing all the things we never get to do. There were many moments of stillness and appreciation for all the blessings we've been afforded.
In the mornings we would wake up and make cinnamon buns and check on the deer visiting our yard and take walks with the babies through the mountain breathing that 5,000 ft elevation air. The view was spectacular and the company even better. It was just the five of us on this trip (Zoey included), and we wouldn't want it any other way. Because of the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, we didn't want to be exposed or surrounded by lots of people, so we chose to seclude ourselves and partake in safe activities ONLY!
The Adventures Continue
We fed the geese! There were quite a few lakes and ponds near the mountain we could escape to watch nature do its thing. We noticed there were quite a bit of geese, or gaggles to be more precise, at one particular lake so we brought some bread from home to feed them and show our boys the beautiful birds. They showed up in droves to eat our snacks and our boys loved it. Mission accomplished!
When we travel we always like to change it up when it comes to dining. At home we eat Latin foods, pizza, sushi, and whatever else comes our way so we really wanted to eat from local eateries around town and support the community as much as we could. We grabbed some grub at the Pedalin' Pig. If you're ever in the area, grab the brisket and pulled pork along with tons of sides. They are scrumptious! We ended up grabbing a few meals from here and ate them at home over the course of our trip. We also bought some nice steaks from the nearby market and grilled on the porch, while watching the Beech Mountain deer run through our yard.
Our last adventure was taking a nature hike down to the Linville Falls. The kids and Zoey loved hiking down the trail. The weather was perfect, with a nice cool breeze, and the views were breathtaking. I think you can tell by their faces (and eyes) (check out video below) how enamored they were with all the trees and rocks and the stunning waterfalls. We found this place by accident, while trying to look for fall leaves changing, but we definitely lucked out, as there weren't many people around so we took it all in, nearly alone!
Time to go home
And SADLY... all good things must come to an end. After a week away, it was time to take the trek back home and get back to reality, but before we departed, we enjoyed one last fire, where we sat and discussed our trip in its entirety over some delicious hot chocolate. It was the perfect ending to an ever-so-perfect trip!
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