We had 8 days of extreme weather change, hikes which consisted of lots of carrying of babies, getting to see my brother and his family which made it feel like Christmas morning each day we woke up, and so much fun that it is always exciting to think about all the laughs we had. We took over 800 pictures, which makes it overwhelming to try and post on, but needless to say it was a gorgeous and fun vacation...THANK YOU MIMI AND DA!!!
We were literally staying on the top of Beech Mountain. The house we stayed in was a gorgeous house that was called "The Dream View Chalet" and each morning we woke up in the clouds...literally...it was like a white out each morning! But when the clouds cleared and when we were not in them anymore, it was a "dream view!"
I need to stop typing and just show pictures of this trip that made our summer so special!
When we woke up in the mornings this is what it looked like
When we were NOT in a CLOUD, our views looked more like this:
To quote Charlie, "we're on top of the world!" and that is exactly what it felt like.
We got there so late on Friday night (midnight) that the kiddos didnt get to see each other until they woke up the next morning. And they were SO EXCITED!!!!!
And Da was beyond excited to be with all his grandbabies too!!
Plus, the first day there was Anna's 2nd birthday! We woke up with the table all decorated and ready to go to celebrate.
Miss Anna in her beautiful jewels
And then silly Willie decided to adorn the beautiful jewelry as well.
...and these were some favors that were handed out for Anna's birthday. The boys really seemed to have fun with them.
Da watching Little Rascals with his grandkiddos. They were all laughing so loud. It was adorable.
This was one of the beds in the bottom bedroom. It was built over real rock and the 3boys LOVED playing over it. It was really really cool and I wish so badly I had a picture of the 3 of them looking over the bed, but what can you do now!
The boys LOVED to play in the cool bunk bed built over the rock. It actually was really neat.
This was just to give an idea of the gorgeous view from the den of getting to look over the mountain that went as far as they eyes could see (when we weren't in a cloud!)
Hunty and Charlie watching Little Rascals
One of the many many cool things about Beech Mountain and where we were staying was that is was right next to (literally in walking distance)to a replica of the Yellow Brick Road on the Wizard of Oz. The home was stayed in was actually in "the Land of Oz". It was so so so neat!!!! If you really like the next few pictures you can read more about it, how long it has been there, the restoration of it, etc. here
And this was where we started...
Starting off on the trail...
Mimi and Da getting a quick pic with the kiddos at the fountain.
There is No Place Like Home!
The carriage into Emerald City
A few views from the walk
And then to Oz...
The gate into the LAND OF OZ!!!!
The YELLOW BRICK ROAD!!!
Some of scary trees along the path...and very silly people!
Marching down the YBR
Coming across all the birdhouses
The witches castle...ahhhh! Inside was the pile of melted witch. It was pretty cool.
The house that had blown on the bad wicked witches feet. It was roped off but they do have formal tours through it at certain times of the year. It was so neat to be able to look in the windows though!
Heading back home...
My sweet little Hunty
And then back home and more gorgeous views off our deck. The pictures in the photos are so different becasue the sky would literally change by the minute!!!! It was crazy and beautiful at the same time.
The next morning we were playing in the front yard...it looks cloudy because we were literally in a cloud all morning that day!!!
Kyle and Drakey were hiding under the rocks in our front yard.
Aunt E, Kyle Drake and Charlie waiting in our front yard to go on the hike.
Drakey still waiting on everyone at the house to go for a hike!
All the kiddos with their walking sticks. They loved those!
Like father like son...how cute is that!!!!
Drakey and Da...both of them in heaven!
Uncle Will and Charlie...he was so happy in nature!
Aunt E found a 4 leaf clover!!!
Hunty finding some clovers of his own.
After our first hike we came upon this "zoo" that Dad discovered. Here they found hurt animals and brought them back to recovery. Or found animals that may have been in captivity where they shouldn't have been, or animals that they brought out of harms way for one reason or another. It was so neat and just made my heart light to know the people who did such wonderful things!
Just a very funny picture of Hunty watching Drakey drink out of the water fountain.
We were so lucky enough to be able to visit this GORGEOUS log cabin that took 7 years to build because it is all original pieces that were hauled up the steep steep mountain (I have no idea how!) The owner is the lawyer for the company my brother works for, and if you know my brother...then you know why we were invited us. There is no way possible you could not love my brother. Is this cocky? Perhaps, but it is also true. Will is the most likeable giant you will ever meet. Kyle took about 100 pictures just of his amazing home, but i clearly can only show you a few since this post is already taking a year to read.
And THEN to top it all off, he had a handmade potato launcher!!! It was so cool and there are about another 100 pictures of that. But I will just say this: fire, hairspray and plastic can launch potatos a loooong, loooong way!
And then right next to his house was this amazing meadow which looked like it was from a movie
Picture of us sitting on the rock right outside our house.
My brother and his family
And my mom and dad
And then THIS ended up being the most hilarious thing (besides watching the Little Rascals) for all the kiddos (and adults too, but really because it was so hilarious watching the kids) It was too bad we did not have the whoopi cushion earlier because if you ever need your child to smile for a picture...that was the TICKET!!! We did not find that out nearly early enough!
Even Anna wanted a turn of the whoopi cushion on her tummy
Sadly Will and his family and Kyle all had to leave on Wednesday because they guys had to get back to work the next day. After we said our goodbyes we went back inside and this little guy was flying around in the kitchen. Fortunately after he landed on the soap dish he stayed there long enough for my dad to take him outside. He sat there for a good 5 minutes resting after a long time of fluttering around trying to get our poor little Hummingbird!
This is really just to give you an idea of how small the poor little guy was. Hunter is still talking about this event.
The Thursday Night Banner Elk Music Concert (Banner Elk was the name of the town...the closest town to Beech Mountain) Wooo-Hoooo!!!!!
Lots of things to do at the Thursday Night Music Festival...who doesn't love a bouncey house?
And them some wading in the creek. After a while Drake refused to hold my hand and so he fell in the water...so typical! So I had to hold my soaking wet child while wearing a white shirt...nice.
Helping the boys on the playground during the concert. (yes, my shorts and shirt are wet from holding Drake after falling in the water).
They LOVED this slide that was made out of bars and then went down it probobly 50 times in a row.
Then Drakey found a little girlfriend to go down the slide with
A very sleepy Drake that we are about to take home to go to bed.
These were the first 2 friends we met on our little hike...
And then we saw one of these friends...whom we did NOT try and touch.
And then this guy (which honestly I would much rather touch the snake then the frog...eeeeewwwww!)
And LOTS of these beautiful guys!
My sweet Hunty...
ahhh...and then there he is. He is my teenager that has already been brought alive!
And as always, sweet Bops.
On another hike with Da...Drakey loves it!
And then later in the day...
My 2 boys wading in the creek. It was too fun to pass up so we just took off their shirts and let them play in the water! Life is too short to worry about bathing suits sometimes:) But then look at the rock where the little waterfall is...see it? not too far from my children?
YIKES!!!!!! At one point my children were playing on THAT ROCK!!!!! Holy Moly that thing was huge and nasty!!!!
And then to end the day, another gorgeous sunset view from our balcony. That will never get old...