Thursday, September 4, 2008

**Grab your Coffee, Have Seat and be prepared...**

This post is FULL of pictures! Lots and LOTS of them. It's our last journey on our trip - our final destination before returning back to Texas. We drove to Sylva, North Carolina - boy is that drive gorgeous!!!!! Nothing but the Great Smoky's as your scenery, going higher, lower and higher again! :)

This is the little bitty downtown area of Sylva:

My sweet family - I just love them!!!

That's the Jackson County Courthouse. I thought it was so pretty!

Doesn't every girl need a street named after them? LOL!

Then - as we drove up to Alan's dad's assisted living center - a feathery friend greeted us:

True story: When I was a little girl my mom told me a story about a gorgeous red bird. She told me that whenever I saw a red bird (or cardinal if you'd rather say) that God was near and was watching over me. That story has stuck with me! I just had to snap that guy. I wanted to get closer. Ok so I did but he went further in the trees and I couldn't find him...but isn't he amazing!

So then we go inside and visit with Alan's sweet daddy for a while. He was reluctant to take a pic - I have NO idea why, isn't he a dashing young man? (he's the one sitting)

He is 84 years old. He's so so so so cute. He's like the Mayor of his home! My gosh ladies are always walking by saying "Hiii Bill" in these cute little voices and so cute! Everyone says hi to him as they walk by and they always had such cute stories to share about Papaw! I'm so glad we got to make this trip to see him. The kids loved it. We loved it.

Later that day we drove up to
Clingman Dome - my GOSH that was HIGH in elevation!! It was 6643 feet HIGH in the air! It was sooooo chilly!! I got some great shots of it - just look!

Aren't those pretty? I love wildflowers!

That's the kids right before they started up the trail (which by the way I didn't go on - I stayed right there at THAT level waiting for my crew to come back down (remember the earlier trail and my ballet slippers? Had them on again - enough said, LOL!)

I have GOT to the be the LUCKIEST girl in ALL the world to have THESE guys as my family!

They were tanning....(not really, LOL)

Isn't that view just BEEEEEEEEAUTIFUL! :)

Now that view just before this is where I left the fam - so they could climb that hill - I think Savannah's wishing she'd had stayed with me huh? Shaypher's telling her his famous line: "You're SUCH A GIRL!"

On their way up to the top - it looks like she's telling Shaypher "umm yeah I AM Queen of all hikers! I came, I hiked, I conquered!" LOL!! (now if Savannah really read that she'd think I was a total DORK for typing that)

Remember those gorgeous red wildflowers I showed you earlier? Well here's a YELLOW one! Alan took this one up on the trail...

Yeah, like I'd get THAT close to a bee!! YUCK!

the view at the top (that haze is the Smoky Mtns)

This is actually in Cherokee - I had to have the Asheville shot!

On our way back home we stopped in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee. It's a BIG TIME tourist town!

We stopped in my FAVE place - a place where it's Christmas YEAR ROUND!!

we stopped here last time and I got some CAAA-UTE ornaments! Of course I had to stop again and shop! :) I got a few more CAAA-UTE goodies!

Ok is that train NOT the cutest??

My FAVE!!!!!!!! The candy tree!

they asked me "is this going to be our christmas picture?" Ummm no...

Ok so is THIS one our Christmas pic? Nope, try again....

This one? Well maybe - if Alan had been looking at ME and not whatever he's looking at...BWAHAHAHAHA!!

So there ya have it - our trip!! Thank you SO much for taking this journey with us! I loved being able to share! I didn't take any more pics on the way home other than the bridge we crossed over from Memphis (where we stopped to spend the night before we headed back to Texas) to Arkansas....

I hope you all have a better than ever weekend. Make LOTS of memories!!

I will leave you with a corny quote:
"Don't be SHY - Say HI" - unknown (lol)