This weekend was the glorious trifecta that this blogger enjoys: eating well (and healthy!), running, and traveling to a new place 🙂 That I could share it with my FAMILY made it that much better! (well, 2 of 3, I did the run solo)
On Saturday we headed out–not too early–to Blowing Rock, NC, a mere 2 hours from here. I woke up early to get 2 miles in solo before the trip. It felt glorious to be up before the sun, but not have to worry about hurrying back to get ready for work (God bless long weekends!) Running just helps me feel sane, grounded, powerful, de-stressed, more motivated, less grouchy, etc, ETC. I really should do it every day 😉
We headed out after 8 AM. The plan was to swing by the hotel, Alpen Acres, and pick up our discounted Tweetsie Railroad tickets. Got there around 9:30 and we were at Tweetsie before 10. Got inside, checked out the map, and decided to make the train our first priority. Gabe was beyond excited!
We had to wait for the train to come, so we checked out the “town” real quick:We had only been there for a few moments when Whoooooo Whooooooo! The #12 train came chug-chugging around the bend.My heart literally leapt (yes, leapt!) with excitement for my son. Here was a real train, complete with steam & smoke & a bell… and then Gabe nearly jumped into my arms, since the train was so loud. His excitement turned to fear, but once we got on, he calmed down.
The ride lasted for 15-20 minutes (maybe? I sort of lost track of time, watching Gabe mesmerized with the whole thing). There was a cowboys & Indians “show” complete with shooting blanks. I loved seeing Gabe’s face… hands down, the best part 🙂
The little western scenes were pretty cool too!
Next we rode some cars & planes… I wasn’t sure how Gabe would do on the plane ride, solo, but he did fine. Look at the concentration on his face!
After snacks of popcorn and lunch (they actually had a very decent grilled chicken salad!), we headed back to the hotel to grab some zzz’s. Gabe had cried when we got off the train–not wanting to go–and didn’t go down for a nap easily. Fortunately he slept for over an hour, so he wasn’t a big cranky mess by the time we went back. Daddy though–he was pooped. Gabe & I waited for another hour, til the afternoon showers subsided and Javi woke up. We headed back and did it all again.
Javi as a conductor:
And Gabe completely into the train set:
And I conquered a fear (not really but kinda!) of riding a horse… even if it wasn’t real. When the park closed at 6, we rode the ski lift down from the top of the hill (where the little Mouse Mine railroad is), and headed over to the Red Onion Cafe in Boone. The lady at the hotel gave it a great review so we did a drive by, and it passed the initial “sniff test.” Gabe was pretty darn good, for a 2 year old, since he had a new train toy to play with:
I ordered one of the specials, grilled chicken with artichokes, olives, and feta, with a side of zuchinni & squash… O. M. G. It was soooo good!
Not one to be too adventurous (and not wanting to pay $22 for a ribeye) Javi got the club sandwich… and pronounced it amazing as well 🙂
Aaaand of course, we just HAD to order dessert. Hey, in my defense, I’ve been eating really clean & healthy, probably 95% of the time. I absolutely had to make an exception for the Chocolate Peanut Butter Ice Cream Pie… It tasted even BETTER than it sounds! And with a decaf coffee with it… I was literally in foodie heaven at the Red Onion Cafe.
All in all, an amazing day with my boys! I definitely want to travel back to Tweetsie Railroad and Blowing Rock. Next post: day 2 of our trip, the actual Blowing Rock & downtown Boone!