Welcome to another edition of Evie’s travel log.  This time our jet-setting girl has visited North Carolina’s beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains, where summertime is totally bearable and ice cream and homemade jam can be had just about everywhere.  Pictures, anyone?

Why does everything in the mountains look spooky?  This house is not the one in which we stayed but is instead inhabited by ghosts.  I’m pretty sure about that.

Evie’s antennae go up as she explores the house in which we did stay, which was beautiful.  She especially enjoyed sliding down these stairs many, many times on her butt and putting all of her flashcards in the the many, many drawers of the apothecary cabinet in the den.  Note to self: If you can’t find your cell phone, look in drawers of the apothecary cabinet  in the den.


Meet Nabisco, the neighborhood cat.  Nabisco and Evie took an immediate liking to each other, and I’m suspicious of a failed plot to bring the kitty home with us.

First stop: the lovely park in dowtown Blowing Rock, where Evie couldn’t really decide what to do first.  Swinging is always fun, but there was also a giant mud puddle at the bottom of the slide, a rock wall for ages 10 and up and a little boy not paying much attention to his baseball bat.  Decisions, decisions.

Of course, your parents could always take you to a candy and ice cream shop  right around your naptime and refuse to let you grab every sweet you can get your hands on, only to act surprised when you have a semi-meltdown right on Main Street.   That’s always a possibility.  In the end, your daddy will always help you manage breaking up the ice cream cone, though.

 Tweetsie!!!  One of the only places in the free world where women dressed as Old Western  “ladies of the night” are sent to play with children on board a coal-burning vehicle run 1,000 times a day for entertainment purposes and with a carbon footprint that can be seen from space.  But…fudge!!!

Mommy and Evie rocket at the speed of sound through the mountain wilderness.  We were warned by our conductor to beware of burning  cinders from the engine that might fly along side the train.  He was serious.  Did I mention the fudge?

Evie prays for unlimited access to the gift shop.  Mommy asks God  for a bar car.

So, used to be that the cowboys and Indians came, pop guns blazing and hootin’ and hollerin’ onto the train.  I remember from my childhood this being terrifyingly awesome.  Unfortunately, it doesn’t happen anymore.  Now, a bunch of Appalachian students on summer break perform a mostly-improvised skit that elicits mainly yawns and pity laughs.  Bless their hearts.  Stick with the Business majors, y’all. ( Incidentally, yes, that Indian is in a lime green shirt.  So?)

Listen, y’all, I’m sorry for raggin’ on Tweetsie.  I remember it fondly from my childhood, too.  Look!  The plastic horses are still there!  And fudge!  And pink velour cowgirl hats! (not pictured)

Even Daddy got in on the action!

(Isn’t it funny to think how the people in the background of your pictures become like familiar strangers over the years?  These people you’ll never see again become permanent fixtures in the visual recordations of your life.  So.) 

Go, Daddy!

We wrapped up our visit to Tweetsie with a stop at the petting zoo, where most of the animals are too aggressive to pet.  Here you see the llama and the ostrich.  Big announcement: ostriches are bastards. 

Good thing this beautiful face makes up for all the meanie ostriches who snatch your ice cream cone filled with animal feed right out of your hand before you even get a chance to throw some in their pen.

And this face, too.

Back at the house, Evie checks her email and the Dow.  Daddy, unused to a decent air conditioner in his own house, fashions a makeshift Snuggie.

So, there you have it: Mountain Trip 2010.  We came, we saw, we did a little shopping.  Many thanks to Evie’s Mimi for the beautiful house, the beautiful memories and the beautiful pictures in which she never appears because she was behind the camera in every one. (Yes, my husband and I suck.)   Props to Big for his mad puzzle skillz.  I don’t think Van Gogh ever thought “Cafe Terrace at Night” would be sawed into 500 pieces and then put back together again for fun, but I’ll bet his right ear he’d have thought it was cool.  More props to Evie’s Uncle Lee and Aunt Jennifer for their mad grilling skillz and for letting us cheat at Apples to Apples.  You guys rock.

And props to me for actually throwing up pictures of myself in my own blog.  Go, self-esteem!