Christmas gift turned pre-Valentines Day weekend getaway? A success!!
My sweet husband is always talking about how much he loves Bryson City, NC. If he were to ever create a dating profile he would likely say something along the lines of “must love the mountains, camping, and my kids.” Fortunately for me (unfortunately for you my dear gal pals out there) he’s taken by little ‘ol me.
Lucky him. Ha. We get to the mountains as often as we can. It’s where we spend every Fathers Day/ his birthday for an annual camping trip! I wasn’t crazy about it in our early days of dating, but it’s grown on me. It’s sort of like a personal challenge now. “How long can I go in the “wild” without modern conveniences?” ( uhhhh, basically 2 days. Tops.) His love for the mountains, though, has truly rubbed off onto me because I was over-the-moon excited for this little “pre-Valentines Day” getaway that I planned for him as a surprise Christmas gift!
My search began a month or so before Christmas as I was trying to think of an “experience” to gift him rather than something he was just going to throw in our ever-growing-junk drawer. It was sort of a win-win, too, because the idea of a getaway went to my benefit as well (selfish score!). For the record, I could have chosen something tropical if I was being really selfish! But, no, I began my search in his beloved city of Bryson. This is his annual “man-trip” destination, so naturally I wanted to bust that up. Wink. So, Christmas morning comes and all the gifts are unwrapped and all the joy and anticipation is building up inside of me to drop this last little letter in his lap…
Curtis: “What is this??”
Me with a big grin on my face: “Merry Christmas, babe!”
Curtis (assuming it was a hand written letter, I’m sure, because I’m corny like that)
*opens it up to find a reservation for this ADORABLE little
Tiny Home in the heart of Bryson City…*
*insert genuine excitement*
Curtis: “Oh wow!! Bryson!! That means we get to go to the Delicatessen!!”
(this man lives and breathes for a good sandwich)
I had searched on Air B&B for a couple months when I stumbled upon this listing and was grading it and comparing it against the others I had saved. It was when I saw this picture:
… that I just knew. My sweet man LOVES a creek, or any body of water really. Anything that gives him an opportunity to throw a line and possibly catch a fishy. I was sold at that point, and genuinely impressed at the cost. I read the reviews. I scoured the information. I felt super prepared (which, if you know me, is the only way I’ll vacation. Like, with an itinerary and all.) I will be honest with you, this was my first purchase of a stay on Air B&B, so I was a little nervous because of that. I wasn’t sure what to expect. When in doubt, I e-mail or call someone. My middle name is practically “Karen-may-I-speak-to-a-manager.” #noshame. The owner of the Tiny Home, Gina, was absolutely fabulous. ABSOLUTELY. I bothered this poor woman countless times from questions about the area, to the check in process, to directions, etc… and she was so so so kind. I definitely would give her 5 stars in customer service for that point alone. She was quick to respond and eager to help however she could.
The day had finally arrived, it was time to drop off the chil’ren and run to our weekend escape. Naturally, as our luck would have it, the Carolina’s had one of the coldest days yet in the 2020 Winter season… & WE GOT SNOW!
The quick 2ish-3ish hour drive up there was pleasant (we live in Concord, NC) and once we got about 30 minutes away from the town, it began to come down and covering the roads. We were fortunate to have All Wheel Drive and felt pretty secure, no slipping on main roads at all (yee-haw). Curtis was in H E A V E N. This man-child of mine turns into just a regular child when there’s snow involved. He probably would have stopped to feel it fall on his face if he weren’t so excited about our impending lunch plans. Which brings me to talk about our first stop along our weekend stay: High Test Delicatessen.
I’m honestly not sure what Curtis was more excited about… the snow or the sandwich. Probably the fact that he got to watch it snow while he ate his sandwich.
This quaint sandwich destination was so much more than just your average cold-cuts & salad stop. You could smell the aroma of fresh breads, meats, and french fried goodness galore as soon as you approached the front door. Before even stepping in! I really had to take my time looking over each sandwich, but Curtis immediately knew what he was getting. He didn’t even care to check out the daily special.
Curtis ordered the “Filler Up”…
… and I ordered the “Italian Turbo”.
I mean.. is your mouth watering yet?! If it’s not, go back and look at the menu. These hand crafted beauties were gone almost before the server could get back behind the counter. Before she brought them, I watched my husband wait in a different kind of anticipation that I don’t even think I witnessed when I walked down the aisle on our wedding day. HA! That’s okay though, we both get it. We are both food people, er, well SANDWICH people. It’s kind of our end goal to have something like this in Downtown Concord, NC one day. You heard it here first, folks!
Curtis & I were so busy chowing down, and ordering ice cream sandwiches to-go that when we finally came up for a breath of fresh air and took in our surroundings… we realized… everyone else but those who worked at High Test were gone. EEK! The snow had gotten so thick on the roads, that we were left in a snowy-empty town (practically). I wanted to keep walking around and looking in the shops, but being the responsible adults we are *smirk*, we decided to go ahead and check out the Tiny House. We were pretty excited to see it any way, and the GPS said it was only 4 minutes away. How stinkin’ convenient, am I right?! The GPS landed us right where we needed to be, but Gina’s hand typed instructions were also super helpful. She also messaged us before we made our way there to warn us of the possible treacherous roads to get down to the home. She was really “on it” and cared more about our safety than anything else. That’s not something a major corporate hotel chain would have provided, in my opinion. That’s the power of supporting local, honey! The snowy road made Curtis and I a little anxious, and even with the AWD feature on the car, we didn’t make it all the way to the Tiny Home without having to walk a little way.
The Tiny House was breath-taking in the snow. We wanted to call Gina, on the spot, and make her an offer to buy the place. I’m serious. If we could have, and she would have? It would have went down. After settling in and calling everyone to let them know we made it safely, you can bet your butt we jumped into that 104 degree hot tub!! It was perfectly tucked under a basically brand new porch, and overlooked the busy creek. The snow, the sounds of the rushing water, the quiet…. we were in love.
We settled into the Tiny Home after our hot tub dip, and watched some TV (which this Tiny Home had TWO of… I couldn’t get over how high-tech the place was for being its size!) We even took a glorious nap. Parents?? YOU KNOW. You know the nap. The “I’m on vacation and my responsibilities are being taken care of by trusted family members” nap. The one where little feet aren’t kicking you in the face or bothering you to get up to play?!
THE NAP, Y’ALL!!
Talk about hitting the “reset” button. Whew. It was much needed.
After a little while of just relaxing, Gina messaged us to inform us that the roads were starting to look safer and wanted to know how we felt about it from where we were. We went for a walk back to our car to find that the snow began to melt, almost as fast as it had accumulated. Sad. It would have been a “shame” if we were snowed in there for another day (shucks)… but that meant we were able to get dolled up and go back into town for more Bryson City adventures! Even though we were staying in a tiny home, the amenities were not tiny at all. The shower was roomy, the bathroom was clean and modern, and the whole set up was really well thought out. She provided us with towels, linens, bath items… she really thought of it all! I may be kind of easy to entertain and impress, but I stayed impressed the whole time.
Back in town of the sweet little town of Bryson City, we parked along one of the main roads in Downtown and walked to our first brewery; “Bryson City Outdoors.” Curtis and I grabbed a beer and were able to check out some cool camping gear. We even scored a couple souvenirs for ourselves. The beer was smooth and easy to drink (and this is coming from someone who really isn’t a beer drinker.) I always choose a sour if it’s on the menu. I would highly recommend the one I tried that day. It’s too bad I forgot the name of it, but I imagine any craft beer on tap there wouldn’t disappoint. They even had them in cans and bottles if you wanted to create your own 6-pack to go! We drank our beers outside, chatted with some locals, and even got to keep our beer cold by sticking it on the snowy topped picnic tables. We were truly in our element.
We had a blast being silly around town, taking pictures and acting like Instagram models. We joked, “DO IT FOR THE GRAM” a few times, but honestly I think my hubs missed his calling. I think he may have a future in photography. Check out these cute little snaps he took:
Quick plug & shout out to Polished Southern Beauties for my Leopard Top! Thanks for keeping me stylish, girl!
We eventually made our way to Nantahala Brewing for another local brewery experience, and some more sours for me! The gentleman behind the bar talked me into trying a flight, and how does one say “no” to that?! It’s hard to pick a favorite, but I think the Strawberry Rhubarb was a top contender. They also had a watermelon & even a key-lime pie flavor!! Because of the weather, they were closing up the grill to get staff home before the roads iced over and became dangerous. We weren’t complaining, most definitely get home to your families safely & in 1 piece. We wouldn’t have it any other way. You could see the disappointment (and understanding) in so many patrons faces when they were told the grill was closed, which was just a sign to us that the food has to be BOMB. The bar staff was cordial & professional in how they dealt with the inconvenience, and even continued to try to feed us simple appetizers during our short time at the bar. We really were totally content with just a beer or two, any way. We had no where to go and all day to get there… when does that ever happen any more?! Even though we weren’t fortunate enough to try the food at this visit, the company of the staff and the locals at the bar made us feel so welcome that we didn’t want to leave! We kept saying that if our trip were longer, we would come back to try their food menu. But there’s always next time!! It’s already in the books, as a matter of fact, Jack!
We were able to have dinner at a cute Italian themed restaurant, Pasqualino’s, that the chef at Nantahala recommended to us. We filled up on pasta, bread and pizza before finally returning to our Tiny Home & calling it a night (you know, after a second round of Hot Tubbin’… & stuff).
Gina messaged us on the morning of departure that we could extend our stay by 1 hour to ensure safety of our drive out of the area. We were consistently blown away by her hospitality and generosity. She was able to recommend a breakfast spot or two before we left. Saying goodbye to our little safe haven was harder than I imagined! I wasn’t ready for the trip to be over! We even joked that this is what we should have done for our honeymoon. You live & you learn, man!
Of Gina’s breakfast spot recommendations, we chose Everett Street Diner. You see, I admittedly really wanted to go on a side-track-mission to Asheville so that I could go back to my favorite breakfast spot during our honeymoon. I was craving the homemade biscuits and gravy from this one soul-food breakfast place, but by the time we could get there they would have been serving lunch. When I looked online at Everett Street Diner’s reviews, they practically ALL talked about the homemade gravy and how amazing the service was. Ok… ok… I’ll give it a try. No way it’s better than the place in Asheville…. right?
W R O N G.
OH-EM-GEE. That first bite about knocked me out of my chair. I’m not going to sugar coat this, y’all…I’m not hyping this up… these reviews aren’t paid for by any of these establishments… but it was BETTER. It was BETTER than the fancy breakfast spot in Asheville. I don’t know whose Grandma they got in that kitchen, but I wanted to go kiss her. I was in southern-biscuit-and-gravy heaven. The fat girl in me was siiiiinging. I got the “Dixie Benedict”, and I think I would honestly make the 2-3 hour drive just to eat there every Saturday, if I could.
I mean, why can’t I?!
I’m an adult. I have a car. Try & stop me!!
Alas, breakfast was ate and our trip was over. *insert sad face*
I’m always eager to get back to my babies and to routine, it’s just who I am, but I needed just one more day. If you’re planning a trip to this adorable little town? Please, do yourself a favor and book it for at least two days. If not more.
I truly hope you look up Gina & her Tiny Home, and consider taking a trip to Bryson City!! Let us know if the reviews helped you any in planning your trip! If you would rather a home instead of a tiny house? Gina’s got those, too! Check out her website: Gina’s Great Getaway’s. Our family is already planning a trip where we try out the Caboose Camper! Go check it out and let us know what you think. We can’t get enough.
Thanks for listening to me rave and rave about our fun trip!! We hope you give it all a try & have just as much fun as we did!!
Til next time, ya crazy kids.