I've written before of our love affair with Asheville, NC. It's an easy drive for us and the town is just so cute. Well, for years, I have heard about the Grove Park Inn, which is this fancy pants hotel just outside town. While Puff and I would love to be able to escape there for a little adult's only retreat, the reason I was anxious to visit at this time of year was to see the National Gingerbread House Competition.
I wasn't really sure what to expect, but on a dreary rainy Sunday at the end of November, we figured it was our best option to get out to do something fun as a family together. (I was also feeling significantly better on my anti-nausea meds, so I was ready to get out of the house for a change!) We made the drive uneventfully, if not slower than usual because of the rain, and got there late morning. There was a line to get in to park, but I have to give their staff a shout-out. They were standing outside in the rain guiding and helping people to find parking and they were all super nice. Yay for customer service!
They had the hotel beautifully decorated with lots of trees and little nooks & crannies full of different levels of gingerbread houses. We snacked on a bagel and looked out the window at the gorgeous hotel (which I'm certain is much more gorgeous in spring and fall) and just enjoyed our time together. It was really a laid back day, which is so different for us!
Some of the top winners were absolutely incredible and seems near impossible that someone could make that out of something edible! What time and dedication... that I do not have! Bimmer did start to act up a little bit, so we opted to wrap up the wandering and hit up their restaurant, Edison, for lunch. I figured it would be mediocre and overpriced hotel food, but it actually really surprised us. (Probably shouldn't underestimate such a nice establishment!) They had an awesome beer selection for Puff, an understanding waiter for Bimmer, and a delicious fish sandwich for ol' preggers over here.
Highlight of the day? When Bimmer decided to stand on a chair in the restaurant, sing "Ring Around the Rosey" and scream "asses! asses!" as loudly as possible while looking at the gentleman at the next table.
Stay classy, folks.
Sidebar: My friend's new book released today on Amazon, Natural Love. Make sure you stop on over and buy it!