First, we stopped in one of our favorite cities, Atlanta. We met up with special friends of ours at the Atlanta Buckarama. We all enjoy hunting, so these outdoor shows are fun for our whole bunch. That night we made our way east, looking forward to being in Sunday services with even more of our friends. Nathan preached both times in 2 different churches. The fellowship in North GA is amazing. It's definitely one of our favorite places to go to church!!!
Monday morning we headed further to north. My sweet husband had a special idea! We revisited our honeymoon spot in Helen, GA. Us & the kiddos were all very excited! The alpine village is so beautiful! We picked one of the many little German restaurants & ate a traditional German lunch. This was a 1st for us, & surprisingly, all of us enjoyed it. The weather, even in August, was awesome! We tubed down the river for hours. What a FUN adventure that was! The rocks made small rapids in the shallow waters. We are convinced that there is nothing more fun on this earth for $3 each! We were all VERY impressed & would love to do that again sometime! Then, we strolled around the village shops enjoying the ice cream, candy, & fudge. The kiddos all bought several souvenirs. Then, we loaded up for a curvy ride up the mountain roads for a small hike to see this beauty:
After our hike, we drove even further north...in fact, we rode up to North GA state line. Nathan has a cousin who owns North GA Taxidermy there. How cool is that? We own South GA Taxidermy, & he owns North GA Taxidermy? We didn't even know each other 'til we meet through the GA Taxidermy Association a few years back. Now, we are all very close. Andrew comes down to see us, hunts, & they can both work together. We have been blessed to meet him. We are all the same age & share a love for the outdoors! This is the 1st time we have visited his place!
Andrew's Place Hand Built By His Grandfather,
Which Is A Part of Nathan's Family Too
His Beautiful Kitchen He Recently Remodeled
Using Rough Sawed Lumber
Over the next few days, we all enjoyed spending time with Andrew. As you can probably tell, he has a beautiful place! Here in South GA, we are not use to the rolling hills that are filled with cattle & horses, mountain streams, less humidity with cooler temperatures, basements which make your houses 3 story, or being woke up at night by the BEAR IN THE YARD!!! That was an experience! Still as much as we love where we live, we both miss the open windows & sleeping as you hear all the beautiful sounds of nature! After the kiddos would go to bed, we would all visit out on the porch for hours talking & laughing...catching up on all the funny stories from yesteryear when we didn't know one another even existed.
The kiddos LOVE Andrew too!
He makes our big family feel right at home!
On the way back home, we made a few more stops. One was in the tourist town of Blue Ridge. It was also a lovely little mountain town with lots of quaint shops & restaurants. Since it was Wednesday, we also made one last stop to a friend's home to go to church with them. They are our special friends who also own a taxidermy shop. Their shop is Alvoy Taxidermy in Covington, GA. The kiddos loved seeing their pet turkeys & chasing their rabbits all over the yard! Mr. Ray smoked up some mean chicken & Ms. Judy cooked us a DELICIOUS home cooked meal full of garden vegetables! It tasted like home but even better since I didn't have to cook it! Lol They are such a wonderful couple! Not everyone can take all of us in, feed us, get us ready for church, & make us feel right at home all at the same time! The church service afterwards was very touching. We look forward to being with them again in the near future as Nathan accepted the invitation to preach a Homecoming Sunday there. After service, Nathan was a great trooper who drove us a few more hours home while we all slept!
This was a very refreshing vacation for us! We enjoyed church services everywhere we went, fellowshipped with lots of special friends & family, ate tons of great food, fished, swam, hiked through beautiful country side, tubed down the river, spent tons of time as a family, shopped 'til we about dropped, & made it home safe! Thank you Lord for such a wonderful vacay!