Thanks for joining me today. I am back at home in Raleigh, North Carolina after visiting my parents in Fairfax, Virginia for the past two weeks. As many of you know, my mom is recently battling Ovarian cancer so I was there supporting her and my dad as she had surgery and gets prepared to start chemotherapy this week. Thank you to many of you for your thoughts and prayers. I truly appreciate it. I was away from my family for almost two weeks. I missed my family a ton but everything went smoothly with my husband taking on the role of single parenthood with some awesome help from his mom for the last couple days.
Last Saturday my mother-in-law (who was visiting and lives a couple of hours away in Charlotte, NC) told my husband and I that we could have a date night and she would watch the kids. She's really awesome isn't she? After a busy morning with the kids and running errands, my husband and I met in our bedroom to make dinner plans around 3pm.
Me: What do you want to do tonight?
Him: I don't know, just get out I guess. Have you thought about what you want to do?
Me: Honestly, I haven't had a minute to think about it so far today. What should we do?
Him: We could leave earlier and drive to Pinehurst and have dinner.
Me: How far away is that?
Him: About an hour.
Me: That would be awesome. Shoot, maybe we could just stay the night and return early in the morning. Do you think your mom would mind?
Him: Let me ask her.
He returns 1 minute later.
Him: She said no problem. Let's pack a bag and go.
Me: Really? Great! Where will we stay?
Him: Don't know. Let's figure it out when we get there.
Me: Awesome! Let's go!
Literally, 10 minutes later, bags packed, we are downstairs and headed out the door. We have never been that spontaneous in our lives! I love it! You gotta grab those opportunities when they come. Life is short and precious. You never know when the opportunity will present itself again.
Pinehurst, North Carolina is an old, quiet, and charming golf community full of pine trees and sandy soil. It's the kinda place where you want to hop on a bike and ride around checking out the houses and flowers then stop for a lemonaid:
We drove from Raleigh to Pinehurst in about an hour:
First, we drove to Pinehurst Village and walked around the charming shops. I just bought one item which I will share with you this week as I am going to use it in a different way than what was intended for a craft/art project. I can't wait to share it with you! The local shop keepers were very friendly and recommended several various inns to stay the night all within walking distance.
We ended up choosing The Pine Crest Inn within walking distance of the village/shopping area. Our room was only $85 a night which included breakfast. This is NOT a full service hotel. One of my uncles used that phrase a long time ago, "We only stay in full service hotels". I laughed back then, but I gotta say, my husband and I both agree, we really like staying at full service hotels now.
Full service hotels have:
-free shampoo, conditioner, and lotion in the bathroom
-a hairdryer and iron for your use
-central air conditioning and heating (not a wall unit hanging out a window)
-a flat screen tv
-a mattress that was purchased after I graduated from college (20 years ago)
You get the picture! We both laughed about it and agreed that for one night, for $85, who cares! But next time we do this, we're staying somewhere else.
Here's the charming (though definitely NOT full service hotel), The Pine Crest Inn (lots of golfers!) Built in 1913:
Next, we decided to check out the charming cottage homes that surrounded our inn:
Both Steve and I decided that this house was by far our favorite. We both thought it could be our dream retirement home once our kids are out of the nest and in college. Of course, there's just the little problem of needing a couple million, that's all:
After dreaming about retirement homes and talking about all of the characteristics we couldn't live without, we showered for dinner. We choose another charming inn to have dinner at, Magnolia Inn, within walking distance:
We had an amazing dinner: appetizer of cheese, fruit, and breads, I had a delicious lobster and shrimp pasta, Steve had a blackened salmon with rice and veggies, and of course, wonderful wine.
We decided that we could return to Pinehurst and neighboring small towns at least once a year for a quick night away. There were many interesting looking antique stores that closed by 5pm that we would like to come back and visit. We'll do that next time when we plan the trip as opposed to leaving about 3:00 spur of the moment.
This night away to reconnect with my husband and dream about our future together was just what I needed! I pray that you get just what you need, when you really need it, too.
Happy decorating & living,