north carolina thanksgiving

Day 1: 

It snowed overnight.
I got in around 3am, so today counts as the first official “day” in North Carolina. We stopped at a few nostalgic places, like the Hiawassee Dam and Field of the Woods.


The dam was freezing cold, but still as big as I remembered. The million steps to the top of the hill at Field of the Woods were just as grueling as I remembered, too (especially in the cold). We found a canine friend that was wandering about the property to “guide” us to the top (don't tell him, but we've been there plenty of times).

Yes, you're reading that right. Raper is a popular family name in the town.

We made a pit stop at the old gas station/thrift store hybrid on the way back up to the cabin and found some interesting things. Then headed home for a cozy night in.

Day 2:

Thanksgiving day! The Brown family arrived at 6:30am sharp. After a couple hours nap, my cousin MaCayla and I went out venturing on the property.

We found some leftover snow to make a makeshift snowman, though if we're being honest he was mostly compacted ice and dirt. Some sticks and 3 rocks later, and the little guy came to life. We left him shortly thereafter to go explore, finding some sheets of ice and icicles.

 Since we have more than a few mouths to feed, we roast two turkeys on Turkey day. One is fried in a deep fryer and the other is spun rotisserie style on the bonfire my dad builds mid-day. Usually by the end of dinner there's nothing left but bones.

Day 3:

And on the third day he rose again” has never been so true before. After our turkey comas, we came back full force on Black Friday. Being that my family is anything but traditional, we ventured out into town to find something active and fun to do.

We ended up at The Lost Sea Adventure, which is a cave tour in the cute little town of Sweetwater, TN. The caverns were vast, but the amount of history underground was incredible.


During the tour we came across writings on the walls from 1765 (I even managed to incorporate a few clips of the caves in the video at the end of this post). Unfortunately I didn't get many pictures due to the extreme lack of light underground, but this is another one of those “you have to experience it in person” kind of things. Trust me.

Later on that night, we found a small place off the side of the road called Santa's Berrie's. It didn't seem like much, but what we discovered was a diamond in the rough. The wonderful couple, Mr. and Mrs. Claus, invite you into their home to do as you please. Whether you take them up on their offer for hot cocoa, tour their bee hives and chicken coops, or simply relax on one of their sofas, Santa's Berries farm is a refreshing twist on southern hospitality.


The last day we spent moseying around various flea markets and poking around the woods where my parents have property. Nothing is more refreshing than a hike in the woods after spending so much time in metro Orlando.

Overall, it was a great break, spent with great people and having a great time. I just got home and now I can't wait to go back.  

PS: Here's the bonus video I mentioned!

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