Blue Ridge Parkway

The Blue Ridge Parkway is a National Parkway that stretches from Shenandoah National Park in Virginia to Great Smoky Mountains National Park in North Carolina. The parkway provides 469 miles of scenic beauty along the Blue Ridge Mountains. The Blue Ridge Parkway has several visitors centers, campgrounds, and exits to cute little towns along the route.

We started the Blue Ridge Parkway on a foggy morning in Shenandoah National Park and hopped on and off the parkway all the way to the Smoky Mountains.

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This time of year is especially pretty because of the fall leaves. There are endless beautiful views along the drive. The road is a well maintained two lane highway.

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One of our favorite stops along the parkway was Asheville, NC. If you like handmade crafts and art then Asheville is the place for you! Asheville is dedicated to crafts and art with hundreds of shops to explore and places to take classes to learn a new craft.

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This is the Folk Art Center on the Blue Ridge Parkway. There were tons of handmade items such as Jewelry, Quilts, Furniture, Wood Crafts, Pottery, Clothes, and so much more!
Along with driving and seeing the beauty of the mountains, there's plenty of hikes along the parkway. We especially love hiking to waterfalls and there were several we got to see!

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The Blue Ridge Parkway isn't the only National Parkway in the USA. A National Parkway is a highway for recreational driving along a historic route that's maintained by the National Park Service. Other National Highways include the Natchez Trace in Mississippi, Alabama, and Tennessee, Colonial Parkway in Virginia, Skyline Drive in Shenandoah National Park, and John D. Rockefeller Jr. Parkway that connects Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks. 


Tahoe Tuesday

Hi Everyone! It may not look like it in this photo but I've been extra mischievous lately.

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For example Michelle was eating a pretzel today and I jumped up and tried to eat it right out of her hand before she knew what was going on. I wasn't quick enough this time, but next time I'll get it.

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We are currently camping near Great Smoky Mountain National Park and will be heading to Atlanta later this week. I'll let you know next week if I succeed in stealing any food.

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Tahoe Tuesday

I'm back again for another Tahoe Tuesday and looking cuter than every, look at my eyes here, cute right? I'm balancing on the back of a chair here and it takes a lot of concentration.

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Well, last time I posted we were in Gettysburg, PA. We've since left Gettysburg and traveled down to Virginia to see Shenandoah National Park. Then we drove south on the Blue Ridge Parkway. We are now in North Carolina outside of Asheville where fall is in full swing. Its nice and pretty here in the mountains!

All this cool weather makes me want to take a nap so, I'm going to get on that.

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Tahoe Tuesday

Oops, I think I slept through the last two Tahoe Tuesdays! I realized this morning I hadn't written a post in a while... Matt and Michelle and I have been exploring Gettysburg PA and enjoying fall. Here's a photo of me looking out the back window at the pretty trees.

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Ok time for another nap, it's one of my favorite activities.



Gettysburg Pennsylvania was once a normal town with farms, businesses, and schools until the confederate army tried to march through in July of 1863. The confederates had marched with General Robert E. Lee up the Appalachian Mountains and were planning for a battle in Harrisburg PA, which is further north than the town of Gettysburg.

However, when the confederates emerged from the mountains in Gettysburg the union troops engaged in battle. The once normal town now became a battlefield. People were forced to hide in their cellars to avoid being shot by the battle happening in their own backyard. One woman, Jenny Wade was baking bread from the union troops in her kitchen when she was struck in the neck by a stray bullet. She died leaving her sister who had just given birth to a baby during the fighting.

I was surprised to hear how close the fighting was to private homes for the people of the town. We were even told little boys would watch the battle from the sidelines after school.

The battle at Gettysburg was one of the bloodiest of the Civil War and the battleground itself is a very somber place. You walk on the actual fields where so many died. The battle lasted for three days and left the town with more dead bodies of soldiers, horses, and severed limbs from soldiers who needed amputations than the town knew what to do with.

The Soldier's National Cemetery was quickly planned and the soldiers who were buried in shallow graves on the battlefield were reburied in the new cemetery. The battle was over July 3rd and the cemetery was dedicated in November. President Lincoln made the 80 mile trip from Washington DC to give his famous Gettysburg Address, a two minute speech. A famous orator gave an inspiring 2 hour speak before Lincoln spoke. It is said that no one clapped for his paltry 2 minute speech.

We took the driving audio tour of the battlefield and learned a lot. We also joined a park ranger led tour of the cemetery and another which demonstrated what it was like to be a soldier during the civil war. Each day that we visited the battlefield we learned a little more, and more of the story made sense.

There are over 1,300 monuments throughout the park put in place to honor the different people that fought in the battle and mark strategic positions. Here are our photos from our visit to Gettysburg Battlefield.

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Devil's Den - troops hid among these large rocks on both sides.

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The Wheat Field was a battlefield (the size of a couple of a few football fields) which changed hands one day multiple times and was one of the bloodiest places of the battle.  Though the wheat shielded your body from view, it did nothing to stop the enemy bullets.

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Looking from the Union lines to the west - toward the mountains that the Confederates first marched out of.

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This is the battlefield for Pettigrew's Charge. The plaque below illustrates the attack.

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Pickett's and Pettigrew's Charge - through this open field pictured above. The two flanks of the Union lines had been strengthened, so the plan was to attack the middle, weakened Union lines.

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The National Cemetery

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Check out the rifled barrel of this cannon cast in 1862.

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These are the graves of the Civil War Soldiers. They are organized by state. There are many unknown graves as well.


New York, NY

We were so lucky to take a day trip to NYC while we were camping in Upstate New York! We figured, when you're that close to NY, you have to go!

We started our day with a drive to the Poughkeepsie train station, then took the train to Grand Central Station in Manhattan. After we arrived in Manhattan we took the subway down to the Wall Street Station. We emerged from our underground travels and spent the rest of the day walking the streets of New York City!

Here's a picture of our route for the day. Overall we walked about 12 miles! Theres so much to see in NYC that every step we took was fun and worth the walk-

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Our first stop was the Trinity Church, very pretty-

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Then we stopped at Wall Street!

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Next we walked to the 9/11 memorial. Wow, what a surreal place.

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This is the base of one of the Twin Towers. It's now a memorial to all those that died in this building on 9/11. There's a second memorial just like this one where the other tower stood just next to this one.

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This is the New World Trade Center called the Freedom Tower. It's right next to the two world trade center monuments where the twin towers once stood. It's still under construction-

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This is a tree that was planted next to the Twin Towers that survived being buried in the rubble-

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After seeing the 9/11 memorial we walked to The High Line which is a park built on top of an old train track in the Meat Packing District.

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View from the High Line-

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This is a window over a busy street with theater seating so you can watch the traffic go by below you-

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Cars stacked up for storage!

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Next up we went to Macy's!

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Then of course over to Times Square-

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Moving on, we stopped by Radio City Music Hall and Rockefeller Center-

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We then headed toward Central Park. We wanted to see a lot during our one day in the city so we did not mess around!

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There's the plaza!

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Coolest looking Apple Store!

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Finally, we've made it to Central Park-

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After all that walking we were ready for a big dinner! Luckily, my college friend who is cool enough to live in NYC joined us for dinner!! We went to Shake Shack and had burgers, fries and custard!

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After dinner we strolled back through NYC toward Grand Central Station to catch our train back to the Airstream!

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We had a full and magical day! NYC did not disappoint!