Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Total Eclipse - August 21, 2017

I would be remiss if I did not write about, or at least mention, the Total Eclipse that will occur on Monday, August 21, 2017. I know, you have heard about it, read about and it seems that those of us in the ‘zone’ are about loopy over the whole thing.  I think many of us are!

I say loopy due to the fact that people in my neck of the woods, where the eclipse will be 100%, are renting out their homes, their back yards, their hay fields – any space a tourist can park a car, RV or Motor Home is up for financial grabs.

I read a post on Facebook that states a hay field for rent for the event.  Then a list of rules such as pick up after yourself, no electric or water.  Dogs on leashes and watch kids.  Leave the land the way you found it.  These land renters are charging arms and legs for the event. 

Tourists from all across the county, and the world, are descending on small towns in the path of the eclipse.  My little town (and I do mean little) is having an event in the Piggly-Wiggly parking lot.  All they said was bring your own chairs!  I am not sure why I would want to sit in the parking lot when I can sit in my pool and watch it happen!

Motels along the path have been booked for a year or longer…restaurants are gearing up for the onslaught.  T-shirt sales are making some rich.  And don’t forget the eclipse glasses.

My Eclipse glasses ready for Monday!

Triple A is on TV warning people about how many will be traveling and what to do when you run into a traffic jam.  Maybe they should warn people to make sure they have a well running vehicle full of gas.   Don’t forget a cooler chest full of water or juice and a picnic basket full of food and snacks.  And pack your patience, it could be a long haul.

This is an event in the making, made even bigger by greed by some.  Use your common sense and stay safe.  It is up to you to make sure you and your families are safe and can tell their friends they witnessed the Total Eclipse of 2017.

Photo is of my solar eclipse glasses that I purchased at City Hall in Sweetwater, TN

Wednesday, August 09, 2017

Fantastic Fun Fall Food Festivals – Tennessee 2017

I don’t know about you, but when we travel our main goal is to eat.  I don’t mean just eat for the heck of it, but to eat something different that we can’t find in our neck of the woods.

I will often hear or read about a restaurant and look it up online.  I check the location and the menu and see if there are comments on Trip Advisor.  If it all lines up I check to see what other restaurants are in the same area.  If the stars align, then do a search for a rental cabin. 

Now, some of you I’m sure will be visiting Tennessee at some point.  If you are into food like we are, I found an article that details locations across the state that have food festivals that might be right up your alley, or right up your taste buds!

I know, out-of-state folks think Tennessee is only known for BBQ or Moon Pies, maybe so.  But there are other foods to be proud of.  Banana pudding is a southern favorite and I imagine for Sunday dinner many folks end their meal with it made from an old family recipe.  You can visit Centerville, TN October 7-8, 2017 for their 'National Banana Pudding Festival'. 

Not a fan of banana pudding, maybe The 'Unicoi AppleFestival' is more up your alley.  Stop in and check out the apples October 6-7, 2017.  Remember, an apple a day keeps the doctor away!  While enjoying this red delight you will be entertained as music will also be provided at this annual festival in Unicoi, TN.

There is a festival in Charleston, TN called the International 'Cowpea Festival and Cookoff'.  So, if you are a big fan of cowpeas you might want to head over to Charleston on September 9, 2017.  According to what I read, cowpeas are black-eyed peas, but I will have to take their word for it.  I am a Yankee transplant living in the south and I do eat my black-eyed peas on New Year’s Day for luck, but I am not sure how they earned a festival!!  Maybe this is the year I’ll check out hat festival and find out for sure. 

Here are some more food festivals in 2017 with the links to more information:

Photo courtesy of Pixabay

Wednesday, August 02, 2017

Have you ever considered a theme vacation?

I guess you might have heard of destination weddings?   They are all the rage, but not for everyone.  How about a theme vacation?  That’s something that popped into my brain a day or so ago when I found out a friend is on such a vacation.

He goes, or tries to go, every summer to a few big-name amusement parks for the purpose of riding the roller coasters.  Not the little bitty kiddo kind, the big adult scary kind.  He posts photos on Facebook and just seeing those photos puts my tummy in knots!  He and a few of his buds enjoy it and they always have a great time.

So, with that said, if you are a roller coaster enthusiast that might be a fun vacation.  But if you are not into all the thrills and spills of coaster riding, there are other theme vacations.  Here are a few ideas:


You may have heard of the 80-something year old couple who had visited all but one Cracker Barrel restaurant (I think by now they did visit that last one in Georgia!)  You might not be a CB fan but perhaps you are into pizza.  Why not do some research and find several of the top pizza joints and try them out.  Just think, you won’t have to worry about what to order – just order the same item in several different restaurants!  

We often pick our vacation destination this way.  If I find some great sounding restaurants that might get us riding in their direction.  Such was the case for our recent trip to Murphy, NC.

Murphy's Chophouse, Murphy, NC


A good start would be a theme vacation to the museums in New York City, or Chicago, or any city that has well-known, or very interesting, museums.  Again, you would have to do research on that since everyone has different ideas of what kind of museum they would like to see.  And don’t forget the small towns across the US.  Their museums may not make the top 10 but they might be just the ticket for an interesting vacation.

Baseball (or Football) Stadiums:

That would be a major league vacation – to visit every AL or NL (or both) ball park in the US (and Canada).  I am not much of a baseball fan but I have been to two parks, one the infamous Yankee Stadium in New York and one many years ago in Baltimore, Maryland.  Don’t think this is just for men, many women are very into sports!


There are so many popular beaches up and down the east coast, west coast and gulf coast you might have to pick one region of the country at a time!  For the east coast, there is always the ‘Jersey Shore’ and its fine beaches in Point Pleasant, Seaside, Long Beach Island and don’t forget quaint Cape May.  Venture south to Maryland’s Ocean City where I have spent time in previous years.  Further south to Myrtle Beach in South Carolina to …. well, you get the point…just look at the map, there are lots and lots of beaches.

There are so many theme vacation ideas I’m sure you can come up with a few of your own.  If you are tired of the same trip to your local hot spot every year, try one of ours in Tennessee, like the Smoky Mountain National Park!

You can't visit the park without taking a photo of the famous sign!

Photos belongs to AbbyG