The Paris of the South

I’m lucky enough to have more than one best friend, and I’m even luckier to count my mom among them.

I know it sounds cliché (especially on Mother’s Day) but it’s true. We do all the typical mother-daughter things: I call her when I’m angry and need to vent, and I call her just to say hello. I ask her for advice. And, of course, I always want to talk to her when I’ve had a bad day–because even though I’m technically a grown-ass woman, I still believe my mom can fix everything.

I also just love spending time with her. We’ve watched a lot of trashy television and visited a lot of wineries. And it’s always a blast.

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Go on, look at how cute we are! Please ignore the freakish reflection of my arm.

A few weeks ago, Mom and I took our first-ever trip together. We decided to visit Asheville, North Carolina–neither of us had ever been, and it was only a four-hour drive from Atlanta. We had no itinerary other than spending time with one another. And drinking wine. Obviously.

We left on a Friday morning, enjoyed a breakfast at Waffle House (“I’m in the South, after all,” Mom reasoned), and arrived in Asheville that afternoon. While our journey was relatively short, it was a beautiful drive. We made a quick stop near Tallulah Gorge, and the mountains in North Carolina were breathtaking.

Our hotel was located in Biltmore Village, so we took some time that evening to explore. There was plenty of shopping–including huge retailers like Chico’s and lululemon–but we preferred browsing places like The Olde World Christmas Shop, which has two stories full of holly jolly Christmas glee. And yes, it was just as incredible as it sounds. I was also a huge fan of Nest Botique & DIY Studio and the Village Wayside Bar & Grille.

 

Vanderbilt vibes. 💰🌷⛰#wanderlust #asheville #ashevillenc #biltmoreestate #biltmore

A post shared by Katie (@katielilybeth) on

 

The next day was dedicated to Biltmore Estate. Since our hotel was so close to the ticket office, we made the mistake of thinking we could walk to the actual estate…only to find out it was about three miles away, and you could only access everything by driving! So, we walked back, grabbed our car, and made the drive to the famous Vanderbilt house.

While I wish that our self-guided tour was a little less streamlined (you have to follow a line, and the path is blocked off with red rope), it’s an absolutely gorgeous place to visit. My favorite room, of course, was the library. Apparently, George Vanderbilt loved travel and books–so I think we would have had a lot to talk about. You know, except for the fact that he was super rich and lived over a hundred years ago.

Downtown Asheville was probably my favorite place to explore. There are so many wonderful shops and restaurants and breweries–you can’t go wrong!

On Sunday, we headed back downtown for the most important meal of the day: brunch. When searching for places to eat on Google Maps, we thought the Tupelo Honey Cafe sounded decent enough–and then IT BLEW OUR FREAKIN’ MINDS. We ordered coffee and mimosas, and had one of the best meals I have ever had in my life. I mean, goat cheese grits?! Sweet potato pancakes?! Is this what heaven is like?!!

(I was under the impression that the Tupelo Honey Cafe was only in Asheville, but on their website, I discovered they have several locations. There is one in the suburbs of Atlanta and I AM FREAKING OUT. Mom, I know what we are doing next time you are in town.) 

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Asheville is a beautiful town, and it made the perfect mother-daughter weekend trip. I’m already looking forward to my next visit: Mom and I have already talked about returning sometime next year, and my best friend will be staying in Asheville this summer. If you have any recommendations, let me know in the comments or on Twitter. I love hearing from you all!

Happy Mother’s Day, Mom. I can’t wait for our next adventure together. 

To all the mamas out there: Happy Mother’s Day. I’m so grateful for all of you, and I hope you get to celebrate in the very best of ways today. I also know this is a painful day for many–so to all the women, mothers, and children who are hurting today, you are seen and loved. You’re heroes, too. ❤️

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