Tag Archives: North Carolina

Asheville Farmer’s Market

Who doesn’t like a good Farmer’s Market?! All of the fresh food and crafty goodness pouring out of the vendor’s area.

Doesn’t that homemade honey make your mouth water?! What about these beans?

Or other jarred goodness…

Not in the mood for food? Then step on over to the crafty area!

They have home decorations and wall hangings.

They even have musical instruments!

Still not finding what you want? Then hop over to the Nursery area.

You can grab some bird seed for your feathery friends…

 

 

Or some perrrty flowers…

 

They even have some exotic plants. I’m not sure what this one’s called, but it looks like a Hippo eating cabbage.

Regardless of what you’re looking for, try to buy local. It’s important to support our local vendors/businesses. Plus, the food is fresher!

Riverside Cemetery

I’ve always had a fascination with cemeteries, especially old ones. As I walk through looking at the headstones I often wonder what they did in life, if family members still visit them, if they would be happy with the inscription on their tombstone. I know I’m not alone in this, as my family enjoys it as well. AND…if you’re thinking that my family is just weird, Edgar Lee Masters published a book (one of my favorites…not so oddly enough) basically written the by answering the same questions I ask myself. While visiting with my family in NC, we stopped by the Riverside Cemetery. Talk about gorgeous!

 

 

They have some beautiful mausoleums. Some have stained glass windows, others have items sitting on the stone tops (inside) as a tribute to the person. This was one that I thought was pretty because of the life growing around it. 

 

 

Then, signs of Spring were popping up. There were these beautiful purple flowers sprouting up everywhere!

 

 

My Sister-in-Law and I agreed that things would be more interesting if people would put cause of death on the tombstones. We saw one that had the cause of death a railway crash.

 

 

We did see some interesting statements on the tombstones though. My favorite of which was:

 

 

There were soldiers from all different wars buried here. For example, there were a few from the Revolutionary War:

 

 

Some from the Spanish-American War:

 

 

There were also some famous North Carolinians that you may recognize. First was O. Henry (AKA Sydney Porter…think Gift of the Magi):

 

 

 

I’m not sure why people were putting pennies on his headstone, but I assume it probably has something to do with him being accused of embezzlement when he was a bookkeeper in Austin, TX (yes really…). However, it may have some other meaning as well.

 

The other famous writer was Thomas Wolfe. He has a couple of quotes from his works on his headstone. People put little rocks on top of his headstone as a tribute:

 

 

 

One of his more notable writings is Look Homeward, Angel which is an autobiographical account (although it is a fictional work, many of the characters are built on his family and his experiences in NC) of his life in Asheville, North Carolina and the death of his brother (who was only 26).

 

 

Since Thomas Wolfe was an Asheville native, his home is now a memorial site and for a dollar, you can tour his home. We drove by it but didn’t get a chance to do the tour.

 

 

The information center at Riverside Cemetery has a walk through tour print out that you can use as you look through the cemetery to learn about some of the other famous individuals there. Some of them are just famous North Carolinians and some are national figures. If you’re in the area, it’s worth stopping by and taking a look.

 

Biltmore Estate Stables

One of the pleasures of going to the Biltmore is being able to ride in their horse drawn carriages. On my last trip to the estate I stopped by the stables to see the beautiful animals. My first impression was “wow…this is quite small.” The stables is in fact one of the smallest parts of the Biltmore estate.

 

The lion is part of the Vanderbilt’s family crest and is seen on both buildings in the stable area. Inside the first barn were the Biltmore Draft Horses. I wasn’t able to get close enough to touch them, but they look so lovable don’t they?

 

 

In the second area of the stables were the smaller horses that I’m sure probably pull the smaller carriages.

 

 

 

The horse on the end, “Ol’ Paint” as my Dad called him, seemed interested in what we were doing there. I imagine they don’t get a lot of visitors there.

 

 

Behind the stable area is a pasture for the rest of the horses to “horse” around in. Yuck yuck yuck! lol…they were pretty calm until I started taking pictures. They got a little rowdy (nipping at each other) the longer we stood there, so we didn’t stay too long.

 

Biltmore Estate Second Visit

A couple of years ago I went to the Biltmore during Christmas. The trip was enjoyable, but all of the plants were in hibernation for winter and the gardens were barren. I just got back from the North Carolina where I had planned on going back to the Biltmore to see it in all it’s glory during the Spring. Unfortunately, I got there about a week too early!

The skies were overcast and the wind was very chilly. All of the trees were still without blooms and the garden just had small green shoots of tulips showing. So, I guess I’ll have to go again…this time in the summer when it’s guaranteed to be bloomed out.

The Biltmore Winery

I’m not normally a wine person, but I enjoy a white wine now and then. Could I name the top wine makers? Nope, probably not. I just know what I think tastes good. I do enjoy going to wineries and tasting their different selections. It’s the best way to be introduced to new wines.

When Mike and I went to the Biltmore, I was excited about going to their winery. Conveniently the hotel is quite close to the winery. Coincidence? I don’t think so!

We didn’t go inside the hotel, but I’m sure it’s quite lavish given the rest of the Estate.

The winery itself is a nice building with a little bit of an old world feel.

There are large barrels of Champagne as you walk in. The entire room is very clean and sterile looking. I love the way the barrels look stacked together.

Then when you walk a little further down you enter “The Cellars”. This is where they keep all of the old bottles of wine.

I can’t remember the oldest bottle they had, but the cellar area with the cool stone walls and the dusty bottles definitely gives a feeling of age. They also had some champagne cellars but I wasn’t able to get a picture of that.

When you’re finished taking the self-guided tour, you can go to the tasting room where there are many employees ready to wait on you. This was one of the best parts of the winery! They also have grape juice so if you have kids they can “taste” with you.

 

When you’re finished taste testing, go over to the food area where you can pick up Biltmore wine, tons of good and rare foods, wassail, and other accessories. Each year Biltmore has a different Christmas wine. This particular year the Christmas wine was outstanding. I can’t speak for any other year!