Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Rob Left His Heart in Nashville

I knew back in Arkansas that I wanted to spend Thanksgiving in Nashville. I found a nice state park about an hour outside of Nashville for us to stay. The Montgomery Bell State park has three lakes one with a swim beach during summer, a hotel, cabins, campground and a golf course. Apparently there are several "resort" state parks in Tennessee, I guess they like their luxury while camping.

We arrived on Sunday and stayed until Saturday. I wanted to make sure we got there early enough in the week since the campground was first come, first serve. I didn't expect many people to camp on Thanksgiving but I was mistaken. When we arrived there were plenty of spaces to choose from, we picked a big spot that had no one around. By Tuesday the park was full, of RV and tent campers. I couldn't believe people would tent camp when it was so cold at night, but they did. The weather was warm during the day, most days and cold at night, between 25 and 30 degrees. It only rained one night and the next night the water on the RV was frozen because of the cold nights.

Around the Campground

We spent most days at the campground playing at the park right next to the campground. We also played catch with the football, and of course I was AWESOME at it!! We also went on a hike that went along the creek that runs through the campground. We drove around the park to check out the golf course and hotel. We saw two of the three lakes, we couldn't really find the third. We also drove around the towns near the state park. There are some gorgeous houses up there, I wish I would've taken pictures of the areas surrounding the park. I could definitely see us living there.
Those tires were tied to a tree near the creek. And, yep that is someones dead deer there in the space near us!!

The drive to Nashville wasn't bad. We went downtown twice. The first time we weren't able to walk around, we just drove because no one was dressed for getting out of the car. The second time we went we came prepared. We did go to the Grand Ol' Opry, there we got out of the car and walked around. The girls loved all the squirrels and dancing to the country music. We went in the gift shop and looked at all of the overpriced items. There really wasn't much else to do.

Grand Ole Opry

We walked around the Bicentennial Park which chronicles Tennessee's history. The park also provides a great view of the capital building. The park has lots to see and also would make a great place to have a picnic. After spending time at the park we drove up to the downtown area.  The Titans stadium is across the river from downtown Nashville. There weren't any games going on while we were in town. We walked in some of the shops and I was amazed at how expensive boots are. We also went to the original Grand Ole Opry which is now the Ryman Theater. The original was closed years ago and the new Opry was built in another area of town. After a few years the original was reopened as the Ryman. We also walked on the country music walk of fame (I think that's what it was called???) and walked past the Nashville symphony hall (not sure of that name either...). There was so much to do but the girls were getting hungry and complaining that their feet hurt so we walked back along the river to the car.

I have spent probably every Thanksgiving with my parents so it was weird to eat without them. We were able to make a turkey, which we were unsure of in the beginning but we found a "lil butterball" which turned out to be perfect. We let the girls help make the stuffing, which is a sacred activity in my family. My dad never let us help break up the bread for the stuffing because he was worried we'd mess up the bread chunks. The dinner turned out great, we had potatoes and gravy, turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce (the kind that comes in a can and is sliced into perfect circles, the only kind I can eat), rolls, and green bean casserole. It was all delicious!! I wish I had some leftovers right now, just thinking about it. I was happy we were able to pull off a Thanksgiving in our tiny little rectangle!

Turkey Time!!

Next stop? Alabama to spend time with Rob's dad. While we were driving through Tennessee Rob realized he loved Nashville and never wanted to leave. He said a few times he was fighting the urge to turn the car around and drive back. So, here we are in Alabama but dreaming of Nashville. Rob has decided to look for work out there and if he gets something we will probably end our adventure and settle down in Tennessee. It bums us a little bit to think about stopping but we also don't want to pass up an opportunity to live where we have fell in love. If we do end the trip any time soon we will keep the RV and still travel to Florida and the East Coast, it will just have to be vacation trips. We also still need to get up to Illinois and someday I want to backtrack to Montana to visit Yellowstone National Park.

For now we are here enjoying Alabama and thinking about the future!

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