Have I mentioned lately how lucky I am to have a boyfriend who is not only super patient with me when I’m having a hard time but will also literally do anything to make me happy? Well, I am. I’m so super thankful for him, too. Last Sunday after spending every weekend of the new year at home either working on the van or working on the house I started to feel really… worn out and restless. I was sick of being at home every weekend and not getting to do anything fun or really anything to get myself out of my head a little bit. It was starting to feel like all the weekdays and weekends were the same and blending together. I hate that feeling. I was explaining all of this to Zach and he literally just got his phone out and starting looking at Airbnb places, he really gets me. This lead to me spending a few hours looking through all the mountains had to offer and finding the Hobbit House up in Jefferson, NC. 5 days later we were off on our little mini-adventure.
We had been to West Jefferson together before and had a great time, it was actually where we took our first trip together earlier this year. I wasn’t looking specifically here but the price was right and the place was cute as heck. West Jefferson is a super quiet little town, not a whole lot to do unless you really enjoy watching cheese get made, but it’s such a great setting with nice hiking trails on Mount Jefferson and an awesome spot to watch the sunset. Plus it was only about an hours drive from Banner Elk and snowboarding. We planned to have a chill day Saturday so we woke up and had an awesome breakfast looking out over the pond, explored the land around the house we stayed at, went to town and did some wandering, did some yoga, watched the sunset and ended up going out for dinner because there weren’t pots big enough to cook food for our fat asses. Which actually lead to a super weird discovery – the Beyond Burger.
We went to Boondocks Brewing for dinner, and I straight up told the waitress I was gonna have a weird ass order because I don’t really do beef but I definitely do bacon (whatever, shoot me). So I ordered a veggie burger with no cheese but with the bacon. After I took one bite I was suuuuper confused. It was pink like beef… kinda tasted like just a bland ass regular burger. I was fully convinced I was going to feel like garbage that night. After spending the entire dinner taking bites of burger and looking at each other in extreme confusion we finally asked the nicer looking waitress (she had dual buns, I mean, duh) and she told us about what it was. She said they are made of pea protein and dyed with beet juice and that’s what makes them pink. Honestly, it was pretty unnerving just because I know red meat makes me not feel well and it was so realistic. The place has some good options for vegetarian, vegan, and gluten free. The space-buns waitress also told us that they have a new chef who is super into vegan cooking so it’s definitely worth a stop if you’re in the area. Also, we don’t really drink but it’s a brewery so, uh, beer and stuff.
I knew the house looked cute and cozy, but honestly the photos on Airbnb didn’t do it justice. There’s no bathroom, just an outhouse with literally 2 buckets. This was super interesting because it didn’t get above 34 degrees all weekend… you really start to appreciate a warm bathroom after one middle-of-the-night trip outside to pee (hello cold toilet seat, we are not friends). But it honestly wasn’t that bad. The place also had a super cool outdoor bathtub and shower, but it was too cold to have the water on out there without the pipes freezing. It had a fully-functioning kitchen (aside from the aforementioned pot issue), and the warmest, most comfortable bed ever. It actually made us realize that a full-size bed would totally be do-able for the van. So basically this weekend trip just gained us a 10 inch closet in the van. Win.
The setting was just exactly what I needed. Forest out of every window, nothing on the agenda, and time to just be and explore and enjoy. 100% recommend this place. As far as West Jefferson goes, you’ll absolutely want to check out the hiking trails at Mount Jefferson. The views are pretty awesome and it’s an easy hike. Bohemia in town is a great little coffee spot with some comfy couches and a bangin’ chai latte.
Sunday we got up early, had breakfast, packed up the car and headed to Sugar Mountain. We took Hwy 88 all the way into town and it was a treat. The scenery was great and there was basically no one on the road on a Sunday morning. When we got to Sugar we realized pretty much everyone had the same idea as us – it was packed. But the snow makers were pushing out some fresh snow and the sun was peaking out from behind the clouds all day. It was great.
After riding until just about closing time we headed straight to Mountain Grounds in Banner Elk. We went there when we were in town over Christmas and knew they had the goods. Zach got a pour-over and I got their special seasonal latte which was basically like a s’more and it was the greatest thing ever and fueled our trip home. We made it back with just enough time to take a shower since it had been since Friday morning… and go to sleep. We only almost ran out of gas once!
These little weekend adventures give me life. They give me a chance to be so absorbed in other things that I’m not worried about how fat I feel like I’m getting, how annoying my job seems to be sometimes, and how much actual stuff we have to do before we can take off in the van. It also really motivates me because whenever we travel we always spend a lot of time talking about the van and how great it would be to have done. It also always gives us a ton of ideas for small tweaks to the layout and things like that. It’s nice to take a break and get away from everything so that we can be really driven to come back and get to work with a completely renewed mindset.
Click here to watch Zach’s Vlog of the first day!