Last Saturday (October 2nd) was my husband's and my 6th wedding anniversary. Jeremiah arrived a quick 9mo and 10 days after our wedding (our honeymoon lasted 1 night before Tony had to be back to work) and we've never been away from both kids for one night since. Jeremiah has spent the night from time to time with Nana but there's always been Hannah here.
Tony put in for some vacation so he'd have a couple days off and my MIL Cheryl volunteered to watch the kids Fri and Saturday and then on Sunday so we could take the TN hangun safety for carry/conceal permit class.
Friday we drove over to Gatlinburg and got a motel room with hot tub access for the night. We took a stroll down the main drag of Gatlinburg trying to decide where to eat and finally settled on TGI Fridays since neither of us had ever eaten there. The food was *wonderful*. Best meal I've had out in forever! I can't tell you how relaxing it was to sit there, have grown up conversation and eat a meal (hot) without having to get extra napkin, forks, take salt out of little hands...
We took a soak in the hot tub afterward and I'd never been in a hot one, just one with Jeremiah once that was the temp of bath water. I can understand why they're popular because after 20 mins I was soooo sleepy and relaxed! Wonder if we can put one on our front porch? It was nice to lay around on the bed and watch non-PBS sponsored TV and knit on a sock a little while Tony talked to me.
Saturday morning I awoke to my beloved coming into the motel room with a box of a dozen glazed fresh croissants from The Donut Friar which is located in "The Village" in Gatlinburg. They open at 5am! Apparently Tony also sneaked a photo of me snoozing away in the middle of the bed. If you are ever in Gatlinburg at any time of day, you owe it to yourself to hit the Donut Friar. They have the best donuts ever (HUGE eclairs, delicious and almost too much to eat!) and it's so much better than standing in line at all the local resteraunts. Good coffee too, which you'll need to wash down an eclair. We each ate a couple and brought the rest home to the kids.
Then we walked around town a little more, did some browsing in a few stores (and how nice was it to go into a store, look at what you wanted to look at and not have to pry a single thing out of tiny fingers?!).
Then it was time to head over the mountain to the 2nd part of our Grown Up Trip: Harrah's Cherokee Casino. I'd never been, not having been old enough to enter a casino when we married and Tony has only been once since then. We're not big gamblers. He's a bad gambler and I'm cheap, so taking some cash in with us suits us fine. We played some .25 bet card game the whole time we were there LOL! Lucky 7s or something that had rules kinda like anything, straights, flushes, 2 pair, 3 of a kind, etc. If you got 3 7s you got to rub one of 3 pots of gold that appeared and that would be bonus winnings. I lost $10 out of my $25. I think Tony lost $60 LOL!!
The drive from Gatlinburg to Cherokee is a gorgeous 35mil winding road up and back down a huge mountain. I could hang out the car like a dog to look at the view, I really could.
After we left we went into a couple tourist traps in downtown Cherokee to get the kids some "Indian drums", feathered headdresses, etc then it was back home to Cheryl's house here in town. By the time we got there the kids were asleep which was sad to me because we were reall y missing them at that point but we spent the night there, left their presents and donuts and got up early the next morning to take the gun class.
We got done with the class and the written test, which we both passed, by about 1pm on Sunday and finally got the kids back. The rest of the day we laid on the couch, snuggled and watched movies. It was a very nice weekend, indeed!
In retrospect casinos are really depressing as hell. None of the games run off coinage or 1 dollar bills, they all take $5s which isn't too bad. They also give you a "member card" which you put in each game and the more you play, you rack up points that you can redeem as coupons off food, hotel, etc. These member cards are attached to small bungee cords. We only saw 3 other couples our age, everyone else was 65+. Looking around you saw hundreds of old people, tethered to whatever game they were playing and most of them chain smoking, their walker or oxygen tank next to them. Atmosphere of lost hope and dissapointment. BUT they serve alcohol now so if you're of that mindset, you can drown your sorrows (we didn't) and then it won't really bother you LOL.