Knoxville Getaway, Desert Door Sotol, and Wigwam Village Tee Pee Trip

We are back home from our getaway! What a fun time. We got to Knoxville yesterday at exactly Noon, having left around 8:30 or so. We gained an hour on the way. We had stopped in Cookeville for a tiny breakfast and more caffeine (unsweet iced tea for me) so our tummies would not be empty.

We arrived and I’m just in love with their condo. It’s perfect for them. They have a screened porch room on the back also! It was so nice.

Around 1 or so we ate a wonderful lunch of chicken salad on croissants – it was the Chicken Salad Chic’s chicken salad. I had saved my fruit also from chic filet as I had no spoon or fork so we included it on the lunch table along with other deli items and chips. It was a perfect lunch and then we set about doing Total Wines and then McKaye’s book store.

Total Wines is always a total blast especially on weekends when they do the tastings. I think we did about five tastings? Oh my. We ended up spending quite a bit on upgrading the liquor cabinet. lol. Both couples. The race was on money wise. We beat BIL and SIL by about $20. I stocked up on a few wines. We were out of cucumber vodka for the girly herbal weekend happy hour sippers. We bought Cognac which is good for those chilly nights and heated up in the microwave for 13 seconds while watching a favorite Netflix show right before bed. And then there was this…..

Sotol is made from this……..

The taste to me was – well- we all said it was hard to describe, which is why you have to try it. I could taste the “plant” in it. And since I like herbal, plant type drinks, it seemed like a strong plant based vodka.

SOTOL <—-You can read about it here. They call it “Tequila’s little brother”. Desert Door’s is actually made in Driftwood Texas, a little town South of Austin, TX. The one on the left is not aged and was pretty smooth – served extremely cold. The one on the right aged in oak barrels and a little more potent – ok a lot more. Still was very good – although heavy liquor not my thing. I’m all up for a taste test.

Texas Wallpaper for your phone background

There might have been another booth with a TX table cloth. lol.

We had a great time doing all the taste tests and then headed to McKaye’s bookstore. We bought a few things there. Then headed back to the condo. We got to see our nephew and his baby, Anna. And also we had to share Anna’s little potty. It actually makes a flushing sound if you push the silver handle, lol.

While getting ready to go out to dinner, BIL Kevin realized he had lost his key to his car. We ran out of time looking as our reservations at Firebirds were waiting. So we took our car and had a fantastic dinner in honor of Kevin’s birthday.

I had prime rib, baked potato and salad. Honestly could not eat it all. I don’t think I can eat as much as I used to. I had to take some of it home to the condo fridge. I think Susan was going to finish it off today as I didn’t want to have to nurse it back home on the drive.

Oh and we had planned a massive “Easter egg hunt” of sorts for Kevin’s key. We were going to keep looking til we found it. Guess who found it? Moi! After I kept asking Kevin to tell me again and again what he did when he got home. We found it in the walk in closet when he had changed clothes and laid it down. Yay! I hate to lose things and I know it was bothering him so we all kept looking til we found it.

We slept so good last night. It was a sofa in the bedroom that lets out into a kingsize bed. Wow. We had plenty of room and being that I was tired from the week and that George woke me up early to leave yesterday, I was so glad to get a good night’s sleep and sleep until l woke up – as was everyone’s plan. Susan had the coffee pot set to where the first one up could hit the button.

As I woke up it was thundering outside and beginning to rain. The storms were not severe but just a nice morning thunderstorm. I loved being able to roll over and rest some more. After George got up, I got up. And we headed out the door to be greeted with coffee from Susan. Everything was so nice. Kevin and Susan fixed breakfast of eggs, sausage and grits, and muffins.

We had thought about having bloody Mary’s and Mimosa’s but I guess we just were all content to keep sipping on coffee. We had a fun morning chatting about anything and everything until George and I told him we’d get out of their hair so they could finish out their weekend doing some other things.

We got home and headed to the store and bought quite a few things for the next couple of weeks. We needed some healthier options so we bought lots of veggies and salads and apples and so forth. I bought some squash that looked good.

And these pics showed up in my memories on Facebook so I had to share. This is us in Kentucky at the WigWam Village (Tee Pees) near Mammoth Cave. We would meet our friends Don and Lisa. We had loads of fun times on these trips in the early days.

Where we go from here?

So we are back home, settling back in and getting ready for the work week. I spent so much time there last week that on Friday it literally made me ill (sick) to go to work Friday. I was NOT feeling well and I could hardly even make myself go and do more returns, but not only did I finish quarter end a day early, I got the month end done on Friday. My month end is mini- compared to quarter end – it’s really about eight states I have to pay taxes in for the month. So I began organizing my world load for the next 8 weeks which is catching up on everything I couldn’t do last month, plus getting ready for the new quarter, moving files, storing files, and upgrading processes and procedures, and I have a big long list. Would you expect any different?

Also I have a few things on my list to do to prep for Mother’s Day. And just some extra things I need to look at and decide on the calendar. I’m going to do a Mother’s Day outing and I’ve chosen to go to the Hermitage (near by us) and learn of Andrew Jackson, see the garden’s area, and then do the wine tasting. I’ve wanted to do this for some time and this is the year. I have to look at the calendar and make our reservations.


I did not video anything from our Knoxville trip for YouTube. I just needed a break and complete getaway from everything. I’m so far behind in videos anyway – and my video’s end up being time sensitive and seasonal because so much of our lifestyle is wrapped around the season itself. And while I do have plans to catch up the channel – I’m also getting my head around a few things to do differently that will not be so time sensitive so it won’t matter what time of the year it is or how much time is passed. So the channel may change around some. However it evolves, it will be on my time frame. I still very much want to do them. I refuse to let life’s situations keep me from doing things I want to do. We’ll get it all done but it’ll just take longer to get things done. And this weekend, I wanted to be all in – plus we were in someone else’s home so all I did was take a pic of the outside, and then Anna’s little potty in the restroom. We needed a break. And we got a little break. And enjoyed our time with family. And we have some more “little breaks” we are planning excursions for as well – upcoming. It’s been a busy year and we have petered out in so many ways. I want to read more, cook more, plan more, write more, video more. I want to be out in nature more, travel more, and enjoy more. I want to work on goals and dreams and to do lists, lol. The fire is coming back in me when I allow the toxic things in my life to evaporate.

The Schedule

The schedule is pretty brutal, but when we get away for even a day, we feel like we are enjoying life again. Or even being home for a day will do that. Those days are so rare now. So today I’m feeling hopeful. But I do understand that tomorrow begins another Full Time work week + commute + plus taking care of Mom’s needs as my PT job – another doc appt, grocery run, church day and Mother’s Day come to play. I have so much laundry to do and it’s ready to be rebooted. So I’ll be back as the schedule allows and will pop in for another post. Meanwhile, Ozark is back and there’s Downton Abbey to keep us sidetracked for our nightly wind-downs. I think that is what I’ll start calling it! Our nightly Wind-Down.

What did YOU do this weekend?

New Video! Late Summer Adventures Near Nashville

Ok so, if you click “watch on YouTube” it gives you the best options for viewing, subscribing, and commenting.

In this video, George and I get out into the community and eat at restaurants surrounding Nashville, and see friends again and eat German food, and we head out to Fairvue Plantation and I took pics of the grounds. (I did not include the inside as it is a person’s home, but I took pics of the historical mansion and grounds). This was a fun video. My comfort with Final Cut Pro is showing, I think. It’s always a learning process as it will do so much. But I was able to do this one with ease, let’s just say.

If you would like to see more of these, please subscribe, give me a thumbs up, and comment on YouTube itself. It really helps the channel. And my encouragement.

There’s not a lot of “us” in this one, just spots here and there, but I do have some future videos coming up that I do have footage. I am always a work in progress. A lot of time we are just busy and I take whatever photos and footage I have for that time frame and try to make hay out of it, lol. But I’m trying to be mindful of taking more videos.

Well, I just got a text from Mom and Fancy is sick. I need to call and see what is going on. Always something.

Moving Continues, Antique Revolving Bookshelf, and Cedar Tap Brewery Visit in Lebanon, TN

Mom’s Antique Revolving Bookcase, aka “The Beast”

Yesterday, instead of doing Christmas decor, I decided it best to go on and get Mom over to the new place and do the Christmas decor Saturday. I’ll be a day behind on the decorating and I might have to short cut some of it, but it is what it is. I can decorate better when there is less going on in the house, so it sounded like a better plan.

So much to my surprise we had two full car loads of Mom’s stuff and could have used a 3rd and 4th if we had included the remnants of the basement too, with the fragile lamps and clocks. We also were not able to get all of her clothes. We plan a 2nd double run to her house today to take things and unload, further disrupting my Christmas decorating. Mom said not to come, but we forgot to send Thanksgiving leftovers and quite honestly I need the closet space as I’m also moving bedrooms this weekend. And George is just going to have to help decorate the tree while I get the other stuff going. I’m not going to have time to do it all this weekend. I don’t even need to be writing this blog but – old habits die hard and I like to do something enjoyable while waking up and drinking coffee.

So for the pic above, George is working on Mom’s revolving Antique book case. It doesn’t matter how hard I try, I end up getting involved in having to move this darn beast. If this house sells, the book case sells with it. lol. I’m just kidding. But it hasn’t stopped me from nicknaming it “the beast”. It’s too fragile to hold books but Mom puts crystal bowls on it for display – you know – she loves her glassware.

George was able to get it on the dolly – only one wheel was on it properly but somehow we managed to balance and toggle through her house to the farthest corner (of course) of the house and I was leading. The dolly wanted to slide away so and the bookshelf fall back onto George. I had to have the dolly slide into my foot to stop it continually and every time I did it hit George in the head, lol. Mom had to go hide and couldn’t watch. I don’t blame her. I didn’t want to be there either. I had begged for us to get help – someone other than me. There was not much lifting involved but there was some when things would start to go awry, I would put more weight on me and we had to move it further back into the corner once we set it down.

I tried to help Mom do things but I don’t know where she wants anything to go and she didn’t either. She said she wanted to figure it out on her own little by little. I would be the same way I guess. She is functional with kitchen, pantry, fridge and appliances, washer, dryer, clothes, and finally bed set up. She has all of her day to day items there now moved from here. So it’ll be pieced together over time and we’ll bring in more boxes and such week to week.

We went and did her huge “move in” grocery run. She is well stocked. The store was out of her frozen corn she likes but we’ll get it next time. Since we had forgotten the Turkey and dressing – I felt bad and it wasn’t near as good of a dinner but we brought in Fried Chicken and Baked Beans and Potato Salad for her dinner – already cooked so she would have something good and not have to cook anything.

We surprised her on her store run by throwing in a few treats for her sweet tooth – butter pecan ice cream, nutty buddies, and ice cream sandwiches. George threw in a few things he knew she liked. Mom was paying for it, but she still seems to like the surprises when we throw them in. She had wanted to go to the store but decided against it after packing her immediate day to day things. She had to stop several times – she just can’t move much without overworking her heart.

George had been wanting to try out Lebanon’s new tap room “Cedar Tap” near the square. So we went there at my suggestion beforehand. We often like to catch a brewery and tap rooms are ok too that have the local favorites from around and also even some from other cities craft breweries to try.

They had a Czann’s on tap and even though it was dark I liked it. It didn’t taste stout but tasted like a medium brewed beer as I call it. I like one large on taste and have kinda left behind the pilsners and lighter beers for the kolsch, hoppier, and even IPA’s – east or west coast, and also the hazy too. My taste is evolving over time. It was a nice and fun much needed break in between our little work day there at Mom’s.

We then did all the grocery shopping, and put all that up and George worked some on her “flex room”. And then headed home.

Tired as I was, I moved Mom’s hanging clothes to the sofa until we load the car today. And I made my bed up with sheets and pillows and moved my night things over – I take a probiotic at night and have some sleep spray I use, Vicks under the nose if my nose is stuffy, and iPhone charger. I will say that the bed felt good and was more supportive of my back and frame – especially if I sleep in the middle where the old mattress has not worn down. The mattress in my office served me well and was quite supportive for what I needed as well as soft, but it felt good to sleep on a more firm mattress. I think I like a soft top but firm underneath. It felt good to be back in my own bed.

I’ll eventually get all my clothes moved over to the other closet. Not sure how much time I’ll have today and tomorrow to do so. But I am going to go get another cup of coffee and see if I can rustle up George to bring up the Christmas boxes. I don’t think I can do it this year getting them from the basement all the way up here. My body has taken a beating this year and I’ve aged tremendously from the last, my muscles are deteriorating for some reason. I may have to go back on the wellness company’s vitamins that I do only periodically now, and make myself to do the shakes, because I felt the best when I put the nutrition in my body. My muscles were the main reason I joined the company in the first place.

Anyway, I’m going to get off of here and go get the 2nd cup of coffee. Here are some of Mom’s lamps and clocks we will be taking to her. They are in the basement downstairs which is a storage area of sorts where the previous owners took the upstairs cabinets and installed them downstairs when the remodeled and we are glad to have the extra storage space. I didn’t want you to think this was my kitchen, lol.

The lamp on the left is an old lamp from George’s parents. A nice lamp but needs new shades. We just don’t need it upstairs right now. But Mom’s lamp is the white one. And below in the pic, the pretty beige one is hers.

I’m hoping these are the missing TV remotes. I had texted Mom to ask but she just said “ok” so I’m not sure if these are the ones or not. But there might be some cords in there that they need for her Roku. So the TV is not set up yet.

Oh and Fancy dog, the statue – we gotta get it over to her.

Ya’ll have a great weekend. It’s going by too fast. But I did get my Christmas cards in the mail. Wooooo Hoo. Something accomplished. And we are waiting on Lowe’s to see when our dishwasher will arrive and be installed. They were supposed to call yesterday but we heard from no one. So hopefully they will call today. Might not be delivered until next week though. We shall see.

I am going to go work on Christmas decor or swapping my closets if I can’t get help.

Ya’ll take care. What you doing this weekend? And are you getting alerts? Or just having to remember to come by and see me? Trying to figure out what is going on.