This past week, Ava and I joined my parents for a week in South Carolina. Joe was unable to come with us as the resort we were staying at had no WiFi. So, he stayed behind with Indi and a bathroom in dire need of some sprucing up. More on that in a later post.
So, onto Pickens, SC. This was by far Ava's longest car ride with the ride there taking close to 7 hours (factor in 2 nursing stops, 1 bathroom break and 1 gas break and lots of horrible rain). We stayed on a golf resort although none of us play golf. It was meant to be a nice relaxing week and by all accounts, I think we all had a nice relaxing time. The only downside to the week was Ava's wacky sleep schedule! She decided it was cool to wake up every night at around 2am and then again at about 4:30am. For the first 10 minutes or so, I tried my best to get her back to sleep but I was right next to her in the bedroom and my bed creaked horribly, so after many futile tries, she ended up in bed with me. I was afraid I would be creating really bad habits that would be impossible to break once we returned home, but for the most part, sleep has returned to normal, with wake-up time now 5:30 instead of 6. We're working on that. The other weird thing Ava did was refuse - and I mean *refuse* - to take a good nap. We'd read her stories, sit with the pacifier - all the usual naptime routines - but she'd start screaming. Bloody murder. And the screaming would continue until you gave in, took her downstairs and sat with her until she fell asleep. The only nap I got all week was when I sat with her till she fell asleep, then fell asleep myself for fear of waking the creature if I moved. Sigh. I was just a little tired at the end of the week.
I'd never been to the mountains of SC before and I must say they are quite beautiful. So lush and green and cool. It was really a nice spot for a relaxing week. We mostly stayed at the condo, watching movies and reading magazines and sorting out recipes (Mom and I both brought along our ever-growing collections that were in need of some trimming). Most of the sight-seeing things were at least 1.5 hours drive so rather than spend 3 hours in the car each day and deal with a fussy baby, we stayed local.
On a lunch trip out, we stopped by possibly the most beautiful native plant garden I've ever seen. My garden aspires to look a little like it. Loads of native wildflowers and shrubs and most of them were waiting to bloom. I can only imagine the colors of all the flowers come summer time.
On the way home from lunch, we stopped at one of (if not the only) South Carolina's operating mills. There were several old buildings with various artifacts in each one. Had a nice time strolling the grounds.
In the evenings before dinner, we walked around the resort, hiking up the mountain a bit to find a beautiful waterfall. Another evening we strolled down to see the horses.
Another day we visited the Pickens County flea market. I was hoping for something like our flea market here, with some antique-type stuff, some yard sale stuff, some food and plants. There were some plant stands, some food stands (with yummy strawberries) but for the most part, it was filled with loads of cheap products. Tables and tables of toiletries, tissues and toilet paper, lotions, sunscreen, deodorant, formula, cookies, chips. Not sure where all these items originated, but I wouldn't buy any of them for fear of any active ingredients being long expired. As Joe said later when I was telling him about this, there were "slim pickens, in Pickens". Har har!
All in all, I lovely vacation despite the baby who would not sleep and the Mommy who couldn't get any sleep!
Enjoy the pictures!