Sunday, December 27, 2009

An Alpine Afternoon

We attended church this morning in our living room under the teachings of Pastor Daddy. I purposefully did not set the alarm last night because our church offered no kids' Sunday School classes this morning. Perhaps I should have more faith in the character training I have offered my children; perhaps I should just assume that they will sit quietly--all 4 of them together--through an entire church service. But, well, our service with Pastor Daddy was quite good, and we had such a nice day afterwards, so why subject myself to such assumptions?

After "church", we headed to Cracker Barrel for brunch. Of course you can't go wrong with Cracker Barrel since you can order anything from grits and eggs to salad and chicken. And, yes, I had a breakfast of grits and biscuits and gravy. Only Mark and Michael opted for lunch food.

On our way home from brunch we discussed the long afternoon that lay ahead of us. Take down the Christmas decor? No, that can be put off 'til tomorrow. Watch TV? No, done that. Too much. We opted instead to make a little trip to Helen, Georgia.

Helen is a little town that looks as if it was snatched from Germany and tucked snugly in among the North Georgia mountains. Even your standard fast food joint offers a little Alpine charm.

We enjoy Helen. It's touristy, but not obnoxiously so. Plus, on December 3, 1994, Mark and I spent the better part of a day here after which we took a drive in the mountains just north of the town. It was atop one of these mountains overlooking more of these mountains that I became the soon-to-be Mrs. TravelDaddy.

So not only is this a location which holds sentimental value for us, but we also always have lots of fun in Helen! The beautiful Chattahoochee meanders through the middle of town. During the summer, the kids love to wade in the river, skipping pebbles but being careful to avoid nailing the nearest tourist tubing down the river. No wading today, though, as it was a little chilly!

Although riding the horse and carriage was not in the budget today, at least we got to say hi:

And, yes, although we've certainly had enough sweets this holiday season, you don't pass this store without indulging:

What better way to work off that sugar than in this park, which is smack dab in the middle of the town? It sits high on a hill, though, so it is virtually invisible to tourists on main street. Which works out well because that means fewer visitors to the park. My kids, of course, had a blast in this secret place.

There are other points of interest to the little town as well. There is the one and only grocery store:

This quaint, little church sits on the outskirts of town:

And across from the church is this landmark: the Nacoochee Indian Mound.

Then, of course, there is this:

Always a reminder that we are indeed in the south. The South or not, this was a lovely day all around!


Anonymous said...


Arby said...

Great pictures!

CrossView said...

I love the Pastor Daddy services here - with our Pastor Daddy. And with your crew, you definitely had the "2 or 3 gathered".... LOL!

The town is beautiful! Looks like so much cool stuff there. We have a huge Indian mound thingie here. Lots of mounds and history. And that grocery store? Too adorable! Those sky shots are awesome. And I haven't been to a real park in years. And... I wish it was closer. We'd definitely love to explore there!

I love that you got engaged near there. So sweet! =D

Momma Such said...

Wow, looks like a ton of fun! Great photos by the way! Especially loving that last one! :) That town looks like a great place to visit! :)

tsinclair said...

Looks like a fun day!

Mitzi said...

I'm impressed with your spontanaity. (sp?) :) Fun!
Yes, my hubby and his brother do look alike.

LoriM said...

Neat pics. Looks like fun. We have a very similar town in Michigan, called "Frankenmuth".

They are famous for chicken dinners and a huge year-round Christmas store. Also a huge outlet mall nearby.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, K & M and family!

@nnie said...

I have looked through these pictures several times... such a fun and unique afternoon! Looks like beautiful weather...

Linda said...

I will be saving this post, and adding the town to our "places to see when this time we go east" vacation. The river is remarkable. Is there camping near there?

dclouser said...

What a fun day! I love Helen. Thanks again for the great time at your place on Christmas Day! Had a great time (in spite of the kazoos...).

Bernie said...


I love your pictures! You did such a nice job and what a fun afternoon.