my friends, monday night was super festive in my world. if i wasn’t in the christmas spirit before, i certainly am now! you see, lina and i gathered a bunch of warm clothes and headed over to waynesville, nc (about 30 minutes away where my parents live + where i used to live for a period of time in my earlier life – i lived there when i first met lina, so she’s visited waynesville a lot) to take part in a fantastic american holiday tradition:
a typical small town, usa christmas parade!
my parents have lived in waynesville for the past 22 years, my bother grew up there as a teenager, and i lived there for a while when i was previously married. it is a typical, cozy mountain town. complete with a little main street with shops, cafes, bookstores, restaurants, and a general store. the prefect little place for tourists to visit as they explore the deep, heart of the mountains of western north carolina. there isn’t much else to the city, except the main street, a few other places downtown, and the people. it’s a pretty slow-paced, relaxed place. what makes this community something special is two things: the people who live here – good, simple, country, outdoors-loving, family-oriented people + the fact that it is the gateway into the great smokey mountains. therefore, it’s a friendly, cute place with an amazing abundance of nature all around. sound idyllic? well, it is.
waynesville is the town that taught me to appreciate and love small town life. there is a charm and simplicity about living in a community where everyone pulls together and helps one another. and, as i was there on monday, i remembered everything that i loved about living there. i don’t want to live there again right now, but the memories + the feelings + a complete appreciation of the town crept up in me as i walked the streets and was surrounded by the people, especially old friends + family members.
when we got there, lina and i went directly to our favorite café – panacea. i am pretty sure that it is my favorite café in the whole world. if i could re-create it and add a few “liz touches” to my own café somewhere, then i would be one happy girl. in any case, we met my parents there, sipped on coffee and chatted for about an hour before dinner.
after dinner, we headed to main street to claim our spots on the sidewalk to watch the parade go by. and we got some goooood spots. by the time the sun went down, the parade began – and it lasted for over an hour. the air was cold, but we were so excited that we didn’t even notice. a few times, lina was so overwhelmed by the whole experience that she shed a few tears in the midst of her giggles. i was just one giant big ball of laughter and smiles, watching and enjoying the people and the floats go by.
i have not been around so much christmas cheer in a very long time – if ever. it was a night of absolute pure, simple joy. and i am still on a high from it all!
have you found your christmas cheer yet?! do you have any special christmas traditions that warm your heart and bring you a sense of nostalgia? share with me!
love + light xx