Sunday, December 30, 2012

What the Art Teacher Wore #48

Christmas in the Smokies: I managed to wear this almost everyday while on our vacation in the Smokey Mountains. Not my best look, but fishnets and heels just weren't gonna cut it on these trails. backpack: borrowed from a friend; jacket(s): I'm wearing two with two more shirts underneath. Mountain Hardware; scarf: Urban Outfitters; hat and fleece headband: courtesy of hub's work, Meinl; cargo pants and long johns: army surplus; sneakers: New Balance
Well, happy post-Christmas/pre-New Years Eve to you! I come to you completely overdressed in layers of clothing and under dressed in overall look. When hubs and I decided to spend Christmas in the Smoky Mountains, I did pack up some stylish duds but they never left my suitcase. Because everyday's agenda involved a hike up some mountain or another, I opted to be comfy and warm. So you'll have to forgive my lackluster look and suffer through my vacation photos aplenty. Enjoy!
The Smoky Mountains, Gatlinburg, Tennessee. We left for Gatlinburg last Saturday morning. We took our time and stopped by Knoxville, Tennessee for shopping at two of my favorite vintage shops in the area, Four Sessions Vintage and Nostalgia. Lunch at The Tomato Head was delish. Our hotel in Gatlinburg was pretty high in the Smokies. This was our view of the mountains the following morning.
After leaving Knoxville, we managed to make it to Dollywood in time to meet up with some friends, see a couple shows and ride some rides. Knowing we'd be back for more Dollywood-tasticness, we splurged on some annual passes. Normally the hubs and I take pretty poor photos but these aren't too shabby for us.
Okay, I was trying to snap a shot of this sculpture outside of the Wild Eagle ride because I thought it was pretty cool. What I didn't realize at the time was that it appears this poor unsuspecting dude is about to become an eagle snack. It cracks me up each time I see it! A side note: the moment they pulled the much-too-tight-for-my-taste harness over my head, I asked to be removed from the ride. The young guy strapping everyone in gave me a raised eyebrow and a "Really?" Knowing that I'd have a freak-out-fest if I was not released immediately, I gave him an, "Um, yes. Really. Please! Right now!" Needless to say, that's all it took. So, sorry, can't give you a review of the ride!
The day after our Dollywood adventures and my "get-me-off-this-ride" meltdown, we spent the day hiking. It was a chilly morning and much of the trail was covered in a 2" sheet of ice. But the huge cave at the end of the Alum Cave Trail was worth the slippery slopes.
At least three bridges made from giant logs were apart of the trail. At the end of this bridge, you had to hike inside the cave and climb a large stone staircase. Being in the shade meant that each step was a sheet of ice. I took to crawling up the steps and hoping hubs would break my fall if I fell.
Ya'll see that ice? You had to watch your step and your head. As the day went on and the sun came out, icicles were breaking and crashing to the ground. It was pretty scary as there would be no warning, just a sudden SMASH! on the ground. We managed to scramble up this slick trail pretty quickly.
At Alum Cave. The cave had a very large overhang which kept the ground here dry. It was still very chilly but the workout from the hike had us stripping off our layers. The overhang had huge patches of ice sliding off of it so we didn't stick around too long.

Hubs snapped this photo of me slipping and sliding across some ice. He likened it to the infamous photo of Big Foot. Sadly, I do see some similarities. Those hairy legs look especially familiar.
Remember the view from the outside of our hotel? Well, this would be the inside. I know, don't look at it too long. The funny thing is, both hubs and I are afraid of heights. So when we'd get off the elevator, we'd walk as far away from the overlook as possible. He was brave enough to snap this one photo for me. "Maybe you should take another to be sure you got it," says I. "I'm sure it's fine." Translation: You ain't gettin' another photo, lady.
The following day, hubs and I met up with our friends and decided to hike the Chimney Tops Trail. It was a pretty intense 2.5 hike straight up a mountain. My out-of-shapeness was really beginning to flair up about midway through the hike. I had to stop and tie my shoes a lot, if you catch my drift.
The view from the top. Only 20% of the folk that take on this hike actually make it to the top of the summit. The map said it was a "scramble" to the top which, I learned, has nothing to do with eggs. In hiking terms that means something like, "there ain't no trail, just a slippery vertical climb." Sorry, that's not my bag. Hubs, however, is now a proud member of the 20% club.
And thank goodness for that. Look at these beautiful photos he snapped from the top. You see that cloud at the top of the frame? Kinda gives you an idea just how high up he was.
Tennessee is such a beautiful place.
Christmas day found hubs and I taking the driving tour of Cades Cove and making our way back home. Tomorrow we are taking another road trip to explore more of Tennessee.
I hope you all have a safe and fun New Year! I'm sure to be spending mine with two of the biggest party animals I know, hubs and Asha the Cat. Thanks for dropping by and allowing me to share my endless vacation photos. I'll be back soon with a new Anthropologie DIY!


  1. Great pics of the Smokies! Been there two times (all the way from Europe) and loved it!

    Happy New Year!


  2. Anonymous12/31/2012

    You guys are so cute! I am so jealous that you went to DOLLYWOOD!!! So much tacky fun, fun, fun! The Smokey Mountains look gorgeous and what stunning hikes :)

  3. Anonymous12/31/2012

    Great pics.

    Happy New Year!

  4. I was born and raised in East Tennessee in the foothills of the Smokies (as were my parents, grandparents, great-grandparents, and so on). I didn't get to go up for Christmas, so these photos were a real treat! Thanks for posting them. And I'm glad to see that you love Nostalgia! I try to stop there every time I'm passing through Knoxville with time to spare.

  5. Anonymous3/20/2014

    Great pics. Been part of the 20% club, 3 times!


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