A good friend of Jim’s got married in Cincinnati, Ohio, this past weekend. When we found out about the wedding, we immediately decided to turn it into a road trip, minus the little guy. We secured Grandma and Pop (Jim’s parents) as babysitters and then started to plan our trip. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, it is so important to spend time with your partner, after you have kids, without the kids. We hardly have date nights, therefore taking little vacations, like this one, is the best way for us to reconnect and have some adult fun. I know some people think we are crazy for taking trips without Jimmie at such a young age (we went to Disney last year when he was 10 months) but honestly, I think I would go crazy without these trips. I need some time away to unwind, relax, and spend time with just Jim. (Don’t worry, I missed little Jimmie like crazy!)
We left on June 8 at 6:30 AM. I insisted on stopping at Starbucks right as we hit the road because all good road trips begin with Starbucks. By 7, we were cruising towards Virginia. We drove through West Virginia and arrived at our first stop in Natural Bridge, VA: Foamhenge. What is Foamhenge? Foamhenge is a replica of Stonehenge, which is located in England, made out of foam. It is kind of tricky to fin, and if you aren’t looking for it, you won’t have a clue that it is located in Natural Bridge, VA. I would recommend using the exact coordinates that can be found on the Foamhenge website. We passed the white fence (and gate) before using Google Maps on our phone. (You can’t see the sign below from the road. There is nothing on the road telling the unknown traveler where Foamhenge is.)
I have wanted to go and visit this weird site for quite sometime (it’s free!). It was well worth the stop. It was a great day and we were the only ones there. It is a small walk from the road. As you can see, it is nestled in the mountains. We were only there for about 15 minutes and then we were back in the car and off to the National D-Day Memorial in Bedford, VA. The memorial is part of the Blue Stars Program. It’s free for active-duty military personnel and up to five family members between Memorial Day and Labor Day.
We were at the memorial two days after D-Day. It is a beautiful, serene place that commemorates the allied invasion of France. This memorial is a must see if you are driving through Bedford. If you do visit Bedford, there is a restaurant a few miles away: Liberty Station. I recommend the bean burrito, it was delicious.
After lunch we had about 2 1/2 hours to our final destination of the day: Damascus, VA. Not only does the Appalachian Trail run through this town, so does the Virginia Creeper. I had never heard of the Virginia Creeper before booking a cute little cottage called Ruby’s Rest on AirBnB. I HIGHLY recommend not only visiting this adorable little town, but also staying at this cottage. The cottage is in the homeowner’s backyard, but don’t let that scare you away. They are really nice people and make you feel like you are old friends. The place may look small but it has a really big bathroom and sleeps up to four people; there are a ton of books to read and great photography to look at.
The Virginia Creeper is 35 miles of nature’s finest. Most people bike it, we just walked it a bit since neither of us have been on a bike in over 15 years (unless spin class counts). One day, we will be back to ride the trail. I hope to stay at Ruby’s Rest again, maybe even with Little Jimmie. (There is a really cool tree house in the yard that he would LOVE!) That night we ate at Hey Joe’s on Main Street; the catfish tacos were amazing. The owners are quite the characters. It is kind of like paying for dinner and a show with these guys. Check out this little dive taco place if you are ever in town.