Friday, June 25, 2010

Hot Fun In The Summertime!!!

Is it hot enough for you?? The days of summer are upon us, but that's o.k. because there is so much fun stuff to do in the North Georgia Mountains!

First of all you can always come shop at Gatewood Hall, our AC is on and we have lots of new stuff to show you! This week we received some new rustic crosses from True Riches they created a new smaller size that we love (we asked them to create this new size for us and they did! Thank you Steve & Jill!!) We also received some new crosses that are made out of recycled Coke bottles they are so neat, that last time we got them in they never made it on the floor because one of our customers saw them as we were getting ready to put them out and she bought all of them! We also have a new line of glasses that are so beautiful! These colorful glasses have a brocade design and look great to mix and match; they are available in high ball and rocks sizes.

With Independence day coming next weekend there will be concerts in the park Friday night! Saturday July 3rd is the Annual Parade in downtown. The fun starts at 10AM so come get your spot early. After the parade come over to our back parking lot because we are told that the Amazing Seed and Feed Marching Abominable Band from Atlanta will be playing for your pleasure. Saturday night head out to lake Blue Ridge for the fabulous fireworks display!! It is sure to be a wonderful weekend and we can't wait to see you!! (Be sure to check out our Summertime Playlist below...some of our summer favorites!! Let me know what you think.)

Friday, June 11, 2010

Surf's Up Blue Ridge!

You have probably read about Stand Up Paddling in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal or even this months Southern Living magazine but, you might not have known that this fun and fast-growing activity is available right here in Blue Ridge. Thanks to Chris Tilghman and his company Surf Blue Ridge you can catch this new wave in water sports. This sport provides core strengthening, endurance, balance and oneness with the water and nature. With roots in Hawaii, SUP has expanded into mainstream surfing culture globally.

The sport has flowed inland from the oceans to our beautiful lakes and rivers. No surfing experience is needed. Whether you seek the peaceful enjoyment of nature, power paddling or a downriver rush, we are told that SUP is an activity for everyone of all ages!

Inspired by a lifetime of water sports, Chris Tilghman brings the first stand up paddle company to the North Georgia Mountains. Chris has over twenty years experience surfing some of the world’s best waves in Puerto Rico, Costa Rica, Cape Hatteras, California and Hawaii. He spent five years living on Kauai’s North Shore with his wife Rhonda and honed his skills on 15-20 feet high waves.

In 2006, our friends Chris and Rhonda made their home in Ellijay (and we are thrilled because they are great people!!). Wanting to provide a unique experience for enjoying the local waters, Chris is excited to introduce Stand Up Paddling with the Hawaiian spirit of aloha and surfing.

Stop by their cool, new store front on East Main Street in downtown Blue Ridge (near the train depot, beside Twigs to Furniture, The Real Estate Connection and Three Sisters Fudge). You can also call them at 706-889-9747 or check out the website at You are going to love Chris and Rhonda be sure and tell them that we sent you!

Monday, June 7, 2010

Let's Celebrate Springtime in the South!

Is it just me or is this one of the prettiest spring seasons we've had in a long time? Shawn and I love the south in the springtime (hence the Indigo Girls song "Southland in the Springtime" on our blog play list). I love old southern Hydrangeas, Magnolias and Gardenias and it just seems that as I have been out and about I've noticed that the Hydrangeas this year are some of the deepest blues and purples that I can remember, and my Gardenias and Magnolias are going crazy at my home in Marietta. I take full advantage of this bounty and have bouquets throughout my home... I even haul them to our mountain house!

I moved to North Carolina in early May of 1973, I was only an infant (o.k. I'm lying but, I was pretty young). When I left Topeka, Kansas it was not great weather and things were still pretty brown, as our plane landed in N.C. I was overwhelmed by all of the green trees and quickly thought to myself this must be why they call it Greensboro.

We moved into an old neighborhood with huge trees, gigantic Magnolias, and enormous Gardenia and Hydrangea bushes. One of our neighbors introduced us to these wonderful unfamiliar flowers. To this day I can remember going into the Kale's old home (it seemed very large to me back then) with the attic fan running (yep, they had no AC!!) and the smell of these powerful flowers wafting throughout every room in the house...I have dearly loved the south ever since!

I remember telling Shawn's late grandmother Margie Hall about those Gardenias, they seemed almost elusive to me now because while I found those little "greenhouse" varieties I missed those big "rose-like" blooms found on the old fashioned, overgrown, southern kind. Margie had a green thumb (we know where Shawn gets it!) and she promised to "root" me some down at her little "getaway" place she had kept at the beach. She described a few different ways to do this and she made it sound very easy. Shortly thereafter she sent Shawn home with a few plastic gallon-milk jugs full of "rooted" Gardenias direct from the coast of North Carolina! Shawn planted them not knowing that a few weeks later we'd get a wild hair to sell our house and build another (same exact floor plan just a little bigger and with a basement, and a few upgrades we decided that we couldn't live without, literally only a few blocks's a long story about loving your home that I'll share at a later time...) Anyway Shawn dug those little Gardenia bushes up and planted them at our new home, and they have flourished...actually almost overtaking one of our entrance gates to our backyard. We may end up selling that house but I pray that we can take some of those fabulous plants with us! We enjoy them so much, and they are such a wonderful reminder and celebration of Shawn's very special Grandma, Margie Hall!

So- to get to the point (thank you for letting me share my happy spring memories!), let's continue to celebrate spring! Come out and enjoy a lovely spring evening in downtown Blue Ridge. Please join us at for our second "West Side Block Party" this Saturday June 12, 2010. Hopefully the weather will cooperate but, we are going to have it come rain or shine! We look forward to seeing you there! Happy Spring!!