In late October, I took a last-minute trip to the mountains with my sister. I packed all 3 sweaters I own, and made my way up to North Carolina with her and my two nephews.
I had the realization in the Appalachians that I am city snob. This was brought upon by my sister noting that I could barely function without a “proper coffee,” a crafty espresso beverage not just a drip joe. I whined that there was nothing open past 7PM and nearly died the night I ate KFC as an only option.
Although inconvenienced, I found magic in the mountains. My nephews inspired that majestic feeling. At 4 and 6 years old, they view life with that little mind wonderment, like everything is amazing and inexplicable. A feeling us adults only get once in a blue moon, if we are lucky.
The first day we gallivanted off to Gatlinburg, TN where the boys got to throw a bowl on the wheel at Alewine Pottery and met the big guy at Santa’s Claus-et. We took a chairlift ride through the Smoky’s to a playground on a peak, Anakeesta. It’s a new attraction that opened in September with shops, a canopy walk and treehouse playground. I decided when I have little ones, they are going to Gatlinburg over Disney every time.
Franklin, NC was our mainstay and boasts as the “gem capital of the world.” I am enchanted by rocks! My mouth was agape adoring agate and dizzy over druzy. I was tempted to get a “Crystal Energy” book and crosswalk the stones to their geoformation to see if there was any correlation.
We went Jackson Hole Trading Post for gem mining. It was $25/5-gallon buckets of sand to sift, initially I thought a rip off. When we lugged 10 pounds of garnet, quartz and aquamarine to a mountain man for a gem analysis, I thought it was a true value. Viewing the expression of my nephews’ heads almost exploding when they found amethysts the size of their fists also affirmed it was worth every penny.
We made our way to Asheville and it was my first visit to this offbeat boho city. I was in love with the “yarning” throughout the city, AKA little knitted little sweaters for trees and light posts. On our return drive down through the Blue Ridge Parkway it began to snow, my first time seeing it in 6 years. As snowflakes fell on our windshield my littlest nephew announced, “It’s snowing! Isn’t it beautiful?” Yes, magical wonderment. We got out and frolicked in the flurries at the top of the Blueridge Parkway. It’s Snowing!
Coming into Thanksgiving with an attitude of gratitude, I acted on my curiosity for crystals and looked up the stone for giving thanks. I did find that metaphysical crystal healing is entirely subjective and more an act of mindfulness than sorcery. The rose quartz is best suited, as it is the stone for universal love and gratitude.
Watch out boys! Crazy Aunt Mandy is ransacking your gem collection this Turkey Day and maybe make a crystal grid. Can I borrow some of your wonderment, too?