...because home doesn't happen overnight.

asheville cabin

Last month we spent a week in the mountains of North Carolina. It was the perfect balance of relaxing and doing. I’ve decided to share more about our stay in a two-part series. Up first is where we stayed!

asheville cabin

We rented a cabin in a remote area about thirty minutes outside of Asheville. For us, it was the perfect proximity to the city. It was far enough away to completely submerge ourselves in nature but close enough to drive into the city for food and fun. Upon arrival to the cabin, we were met by the sweetest waft of mountain air mixed with pine. We couldn’t stop inhaling. I wanted to bottle up the scent and bring it home with me.

asheville cabin

A kitchen garden growing alongside the front walk smelled delicious, too. We were free to use the herbs for cooking meals during our stay.

asheville cabin

At the opposite end of the cabin was a deck overlooking the mountainous landscape. We caught the tail end of October and it was perfect timing. We literally watched the leaves change from green to various shades of orange and red during our stay.

asheville cabin

The porch swing was ideal for sipping morning coffee and watching the fog roll in. It was so peaceful. Chirping birds and a nearby bubbling creek were the only sounds.

asheville cabin

They don’t call them the Smoky Mountains for no reason.

asheville cabin

The cabin is located a mile down a private gravel lane that crawls up the side of a mountain, surrounded by trees and farms along the way. I managed to squeeze in a few runs and the colorful tree canopy created a tunnel-like effect. While running up the side of the mountain wasn’t easy, it felt like I was watching the most beautiful silent film.

asheville cabin

Except for a few cows mooing at me :)

asheville cabin

The cabin itself was a dream. The casement windows were my favorite part. I would crank them open to let in the mountain air and listen to the creek.

asheville cabin

asheville cabin

Floor-to-(almost)-ceiling windows in the dining area gave us an amazing view of the autumnal colors. We spent the majority of our time in the cabin at the dining table. The benches were perfect for the kids. At home, we eat most of our meals at the kitchen island. It’s casual and unfussy but sitting at a table where we can look at each other’s faces is pretty nice, too. This table inspired us to start eating at our own dining table more often.

asheville cabin

The sight lines in the cabin were incredible. I loved the transom windows above the bedroom doors.

asheville cabin

The only bathroom was charming and cheery and included an oversized clawfoot tub, hexagonal floor tile, high angled ceilings and a large pedestal sink. Just imagine soaking in the tub with a view like that!

asheville cabin

Without light pollution, nights at the cabin were the blackest of black and perfect for stargazing. All lit up at night, the cabin reminded me of a tiered birthday cake glowing with candles.

asheville cabin

asheville cabin

asheville cabin

We felt right at home in the cabin. Built-ins were stocked with all kinds of books and board games. (During one family game night, we discovered that Mabrey is a Pick Up Stix ninja!) There was no TV but we did stream The NeverEnding Story for a family movie night. All five of us piled onto the sofa to huddle around the laptop. It was so cozy. There was a home stereo and our soundtrack for the week included a lot of Nickel Creek, Johnny Cash and Willie Nelson.

The kids were excited to discover a few surprises: a hidden play space tucked under the eaves in one of the bedroom closets, a ping pong table in the unfinished basement and a secret man cave in the loft of a barn on the same property. The man cave included a wet bar and drum set (!). Layne really took to the drums. He would wander down to the barn on his own throughout the week and I would hear a rough drum solo through the open cabin windows. It was too funny.

asheville cabin

We had several rain days but we didn’t mind. We hid out in the cabin baking cookies, reading books, playing ping pong, sipping coffee, listening to music and just being together. I finished Cabin Porn and The Inner Game of Tennis. Cabin Porn is a beautiful collection of handmade cabins. I knew the cabins would be good but, my goodness!, the stories behind them left me in tears and inspired. I was not expecting all the feelings. And The Inner Game of Tennis was great, too, if tennis is your thing. I started The Kinfolk Home as well but have yet to finish it. It’s not due to lack of interest. In fact, it’s quite the opposite. It’s so good that I want to be able to savor it uninterrupted and, well, real life presents a slew of interruptions. I need to make the time to finish it.

asheville cabin

I bought Animal Kingdom and Splendid Cities just for the trip to ward off boredom. They are the most beautiful coloring books. I brought along a pencil case (from Target) filled with colored pencils. They kept Steve, the kids and me busy for hours at a time. It was almost meditative.

Needless to say, our time spent at the cabin filled us up in so many ways and we’re so grateful for the experience. I think we all left little pieces of our hearts in those mountains.

Stay tuned to read about what we did and saw beyond the cabin.

P.S. – I’m not linking directly to the cabin listing for privacy reasons but, if you’re interested in learning more about it, you can email me.

images: Dana Miller for House*Tweaking

63 Comments

14.November.2015

Looks like a beautiful place. A trip to the mountains is on our travel list in the next year or so.

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I used to go to summer camp near Asheville when I was a kid. Such a beautiful part of the country. And the cabin you stayed at looks amazing!

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14.November.2015

What a dreamy spot for a vacation! Looking forward to hearing about the rest!

As a meditator, I thought this article about adult colouring books might interest you: https://t.co/ZP4Jj83hs1

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replied on November 16th, 2015

Can’t wait to read it! Thanks for the link.

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14.November.2015

Beautiful rental Dana – welcome to cabin life! :) Glad you enjoyed yourselves. I look forward to reading about the rest of your North Carolina vacation!

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14.November.2015

Stunning! It looks like the perfect escape! My husband and I went to Ashville a few years ago (can’t remember where we stayed, but it was nothing this amazing!) and loved the town and surrounding mountains. Such a pretty part of the country!

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14.November.2015

What a beautiful place to recharge and connect with nature! We bought a Cabin a couple of years ago that will be our labor of love and improvement for many years to come. I’m grateful for this post and all the inspiration… Now I need to get my hands on Cabin Porn!

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replied on November 16th, 2015

I have cabin envy! What a wonderful idea.

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14.November.2015

Love this! It brings me back home; I can smell the trees and feel the chill in the air, my favorite time of year. Thank you for sharing this slice of Autumnal heaven with us.

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14.November.2015

Such wonderful pictures. I feel like I’m right there with you, in a non-creepy way! Have you upgraded from the Canon Rebel and lenses that you blogged about in the past?

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replied on November 16th, 2015

I still have my Canon Rebel. However, these were all taken with my iPhone. I packed my real camera but once I was there it just felt too forced to drag it out and set up the tripod and all that jazz. Plus, it was easier to slip my phone into my pocket while running and hiking. I like the way I can quickly snap candid photos with my phone. I think it captures the little moments so well.

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14.November.2015

So glad you loved the mountains! I took a very similar trip this summer to the same area with some grad school friends- who knew coloring in the mountains was such a popular pastime?!? ;-) Thank you for sharing your trip and beautiful photos!

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14.November.2015

Would love to know where this cabin is and/or if they have a smaller one for a couple. Thank you. Very wonderful. Almost surreal.

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replied on November 30th, 2015

Just sent you an email!

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replied on February 27th, 2016

My husband and I want to take our kids in April. Can you also email me the cabin info? Thanks

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replied on March 2nd, 2016

Just sent you an email!

14.November.2015

I lived in a one bedroom cabin with my 3 girls after a sad divorce. It was the perfect place for us to heal. I actually was remarried years later at that same cabin. The. Best!

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replied on November 16th, 2015

You hit the nail on the head. It was healing. So glad to hear your story had a happy ending. x

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14.November.2015

I’ve been meaning to buy some coloring books like that! My 6yr old has become art obsessed, and I too find it very calming coloring with him. It’s neat that something I enjoyed doing so much when I was little is now something that brings peace and comfort to my soul. So glad you guys had a good time!

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14.November.2015

What a great place! One question though. Did the bathroom have a glass see-through-to-all-the-poo-poo door…or was that just me?

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replied on November 16th, 2015

All the interior doors have glass panels. There are sheers on the backsides for privacy. You can’t see through them but they still let light through. Personally, I loved them. So, no, you couldn’t see anyone in the bathroom or bedrooms.

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15.November.2015

I ADORE this whole story but especially that black and white photo that manages to get all three of your kids into the frame. It seems to embody your stay so well. Independence, quiet play, together time. I’m inspired to do a similar vacation!

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16.November.2015

Such a gorgeous retreat!

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16.November.2015

Hi, Dana! I would like to receive the link/ information about this cabin. We have stayed in other cabins in the Asheville area and love the seclusion and views this one offers. Thank you!

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replied on November 30th, 2015

Check your inbox ;)

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replied on December 2nd, 2015

Hi Dana, what an amazing place!
Could you please email me the link to the cabin. Thank you.

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replied on December 10th, 2015

Check your email!

16.November.2015

Long time reader – love this post! Great vacation idea.

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17.November.2015

What a dreamy place and vacation!! The owners seem to be awesome people, just by their décor and thoughtfulness in what came with the cabin. Blocks? My kids played with those for HOURS when they were little. A separate man cave with a drum set?! Oh my goodness!! The coolest! I’m inspired to recreate your vacation in my own neck of the woods. :) Thanks for the lovely post and great pics! I’m so surprised to find out that they were taken on your phone! Nice!

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21.November.2015

What a lovely stay away from home; thank you for sharing your experience! Could you, please, share with me the information on this cabin and its rental? Thank you!

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replied on November 30th, 2015

Just shot you an email!

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22.November.2015

Would love to know where you stayed! My son and I stayed twice recently in one of the Cabins of Asheville, in Candler, at the base of Mt. Pisgah. It is a magic place, and we will go back.

Thanks!

Donna

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replied on November 30th, 2015

Just emailed you!

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22.November.2015

We’ve done VRBO 3 times now and haven’t been disappointed yet. This place is gorgeous and the Smokies are on my must do list. Did they allow dogs? My husband hates to be away from our 4 legged boys and VRBO is great for having pet friendly rentals.

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replied on November 23rd, 2015

Pets are allowed on a case by case basis!

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02.December.2015

Oh my – my heart! My husband and I just moved from Asheville to the bay area and I miss it sooo much!! Next time you go check out Vortext Doughnuts, Buxton Hall and Biscuit Head. If you are into beer Wicked Weed is my favorite! Cocktails? Nightbell. Wine? 5 Walnut. If you’re into hiking I have tons of juicy trails!

Love the pictures!

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replied on December 7th, 2015

We will definitely go back again! And soon!! We didn’t get to hit up any breweries so that will be top on our list next time ;) I will contact you about hiking trails, too.

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replied on December 7th, 2015

Wonderful! I saw your second post – loves! We lived downtown just across the highway from Montford. Such a beautiful neighborhood!

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03.December.2015

I would love to have the information for this cabin. We are heading to Asheville soon, and this would be idyllic. Thanks!

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replied on December 10th, 2015

Just sent you an email with the listing info!

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04.December.2015

This place looks awesome! I checked AirBnB and VBRO for cabins in and around Asheville a few months ago and don’t remember seeing this one. Would love to get the details on it!

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replied on December 10th, 2015

Check your inbox!

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08.December.2015

Thanks so much for sharing. What a beautiful place. I would love to know more about it. We have been wanting to visit North Carolina for a while now and would love to stay here.

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replied on December 10th, 2015

Just sent you an email!

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21.December.2015

We are new to the NC area and are looking for an awesome cabin rental getaway. Could you tell me where you rented that cabin from?

Thank you kindly!
Frances Favela

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06.March.2016

Would love to know where this is. Heading down there in May for a wedding and need lodging.

Thanks!

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replied on March 7th, 2016

Just emailed you!

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28.March.2016

We are planning a family trip and would love to know where this gem is.
Thank you for sharing.

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replied on March 28th, 2016

Just shot you an email!

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10.June.2016

Could you send me the listing for this cabin, planning for a fall trip to Asheville/Brevard area. thank you!

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replied on June 12th, 2016

Just sent you an email!

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16.July.2016

I would love to book this gorgeous spot! Please shoot me a link to the listing!
Thanks so much!

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replied on July 19th, 2016

Just sent you an email!

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09.August.2016

We are hoping to visit Asheville this fall! Please send me the listing for this cabin? Thanks!

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29.August.2016

I would also love the info on this rental – it looks amazing!

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replied on August 30th, 2016

I just shot you a quick email!

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05.September.2016

We are looking to visit Asheville for Fall Break and would love some info on where you stayed.

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replied on September 6th, 2016

I just emailed you the link!

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26.September.2016

Hi, I’ll join the chorus of people asking for the link to this listing. I’m planning an Asheville getaway with my family this winter. Thanks so much in advance!

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replied on September 27th, 2016

Emailed you!

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03.October.2016

My wife and I are long time readers of your blog. Would you mind sending us the link to this property?

Thanks!

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replied on October 5th, 2016

Just emailed you!

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02.January.2017

Hi my wife follows your blog and has mentioned this place you have stayed at a number of times. Our 5 year anniversary is coming up and would like to take her. Would you mind sharing the info with me?

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