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Colditz Cove Tennessee

I woke up on Sunday with that drab feeling you get when everyone has gone home after a big holiday or event. The smart thing to do would have been to go to church. But, we felt like running away … at least for the day. So, I did a google search for waterfalls that I have not seen in our area.

Mapquest would not recognize the location. So, with only the website directions in hand, we set out on a whim. Amazingly enough, the directions were perfect! After a 50 minute drive, we made it to our destination! Colditz Cove!

You know you are getting close when you see the pumpkin.

This hike had been reviewed as easy. And, I would agree as compared to most waterfalls that I have hiked to in this area. Most of the trail was flat, well marked and safe. They have even placed wooden bridges in areas where water seemed to pool on the pathway.

However, there were a couple areas where the trail became narrow and ran right along a steep cliff to the trail below. So, I would not let young children run too far ahead.

My favorite part of the path ran through an area of barren trees where the ground below was also barren, no greens … only the brown leaves and dirt. It felt as though I entered a whole different place. I did not get a picture of the entire area … only this rock that was to the side of the path in that area.

As you continue along the trail, you are given a glimpse through the trees of the treasure that awaits you below …

Before we set out on our journey, there was a warning sign to watch for falling trees due to the damage from the beetles.

I don’t think this was from beetle damage, but rather the tree to the right growing on a rock and just falling over from our Tennessee winds. It hit the other tree in a domino effect.

As you wind down the path, you follow along enormous rock formations. It is really very eery being alongside & underneath these rocks considering the rocks that have already fallen.

As you walk the trail, you are greeted by an abundance of spiderwebs.

 And many orange colored lizards.

And, when we almost reached our final destination, I was a bit disappointed. Due to the recent rains, the path descending down to the water at the base of the falls was pretty muddy. It was passable, but we knew we would come out a mess. So, we opted to stop.

But, still a good day!

On our way back home, we stopped at The General Store.

It has a 50’s diner …” The Rockabilly Soda Fountain” in the back. So, we stopped in. The food was ok … but it was all about the atmosphere. I just wish the waitresses wore these poodle skirts to make the experience complete.

And for those inquiring minds that want to know …. yes! They played Elvis songs on a jukebox!

And for those who follow my Cash Talks!! Fat Walks!! Weekly updates … there was nothing diet on this menu. So, I had a burger, fries, rings & a root beer float. I just hope my hike cancelled it out! haha!

The Biggest Loser: The Workout – Weight Loss Yoga with Bob

Today was weigh in day for out little family weight loss contest. And, I am proud to announce that I kicked booty! 6 pounds gone!! My partner lost 2. Not bad for those little lifestyle changes that we made! And, we beat both sets of brides and grooms! WooHoo!

For Christmas, one set of the bride and grooms gave me the “Biggest Loser: The Workout – Weight Loss Yoga” with Bob Harper. Now, I always thought Bob was the easier / nicer trainer. And, I guess in personality, he is. But, this workout is tough. My muscles were shaking, begging me to quit! No, it’s not the cardio crusher that Jillian’s 30 Day Shred is, but tough all the same! I woke the next morning with sore muscles in places I had forgotten even had muscles …namely my abs!! And, today, 2 day later … they are still sore!

It has an interactive menu, so you can select your workout and even select to have Bob’s instructions with music or just music. I used his instruction because I found it very helpful. I am not new to yoga, but I am also not an expert, either.

He challenges you to do this workout 4 to 5 days a week. So, I must go to complete day number 2!

Black Mountain in Tennessee

My brother and I decided to hike at Black Mountain here in Crossville last week. It was a beautiful Spring day, a great day for hiking. Our first stop was an overlook. While it remains a little brown around that area, it is still very beautiful!


We left the overlook and proceeded down the trail. But, like most places in Tennessee, it is not very well marked. When we got to the end of the path, we could choose “Main Trail” or “Loop Trail.” I wished at that point I had looked closer at the map at the beginning of the hiking trail. haha! We chose the main trail.

We headed down stairs made from rock and covered by Mother Nature in tree leaves. Once down the steps, we proceeded down a winding trail going down the side of a mountain. I remember saying that I sure hoped we didn’t have to go back up the way we were coming down. I would end up eating those words and finding out just how out of shape I am as we discovered we “couldn’t get there from here.” Argh! I was never so happy to see the top again!

We stepped just a few feet from the trail and came upon this giant hole in the ground. Scary! If you aren’t looking, then you could easily fall down there.


Now, I love to hike and it was a fun adventure. But, because I was exhausted from our little side adventure, we did not get to find the Windlass Cave or the second overlook. Oh well, we have a good excuse to go back another day. (Note to self …. take the loop trail!)

To read more about Black Mountain, click here.

The Indian Village Trading Post & Great Smokies Flea Market

Recently my husband and I took a weekend trip alone to Pigeon Forge. The first we’ve taken in a long time without the kids. While returning home, we decided to stop at the Great Smokies Flea Market. Our chance to look as much as we wanted, without the boys complaining that they were ready to go home. It was a brisk, sunny day and there were actually several vendors set up outside. But, my first stop was to buy a funnel cake. Oh, it was so good! As we entered the building, I stopped at a booth were a gentleman was selling paintings with rustic frames to mimic window panes and shutters. I told my husband we would be coming back for one but I did not want to carry it. So, on we went. We purchased a new living room rug at a great price, several little dog trinkets for my little one’s curio, and many other small items. But my favorite purchases were from a Native American pottery place. This Indian Princess now resides above my mantle.


I got so excited about my new pottery, I left the flea market without a painting. I did not know the man’s name or how to get in touch with him. But, I do plan to stop by to see if he is still there next time I head back that way.

I have also since forgotten the name of the booth in the flea market. However, his brother, the one who makes the pottery also owns The Indian Village Trading Post at the edge of Fall Creek Falls State Park here in TN. There you can find many unique things such as wood carvings, painted feathers, pottery and much more. And while you’re there, check out the gorgeous waterfalls in the area. You’ll be glad you did!


Family Ties Restaurant

On Friday, my hubby and I try to be adventurous by visiting places we have never been to before in our local area. These past two weeks, we visited the Family Ties Restaurant. It had been recommended many times to us before, but we just never made the time to go.

On our first visit – 

     I noticed the outward appearance of the place itself. It is a small restaurant and appears somewhat aged. The sign on the wall near our table said something to the effect of …. If someone is smoking, they’d better be on fire. I did get a chuckle out of that. The dessert counter was adorned with various items to support the community ….. a Veteran’s Day CD, a humane society puppy jug and added while we were there was a jug to gather donations for an employee in need of a heart transplant.

     My hubby is a big eater. He ordered a breakfast and a lunch. I ordered the lunch special. The chicken on the special was hand battered “just like Grandma used to make,” as promised by the waitress! After a little seasoning, it was super. The mashed potatoes, on the other hand, were straight from a box! Very disappointing! My hubby raved about the fried potatoes from his breakfast. And he decided at that point he would return for the fried potatoes and chicken. And thanks to their cheap prices and ability to order an entree alone, you can pick and choose as desired.

     The service started out fair, but once we got our food we did not see our waitress again until we had someone call for her to return to our table. Our glasses were never once refilled. Despite this, we did have desert. I had the fried twinkie. That was a new one to me. It tasted just like a funnel cake. Yummy!

On our second visit –

     I noticed on the wall this time a framed signature list from customers who were military veteran’s. It is quite large and I wondered if they pull it out of the frame every time someone wants to sign it. It must be a tedious task since there where only a handful of signatures.

     As decided from our previous visit, the hubby got the chicken and home fries. A gentleman there told us that he has people come from all over the place just for his chicken. Again, my hubby was not disappointed by his choice. I opted for the catfish. It was a very large piece. It was great until my last bite which was being held together by a crispy fried hair. The corn bread was homemade. And my dessert was a piece of coconut pie. Not as good as homemade, but still pretty close!

     Our waitress this time was a woman who was on her very first day. And, while she was obviously still learning, her service was far better than the last time. Our drinks were refilled and she came back to check on us several times.

So, if you are looking for a reasonably priced, decent meal with a down home appeal – I would recommend the Family Ties restaurant. However, if you want great food, great service and do not care about the price, I’d recommend that you go elsewhere.

Chris Martin Writes

Life is a great big canvas, throw all the paint on it you can. - Danny Kaye


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