“Of course!”

A lot has happened since my last post. On this path toward full “adulthood,” I’ve stepped on the accelerator more than I could have imagined.

Let’s start with our new relationship status: ENGAGED! It was inevitable (fortunately, as it’s all I had hoped for) yet I was still surprised last Friday, October 25 during our visit to the Biltmore Estate in Asheville when Aaron asked THE question here:

TheSpot

The (brief version) of the full story: We had this weekend getaway planned for several months – a relaxing three days of Asheville and Brevard, full of a tour at the Biltmore House, several hikes in Brevard, and of course, some of our favorite (and new) beer haunts. We left Durham early Friday morning and arrived at the Biltmore Estate by 10:30am. After touring the house with our audio guides, we had a wonderful lunch out at Cedric’s Pub in Antler Village (made the butternut squash and kale risotto vegan!), a nice walk around the farm, tasted wines from the Biltmore Winery, and wandering the shops, Aaron asked if we could go back to the house for a few more photos. It was true – we had not taken many photos of the house upon our arrival since we were hyper-focused on starting the tour before the crowds expanded. So, we drove around the Estate, parked, and walked up to said balcony. At first, there were other folks near us taking photos. And then, they all disappeared. Before I knew it, Aaron was down on one knee (here is where I blacked out), and when the infamous question tumbled out of his mouth, my response was: “Of course!” Ring

it was perfect. We were able to be together, just the two of us, and blissfully love on one another and the progression of our relationship over the last (almost) three years. Then, once we cried, laughed, and glowed, we were able to share the news with family and friends. And, without a doubt, take our celebration to the most logical of places:BurialBeer

Thank you, Burial Beer, for providing the backdrop for our first toast of our engagement. The rest of the weekend was full of a celebratory air, which made it even more special. We spent the remainder of Friday in Asheville, visiting White Duck Taco (yum!) and Wedge Brewery (the Community Porter was on point). Then, we traveled to our hotel in Brevard, where we awoke Saturday morning (when it was 26 degrees outside – WHAT?!) to hike Looking Glass Rock – a challenging hike but paid off in dividends upon reaching the top:LookingGlassRock2

Post hike, we wandered into downtown Brevard for the town’s Halloween festival, watching a pumpkin roll and grabbing lunch at local restaurant Mayberry’s. Not a surprise, but a trip to Oskar Blues was a definite post-lunch, and the Cinnamon Coffee Porter I started with about blew my socks off:

oskarblues

Post adult bevvies included watching some Tennessee football and napping (the essence of true vacation living) and then another adventure into downtown for our engagement dinner at The Square Root after trying out Brevard Brewing Company (pretty middle of the road).

The final day of the weekend brought an incredible hike in Dupont State Forest involving three waterfalls – Hooker Falls, Triple Falls, and High Falls. (shown below):

HighFalls

To cap off just a beautiful time together, we stopped for lunch at one our favorite Asheville eateries: Green Sage CafeGreenSage

Citrus Kale Bowl for the win.

Whew! So now, it’s wedding, wedding, wedding focus. Pinterest boards are exploding. Aaron and I are thrilled and excited to share our special day with all those who have brought such love, friendship, and support to our lives. More to come in other pursuits, including new home, another half-marathon, and new vegan recipes. For now, cheers!

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