My Family Rocks! Sunday: Bucket List Dream Helen, Ga

In this Post: Our trip to Helen, Ga and a Pumpkin Gingerbread Trifle. So It’s actually Monday now. It took for ever to load the pics and post them.

Hello everyone, I hope you had a lovely weekend. Honestly I’ve felt crummy because of the change in weather and chest inflammation etc. I’m clinging tight to my heating pad. I should give it a name lol………maybe draw a face on it. Like I said, I have a love hate relationship with Fall. I’m not even going to get into how I feel about Winter. Praise the Lord for Christmas at least.

Anywho, though our trip to Helen took my pain from a dull ache to wanting to kick a gnome……well, I’m glad we went this season. Because Fall is beautiful and making it up to Anna Ruby Falls gave me a sense of accomplishment. I kept asking Frodo if we were almost there lol. Then I laid down and waited for eagles to carry me back to the motel……oh wait never mind…..that was just my overactive imagination. I hope you enjoy the pics and that you will see this amazing village some day.

First, here’s the Pumpkin Gingerbread Trifle. I have a lot of Helen pics so I wanted to post this first. Chris didn’t like the ginger cake. Michael loved this. It tasted like breakfast rather than dessert to me.

Recipe at: http://www.tasteofhome.com/Recipes/Pumpkin-Gingerbread-Trifle

Note: I didn’t like the smell of just the pumpkin & pudding mixed together. So I added 2 packs of cream cheese, some milk, cinnamon, and vanilla.

Now for a million Helen pics…….

Day one: shops & festhalle

Hansel and Gretel Candy Kitchen- their chocolate toffee is amazing!

Enjoying my caramel apple at our motel. We made a lot of pit stops at our motel. It was nice because I didn’t feel the best & we had a fire place which kept the place toasty. Best Western rocks :). It was cold and thankfully the “Bavarian” Dollar General had a comfy owl hat. I got several compliments. I do sort of look like Mario in his raccoon costume though….

Folk band at the Festhalle

Walking the streets of Helen

Glass shop– watching the man make a glass hummingbird

Helen at night- I don’t remember the shop but we found cheap hot dogs & funnel cake πŸ™‚

Michael showing off his wooden dagger from one of the shops

Michael & Woody fast asleep at the hotel

Day Two: Bear Park, Charlemagne’s Kingdom, Cabbage Patch Land, Hofer’s, and the Troll Tavern

My guys drinking coffee on the balcony. We had a beautiful view.

Yaaa cozy fireplace! Michael ready for an adventurous day

http://www.blackforestbearpark.com/

Before we saw bears we were forced got to see reptiles. Michael was a bit anxious. I lost my love of snakes after middle school. I didn’t bother saying hello.

More reptiles….yaaaaa

This was an actual Rattle Snake. It was freaky to see one so close. I generally try to avoid them. Chris is brave.

Finally we are ready to see BEARS

What’s even better is that we got to FEED the bears……and they DIDN’T eat us πŸ™‚

Here are the live bears. They did tricks for food. They were too cute (from a distance).

They preferred that we throw the food directly into their mouths.

Feed me Seymoure!

Come on! I’m starving here!

Look! We’re trees!

Chillin’ out, maxin’, relaxin’, all cool…..

lol this bear was doing some serious posin’

Bear Park Mural outside

Charlemagne’s Kingdom

http://www.georgiamodelrailroad.com/

If you visit Helen, this is a MUST. This model of a railroad and Germany is the only one of it’s kind in the U.S.A.

castles in the mountains

It’s huge! You have to see this in person πŸ™‚

Mountain village

View from above

Babyland a.k.a Cabbage Patch Land

http://www.cabbagepatchkids.com/

This stop was completely for me. I may have went here as a kid but I can’t remember. If so it was before they built the huge building.

When I got inside I was like a chipmunk on coffee. It was awesome!Β  A nice “nurse” welcomed us in and told us where the nursery was and how to “adopt” a baby (cabbage patch doll).

A big nurse doll in the nursery

We got to meet one of the original nurses from when it all started. She is the last one left there. She was very nice.

dolls everywhere!

The Cabbage Patch tree where the “babies” are born.

Don’t judge me. I don’t care if I’m an adult. This is flippin’ cool!

It took a long time for Michael not to act miserable & too tough to be there. After awhile he warmed up. He even asked me if the bunnies really made the babies grow in cabbages lol.Β  I told him he came out of lettuce…….lol no worries. He knows better!

My wonderful husband had to take this crazy picture. It’s supposed to be the look on my face when I found my very own cabbage patch.

So I have a princess cabbage patch for my doll collection. I only feel slightly guilty…since I don’t have a little girl..and I’m 27.

We were surprised by a live birth! The “nurse” actually delivered a doll from the cabbages. Her narration of the process was hilarious.

After the crowd named the “baby” we watched the nurse get the baby ready for adoption.

http://www.hofers.com/

Hofer’s Bakery

Chris finally found his beer stein here. He drinks coffee out of it :).

Chris and Michael enjoying their eclair. That thing was big.

Michael and I sharing a gingerbread man. It was the best gingerbread.

One of the most magical things about Helen is the wild bunnies. If you haven’t been in awhile then you would not have seen them. We asked the waitress at the Troll Tavern and she said a man had bunnies as pets and they got out of control Two years later the bunnies are EVERYWHERE!

Bunnies under vehicles…

Bunnies sitting quietly…..not moving until you reach out to touch them

Michael trying to catch a bunny

We ate at the Troll Tavern under the bridge. It was beautiful next to the river. We ate inside because it was cold. Chris had his one beer for Oktoberfest. I don’t drink and Chris rarely drinks. The crab artichoke dip was awesome!

http://www.helenga.org/business/troll-tavern

Helen is beautiful at night πŸ™‚ The end of another good day.

Day Three: Anna Ruby Falls, Scarlet’s Secret, and the Dutch Shop

Time to say goodbye to our motel. I don’t think any of us wanted to leave. πŸ™

View of Helen coming in

This beautiful little structure is out in the middle of a cow field.

We collected fall leaves at the park across from our motel room. Then we drove to Anna Ruby Falls. We bought a “Gandalf” walking stick in the shop.Β  Michael is reading below. So this counts as a school field trip πŸ˜‰

http://www.helenga.org/business/anna-ruby-falls-visitor-center

I needed the walking stick the most, so I became Gandalf…..with a Mario hat….cough

Me and little man “climbing” the rocks. Lol I could so be a Disney character with that get up…..Rafiki maybe?

Anna Ruby Falls was so beautiful. I took tons of pics but I’m not posting them all here. Maybe you will see more in my inspirational posts…….

Family pic πŸ™‚ We all have our interesting hats

Chris carving our initials.

The results…. C.A.M (Chris, Amber, Michael)

We took several kissing pictures everywhere. I’m sparing you. So here’s just one.

We ate at the Helen HuddleΒ  House just to say we ate there. It looks completely Bavarian on the outside but on the inside it’s the normal greasy but yummy Huddle House. Gotta love the south πŸ™‚

Inside Hansel’s & Gretel’s main shop…yummmm

Michael actually wanted a pic with Santa, which is surprising since we don’t do Santa

The Christmas shop was closed :'( It looked so inviting…

Michael is not channeling Michael Jackson lol. He said he was putting his hands in his pockets like Bruce Banner (the Hulk) ;P.

Another Bruce Banner pose

Chris got me these beautiful Windmill earrings and necklace at the Dutch Shop.

Look! ANOTHER bunny!

On the way out of town, we visited Scarlet’s Secret, a Gone with the Wind museum.

http://www.scarlettsecret.com/

I told the nice owner that I would mention her in my blog.Β  I’m not a big Gone with the Wind fan or anything but it was neat to see the collection.

The plantation house

Christmas tree decorated with Gone with the Wind ornaments. You can buy your own in the gift shop.

A portrait of Miss Scarlet O’Hara

So we are home now. I’d love to see Helen in the winter. Have you been to Helen? What are your favorite restaurants and attractions?

God bless & remember the High King lives! ~Amber Dover

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