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Our Wedding And Beyond

We have almost 700 honeymoon pictures.  Obviously not all of them are up, but here is a small sampling of what we did:
This link will not work if you click on it.  You have to copy and paste it into your browser, but it should take you directly to the photos.  I recommend viewing them in slideshow presentation (an option on your right) as it will be much easier.

High above beautiful Tennessee. Look how the view looks like water. It's amazing.

This was taken at the Alligator Farm in Saint Augustine, Florida.

Our honeymoon was the best ever!  We left Monday, May 31st and headed out.
Our trip went like this:  Virginia, North Carolina, Tennessee, Georgia, Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, Virginia, home.  We had such a blast and did so many cool things!

May 31st:
Not much happened this day.  We woke up at the hotel and I pulled a muscle in my neck and spent the next three days holding my head funny and being in pain.  We went home and packed for the honeymoon, said goodbye to family, and left.  Jamie dropped me off to get my hair cut, while he went out to get a travel cooler for us and a travel pillow for my poor neck, along with an ice pack.
We made it all the way through Virginia (didn't do anything) and ended up staying in Henderson, NC (didn't do anything there either).
One of the first places we stopped was McDonald's.  One of my co workers said, "Oh, that was romantic," but we were starving!  We had to eat!  We did spice it up though:  we ate outside in the kids play area (it was terrific weather) and got our pictures taken with the plastic Ronald McDonald.  LOL.

June 1st:
We were still in North Carolina for the whole day.  The first thing we did was go to a Wildlife Park (not a zoo!) and we got to hold a baby tiger and get our pictures taken with her.  (This is in with the honeymoon pictures.)  I wanted to get my picture taken with a big tiger, but the owner of the tigers was the only one to do the pictures and he wasn't there.  We were told to come back later on our way home, but when I called to double check, he told me that he was not doing pictures at that point.  :(
There was a very fun camel there that you can see in the pictures who was very hungry and kept sticking his head out trying to get fed.  As much as I love animals, hungry zoo (errr... wildlife park) animals scare me.  So Jamie went up and fed him and petted him and then there's two pictures of me absolutely terrified that he's going to bite my head off and eat it.  Fun pictures to see!
We went through a car museum in Kannopolis that Jamie wanted to go to.  A few Mustangs in there, which made me happy, but the highlight of the museum was the ducky stuffed animal with hair.  LOL.

June 2nd:
We made it to Tennessee!  Tennessee I don't believe was originally on the mental list of states to hit, but the more I thought about it, the more I thought it would be cool to get to pass through there.  We also saw an advertisement in our map which talked about a lost sea that sounded cool, so we headed over for it.  It turned out to be the highlight of our trip.  There is sooo much to see and do there.  And the state is just beautiful.  Jamie and I discussed staying there and calling our families to tell them that we wouldn't be home, but we eventually decided against it.
This was the one place we splurged on a room.  I was trying to be thrifty the whole time, but we decided to get a room over looking the water (a muddy river running behind the hotel - lol) and we got the heart shaped jacuzzi.  Very nice.
We were staying in Pigeon Forge, which is apparently a huge family vacation spot like Ocean City, but we never were able to figure out why.
This day was mostly filled with driving, though we did go Go-Kart racing on a very cool wooden track that went up and down and around and around.  Jamie finished second in the group of like eight, and I finished third.  I tried desperately to get a picture of him in front of me, but all we ended up with was a big blur of a picture!  :)
Oh, the night there was spent trying to find me fudge.  The first place we went to, I thought they were over priced, so I refused to buy any.  We went to another place, but even though they advertised that they sold fudge, they did not.  We went to another place, but they were so busy and only one person was working, so we left and went to another place, but they were closed, so finally we went back to the hotel.  Oh yes, Jamie could have killed me!

June 3rd:
We left Pigeon Forge and headed for Gatlinburg.  We had seen many signs for Ripley's Aquarium and decided to go (we both love aquariums).  It was so awesome.  They had tunnels that you could walk through where the fish and the sharks could swim over top of you.  We have a lot of pictures of this.  They had a "Pet a Sting Ray" section, but of course they all stayed at the bottom of the water and you could never get a chance to pet one, though we tried to get a picture of Jamie pretending like he was.  :)  At the end they had an amazing place for kids to have fun at - they can crawl up into fish tanks and see fish from the inside.  We have some pictures of this.  They also have a whole discovery place where we got some fun pictures and ones that everyone loves.
After this we sat outside eating a pretzel and enjoying Tennessee; it really is beautiful there.
We got lost trying to find the road we needed, which took us back to Pigeon Forge and I was able to get some fudge!  LOL.
We headed off to the Lost Sea.  I told Jamie we needed to go South.  He disagreed and said, "We just came from the South.  We need to go North."  I disagreed, but he headed North and ended up taking us veeery far out of our way (way back towards the top of North Carolina), but we did finally make it to the Lost Sea (and even before they closed for the day too - woo hoo!).
This was an amazing experience for us.  Neither one of us has been through caves before and I know I was just in awe - holding up the group because I was snapping pictures right and left.  It was amazing.  You walk all the way through this cave, while the tour guide points out the cool things and then they take you on a boat ride out into the underground sea that was lost for sixty years before someone found it.  They had fish out there too that they had brought in to see if they could find their way out and they never left, so now they keep them there.  It was just the coolest thing we did.  We couldn't stop talking about it.  Jamie wanted to do it one more time on our way home, but we didn't.
After we left Sweetwater (where the Lost Sea was), we headed down to Chatanooga, where I had my first experience with a Steak 'n Shake restaurant.  We tried their double sided milkshake and I got mint chocolate, which was so nasty, I felt like I was going to throw up.  Yuck.

June 4th:
We were still in Tennessee today (why would we ever leave?!).
We read about an incline Railway that is a mile long and takes you 1200 feet up into the air where there is a whole other town built up there.  You can get out and eat and shop and apparently see five states from the top of Lookout Moutain.  The view would just leave you in awe.  It was absolutely amazing and beautiful.  While going up the moutain in this Railway car, they have an automated recording telling you that you should feel safe because you are being held 1200 feet into the air by two cables.  Well lucky us we were in the back so I could turn around and see these cables.  Ummm, I did not feel safe.  They looked like they could snap at any time.  I usually am not afraid of heights, but this was a whole other experience.  I started freaking and Jamie told me if I didn't want to take it on the return trip, we could take a taxi back down on a normal road.  But we did take it on the way down - which was not nearly as bad as going up.
Anyway, while up there, we just stood around for what seemed like forever just staring at the view.  I couldn't get over how far you could see and how fantastic it looked.  We started walking as there was a battlefield park further down.  This was very cool too.  I wasn't too much into learning about what had taken place there (the Battle above the Clouds), but again, just the view was amazing.  Thanks to the timer, we got some awesome shots of us above the view (and the world) that are in with the pictures.  There were so many trails that you could take.  They had stairs in that they had put up so that you could make it up the rocky side of the moutain.  Let me tell you, I didn't feel too safe on these things either.  There was nothing underneath of them, and they felt like they were made out of aluminum.  Not too happy walking on them, but I kept telling Jamie, "Let's just go a little further and see what's down there."  By the time we decided to stop and turn around, we had sooo many stairs to walk back up and it seemed like they would never stop.  We were worn out and sweaty by the time we returned to the park.  They did have cannons there, which are always cool to see.
We left the park, went back to the Railway and went down the moutain where they jipped us out of $10 for two pictures that I didn't want because they were overpriced, but Jamie made me buy.  Cool pictures though.
After we were 1200 feet back down safe and sound on the solid ground, we headed off to Ruby Falls, which is an underground Waterfall.  It was cool, but for as much hype as it's given, it's not as cool as the Lost Sea, which doesn't charge nearly as much and isn't advertised as much.  Again, it took us walking through caves, where the tour guide would point out neat things (we again ended up in the very back of the group, holding everyone up because I was taking pictures).  At the end, there was the real water fall, which is natural, not man made, and it goes down into a lake and then runs off into some body of water, which I do not remember.  You could also do some sight seeing there of the views after you got out of the cave, but it wasn't nearly as high as Lookout Mountain.
Tennessee was an absolute blast, but I was so ecstatic because finally we were off to Georgia!  Woo-hoo!  I'd taken a liking to Georgia ever since high school when there was a college there that was in my top two choices to attend, but my father refused to drive me all the way to Georgia.  Ever since then, I'd always wondered what it was like.
Georgia was not that far away.  We were already in Chatanooga, Tennessee - the very bottom of Tennessee.  We hit it in no time.  We had wanted to go to a Kangaroo Preservation Park, but we could never get through to them.  The phone was always busy.  When I finally got through, they were closed.  We decided to hang around in hopes that we could go the next day (they required reservations - why - I have no idea).  So we stayed in Dalton, Georgia.  This was the most boring place, so it only seems right that this be our most boring night.  We went out trying to find something to eat.  There is NOTHING in Dalton.  Jamie hated that place and will not let me talk about it anymore.  We drove around and around and around and around some more and all we could come up with was Wendy's - so that's where we went for dinner.  As usual, we got fairly bad service.  We left and went back to the hotel where we decided to seek out the laundry room as I desperately needed to wash some clothes.  They had no detergent there - not even for sale.  So off we went to Wal Mart to buy some.  Back at the hotel, I had to clean all the gunk out of the washer and then we sat around forever waiting for our clothes to wash.  This must have been the slowest washer in the world.  It was so hot there that we just sweated.  We did sit down and play a card game, but it wasn't that exciting.  It took forever, but finally two loads were washed and dried.  The night of the fourth was very boring.  At least the day was fascinating!

June 5th:
We got up and went to get our free breakfast at the hotel.  Everything was gone.  We said, "Screw it" and decided to check out and leave Dalton as fast as possible and never look back.
I called the Kanagroo Park.  Still ALWAYS busy.  I was pretty irritated with them at this point.  I finally got through and was told there were no openings.  Fine.  We left Dalton.  (By the way, we tried calling on our return trip too, because if we could make reservations, we were going to stop by on our way home.  No shocker when I called at least ten times only to get a busy signal every single time.)
We headed further south and I don't remember which city it was in, but we went to a cool Dinosaur museum, which actually had a very small amount of dinosaurs and more of general wildlife.  We were able to get some cool pictures, so that's all that matters.  It did actually have some quite fascinating parts.  I'm glad we went.
We were only in there for about an hour and a half (though it felt like it was all day).  We left there and headed for Savannah - which was quite a far drive from where we were.  We spent most of this day just driving.
We were going to go on a midnight ghost tour in Savannah, but I was so tired, so we didn't.

June 6th:
This was not such a good day.  We went on a sightseeing cruise, which I was very excited about, but it turns out there's not much to see on a sight seeing cruise in Savannah.  We saw a Fort, and a sunken ship.  I would have to say that the most interesting part of the cruise was being followed around by the coast guard.  We happened to end up in Savannah at the same time that the G-8 summit was going on.  We had no idea it was supposed to be happening, but it was.  For this reason, it was extremely hard to get past security to even get on the boat and then while on the boat, we had two coast guard boats stalking us around the water and two helicopters keeping a very close eye on the boat from up above.  Very laughable, actually.
We went to a restaurant which had great food, but I didn't have the best experience.  First they got my order wrong.  Then they finally brought out what I had ordered, but didn't change it on the receipt.  My chicken sandwich consisted of chicken fingers thrown on a roll, and I had the hardest and most messiest time trying to keep them and lettuce and tomatos on the darn roll.  While we were eating a torrential downpour came through (thankfully we were inside).  We went to leave and I forgot that the booth was up about half a foot and we had to step down to get out, so I stumbled out of it.  It was nice to leave.  :)
We went souvenier shopping after that.
Later that night we tried to go on the ghost tour that we had missed the night before, but the midnight one was cancelled.  The 9:30 one was also cancelled.  We decided we would go on another one that started at 10:00, but we got desperately lost and when we finally figured out where we were going, we hit every single red light (every one!!).  We decided that for some reason someone higher up was trying to tell us that we shouldn't go, so we turned around and headed back to the hotel, where we actually got some green lights!  Imagine that!  We stopped at a Sonic Restaurant, which we do not have in Maryland (insert angry face here) and I got a very good Oreo Blast.  So we spent our night in bed eating dessert.

June 7th:
Left Savannah to get away from the G-8 Summit and headed down to St. Augustine, Florida.  As soon as we got there, we went to an Alligator Farm (which was our whole point in going to St. Augustine).  It was so cool.  They had other animals too, but mostly alligators.  We got to see them being fed and learned that they all get to eat in a two week time period.  Two weeks!  I couldn't even imagine!  They didn't look that hungry though.  No one was really jumping for food.  We got to feed the baby alligators and they were fun.  They actually did jump for the food.  It was a very nice place to go through, but goodness it was HOT!!  I'm used to Baltimore's humid summers, but this was ridiculous heat!
There were a couple of places that were inside and air conditioned.  The first one had a replica of a huge alligator that was caught.  I was so interested in reading all about him, but got quickly annoyed when there were kids in there sreaming as loud as they could, running around, getting in your way, and their parents were standing there saying nothing!  After I learned all about this gigantic alligator, we went off to see another alligator that basically lays in the bottom of his "pool".  You get to stand next to him as they have glass there.  That's where we ran into the kids again.  Screaming, yelling, basically being a pain.  All I wanted was one simple picture and their parents saw me waiting with my camera, but wouldn't make them move.  Then when the kids went running off, their mothers stood there talking about how one of them had a curly piece of hair.  And you would've thought that was just the coolest thing ever.  They couldn't get over it.  I should've said something to them like, "Move out of the damn way," but I didn't.  By the time they walked away I was livid.  Thankfully they stopped for a show that we did not want to see, so we lost track of them.  I don't think I could have walked around the rest of the park following them.
They had a fun parrot there that would whistle at me everytime I turned to walk away.  I got such a kick out of him, I videotaped him while Jamie went off to the bathroom.  He also jumped up and down and swung upside down on the branch.  He was such a hoot!  LOL.
By the time we left the Alligator Farm, they were closing and we went to try to find a hotel.  We did spend a good hour driving around trying to find a place and Jamie was so pissed at me because we ended up going back to the first place we stopped at, which I deemed too expensive the first time, but at that point an hour later, it seemed just right.
We went on a ghost tour that night, but it was more of a theatrical performance, and while it was just okay, it wasn't what we expected.  Jamie had fun though.  It was certainly interesting.  It took us inside an old Jail, that I actually had already wanted to see.  It was so interesting, we made plans to go back the next day.

June 8th:
First thing we did was head to the Old Jail.  It was so fascinating.  A lot of people thought that as tough as this Jail was, that it was way back in the 1800's.  While that's when it first opened, I don't believe it actually closed down until the 1940's or even later.
There's a great picture of Jamie in a bird cage.  Our tour person (a great lady!!) told us that if someone had done something wrong inside the Jail, they would take them out to the bird cage, lift them up into a tree in the hot sun and that way the towns people could walk by and make fun of them.  Very interesting.
The cells were so small, you couldn't even walk in between the metal "beds" without turning sideways.  The "mattresses" consisted of pillow cases with a little bit of hay inside.  It was awful.  All the windows were open, so they encountered a lot of bugs and rats.  During the day, they were forced to go out in the fields and work.  Eventually the Old Jail was turned in for cruel punishment and unsanitary conditions.  I think not too long after that is when it closed down.  They did make a big deal about the Sheriff though and how he never lost an inmate.  No one was ever able to break out of there and he even went out looking for criminals he thought should be there.  A very, very interesting tour.
After we left the Old Jail, we headed down to Daytona Beach, Florida.  Wow.  What an amazing place.  We started seeing Palm Trees in Georgia, but they were everywhere in Florida.  We stayed at a hotel right on the beach.  The only place I would not redo if I had the choice.  All of our hotels were very nice, but this place was awful.  We had an awesome view and while everything looked clean, it felt dirty.
We went out and just walked along the beach, which I love doing.  You can see in one of the pictures I look like the water is cold.  While it's a little chilly, it wasn't that bad, however, right after that picture, I was only knee deep in the water, but it came up and soaked my shorts.  Back to the hotel to change.
We basically drove around afterwards to see what there was to do and didn't do much else.

June 9th:
Couldn't wait to leave our hotel!  We went to check out and while it says that they open at 6 a. m., the door was locked at 8:30.  Jamie rang the bell and about five minutes later, here finally comes a lady from the back in pajamas looking like she had just woken up and we were the most horrible people ever.
Before we left Daytona Beach, Jamie just had to drive on the beach.  A lot of people haven't heard of that.  I know I never had, but for $5.00 you can drive and park on the beach all day.  It was rather early so we were one of the only cars there.  We got pictures of him with his car on the beach, he was so excited.  We parked the car and I walked in the water some more.  Tried to get some last pictures of me in the wonderful Ocean before we left, but the sun was behind me and so I turned out all dark and you can only see me as a blob.
I never wanted to leave, but we did.  Jamie wanted to go to Daytona USA, where the Nascar Races are held.  We got to take a tour around the track, which was pretty interesting.  Inside we got to watch the Nascar Imax Theater production in 3-D, which was pretty cool, but the 3-D glasses messed with my eyes and gave me a headache.  Jamie got to do a simulation drive of what it would be like to drive a car in Nascar.  I got to be a passenger.  Pretty cool.  We spent forever there.  Afterwards, I couldn't wait to leave so we could eat.  We were both starving.
We decided to go back to St. Augustine so that we could do a walking ghost tour since the one that we did before was on a Trolley.  This one was the most interesting one we did.  I didn't find out until this tour that two nights ago, when I saw a cat and wanted to take him home, but he ran away from us, that this was a real life ghost cat.  Okay, so Jamie insists that it was just a normal cat.  But I know it was a ghost.  While on the ghost tour, our tour guide (she was fantastic) took us by a very swanky restaurant that I said we should eat at, but we never did, and she said it was haunted by a cat and when you went to catch it, it disappeared.  Two nights earlier in the same vicinity we saw the cat, he jumped over a fence (a tall fence) and sat sitting about six feet behind the fence on something it appeared, looking at us, until he disappeared.  After the ghost tour, we walked by the same place and I looked over the fence to prove that it was a ghost cat, and what do you know, the fence was about six feet tall.  There was nothing behind the fence that the cat could have sat on that could have made him sit up that high.  There was only a table and if he would have sat on that, he would have only been about three feet off of the ground.  I was convinced that it was the ghost cat.  Jamie is still unconvinced.  Forget him!
Anyway, the tour was very interesting and we got one verrrry interesting photo back.  A yellowish / whitish blur that can only be explained by the camera picking up a ghost that we couldn't see.  A co-worker even saw the picture and said, "Oh a ghost" and when I told her that it was taken on a ghost tour, she was shocked.  Interesting photo that you can also see with the others.
St. Augustine is a very fun place, but the whole town shuts down at like 6:00.  We drove through in the afternoon and it was packed.  We went back at 5:30 and I asked a lady in the store when she was going to close because we were going to come back later and buy souveniers.  She said, "In fifteen minutes".  When we drove by at about 7:00 the whole place was dead.  It really is a ghost town.  We are not used to that in Baltimore where things never close.

June 10th:
We talked about what our trip back was going to be like.  We were planning on hitting the Lost Sea again in Tennessee, heading to North Carolina to go to the Wildlife Park where I could get my picture taken with the big tiger, and seeing some other Nascar things, but since the tiger fell through, we decided to leave St. Augustine and head to South Carolina since we hadn't been through there yet and had no idea what kind of cool things we could find there to do.  We stopped at the Welcome Center, just like we had in every other state and we decided that there was nothing to do anywhere in South Carolina except in Charleston, so that's where we went.
We went out after checking into our best room thus far (with extremely friendly people at the desk) and decided to go to a place called "Moe's".  Had no idea it was a Mexican restaurant.  They had amazing food!
While driving around, we found a place called Patriot's Point.  They had a museum on this very big ship, but they were closing, so we couldn't go.  We instead walked around and looked at all the cool things that were outside, and there were quite a lot.  Some very funny photos from here.  There's a great one of me on a gun (!!) that is operated with pedals!  I thought it was a tank and was shocked when Jamie said, "Nope.  It's just a gun."  Amazing stuff I've never seen before!  I climbed up in there and put my feet on the pedals and told him to take a picture of me on this amazingly huge "gun".
Another ghost tour that night that was just okay and returned no cool photos.  All in all, we didn't have too much success with ghost tours.  While the stories were interesting - the only one I really enjoyed was the one in St. Augustine.

June 11th:
We went back to Patriot's Point to do the boat Museum, but when we got there, we walked through the gift shop and decided not to go through the museum.
Since we had seen the only cool thing in South Carolina (Patriot's Point), we decided to leave and head up to Virginia.  We had passed right through Virginia the first day and didn't even stop.  I was sure there were lots of cool things to do there.
Nothing exciting really on this day.  All we did was drive.  We got to Virginia's welcome center half an hour after they closed.  All through our trip we had found out about all the neat things to do from the Welcome Center, so I was very disappointed, but we headed off to the next Rest Area, where we were sure we could find some brochures.  Off we went.  The only brochures they had there were brochures that said, "Advertise your brochure here".  No help to us.  We decided to just stay the night in Richmond since there had to be something cool to do in Richmond.  We would discover it in the morning.  It was pouring down when we got there, so we just stayed in at the hotel and ordered in Pizza.  Ahhh.  Sometimes the best memories are when you do something that is just so easy.  I called the front desk about the people above us that were screaming, slamming doors, and just being loud.  Nothing was done.  Somehow I slept wonderfully.  I'm not sure if all their rooms were like this, but when we walked in, one of the walls was completely lined floor to ceiling with mirrors.  I told Jamie, "I know we're on our honeymoon, but I swear I didn't request the porno room".  LOL.

June 12th:
We went to check out.  I was going to get some brochures from inside the lobby, but the door is closed with a sign that says, "Will return in ten minutes.  Ring bell on the side."  Okaaay.  Why ring the bell if no one is there?  I rang the bell anyway.  No one shows up.  Jamie and I sit in the car (with three other people waiting in their cars to check out) and finally see someone inside.  I go to the window and we still cannot get inside the lobby for whatever reason.  So we left and went to go to the Tourist Information Center, which we saw on a sign on I-95.  Instead we ended up in ghetto Richmond.  We got out of there quickly.  We went to the next rest area to find something cool to do, and the same as before, the only brochures were the "Advertise your brochure here" brochures.  At this point, we decide that there is absolutely nothing cool to do in Virginia, so we give up and I say, "If we knew South Carolina and Virginia were this boring, we could have gone back through Savannah or spent more time in Florida."  Since we cannot find anything cool to do, we just head for home.  We weren't supposed to get home until late Sunday night (that's what we expected), but instead we arrived home today in the early afternoon.  It wasn't so bad though, we got to get our 27 rolls of film dropped off and developed in the one hour photo lab and get those back later that night.

June 13th:
This was supposed to be the last day of our honeymoon, and even though we arrived home a day early, I guess this day still sort of counts.  We stayed in bed all day!  We ordered pizza, watched the race, I scanned in pictures, we put pictures away.  It was nice to not have to do anything after two weeks of doing everything.  At the end of the day, we did go see Jamie's friends where they presented us with pictures from our wedding.  We hadn't seen any yet, so this was quite a nice surprise.  And thus is the end of our adventure.  We had such a blast.  I would definitely do it again in a heartbeat... but of course different states this time.