We had the best time on our little back road tour. This was planned as a very relaxing trip, no special places to stop unless we saw something interesting. Of course, food was always at the top of our itinerary!
We started out around 9:00 a.m. on Thursday morning hitting I-65 heading north. We planned on getting off in Clanton and traveling on Highway 31 as far as we could.
Just outside of Montgomery looking toward Prattville
Sons of the Confederacy flag
Heading into downtown Clanton and some pretty scenery along the way
This old antebellum home was behind a fast food place where we stopped. Unfortunately, it was in pretty bad shape.
From Clanton we arrived in Birmingham on Highway 31. Hwy. 31 is also known as the Old Montgomery Highway or the Birmingham Highway. It just happens to run by the Riverchase Galleria (as well as Old Time Pottery – and yes, we stopped there for a little Christmas shopping).
Skyline of downtown Birmingham
Just outside of Birmingham we next came to Warrior, Alabama where I snapped this old car. My dad and mom had one just like it when I was a little girl!
This looked like a great place to stop to eat some good old fashioned barbeque and it was soooo good!
Here’s Big Daddy himself!
Continuing on Hwy. 31 we headed to Cullman, Alabama.
Cullman is home to the Ava Maria Grotto. A monk who lived on the grounds of a Catholic mission carved all of this work at the Grotto! It is stunning to see his work!
Looking down the path at the beginning of the tour of the grotto.
Back to the town on Friday we discovered that Cullman was going to host their annual Christmas tour the next day. All the shops were decked out for Christmas.
Years ago when my mom and I visited relatives in Cullman, I discovered this place called Southern Architecture and Accents. Outside the shop was this huge urn planed with a fern. Let’s go inside and check it out….
This place is unbelievable! It stretches on forever with one-of-a-kind architectural pieces. Most would be for a big home and a large pocketbook!
Way out of my price range but just gorgeous….
We saw this store around the corner and it turned out to be my favorite place.
Lots of hand painted harlequins throughout the store. One of the rooms was full of nothing but lamps and lamp shades. I can’t believe I didn’t take a picture of all those lamps…
This large picture was so pretty
I would love to have a cozy spot like this to read or watch TV. Again, more harlequins!
These were paper maiche (sp?) Christmas ornaments and only about $12 each!
Another wall painted with creme and gold
Then we started driving around the historical home district. This was just a little building next to the one below
According to the sign outside of this cute little cottage, this was the first home built in Cullman
I had to take this of these chairs in the side yard of this home. I just got two chairs and a table like this from the lady who held my mom’s estate sale. She had them painted red but I’m going to paint them white next spring
Look at that tree in the yard with the chairs….took my breath away!
I loved this little house and especially the front door. This is the door I want on the front of my home which looks a lot like this one (painted brick, etc)
There were lots of planted window boxes which made me want to come home and plant something in mine
Moving on the next day to Decatur, Alabama. This first house I fell in love with. It’s hard to tell from the pictures but it was so darling. I’m sure the lady living here thought we were stalking her…she was working in her yard and I made hubby go around the block several times so I could just drool over this cottage. Wait till you see what I spotted around back on her porch!
Look at her pumpkins and gourds all piled up here..so cute.
And her windowbox….to die for!
But look here! Drop cloths on her porch! I had already planned to do a drop cloth treatment on the frame of my gazebo in the back next year but isn’t this stunning?
Cotton fields of Alabama!
Our hotel was in the downtown historic district, right across the street from antique and speciality shops
Pretty little tablescape in this window
Looking down the street at the shopping area. You can see the hotel where we stayed in the far right corner
Lobby in our hotel
We had a wonderful time. We even stopped at a yard sale Saturday morning in Decatur where I scooped up a rusty-looking candlestick for $1.00 and a huge rattan thing-y for my front door for 5.00.
Yesterday (Wednesday) I had the pleasure of meeting a lady who had made a comment on my blog when I posted about Taylor and the Christmas on the Coosa pageant. She works downtown close to me so we met for lunch. I think it’s the beginning of a great friendship! Hi Michelle!
Also, on Monday I’ll be giving ya’ll some great recipes using Bryan sausages and Little Smokies. More on that soon……until then, stay safe!