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Mim Stella

What a lovely post. You are truely blessed.

Sharon at Norah'S

Could it be because of the two little fairies you left at the mountain spring?

Cindy Dean

Your posts are like reading a wonderful book that you can't put down. Do they have to end?? I think you are starting a new phase in your life with the kids all grown and independent. You will find your way... I wish you peace and happiness.


Nina, its just because you are a Mom.

Looks like you shared an incredible weekend with a wonderful young man.


Nina...your writing is so beautiful...makes me swoon...I hope one day you will collect it all in one place and consider publishing...I wish I could write like you or see the world the way you see it...barbara


reading your blog, is like turning the pages in my favorite book , i can read them over and over again and feel like i am right there with you...i know that your sons are so very proud of you and their love for you is boundless....


That was so lovely; how wonderful that he is so eager to share his burgeoning new independence with you and invite you into it!
I've no children of my own, but I still get that melancholy, bittersweet feeling when I see youngsters I care about spreading their wings and growing up well. I suppose to be honest there's a little bit of envy in it too, for me, I suppos eit's natural. But we have to rejoice for them, and for ourselves that we can enjoy them and are so blessed in them.


Oh, Valle Crucis! The last time I was there, I couldn't believe the GROWTH to that place! And Mast General Store! What a treat that place is. And Boone! My old stomping grounds. How sweet this all was, and on top of that to see your son glowing & happy putting down his own roots, nourished by the warmth of his mother. I am so glad you had this time and were able to share it with him - and Aspen too!



Sounds like a beautiful visit in a beautiful place! What a wonderful gift you give us, by sharing YOUR gift with words! As thrilled as I am that my mom lives closer to me now (in Raleigh) I miss my frequent visits to Boone, Deep Gap and Jefferson -- little corners of Heaven. Sending you sunshine!

Andra hepler

You were blue because you have raised a child...a son...and he is well....smiles, andra


Nina...your writing brought me a much needed moment of peace this afternoon...thank you.

Perhaps I found a clue as to why you felt a bit blue on your journey back home....the words were actually on the home page of the Mast General Store website:

some times are just
too good to leave behind.


You always take the most beautiful pictures! Really enjoyed them.

Elise B.

WOW! Thank you for this...


Such a lovely post! I live in the city now, but I grew up in a tiny town in rural Tennessee, in a small house tucked deep in the woods. Reading about your journey & seeing your beautiful makes me REALLY remember the joy & wonder that can be found in a forest, if you go looking...


I felt the same way leaving Boone and Riley this morning. Just a strong sense that I would miss him, but it was good he was there. I felt I had to do something so I wrote him a letter and mailed it from Boone.


oh nina, I think your son is exquisite - he radiates that "something" doesn't he? each time i leave my loved ones, a little piece of me stays behind - maybe you were just adjusting to your new self!! my dad came to our house just the other weekend to share a family meal for the first time in the 15ish years that i've been out of the nest (he's a bit slow....). from a daughter's point of view, I felt so pleased to be able to share something with him that he has always provided to me - proud of myself that I "fed" and looked after him for a change. Robin would have been so chuffed to show you off to his friends and to be able to say "look at my world mum". xoxo hugs


oh Nina - this is such a moving post - so sweet so tender - what a wonderful son - what a wonderful mom - I think that Boone would be the perfect place to visit with my son Boone - someday soon...

forgive me Nina...

but this one made me swoon...

I used to sing a little tune
about the moon
in a spoon
in June
to my sweet, sweet Boone
he'd laugh and say - oh mom...
he'll be gone too
too soon

tears and hugs

xox - eb.


This post was lovely, I love how you shared your time with your son and his friends. He looks like such a wonderful soul. You write so beautifully, your posts always take me to another place. Its always calmer, gentler and peaceful. Thanks for sharing with us.



SENSATIONAL post and photo's. You certainly seem content about Robin - well done Mum!!!

Cheryl Simpson

Nina, sweetie...bittersweet and blue is the feeling of a mom who has done well. She has raised up her boys the best she knows how. She reflects on the times when she held their little hands and led the way for them. The little hands have grown now. Robin takes hold of your hands and leads you into his world. You can be proud of the man he has become. But as mothers...we still look for that little boy who raised his hands to us.
Your writings and pictures always touch my heart, Nina.
Hugs, Cheryl

Jo Stables

Oh Nina, what a lovely time you had and well deserved, time you did something just for you.
Lovely photo's, those colours on the stairs, I want to get out my paints to see if I can capture something vaguely similar.
I think its the leaving that is so poignant Nina, you have two wonderful sons, but then what else would you have.

Gypsy Purple-Chamara

What a stunning post Nina!!!!!


Thank you for the inspiration. For myself, raising three boys is a challenge and I am constantly thinking about who they will become. Having seen you conquer one of the most difficult jobs on the planet makes me feel like there is hope for me too. Thanks!


What poignant and beautiful writing -- you captured all the feelings parents have seeing their children on their own, doing well and melting into another 'family' of friends and lovers. How lovely it is to see our children making their way and how hard it is seeing our children making their way. Those threads you created through their lives will keep you connected forever, no matter what nest each of you is occupying at the time!

P.S. Is the bead store still there in Boone? I was there last year and loved it -- want to go back soon.

alex s

My! How I love your blog. I feel like I was sitting right in that car with you. I understand bittersweet better than any other emotion. It is my very constant companion.

Did I mention that I love your blog? so so so beautiful...

ro Bruhn

I so know that feeling Nina, my daughter and 2 gandchildren live a five 'hour drive from me, whilst it's wonderful to visit, its gut wrenching when you leave especially, when my 4 year old grandson cries because he wants to come and visit RoRo.


Oh my....what a wonderful post Nina !!!

I feel like I just finished the first chapter in a new book and now I want to go on.......

You write in a way that people can't help but fall in....and the photos.....are just WOW !!!!!

Megan Pickwell

It must be both wonderful and sad to see your child as an adult - wonderful for the person they have become with your guidance, sad for the letting go that must happen to allow them to find their own way.
PS registrations opened up for artistic Journey retreat today- we can't get enough of you guys!


As a mother I understand completely how you feel towards you son. Mine is still a teenager, but my feelings for him are very much parallel to yours for Robin.

Julie H

What beautiful photo's Nina and what a beautiful son. Each time you post a picture of this dear dread locked boy I feel a peace eminating from him - a lot of the credit for that must go to the wise Mama who raised him.


I am always amazed that your writing can convey such love through a metal machine. Your boys are lucky to have a wonderful Mom like you to help guide them through life. They have the greatest gift. It looks like a lovely time. I love Boone as well and spent many weekends there as a child. Thank you for sharing Nina. Love, Jamie

fran welch

hi nina, your robin is a very handsom man now!!! little sweet boys to big sweet men......and though i don't get by blogs like yours as much as i would like it's a joy to see your amazing photos and writing. ....sweet and happy trails to you and your two sweet boys/men.


Tout simplement Magnifique !!!!!!

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