North Carolina Soul

Nothing could ever convince me that I don’t have salt water in my veins.

We made our annual Memorial Day pilgrimage to the New Bern area this weekend for some beach relaxation. After a crazy, busy start to the year and being primed with the knowledge that the next two months are going to be equally hectic, I made a vow to live in the moment on this trip and not behind the lens or on a screen.

So I promised myself I would breath in the salt water, take in the scenery and enjoy watching my children play rather than try and capture every moment on film. Some memories are best kept in your soul.

I have kept my promise, and it has been glorious.

But something told me last night to grab the camera and take it with me while we ventured to the Outerbanks, and I am so glad I did. These were the only pictures I took that entire trek – but oh, so worth it.

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I pulled over in a “No Park” zone, jumped out and snapped this. I only had one chance because a sea lion rolled in the water and did not like me in his space.

 

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Sunset starting just as we cross the bridge to leave the Outerbanks.

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An amazing sunset and memorable drive, coming to a close.

There is something about this area of the state that makes my heart leap with artistic inspiration – the beaches, the architecture, the waterways…all of it. If you ever get the chance to come to the coastal region of North Carolina –

Do it.

I promise you will leave with a new light.

 

All Images © 2016 Ashley Price

The Witty Bean Summer Travel Series: New Bern, NC

The Hidden Gem: New Bern, NC

There have been a few places we’ve traveled to that made me go, “Wow. What a great little part of the world.” New Bern, North Carolina definitely makes the list. It’s a small coastal town about four hours east of Charlotte and if you blink, you’ll miss it.

When we decided to take a quick weekend-beach vacation over Memorial Day weekend, I knew our chances of finding a hotel and lesser known beach, were going to be slim-to-none. After hours (not even kidding) of searching Trip Advisor and Google, I finally found New Bern, North Carolina.

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Home

This was a post that I outlined and wrote while traveling back to Arkansas for ten days. In the grand scheme of things, it wasn’t a lot of days…but I realized as I was traveling in the airplane that home really is where the heart is.

When we moved to North Carolina back in January, I was hesitant. I had never lived away from Arkansas in my entire life, with the exception of the summer I spent in Northern California with my brother. It was daunting to think about. I had always defined myself as a family girl, and this equation included my dearest friends. I had this notion in my head that without my extended family and friends by my side – I would be miserable.

Only, I wasn’t.

When we settled in I realized I wasn’t homesick…at all. Then I felt moderately guilty. Because seriously, what kind of self-proclaimed family girl doesn’t get homesick when she moves a thousand miles away for the first time in her life?!

I absolutely miss everyone. I just don’t have this burning desire to be home. That made me start questioning what my definition of home really was. When anyone asks me where I live I say, “North Carolina.” When asked where I call, “home” the answer is always Northwest Arkansas. Which is fair, I grew up there and have roots that run deep.

So when I didn’t instantly miss Arkansas, or the idea of Arkansas I thought maybe my homesick button was broken, or maybe on a time release, like Tylenol. But it has been over four months and I’m not homesick.

Because as I was packing, I realized that my home, or my definition of home at least, is this…

My home is made up of memories and the people you make those memories with. It fits neatly within your soul and you can carry it with you no matter where you travel in the world.

Home is a state of mind – not a particular place. And I am glad to have found mine.