Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Home Sweet Hilton Head

Once upon a time we rode into Moss Creek Plantation and were immediately enchanted as we drove down a winding road, canopied with live oak trees that were dripping in Spanish moss; the place oozed southern charm and truly felt like we had stepped into the pages of a fairy-tale.  Our Hilton Head home was more than just a place to land for the holidays, it was like living inside a virtual painting. Walls of glass spanned the back of the home and looked out over the salt marshes, creating a sensational and an ever changing landscape for us to endlessly gaze upon; finding motivation to get out and leave was hard, I mean why would we want to, we had a stunning view right from our kitchen table.

The condo was smack in Moss Creek Plantation; home to two golf courses, a tennis center, an equestrian facility, pool/fitness center, miles of walking/biking trails and a reserve island. Needless to say the grounds were vast and the community completely catered to those living there, whether it be their primary home or second home.

Speaking of second homes, the Salt Marsh Cottages in which we stayed were specifically designed in the seventies as a second homes for those migrating south for the winter. The designer, Jakie Lee, won national recognition with this design; creating an organic design that just seamlessly blended in with nature and bringing that outdoor connection inside. The architecture was superb and we truly felt like we were part of the environment from the comfort of our couch.

View from our wall of windows
This place was an amazing holiday retreat for us and we opted to spend five weeks here, just so that we weren't perpetually on the road and could just hunker down and enjoy the holidays and each other for a bit of time. Being here for Thanksgiving and Christmas, I couldn't resist the opportunity to set up a Christmas tree this year, especially after last year and having our home packed up and in the utter state of chaos that surrounds a move, it really seemed like a must this year. A little something to anchor us and give us a sense of “home for the holidays”feeling.

View from upstairs loft
Giving into the holidays was really easy and I couldn't wait to get back to all those traditions we have had year after year, especially after skipping out on them last year. From the tree, to cooking Thanksgiving dinner, and although it was just the three of us, it was perfect. And for me, once a puzzle comes out, the holidays are near; I grew up in a home that during the winter break we would spend endless hours together constructing puzzles. I know it probably came about as a means of my parents keeping our minds occupied and off the television, and possibly out of the hair while they dealt with the pandemonium of the holidays, but to this day, seeing a puzzle on a table screams Christmas to me just as much as the trimming the tree does.

A holiday tradition 
While in Hilton Head, we had an opportunity to meet with some of the neighbors and I feel like they just adopted us and took us in as part of their families. On Thanksgiving Day, one set of our neighbors, Sue and Tom, invited us over for pre-dinner cocktails, insisting we come over and meet their family. They were the true beacon of southern hospitality and made us feel so welcome on a day that we were missing those so dear to us. It meant so much to us to pop over for a bit and just feel that family-like setting and the two of them and their kindness really added all that much more of an appeal to our stop in South Carolina. Meeting them, their kids and grand-kids is such a cherished memory.

Bridge leading out to island reserve
Ethel even loved it here. I honestly couldn't even tell you what her favorite was, it could have been so many things:  warming in her bed in front of the fireplace, getting out for fun quiet walks of chasing squirrels and birds on the reserve island,  or her daily treats from the security guards. In fact she became obsessed with the security guard check in as we would return from excursions or errands and the security person would be there with a little treat for Ethel upon our return, they knew her just as much as she knew them and trying to contain her from hopping out of the car window and into their arms some days was near impossible.

Christmas Spirit
Not only did our Hilton Head home and community win us it over, but its location was beyond ideal. Everything was nearby: the beach was a quick thirty minute drive, the heart of Savannah was forty minutes away and Charleston was within a two hour drive. This is definitely a place I would love to spend more time in and even possibly settle, we absolutely loved it here. So if you y’all get a hankering for the south, here it is our holiday retreat in Moss Creek Plantation, you should definitely go and visit, the place is magical!

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