4/19 Real Bride Rachel: Happy Honeymooners

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Hello, it’s me … that Broke-Ass Bride who has been MIA for a bit.

Life has been nuts!

But let’s not dwell on that; let’s talk about fun, happy things … like a honeymoon with your new husband. Russel and I both love to travel. He’s spent time in Europe and Colombia among other places, and I just got back from my third cruise to some fun, exotic locales. But when it came to our honeymoon, we decided to keep it simple — and cheap! Would it have been amazing to take a long trip across the pond or to a tropical oasis? Of course! There are so many places I am dying to see, and getting away for 10 days or two weeks is always fantastic in my book. But because we paid for our own wedding, it’s not like we had a lot of spare change lying around to finance something extravagant, and that’s okay! Our day was awesome, and we do not regret spending what we did. It just meant that we chose to stay close to home, which turned out to be super relaxing and just what we needed.

We’re outdoorsy (hello, engagement while fishing), so it was easy for us to choose a cabin in the woods as our getaway. Luckily, we live a very drivable distance from some fantastic mountain ranges, so we had lots of cool locations to choose from. I am not even sure what swayed our decision, but in the end, we chose North Carolina.

Easy drive, mountains … beer!

I knew I wanted to visit Asheville after hearing so many friends rave about it, so we used that as a guide when selecting our cabin. We found the perfect little place on AirBnb that was only 45 minutes from the city. It was a small, cozy place for two, newly-built, and completely secluded. It had a pond to fish in, plus an amazing screened-in porch that was perfect place to sit and relax and watch for the adorable little deer that were all around. There was a grill, so we stocked up on steak, veggies and other food and made three meals every day, which was obviously much cheaper than eating at restaurants. Bonus! It was also close to state and national parks, so we spent a day exploring the area and going on a long hike. The best part? It was $75/night.

Hell yes!

We stayed Monday-Thursday and then packed up and headed into Asheville for a couple days. We stopped at the Biltmore on the way and took the tour, which was fascinating to me. I like to go on very long and twisty Wikipedia deep dives (as my friends and I like to call them), and I’ve spent an embarrassing amount of time reading about the entire Vanderbilt clan and their famous home, so I loved seeing it in person. We were not huge fans of the $75 price of admission … hi, that’s an entire night of lodging for us … but I do think it was worth it.

We got settled into our second-and-also-cheap Airbnb of the trip and then took an Uber into the city to check out all of their awesome and well-known breweries. It was so much fun! We both love beer, so we had a good time tasting a ton of different brews, and the vibe around town is so nice and chill. Burial and Green Man were both excellent, so if you’re ever in the area, go to them! Asheville definitely lived up to the hype, and we’d love to go back and spend more time there.

The end of the week rolled around too quickly, but we truly felt so relaxed and refreshed due to our lazy, slow-paced itinerary. The drive back to Ohio was actually really great. Russel’s old Durango only has a CD player, no radio … and I can only listen to the same discs over and over before they get old. So I downloaded the first season of Serial, and we listened on the trip back. We were way late to the game, but we’re all caught up on both seasons now, yay us!

All in all, it was a wonderful trip.

After the hectic and stressful months and weeks leading up to our big day, it was exactly what we needed to unwind. Add in the fact that five nights of lodging and six days of food and activities were insanely cheap, and yeah … we were happy honeymooners.

What are you doing for your honeymoon? How are you keeping it broke-ass friendly?