As we safely try to establish some sort of new normalcy, our family has slowly opened up our social circle to a few people who we know are also taking the necessary precautions to try to remain healthy. Some of these people include Laney’s best friend, Channing. The stars truly aligned for their friendship. They have the sweetest relationship and it has been so great that Jordan and I have hit it off too. But the cherry on top has been that our husbands have enough in common to have carried their initial conversations to then grow into a friendship as well.
With all of that said, we have been wanting to go away for the weekend with our new boat and with Jordan wanting to go away for her birthday, we scoured AirBnB to see what they may have available. We totally lucked out and found the perfect house for our families right on Lake Wylie! It was actually the only one available that fit our criteria but it was meant to be!
A Much Needed Weekend Getaway
Friday, June 12, we loaded up our cars as well as the boat and made the drive north to Lake Wylie. Lake Wylie is located just south of Charlotte, NC and is only a little over an hour from our house in Northeast Columbia, SC. This makes for a very bearable drive with two toddlers in the car and having grown up in Charlotte, it’s always nostalgic for me to go back to that area.
Upon arrival down a long wooded driveway, we pulled up to a quaint ranch style home right on the lake. Check-in was at 3:00pm and I believe we got there around 3:30pm that afternoon. Entry was accessible via an electronic keypad, which made things very easy to get in and unload. The first impression was that it looked exactly like the pictures! Furnishings were from Pottery Barn, Restoration Hardware and Homegoods. Most things I would put in my own home! It was such a nice feeling to know it actually felt like our home away from home for the weekend and not just a typical rental with consignment finds to fulfill the needs of the space. One of the best things about it too was the fact that the boat ramp was a two minute drive from the house making it very easy to put the boat in the water and bring it over to the dock at the house. We actually packed a good bit of the weekend’s groceries in coolers from home but still needed a few items from the grocery store, so once we got unpacked, Jordan and I ran to the nearby Harris Teeter. Meanwhile, the kids had a blast playing throughout the open concept living areas with the toys we had brought from home.
That night, we grilled hamburgers and hot dogs and enjoyed dinner al fresco style on the nice outdoor dining table on the back patio overlooking the lake. Prepping for our meal and getting a feel for the kitchen, I was SO impressed but what was provided. It was so nice to see matching place settings, cups, nice silverware, baking dishes, etc as well as some extras like a lighter, birthday candles, cute cocktail napkins, ziploc bags, prepackaged sweeteners and simple items like that that you would have at home but may not have thought to pack or buy. It was hands down the most equipped kitchen in a rental I have ever seen! After dinner, we all jumped aboard the boat and went on a relaxing sunset cruise. It was the perfect start to a much needed weekend away!
A simple 5 minute drive from the house puts you in the middle of some great shopping! There’s a very nice strip center with the Harris Teeter we ventured to as well as a West Marine store and other fast food type places. I also recall passing a Jim ‘N Nicks BBQ which is a great chain sit down restaurant. If you’ve never been to taste their cheese biscuits, you haven’t lived. Across the street from all of this is a huge outdoor shopping center complete with a Super Target, Old Navy, TJMaxx and everything you can think of in between!
South Charlotte is only about a 20-30 minute drive from the house depending on where you’d like to go which gives you a TON of other shopping and food options. We knew we didn’t want to leave the house unless we had to, so we didn’t explore any of Charlotte this time. Also places like SouthPark Mall are still closed. Since we live so close we can make day trips when we get the urge for an adventure out of town. But South Charlotte is the area where I grew up so if you ever need any recommendations, I’m ya girl.
Saturday started with a birthday surprise for Jordan and a big homemade breakfast of pancakes, bacon and scrambled eggs. The night before, Brad stayed up to help me blow up balloons and put together a balloon arch that we then hung in the kitchen/keeping room with a Happy Birthday banner. (God bless the balloon pump and balloon arch tape I had bought for Laney’s birthday back in January to make this quick and easy!) With full bellies and bathing suits on, we made our way down to the boat midmorning. It was SO nice to have the boat right there. All we needed was ourselves, a bag with towels, some snacks, some drinks for the cooler and we were set! We jumped on and away we went! We cruised around exploring areas we hadn’t yet driven around since we were in a different area than the boat ramp we typically use during our day trips. We also found a quiet, undeveloped cove to attempt to wake surf.
With Tyler there to help drive the boat since I’m still learning the feel for it, Brad jumped in for his first ever attempt. Having grown up wakeboarding and water skiing, I was pretty confident it wouldn’t take him long to figure out. He went down on the first try, but popped right up on his second attempt and enjoyed a long ride before eventually just letting go of the rope and gliding down. Afterwards, I decided to give it another try. I had previously given it a go on one of our day trips but couldn’t quite figure out how to keep my center of gravity small and over the board until I was up even though we had watched a bunch of YouTube videos. So anyways, there I went again. I did much better and managed to get up once for a split second (and I have a video/pic to prove it!), but still have some work to do to maintain my balance. The last time I tried to get up, my knee popped so I knew it was time to hang it up for the day. I’m still nursing this knee back to health one week later. #thisis32 Last up was Tyler who managed to get up for a few short rides. Afterwards we made our way back to the house for lunch on the patio.
The house was equipped with some really comfortable floats in the downstairs suite, so we grabbed those and took them to the beach area of the property. It was so nice to have this little sandy spot for the kids to run around and for all of us to have an area to float in shallow water that was tucked into our cove away from other boaters. After some time in the water, we all went in for showers and naps. While the guys napped with the girls, Jordan and I went to the nearest GAP store that was open in Charlotte. I had some overalls I needed to hopefully exchange so we took that time to have a little mom outing.
By the time we got back, the guys had caught some fish with the girls, were already marinating the steaks and prepping for mashed potatoes. Perfect timing! We again had a wonderful dinner on the patio followed by sunset pictures, another evening cruise the boat, birthday cake and s’mores by the fire pit. It was a great day!
No Sunday scaries here! We still had one last full day to enjoy! The day started in a similar fashion, this time with grits and bacon. After breakfast, we packed up and got on the boat for our mid morning ride. We went further north where you can see property sizes increase and the waterways aren’t quite as busy with boats but rather stand up paddle boarders and kayakers. We went all the way up to where the lake funnels back down into the Catawba River before we turned around to head back to the house. No one attempted any wake surfing as we were all sore from the day before, but at one point the kids were all in the back of the boat with the guys, so Jordan and I stretched out in the front of the boat with a Coke and La Croix, ready for some quiet mom time just enjoying the scenery. Well not more than a few minutes and one sip into our drinks, a boat with a wake surfer on the back came zooming by creating a large wake that splashed right over the bow of the boat and into our laps. We were drenched!
Once back at the house, we made lunch, played on the beach and went back out on the boat to play with our new tube-like towable. It unfortunately was a little smaller than we wanted and had a slow leak so after a few quick rides we called it a day to head back in for naps. Sweet Morgan couldn’t hang until we got back to the house.
Once back up, we went down to the beach area for some floating time and we also did some fishing off of the dock. We later got cleaned up and put chicken on the grill for dinner accompanied by corn on the cob and Mac & cheese. After dinner, we went on one last sunset boat ride, got the fire pit going, had some ice cream and continued to enjoy some adult time around the fire pit once the girls went to bed. What a relaxing way to end our time at the lake!
Check out was super simple. We had spent the majority of our time outside so the mess inside was minimal with only some dishes to do and toys to pick up. That morning I set my alarm to get up and enjoy my last cup of coffee on the upper deck. It was chilly that morning with a light sprinkle of rain. When Laney woke up, she decided to join me.
All sheets and towels were to be put in the master shower, doors locked and out by 11:00am. We managed to get cleaned up and loaded up by 10:30am. We then caravanned down to the boat ramp while Brad drove the boat over from the house. Once the boat was up on the trailer, we made a pit stop at the Chick-fil-A just before getting on the interstate and headed south towards home.
David and Lacey were such gracious hosts! As previously mentioned, the home was decorated beautifully and was stocked with just about everything we needed. There was also a handwritten note on the kitchen island when we arrived as well as a bottle of Prosecco to welcome us! And most importantly it was clean! They advertise that everything is cleaned thoroughly and sanitized prior to check in and we definitely witnessed that. They were also very responsive. I got to the house before Brad since we drove separately and he was taking the boat to the ramp first, and since he had done the corresponding during the booking, I didn’t have the instructions on how to get into the house. David answered quickly and walked me through how to get in. They made it all so easy!
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The house features large windows all along the back of house which gives you a perfect view of the lake at all times. This was my favorite thing about it! The upstairs area has a slightly more formal, yet comfortable den with a wood burning fireplace. (I can’t wait to enjoy this room more when we are back there this fall!) This room leads you into the dining room with ship lap and a sitting room with cozy swivel chairs that I loved drinking my coffee in. The kitchen was bright and open and the keeping room included a TV for the girls to watch their morning cartoons. Other than that, it was never on. The keeping room also led to a deck with patio furniture and the stairs leading down to the lower patio. Between the dining room and kitchen was a hallway with a bedroom with a queen bed (where Laney slept — the bed is up against a wall and I had packed our bed rail from home), a bathroom, several closets with extra cleaning supplies, pillows, blankets, etc., laundry and the master bedroom with a king bed and en suite. Each room had two very soft robes hanging in them like you’d find at a luxury hotel. We didn’t use them but other people have raved about them in the home’s AirBnB reviews. To get to the master bathroom, you have to walk through a good sized walk-in closet which is where we put Morgan’s pack-n-play. The only quirky thing is that the 3rd bedroom is downstairs and can only be accessed from the outside. It’s like a mother-in-law suite. This area of the house is located down the stairs from the upper deck. Below this deck, they have another comfy seating area and upgraded the ceiling so that it’s covered to prevent anything falling through the deck boards above like rain, etc. Beside this is the area with the covered outdoor dining table and the door into the bottom suite. It includes a front room with a couch and eating area, bathroom, small kitchen and a bedroom with a queen bed. The patio area has 2 rocker style chairs around the fire pit, 4 Adirondack chairs with several side tables, a grill and a walkway with pavers from this area down to the dock.
Here’s the link to the house:
If you’re booking your first ever AirBnB trip, use this link for a discount!
What We Packed
Paper plates (to cut down on dishes)
Marshmallow Roasting Skewers
Morgan’s booster seat
Floats (didn’t need them because the house had some)
Inflatable pool (ended up not using since there was a beach area)
Small bag of toys and books for the house
Folding rocking chairs
Inflatable toddler bed (Channing slept on this in the downstairs suite)
Pack n play
Pillows (the girls used their pillows for home comforts, but the house’s pillows were actually nice!)
Bed rail (Laney used this for the guest room bed)
Several changes of clothes for everyone
Several bathing suits for everyone
Several cover ups
Toiletries & our preferred detergent pods
Other than that, the house had everything we needed! When we go there again for Thanksgiving, the only extra things I know I’ll need to pack is a potato peeler and a couple of extra pots.
What’s your favorite AirBnB you’ve ever stayed in? I’d love to see it down below in the comments!