When I think of the south I think of plantations, sweet tea, and alligators.

I also think of southern charm. And Missy.

Missy is a sweet charming southern girl who I met through blogging. When Missy heard we were in the south she gave us some suggestions of what to see. It was Missy who recommended Tannehill Historical State Park. She also recommended we stop in Tuscaloosa Alabama for Dreamland BBQ and to see the devastation left by the tornado.

I was delighted when I found out her town, Meridian,  Mississippi, was on our route to New Orleans and we would get to meet in person. Our budget stretched tight, we stayed at beautiful Lake Okatibbee for $7 a night using our Passport America membership. We spent the first part of our day following our typical morning routine, school. Then in afternoon, the boys and I ventured out to downtown Meridian to meet Missy and explore the town. Missy treated us to drinks and dessert at Jen’s Place. Afterwards, we walked around the downtown getting a quick peek into the Meridian Railroad Museum and enjoying the many carousel horses scattered around the city as part of public art project. The proceeds from the Around the Town Carousel project benefit Hope Village for Children. Why carousel horses? Meridian is home to the last remaining Dentzel Carousel House, a national landmark, located in Highland Park.

The next morning, we decided to visit Highland Park before hitting the road. Unfortunately, the carousel is closed on weekdays during the winter but Missy called the park just to be sure. Much to our delight, the carousel was being shown to someone who was planning an event there and the planner said we could come on down for a peek. The peek turned into a private tour and ride! Talk about southern hospitality! The carousel is beautiful and as we spun around I couldn’t help but think of the generations who had ridden before me. It is definitely worth a stop for those traveling through Meridian.

Thanks Missy for your hospitality and recommendations. Thankful you could be a part of our adventure!

Love and Laughter,

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