December 2017
Vol 10, Issue 6

Doug & Jodee Sellers

     Happy Holidays to you and yours!  Hope you had a great Thanksgiving and are looking forward to Christmas, the New Year, Hannukkah and/or other special days.  As is the tradition, the Saturday after Thanksgiving Jodee and I headed back to the Farmer's Market for our Christmas tree and wreaths.  She did a great job on the doors and mantel this year using several of her whimsical houses and pottery trees for the mantel.  With the fireplace crackling and the lights aglow you can't help but get in the spirit.  We hope to see you for the holidays or maybe in January and February when our winter rates make it a great deal for you. 
     I must drop back for a moment to last season to share a photo.  As I predicted in the last newsletter, the fall foliage held on deep into November.  I took the photo of the garden gate on November 9th.  Amazingly, it's now December and the Spirea in our front yard is still bright gold.  
The Week Off That Wasn't  
     We closed the week of December
Re-roofing on hold as the snow piles up
4th - 8th to re-roof the lodge.  Jodee and I had been looking forward to having the place all to ourselves for a few days.  Then we decided to replace the hot water heaters while we were at it.  They weren't broke.  Heck they still looked brand new but they were 18 years old.  For a cheapskate like me that was a tough call to make. Then we thought, why not refinish the wood floors in the great room and repaint a couple of bathrooms.  Then we realized a few tubs need to be re-grouted also.  And then we needed to have some work done to the hot tub at the Luhn house.  Then it was a repair to the furnace thermostat.  Then we discovered we had flying squirrels in the attic and called Asheville Wildlife Removal which had to set traps and install barriers to prevent future overnight stays of the little unwelcome guests. 
Melting Snow Brings a Smile 

Then the snow came!  A predicted couple of inches turned into 12 and the roofers, the plumbers, the squirrel catchers, and the staff all stayed home.  We had to cancel two more days of reservations.  Jodee (bless her heart) and I shoveled a foot of snow off the circle drive and the most of the decks to try and get ready of a few guests coming on Sunday.  Our week off turned into the hardest (and most expensive) week all year.  We are so glad to get back to just cooking breakfast and running the lodge. 
Interesting Business Travelers Stay at Bent Creek Lodge 
Michele & Charles Smith of MC2 pottery, click on the pic to see more pots on their website
When you think business travelers do you picture folks in suits here to meet other folks in suits?  Not necessarily so. Michele and Charles Smith, have stayed with us the last three years when they  come to Asheville in mid October to show their bonsai pots at the Annual Bonsai Expo at the N.C. Arboretum.  That is the premier bonsai exhibit in the south east and the most popular plant show of the Arboretum.  The Smiths have done very well showing and selling their unique, pottery bonsai containers there. Check out their pottery on the website and you will see why.  At the end of the expo they made their reservation for next year and obviously they have been spreading the word about Bent Creek Lodge.  The same day two other bonsai vendors made reservations for next years show.  Charles told us,
"We leave our day tired and worn out.  It is such a pleasure to return to a place that is welcoming, homey and relaxing to reenergize for our next day's activities." 
     Later the same month was the Animal Fiber Expo at the Asheville Civic Center which brought Maureen and Kate of Green Mountain Spinnery, and Pam and Mark of Indian Lake Artisans to stay at the Lodge.    Green Mountiain Spinnery creates beautiful yarns using vintage equipment in their mill in rural Vermont.  Indian Lake Artisans make unique hexagonal knitting needles and other specialty items.  Mark told us, "We love the lodge so much that next year we are extending our stay beyond our business days. We wouldn't think about staying anywhere else!"  Later this month we have folks coming to record gospel music at Crossroads Recording Studio in Arden.  
     People often tell us, "I bet you meet a lot of interesting people as Innkeepers."  Indeed we do!
The Folks You May Never See That Keep BCL Rolling 
     We used to have guests, Chris K. and
Don Mandelkorn, Margaret Davis and the Sap Bucket 
Ann G., from New Hampshire smuggle us maple syrup down whenever they came for a visit.  They moved to Asheville which  put an end to that operation.  Fortunately they introduced us to Don Mandelkorn and Margaret Davis of Green Mountain Maple right here in Asheville.  They deliver gallons of that sweet, delicious syrup right to our kitchen whenever we need it, always with a smiles and a twinkle in their eye. T he other day as I watched Don drive away in his retro 1961 Metro van it made me think of that nostalgic bygone era when milk was delivered door to door.  It was then that I realized the oft repeated phrase " you can't get good service like you use to" is totally untrue.   
     Besides Don we have Nick from Hav A Cup Coffee service who comes every other Monday to clean our coffee pot and stock our shelves with that wonderful Velvet Hammer Coffee.  He always asks how business is going and if we are busy he just says "don't worry about writing a check, I'll get it next time".  Then there is Joe with Cleggs  pest control who has often come out on his own time, suited up in his full HAZMAT suit to battle our vicious, ground dwelling yellow jackets.  He is my super hero. And the folks at Rathburn Food Equipment who sold us a DCS commercial range and a Jackson dishwasher nearly 20 years ago.  They can't even get parts for those dinosaurs anymore but somehow they do their magic and keep them chugging away for us.  And another real savior for us has been A-1st Choice well drilling.  They dug our well, also nearly 20 years ago, and when lightning burnt the pump up 600 feet down that well we gave them a call.  They came out that day, worked late into the night and had our water running so we were back in business the next day.  
     It takes a lot of help to keep Bent Creek Lodge going, way too many to list, and we would like to thank them all.  And I promise never to repeat, "you can't get good service like you use to" ever again.  
We Reached a Major Milestone!
     I must admit Jodee, our partner and
John York & Jean Wauford Accept Our Last Mortgage Payment
bookkeeper, Kathy Courtney, and I are mighty proud this month to reach a goal that none of us could visualize when we started back in 1999.   Last week Jodee and I hand delivered the last payment on our mortgage to John York and Jean Wauford, at Carolina Alliance Bank.  They have treated us like they were a part of our team and they still are in many ways.  But it sure feels good to not owe them any money, at least for now.  I think this calls for a celebration!


Doug & Jodee Sellers           

Bent Creek Lodge
Remember Bent Creek Lodge Gift Certificates make great gifts and they are now available for purchase on our website.