Saugatuck Getaway

For my mom’s birthday back in March I gave her a weekend in Saugatuck, just us. Leaving the men and dogs at home. Since my parents skip town immediately following her birthday, our trip had to wait until their return, almost three months later. A touristy-artsy-charming town on the west side of the state, Saugatuck is a great little place. We chose to go early in the season, and in the middle of the week to avoid both crowds and high weekend rates. The town is situated on Kalamazoo Lake, which then flows into Lake Michigan. Our visit was a little too chilly to do any beaching, but it’s supposed to be pretty spectacular. (I’m partial to Lake Michigan beaches as it is, so I couldn’t really give a fair assessment.) Continue reading

Jacksonville Adventure

Prior to a few weeks ago, I hadn’t been to Florida in over a decade. Ryan’s middle brother and parents have all relocated to Florida, and made plans for everyone to visit between Christmas and New Years. It was just a handy coincidence that in Michigan we were just coming off a violent ice storm, which included several days of below-freezing temperatures and power outages. Needless to say, we were ready to go. Continue reading

Kayaking on the Platte

Bday Kayak 2
It would seem from my posts that I’ve spent a lot of time up north this summer.  And while it hasn’t felt like I’ve made a hefty number of trips, my photographs and calendar might suggest otherwise.  Well, add one more to the list.  Last weekend was my birthday (my birthdayyyy!) and I wanted nothing more than brunch, Mexican food, and kayaking.  I also have a tradition of spending birthdays with my parents, so north we went!  I didn’t take any (decent) pictures of brunch at Beggar’s Banquet or my Mexican fiesta at Union Street Cantina, so I’ll just assure you they were fantastic.  Now, to the kayaking. Continue reading

Close Enough to Vacation

tc blackstar flowers
This was, as I think is true for a lot of people, the summer that wasn’t.  Ryan and I didn’t get any vacations scheduled aside from our annual events, and so they just never happened.  (I had grand plans that included a lot of camping and weekend road trips, alas.)  So, a few weeks ago I said THAT’S IT, and went up north for a four-day break from reality – also known as my parents house.  Being retired from education, they are in a unique position to empathize with my lack of out-of-town adventuring; they’ve had summer vacation literally their whole lives.  So when I arrived they had a full docket of summer-vacation-eqsue entertainment for me.  Except it was 60 degrees and raining. So more like a drizzly European holiday, rather than sunny, friendly, beachy northern Michigan.  But I’ll take it.  There’s just something so cozy about a sweatshirt, shoes, and socks after a few weeks of heat.  And like a kid on a long car ride, I packed a big bag full of things to do – I was ready.  We went hiking, poked around downtown, went to some antique and resale shops, wine-tasting, and ate a lot of great food. Continue reading