Well, we’re back!! Sorry for that extra long blog break. Totally not intended, but we had such a peaceful and relaxing time that I never even pulled out the computer. I have to admit, between getting to stay in such a beautiful place, enjoying the COOL weather, and being gone for 9 whole days, it was really hard to come back yesterday.
S0. Northern Michigan is a DREAM. I had no idea. We’ve been back for less than 24 hours and Brian has mentioned probably ten times how he wished we lived there. It was a long trip and we saw and did a ton of stuff, so I’m probably going to have to break this into 2 posts…
Last Thursday we flew from Dallas to Chicago (my parents left on Weds and drove there instead of flying), met up with my parents and Aunt Kathy, and stayed at my aunt’s house in Chicago. Of course for dinner we had to check out Portillo’s for Italian beef and Chicago dogs.
After dinner we drove around Naperville, where my dad grew up. It’s such a charming town- I really want to go back and visit when we have more time to check it out.
On Friday morning we loaded up and hit the road for Charlevoix. We fought traffic, took a quick lunch break in Grand Rapids, then ended up in Charlevoix late Friday afternoon/early evening.
Y’all. I almost cried when we got out of the car. First of all, it was in the low 70′s, which felt like a miracle in and of itself after leaving 95 degree Dallas. And then the house…
So amazingly cute, right? And check out the yard. Front:
(Ha- my new summer obsession: grapefruit shandy)
The pictures don’t do it justice. The backyard was HUGE with tons of running space for the kids. The upper level had a sitting area and baby swing (Isla was obsessed… my poor dad & Brian probably spent half of their vacation pushing her). The lower level was a giant hill and flat yard. It was all fenced in and then past the fence you walked down a few stairs to another yard (with chairs and fire pit) and a boat house. We spent so much time outside- drinking coffee, reading, eating meals, watching the kids play. The backyard had an amazing view of the harbor and “downtown” Charlevoix, so we would just chill and watch the boats pass by.
It was CHILLY!! Long sleeves AND a blanket!
Another great thing about the house was that it was probably under a half mile from downtown, so we could easily walk or bike into town. I found an awesome coffee/crepe shop, That French Place, so most days I sweet-talked Brian into walking into town with me to grab an iced coffee. We also walked to dinner a few times, biked to the grocery store, and walked to a few bars once the kids were down (don’t worry- my parents and aunt stayed home with them). The town has a ton of cute gift shops, a great toy store, specialty food markets (cherries cherries cherries!) and about 15 fudge shops. Oh and an entire store of just taffy. Even with all the walking, I probably gained 10 lbs.
A few downtown pics- the harbor and lighthouse.
At the crepe place with Jack- he had ice cream and Brian and I shared a strawberry-nutella crepe.
We were also within walking distance of the beach. Two beaches, actually: one on Lake Charlevoix and one on Lake Michigan. It was a 15 minutes walk through the neighborhood (don’t even get me started on the houses- they were huge, old and so beautiful) to Depot Beach, a small beach in front of the old Charlevoix train depot.
Ok, the water was COLD. Of course the kids barely seemed to notice, but Brian and I only made it about knee deep.
So this whole “clear water lake” thing is a foreign concept to this Texan. Holy moly. I would be a lot more excited to swim at Cedar Creek if I could see the bottom.
The owners of the house where we stayed lived right next door. They were the sweetest couple and Jack and Isla were both smitten with “Miss Sally.” She left presents for them on our doorstep, brought them books, and let them come over and play with her sweet lab. They also invited us out on their boat on Saturday and gave us a tour of Lake Charlevoix. Jack got to drive the boat for a while and was in heaven.
OK, part 2 tomorrow. I have a TON of laundry to catch up on, naturally. Missed you guys!