We were on vacation. In northern Michigan. Perhaps my favorite place in the United States - maybe even the world. It might have to do with all of the memories I've had there as a child growing up, or the promise of cool summer evenings (with the exception of this year - booo.), or the mixture of clean sandy beaches mixed with lush green forests. I get nostalgic just thinking about it. In fact, Michigan started this big campaign a few years ago, and one of my friends acting genuinely shocked when she found out they didn't hire me as a spokesperson instead of....what's his name? oh yeah, Jeff Daniels. I guess he's sort of a big deal. whatever. The first part of our vacation was spent up there with my family.
Almost every year, for as long as I can remember we have been traveling up to a small town near Traverse City, MI to a Christian Retreat Center. That sounds kind of lame, right?
But it's not.
It's this crazy anomaly that exists in my world, and it wasn't until this year I learned to appreciate just how special this place is. It's the type of place where little kids run around without their parents wearing their swimsuits all day. Where no one gets a key to their cabin because you just don't need to lock it. Where every day we left our lodge room door wide open to encourage airflow and never thought about hiding our computer or my camera. Where you know everyone there, because you have been going up with the same people during the same week most of your life. Where you don't miss a meal because the food is just. that. good. Where informal extended family reunions happen regularly, and you stay up late playing cards with people you only see once a year. Where young college students spend the summer on staff scrubbing pots and pans (like Dustin) or perfecting baked oatmeal recipes (like yours truly).
This is that kind of place.
This year I got to introduce my sons to this part of my life, and I was able to see it in a whole new way.
|Miles loved watching the water.|
|So did Mr. Droopy Drawers|
|Playing in the drinking fountain|
|Rachel and Isaac on our way to an adult-only Traverse City adventure.|
|Liam "enjoying" a boat ride.|
|Miles kept telling Grandpa to "slow down Granpa!" while wagging his finger at him.|
|No hands!.....well Miles left one cautionary hand down.|
|It was so unusually hot that we could only go to the beach in the morning and evening. We never even made it to the big Lk. Michigan beach.|