Happy Friday (again)! I have to admit that I really do look forward to these Friday Finds on Mackinaw Road days. I hope you do too!
I also have to admit that almost all of these finds happened two weeks ago, but there was just so much to share around the Thanksgiving holiday that I decided to save it for this week.
Christmas is right around the corner and I’m already nervous I am going to forget someone’s gift. Luckily, the parents are taken care of with tickets to shows and sporting events and I have most of the other gifts too. I was visiting a friend to pick up a cake she made for my mom’s birthday (it was nothing short of amazing!!!). Her house had so many of my favorite things including lots and lots of books and travel relics tastefully placed throughout. This particular personalized wall art captured my attention… How perfect is this for the travelers in your life? Now, since my entire family travels…Continue reading Friday Finds on Mackinaw Road, Take 10: Vintage Travel Magazines, Chatbooks, and a Travel-Related Gift
While I love a good scroll through Pinterest, I have to admit that often times a big red FAIL could be plastered across my final projects (except this one). And, even when I do feel I’ve successfully copied a Pinterest suggestion, often times, my kids could care less (they are probably used to my FAILS;-). Just a quick example… for our Road Trip to Washington D.C. this past summer, I printed colored scavenger hunts and road games, bought all of our kids’ favorite snacks, made 100 trips to the $1 section at Target, created art packs complete with new crayons, put all of the activities into neatly organized boxes, etc. etc. And you know what the 4-year old did? He talked to us for the 10 1/2 hours, falling asleep only when we were crossing from Maryland into D.C. The clipboards were a hit for a hot minute as was the sheet with all of the fast food restaurant signs that they were supposed to find (I think there were clouds with Happy Meal heaven thoughts in their heads). But, other than that, the boxes quickly became drawing boards and the backseat floor an endless array of spilled crayons and granola bar wrappers.Continue reading The Lazy Mom’s Guide to non-Pinterest Travel
“I’d like to do a flight of beer.” This was my husband’s “winery joke” and I have to say, it was a success every time. Humor aside, there are just under 60 wineries in the Traverse City area, so we are slowly adding one or two to our repertoire on each trip.Continue reading Traverse City Wineries
I have to admit that Charlevoix has my heart. I don’t know if it is the cozy town, the amazing green water, or the chance to touch base with one of the first friend couples we met when we moved to Grand Rapids 11 years ago. It is amazing how quickly life goes and this chance to refresh is always welcomed. Where there was once a little blonde-haired toddler, there is now an almost teenager watching my preschooler and our other grade-school kids. We don’t see each other often even though we live quite close and that’s fine. It’s how life works sometimes. But it just makes this weekend all the more special for us.Continue reading What to Do in Charlevoix, Michigan
On a recent trip to Leland, Michigan, I was able to join in the festivities as Maggie Revel Mielczarek celebrated 5 years of Leland Gal in Fishtown. Maggie and I met years ago (i.e., before kids) at Bunco. (If you love to talk but don’t love learning card game rules, this is the activity for you :-). Continue reading Leland Gal
I recently visited Leland, Michigan. I hadn’t been in years but was excited to visit and join in Leland Gal’s 5 year anniversary. And, honestly, it’s Northern Michigan… you really can’t go wrong up there. The water is a shade all its own and is as clear as can be. There is a very relaxed beach town vibe complimented by good old Midwestern friendliness. Continue reading What to do in Leland, Michigan
I was recently asked where we were headed next. My answer…No where! And I was excited about it! This weather is what Michiganders endure 6 months of winter for! It is finally going to be beach weather and we have some of the best beaches and beach towns (I may be a bit biased.) Okay, so I’m not exactly going to stay put. Truthfully, I am going to take every opportunity to hit up the lakeshore and road trip it up north. We just had our very own family tradition of our “unofficial first weekend of summer” in Traverse City. Here is where we ate:Continue reading Where to Eat in Traverse City, Michigan
Welcome back to my randomness… with Friday Finds, Take 2….Hope you all had a great week! We made it to almost-Friady. Yay! And I made it through February without a broken bone- double Yay! Our only February hick-up was that our dog ate sand at the beach and had to spend the night at the Emergency Animal Hospital. Fortunately, he is back to his crazy, jumping, kissing 10-year old self.
Donkey Taqueria- If you are visiting Grand Rapids, Michigan, or live within an hour radius of Grand Rapids, this restaurant is a must. It is my favorite restaurant. So much so that I always have fabulous intentions of trying one of the new eateries that keep popping up around the city but just cannot tear myself away from Donkey. I love being guaranteed great service, a delicious Paloma, and top-notch food. Every. Single. Time. Making it feel even more special is the fact that it forces you to just relax. You cannot call ahead (there isn’t a listed phone number), making you come to terms with the fact that you are just going to have to show up and go with the flow. If the wait is too long, we have always had good luck going across the street to Winchester for a pre-dinner drink. Donkey will just text you when your table is ready.
Lee and Birch– Looking for a different activity while you wait for your table? Just head up the street to Lee and Birch. I went in to just “check it out” and pretty much could have seen myself in all of the clothes in the store. It is small, which feels cozy and not too overwhelming. The sales people are pretty chill, helpfulbut not at all pushy.
Zing Zangs- This is an oldie but goodie. One of my brothers-in-law is our designated Bloody Mary guy and this is a favorite. Whenever he and my sister-in-law ask what they can bring, I always want them to bring the Bloody Mary’s. He did, however, share his secret, so now we can all make delicious Bloody’s. Zing Zangs has just the right amount of spice and thickness. It’s as much a staple at our family gatherings as ice cream cake, maybe even more so!
Barre 3 via You Tube-With all of this eating and drinking going on, I thought it only “fitting” that I throw in a workout too. I just discovered this tonight, and it is great! It is perfect for when, say, your stairclimber is covered in plastic and every item in your storage room is now in the family hangout room because you had/have a “vision” for your laundry/mudroom (insert teeth-clenched emoji here). Moving on… the You Tube sequence is about 40 minutes long and would actually be perfect for when you are traveling too (there are small weights involved, but, let’s be honest, I’m not using those at home either). I really found the instructors to be encouraging and saying everything I needed to hear throughout the workout. The sequences are really easy to follow, and since repetition is key, it’s fairly easy to stay on track.
Well, there you have it, my barely-travel-related Friday Finds. I’ll be back next week with the Island Interviews Series. You may have also noticed all of the beautiful beaches lately on my Instagram account.. stay tuned, a related post is coming next week too.
**I have no more fun ways to say this, so just know… this post may contain affiliate links, meaning that, at no cost to you, I may be compensated. Thank you!
Since I love a good countdown and have been seeing quite a few Top 5 Posts of 2016, I thought it might be entertaining (and, admittedly, a bit self-indulgent) to look back, too, especially because I’m grounded until March. (Have a mentioned that? Ha!) Granted, the statistics are from a whole 3 months, but still… Here we go…
4. A Long Weekend in Northern Michigan: Northern Michigan’s beauty never ceases to amaze me. Can you believe that water is in Michigan and not the Caribbean? We had such a wonderful trip; it will definitely be on our list for next year, too.
2. Gift Guide for the Traveler in Your Life: Here I provided several gift suggestions for the traveler in your life. I purchased the Leather Charger Roll-Up for my husband for Christmas, and not only does he carry it with him when he travels, but he also tells me all about it often.
1. Banff: Something for Everyone: I was so happy to see this as my top post of 2016. It was such a surprising and amazing destination. I really would recommend Banff and Lake Louise to anyone and everyone.
I’m so excited to see what 2017 has in store for us! We already have four trips planned, two with our larger families, one with the four of us, and one with just the two of us. Do you have any destinations on your bucket list that you are hoping to check off this year?
*This post may contain affiliate links, meaning that, at no cost to you, I may receive some compensation.