I love Michigan and have lived here all my life. Within one to four hours in any direction, you can take an endless number of road trips and discover fun things to do. (Under the “Michigan” category, you can bring up earlier posts – and I hope you will.)
We’ve got countless lakes at every turn, gorgeous weather and amazing vineyards as well as sports, casinos, festivals, concerts, theaters, galleries, universities, zoos, great restaurants, parks and markets….you get it, right?
I’m sharing a couple of slideshows of road trips I’ve made over the last four weeks, from St Clair and Marysville to Traverse City, Lake Leelanau, Cedar and Suttons Bay. If you have a chance to visit Michigan, these are a few of my favorite places.
- St Clair & Marysville
2. Traverse City, Cedar, Lake Leelanau & Suttons Bay
A year ago, I planted a single, tiny morning glory with one little blossom on the edge of my herb garden. After a few weeks they went crazy. Earlier this summer, I recall worrying that no morning glories had appeared in my garden in spite of millions of seeds that fell while I was dead-heading last fall.
When we returned to Michigan after two weeks in Tennessee, my herb garden had disappeared under a canopy of morning glories gone wild.
A gleam in his eye, Spence offered to find his machete and “help me”. I declined in favor of a kinder, gentler approach pruning until the herbs were liberated while surrounded by a wall of morning glories.
Aren’t they gorgeous? They appear to have tiny white lights in their centers, illuminating from within while their rich colors provide a fabulous display which delights me every morning.
With the first of our three day Fourth of July weekend, the weather here in Michigan couldn’t be any more perfect. In fact ever since Wednesday this week it has been gorgeous including cooler nights and even a pretty solid and much needed rainfall in the wee hours Friday.
Spence and I choose to stay home on holiday weekends as the majority of the state heads “up north”. The Great Lakes State, Michigan has much to offer the farther north you travel and it’s stunning. However, there’s also traffic, construction and people pulling boats, jetskis and various other toys. We’re retired and can travel anytime plus when everybody else leaves town, it’s quiet and laid back.
With a soft breeze, brilliant blue sky and fluffy white clouds drfting above us we’re enjoying the garden. I picked the first 5 raspberries earlier, eating them right off the bush, like a bite of warm raspberry pie. In a bit, Spence will fire up the grill and I’ll open a bottle of wine and we’ll be chillin’.
Indeed, it’s a perfectly beautiful Saturday.
Today, more blooms appeared in my garden. First one, then another peony opened with so many to follow in the days and weeks ahead.
My irises continue to open at break-neck speed with Michigan’s hot, dry days. Each iris is more delicate and showy than the next. The pale peachy-pink iris is new this year.
Fifty second thing: Living my entire life in Michigan has assured that I’ve always experienced the change of seasons. My favorites are Spring and Fall as they provide the most dramatic and profound shifts each year. As we are enjoying Spring in Michigan right now, I had to feature it as one of the “59 Things” that make me happy.
In recent weeks, we’ve enjoyed temps near 80 and serious lows, including a freeze warning last night. We’ve had cool spring rains (and hail) at night, providing moisture for green grass and flowers.
My community has numerous flowering crab and cherry trees, “tulip trees” and rhododendron blooming now, while other trees are bursting forth with leaves overnight. It’s thrilling to see everything come back to life after looking gray, dead and dreary for months.
Anxious to garden, I’ve purchased large pots of pansies for my front porch and deck. I cleaned out numerous flower beds, then mulched (31 bags of pine bark mini-nuggets). Tulips, daffodils, lily of the valley, peonies, poppies and hostas are all emerging so quickly that if you sit still and watch, you’ll see them growing.
Today I purchased jalapeno, green bell pepper, sweet red and yellow pepper plants. For my herb garden, I purchased: rosemary, cilantro, lemon thyme, flat leaf parsley, sweet basil, French cooking thyme and bush basil (aka Greek Basil). For now, they’ll remain in my sunny kitchen window…..soon to join a recently planted rosemary plant and the returning perrenial chives, garlic chives and chocolate mint in my herb bed. I didn’t find sage today at the nursery but I’ll do so in the coming weeks.
Everything is coming back to life. With mild longer days and the promise of Michigan’s beauty returning after the winter, Spring once again, makes me grateful and very happy.
For more of the “59 Candles, 59 Things” series click on categories, then “59 Things”. I started this series nearly a year ago on my 59th birthday to share 59 things that make me happy, we’re now approaching the final stretch. What makes you happy?