Originally we would visit in the summer, and then when I was about eleven, my parents bought a vacation home, and we went up as often as possible. Summer was perfect for going to the beach, fall has gorgeous colors. Winter was all about skiing and snowboarding at the local ski resorts and spring....spring is just rainy up there, but it's pretty! My parents, (my Mom and stepfather) sold their vacation home while I was in college. It was pretty upsetting for me because I loved being there so much. I'd go up with friends all of the time, it was my second home. Luckily, my Father and stepmother also purchased a vacation home in Harbor Springs and eventually made it their permanent home. This was after deciding that downtown Chicago wasn't where they wanted to raise my much younger brother. After a couple of moves to Toronto and Los Angeles and a divorce, they are both back in Harbor Springs full time, and also...working together! It's a long story, but in addition to going up for the fall colors, we made the four hour trip north to see my Dad, my stepmother Lauretta, and their newly opened restaurant and bakery!
Heading North! You start to see lots of logging trucks.....
Arriving at Grandpa's cute, little cottage.
Lots to see when we went out for a walk to stretch after the long car ride.
It was so much fun to visit my stepmom Lauretta at her bakery: Small Batch! Yum, you can click on the link above to see more pictures. She's such a wonderful and creative baker. Before this, Lauretta was a shoe designer like my Dad. Baking was always her hobby and she eventually turned it into her full-time job. How cool is that!? :)
My Dad and Lauretta also own a little restaurant in Harbor Springs together. It's called "Small Batch at the Cupola." I swear, I'm not being biased, it was the most delicious breakfast I've ever had. It was our first time eating there because it just opened this year! I had Lauretta's famous Eggs Benedict dish. It was fantastic, and I LOVE the flash fried chard salad. It was just the most unique texture, the chard melted in my mouth.
Noah taste-tested a new kids' meal for the fall menu: chicken and waffles! The chicken is in a waffle cone and comes with scrambled eggs. Everything has sprinkles on it. Lol. If there is one thing my parents know, it's how to have fun!
I didn't stop to think that Josie might be too upset to stay home alone at my Dad's house, but she was. She was so nervous any time it looked like we were about to leave, so we ended up having to take her out to breakfast and dinner. She had a lovely breakfast of scrambled eggs under the table, and then some truffle fries the night before when we went out to another restaurant. Oy!
There's so much to do in Harbor Springs, but this trip was very short and low-key too, which was fine! The balcony at my Dad's provided a lot of entertainment for Noah and Josie....
Pond Hill Farm is a local farm that's open to the public. They have crops and vineyards and an animal barn and a store and restaurant and a brewery and a playground and...and.....We love it!!!
Josie met so many new friends.
A potato catapult!
I know this picture isn't great. I was stuck in the backseat, but I really wanted to get a picture of the famous "Tunnel of Trees!" You basically drive through a winding, twisty, tunnel of trees. It's gorgeous, and before and after the tunnel, the road takes you along a cliff, high about Lake Michigan. I love it.
Did you know that the Great Lakes can almost look like the ocean ?
Can you hear the waves?
We drove up on a Tuesday and home on Thursday, so our visit was quick. On Thursday morning we took a quick, nostalgia drive. This is our old vacation home, the one I loved. I miss it so much, but it looks like somebody is caring for it nicely.
Oh, this is why I woke up to find Jon sleeping in Noah's room. Lol.
Where was I? Thursday morning we were sad to leave but ready.
A quick walk around town and a stop in at Gurney's Harbor Bottle Shop for sandwiches! I've been going there my whoooooole life and I STILL can not see over the counter to order my sandwich!
Oh! And this cute, little place is Tom's Mom's Cookies. Another place that I've gone to since I was a little kid and it's still there!
Just before we headed out of town, we took a quick family picture onto of the bluff that overlooks town and the bay.
I'm so glad that we made the trip!
Until next time.