Last Thursday night, we drove north with Leslie and Larry, for our annual 4th of July trip to northern Michigan. The weather has been spectacular, kindly doing all the raining after dark, dappled sunlight coming through the trees every day. Temperatures have been 75-80 degrees, although today is just a bit cooler.
The only drawback is that I have had a cold the whole time, and even though I wore a mask in the car on the way up, I managed to pass it on to Larry. He's on Day 2, which I can attest is less than pleasant.
Otherwise, we have had a lovely time reading, relaxing, golfing, shopping, and enjoying the annual events in Harbor Springs for the 4th of July: art show, parade, and fireworks.
This afternoon, I am enjoying a Tigers' game, especially as it appears they may win. The others are golfing, and later we head into Petoskey to Bayfront Park ball field to watch some softball with a backdrop of Little Traverse Bay.
I may have spoken too soon about the Tigers.
One of my favorite things to take pictures of is flowers, and Harbor Springs is lousy with 'em.
And I feel sure I have posted this before, but the sky in this shot of the Ephraim Shay house is too beautiful not to include...
There's something new at The Henry Ford this year! Meijer is sponsoring Fall Flavor Weekends in Greenfield Village. Yesterday started out gray and rainy, but by noon, it had brightened up. There was a lovely breeze, and I had plans to meet one of my co-workers from the education department for Ferment: Beer, Wine, Cider, and Food Tasting Event in the pavilion near the Village Green.
I went sans camera, so I can't show you pictures of how gorgeous the day was, but we had a great time sampling some brews. My favorites were a Belgian ale made in Dexter, Michigan, near Ann Arbor at Jolly Pumpkin Brewery. It's called La Roja, and here's a description from their website:
"An artisan amber ale brewed in the Flanders tradition. Deep amber with earthy caramel, spice, and sour fruit notes developed through natural barrel aging. Unfiltered, unpasteurized and blended from barrels ranging in age from two to ten months."
It even had a fun Puss-in-Boots label, which you can see here.
My other favorite is the hard cider we tried, an organic "scrumpy" from Flushing, Michigan called J.K.'s Orchard Gate Gold. So rich! Yum. I am not really much of a beer drinker, but I am a cider girl. I am imagining some of this cider hot and mulled with some nutmeg and a cinnamon stick. Mmmmm.
That was Saturday (except for the nap, afterward, of course). Today's plans include laundry and helping my friend's son with his college application essays. He's a terrific kid, and captain of the varsity football team; big shoes to fill as last year's team were state champions!
I'm also getting started on a presentation for the Michigan section of the American Association of Physics Teachers(October 1-2), prepping proposals for the Michigan Reading Association (due September 30), the Michigan Science Teachers Association (also due September 30), and finishing off a flier to be passed out at the Boy Scout's Great Lakes Council Rendez-Vous which is next Saturday, the 25th! Eek! What in the world am I doing writing a blog post???
Have a good week, everyone. I'll still work in time to come by your blogs and leave smart-aleck comments. It's what I DO.
Keely's new, post-apocalyptic button links to her made-over blog, The UnMom. Go there.
1.) Just returned from a restful, fun weekend with lots of friends. Chico and Chickadee were our hosts. I have used Chickadee as a litmus test for when I should warn readers of questionable content in a post. Here's why: During a game of Trivial Pursuit, Silver Screen edition, Chickadee had to pass this question to her partner, as she was unable to read it aloud:
Who was the actor that Alfred Hitchcock routinely introduced on set as "Master Bates?"
Yes, it was Tony Perkins, of the Bates Motel, in the movie Psycho. She couldn't read it aloud. It was very funny, and she was a good sport about letting us laugh about the whole situation.
B.) I was short by two books on my 12 Books, 12 Months challenge, but as of yesterday, I have found another book. Sarah Vowell has a new book coming in March, 2011! It's called Unfamiliar Fishes, and it's about the history of Hawaii, the only part of the U.S. ever to have been a kingdom. Consider that to be book 11. One more to go.
III.) I have gotten hooked on a game on my Kindle called Shuffled Row (the game is called that, not the Kindle. Surprisingly, I don't yet have a name for my Kindle. That seems wrong. I'll need to work on that.) Anyway, Shuffled Row is kind of like Scrabble played against a clock. I highly recommend you stay away from Shuffled Row, unless you have plenty of time to kill.
4.) This is the first day of the second year of me not teaching. I miss hanging out with the kids and my teaching partners. I don't miss anything else about it.
5.) Our long weekend was spent in one of my favorite places to photograph, so I have lots of new photos to process. I'll share a couple, though...
I need to get ready for work, kids. Go visit Keely for more Random Tuesday Thoughts.
Well. I did it.
I survived the second week-long NEH teachers' workshop in the 90 degree heat, and 99% humidity. And, like last time, it was wonderful. Even better, actually, because I felt like I knew what I was doing. Also, those moisture-wicking golf shirts? Get some. Mine featured Cool-Max, and I luff them. They really worked.
During the first workshop in June, I brought my camera along, as it was my first chance to have hours in the village. This time, I left the camera at home, and absorbed the lectures, all delivered by nationally-recognized experts. What a gift.
Friday afternoon, I scooted home as quickly as I could, because it was time for the Knight Gathering. For 21 years, Buddy's maternal-side relatives have been gathering for a reunion on the last weekend in July. This year, we are in Cadillac, Michigan, near the highest knuckle of your ring finger. In other years, we have gathered in Chicago, Detroit, Houghton Lake, or St. Joseph/Benton Harbor (extreme southwest Michigan).
For the last few years, we have been gathering in Cadillac, as it is near the home of the matriarch of this group, Buddy's 99-year-old Grandma. Today, when we leave the hotel, we will pack up and go visit her at her place, as she was feeling dizzy yesterday, and didn't want to venture out.
This is our room, AKA Party Central. We reserved a room early enough to get a suite. That bed that Buddy is sitting on back there is a king-size, tempur-pedic, so I have slept like a log this weekend. Even when our room looked like this:
...which was most of the time. The pool and the nearby Lake Mitchell have accommodated our group nicely, but the minute someone sits at a table, out come the playing cards.
I understand that euchre is a midwestern thing, probably invented for those among us who couldn't, or didn't want to, manage to learn bridge. My son and some of his (second? third?) cousins are carrying on the tradition to the next generation.
So, that's my week wrapped up. Hope yours has been comfortable and happy!