Category Archives: Day Trip

South Haven 2012

Yesterday was the family reunion, and from the time that I heard it was going to be so close to Lake Michigan and South Haven, I wanted to take some time and head over there. I love being by the water and 15-20 miles is NOTHING to me! πŸ™‚ The only question was if Mom would go for it.

We spent the night in Paw Paw. In the morning, I dragged her to St. Mary’s Catholic Church for Sunday Mass. It was a cute little church right by the court building that we had looked at yesterday. All around the church, the sidestreet parking was clogged. We managed to find the last parking spot in the tiny parking lot, but people were already creating a middle line of cars where it wasn’t legal to park — just to be able to get in to Mass! A good sign, right? πŸ™‚

We were a little bit late, and so we took a seat in one of the back pews, like any good Catholic would do. After Mass, I snapped a couple pictures to prove I was there and grabbed my Mass ticket (parish bulletin). I was surprised to find that it was only 4 pages long! At both my parishes, it’s usually more like 12!


Next, we headed out of town. I didn’t have a lot of charge on my phone, so instead of using the GPS, I just found my way to M-43 and headed west. I wasn’t going to stop until I hit water! We had heard that there was a Blueberry Festival in South Haven this weekend and thought it would be good to check that out. We pulled into town and ended up on Phoenix Street. Just past the downtown area, right before the road dipped down to go towards the lighthouse, there were barricades for the festival. Luckily, there was also on-stree parking RIGHT THERE! We couldn’t have asked for a better spot!

We were on the southwest corner of the intersection, and on the northwest corner was this sign:

I liked looking at all of the boats in the marina. If I could, I would love to live on the water and have a boat (or two or four) of my own!

As we were walking down to the pier, we saw this big, pink flower. It was huge! Probably 7-8 inches in diameter! Even though it doesn’t really look that big in the photo.

And, finally, THE BEACH!


And the lighthouse:


With sailboats on the water!

We read all of the graffiti on the lighthouse. I saw one that said “Hannah was here” and wondered if it belonged to Hannah Ekblad…
Hannah Was Here

I even got Mom to take a picture…. And she was happy that I didn’t push her in the water! πŸ™‚

I tried taking a self-portrait, although it turned out a little funny because I kept squinting in the bright light.

We didn’t take the time to actually swim on the beach, but I did sit down on the edge of the pier and dangled my feet over the side!

More pictures of kids playing in the sand:

Seagull footprints:

Even though I had my good running shoes on, I still walked across the sand to take pictures of the waves. These are tiny compared to the waves of the ocean, but I will take what I can get! πŸ™‚

All of the water and boats actually looked like this:
I added contrast to most of the other shots, but it was kind of cool as they were normally, with almost nothing to tell you where the sky ended and the sea began….

Like me, you might be wondering why my mom was looking at her feet so intently. Well, it appears that where she was standing, when she took a step, the sand would shift and “crackle out” about 12 inches away from her foot.

The Ubiquitous Seagull Shot:

Another look of the beach, pier and lighthouse:

I took pictures of some treats for Erwin:

And for Lindsay:

Amy had suggested that we eat at the Phoenix Street Cafe while we were in town. So, after browsing through a couple of neat little shops, we did just that! I’m not sure if my brother or my dad would have enjoyed it as much as we did.

Here is Mom’s Asparagus Sandwich:

And my Spinach Burger (no meat was harmed in the making of this burger!):

Right next door to the Phoenix Street Cafe was The Blueberry Shoppe. I got 5 pounds of blueberries to take home, some mix to make Blueberry White Chocolate cookies, blueberry jerky, blueberry truffle, and we each tried a blueberry drink.

Mom got the Blueberry Lemonade (which was the better-tasting of the two):

And, although I would have preferred the Blueberry Lemonade, I opted to try something different and got the Blueberry Jelly Belly soda.

Our quick vacation to South Haven was now complete, and we headed back home. Plus, our 3 hour time limit for parking was about over…. πŸ™‚

Day Trip to Ann Arbor

For our last pre-school trip of the summer (there will be tons of after-the-start-of-school trips, this is just my latest excuse), April and I headed over to Ann Arbor for the day. I had lots of suggestions on what to do, but due to time constraints, we weren’t able to fit them all in. πŸ™‚

We stopped at Our Lady of Good Counsel on the way to look at the grotto and the new Garden of Gethsemane. Unfortunately, we got caught in the post-Mass traffic and we sitting in the middle of North Territorial for quite a while trying to turn into the driveway, but being blocked by people exiting. After a long bout of laughing, we decided to cruise by the new rectory/house. We couldn’t determine which one was “ours,” but they all looked pretty nice. πŸ™‚

Word of the Day: swanky
1. A person or object that is posh, high-class, glamorous, classy, upmarket, etc.
2. A person or object that is cool, awesome, hip, maybe even obsessed by the person using the word, to describe that person or object.
(Thanks to Urban Dictionary for the definition!)

While parking, we saw that Fr. John’s car (SUV, whatever) was there, so we sought him out. We caught him in the main part of the Church where I told him of the Plans of the Day and that we were visiting OLGC. He didn’t have a long time to chat, as he had to get ready for Mass, but did get to greet April.

Growing in Faith since 1920

We took a quick tour of the upper floor of OLGC and I tried to point out some things. I don’t know how good of a tour guide I was. I tried to point out the saint statues in the main space, the mosaic to Our Lady of Good Counsel, the big Bible, the small chapel behind the tabernacle, some of the saints drawn on the windows and the Day Chapel.

Our Lady of Good Counsel Mosaicdscn3577Day Chapel

Then, we went outside and looked at the garden and the grotto. I made April try to figure out who’s who in the garden between Jesus, Peter, James and John. She did well. Then, I mistook one of the displays they had there. I thought it was the cross, getting ready for the crucifixion. However, in Fr. John’s bulletin article for today, it says that it’s an olive press, and gives the significance of that. I did like the suggestion that it might be a catapult. Heehee. It’s even aimed at the church. I suppose that’s one way to get people in to Mass…. πŸ™‚

Our Lady of Lourdes Grotto, OLGC, Plymouth, MI

St. JohnSt. Peter
St. JamesJesus praying...

“Catapult” Heeheehee!

It was close to noon when we left OLGC, so we thought that lunch might be a good next course of action. I wanted to go to Casey’s Tavern because they have awesome sandwiches. There was a book fair going on in Kerrytown and parking was pretty impossible. After driving up and down the streets, I finally parked at the hospital and we walked over.


Casey’s is not open on Sundays. We trekked up to Zingerman’s and saw that the line for food was out the door. We got into the store portion and April picked up some raisin bread for her family. We hopped over to Zingerman’s Next Door and I introduced her to their gelato.

I think she likes it!
April and her mint chocolate chip/dark chocolate gelato

April at Zingerman's DeliZingerman's bakery case

Across the street was a book fair in Kerrytown. April found a present for her nephew: A space story puzzle book which was self-published by a young boy. He had published 3 little books and they are all pretty cute. Not only did she get the book, but she got her picture taken with the author and the book signed by the author and the illustrator (the author’s mom)!

April takes a photo with the book's author

Still hungry, we made our way to State Street for sandwiches at Amer’s Mediterranean Deli. We checked out a couple used book stores on the way, but managed to hang on to our cash. πŸ™‚ Amer’s is great for having a huge list of sandwiches (over 80!) on multiple chalkboards, arranged by type of meat. I had the T.M.H. (turkey, muenster, honeycup mustard) and swapped out the usual rye bread for challah. Yum! I also got a peach italian soda. Yum!

April and her sandwich from Amer's

My T.M.H. from Amer's Mediterranean Deli!

By the time we finished eating, it was 3:30 pm. We had wanted to get home about 5 pm, so we started to make our way back to the car. We rode the M bus to the Cardiovascular Center, took photos with Bo Schembechler (heehee), cut through the Cancer Center and down the hill to the car. After all this traveling, I was quite thirsty and suggested we stop for drinks before hitting the highway. We stopped at Sweetwater’s Cafe and got lemonade slushies. I got regular and April got the strawberry variant.

Bo and April, chillin’:
Bo and April

Bo Schemechler's Plaque

Just as we were getting on the highway, we saw a ladder truck with a US flag flying from the ladder. There were firemen standing around. Framed by the dark clouds in the background (as it had just started to rain) and lit by the sun it was a gorgeous site. Sadly, I was driving and not able to take a photo for you. I did beep and wave as I passed, though! πŸ™‚

Shortly after arriving home, I remembered that it the funeral visitation for Fr. JJ’s dad was tonight. I quickly changed clothes, jumped back in the car and drove to Dearborn. I arrived in time to pray the last mystery of the rosary and give hugs to Fr. JJ. He said he was so glad that I had come. I know that he will need lots of prayers, both Monday when he has to preside over his dad’s funeral and in the days to come, particularly in the quiet times when he is alone. Please help me pray for him and for his family for God’s peace and comfort.

Finally, I raced back home to try to make it to Mass at SS. Cyril and Methodius at 8:30 pm. GPS said that I was going to be 15 minutes late, but I managed to be only 5 minutes late. Whew! So glad I made it to Mass! πŸ™‚

Not bad for a Sunday! How was yours?