Monday, October 10, 2011

girlfriend getaway

I spent the weekend in Muskegon, Michigan with a couple of childhood friends.
We'd been talking about getting together for a weekend for two years. 
One girlfriend lives three hours south of me, and the other lives up in Ontario.
After another mutual friend of ours recently had a major stroke
- at age 50 -
we decided that life is too short to keep putting things off...
and to just do it.

The hotel we stayed in was gorgeous - right on Lake Muskegon.
Since it's off-season AND I get a government rate, we got a great price on our room.


We couldn't have asked for better weather - around 80F and sunny -
in OCTOBER.
In Michigan.

We wandered around a Farmer's Market...
(That's one of my lovely friends in the striped shirt.)


Toured a winery and admired the gardens...
We especially loved this border made from glass jars.
I've been saving wine bottles to accomplish the same thing, though I like the jar idea even better. 
I especially love how they glued rocks and marbles to the tops of the jars.


We had lunch at a little bistro and bakery called, Mia & Grace. 
It's all organic, farm-to-table food. The pastry chef trained in France, so we indulged
in his buttermilk pie. It rocked.
 

Check out the unique menu board from Mia & Grace. So clever and creative!
I love places like this...artsy.


We hit some thrift shops, walked around a park and the lake, went to an artisan cheese shop and sampled a bunch of cheeses (bought some for our impromptu dinner), watched the sunset
over the lake...



And then went back to our hotel room for a girly dinner...
Artisan cheeses, crusty baguettes, chips and salsa, chocolate pretzels
and wine. All while reclining in bed with the balcony door open to feel the cool breeze
and watching Food Network and talking until we fell asleep.
Bliss!


On Sunday, we drove to Lake Michigan. I'm used to the Chicago beaches of Lake Michigan -
crowded, flat and unassuming, with dirty-ish water - so I was in awe of the beauty
of this part of Lake Michigan.
We had the whole beach to ourselves - what a gift.


The dune area of the beach is especially beautiful in the fall...


Another part of our walk on the lake shore had us admiring lighthouses and beautiful boats
that would pass by...


All too soon, we had to head back to our hotel area for lunch before we all left for home.
We sat outside in the sunshine (soaking up all we could) and toasted the weekend
and each other with mimosas. This is squinty me and my lovely Canadian friend.


What would we do without our girlfriends?
I am so thankful for them.

"There is nothing on this earth more to be prized than true friendship."
(Thomas Aquinas)



2 comments:

  1. It looks like you had a really fun weekend with your friends! It is so good to get away like this and just laugh and talk and eat and enjoy life!! So glad you had this time.

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  2. Hi Melanie, lucky you! This sounds like the perfect little getaway -- with all my favorite things, too -- good food, good friends, good wine, great weather. What more could you ask for? Will have to keep this hotel in mind if the kids and I travel to the States next summer. My aunt is in Spring Lake which isn't far away -- we used to go to WalMart in Muskegon because there wasn't one in Spring Lake or Grand Haven. Hope your day is fabulous. Tammy

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