July 28, 2013

A Little Getaway

 A few weeks ago we took a little trip to South Haven, MI. We had never taken a beach vacation due to my Sweet Hubby's extreme dislike of direct sunlight. Also due to his aversion to sand, stemming from an unfortunate incident in his Navy days. You can see what I was up against, right? Luckily I married a man that will do anything for his girls so we hit the road and drove north for our first trip to Michigan.

This is how we travel. Every.single.time. It was just the three of us for this trip, but I'm pretty sure Maddie won't miss it next time.

After a short 3 hour drive, we immediately stopped and bought food for a picnic lunch on the beach and headed there to hang out until check in time.

This girl took to it immediately. Also, don't you love her swimsuit? And is it just me or is she all arms and legs?

Happily hiding in our sun shelter. The weather was amazing! Highs in the mid 70's and sunny. Our kind of summer.

At our Inn we were able to sit on the porch and have drinks. Of course just looking at the sun and water wore this one out.

The next day we drove 20 minutes north to Saugatuck.

 We loved it too. There are so many towns I want to explore in Michigan now.

 We spent the morning visiting shops and exploring.

Then we did stuff you can't do at home like drink beer (I'm pretty sure this sampler was the highlight of the trip for him and the reason he has agreed to go back every year) and chase squirrels around.

I can't believe it took us 10 years of living here to drive 3 hours to get to Michigan. I'm in love. I can't wait to go back next summer. It was a little sad to pack up and say goodbye to our new friends, but we know we'll be back soon.


  1. About 5 years I discovered MI for the first time by making a 4 hour trip from IL. Now I go about 10 times a year. :) My Sister moved to Kalamazoo so I have lots of reasons to visit. Our favorites: South Haven, Holland, St Joe, Dunes in Sawyer and Grand Haven. In 2 weeks we are heading to Holland before school starts. We rented a camper and will be staying on the beach. Loved to read about your visit.

  2. Your husband would enjoy Mackinaw Island~not much sand there but a lot of history (forts) and fun! It is a longer drive but so worth it. So glad that you fell in love with my home state!

  3. We were just there yesterday visiting with family and friends. We live in Michigan so getting to Lake Michigan is just a quick trip for us, but always a fun time and lots of new things to explore. Glad you enjoyed your first trip! I'm curious where you were when your hubby enjoyed the beer sampler?

  4. I have never been to Michigan, but have always wanted to visit Mackinaw Island.

    It looks like you had a wonderful time - creating memories.

  5. Jennifer,

    I grew up in Chicago and we visited Saugatuck and Grand Haven often! Michigan's beaches are such a gem, glad you got to visit!

  6. It looks like heaven! I didn't know the peace of a day at the beach until I was an adult & now we go every year. Its so wonderful to give your kids those experiences to remember.

  7. What a lovely trip! And your husband is a sport! I am also married to the no sun, no sand man!

  8. Jen, for many, many years before my husbands M.S progressed we spent the weekends in MI exploring the West side of the state, glorious times indeed! Living just minutes from the MI stateline made it even better. Many great shops to explore and good eats too! Grand Haven, Muskegon and many other small towns made these the greatest of times. Love the little old fashion dime store in St. Joe and the candy at Kilwins too! Glad you took the adventure to MI's "west coast"! The people are great and the fun plentiful! Did I mention Autumn is incredible? So miss those days when life was simple, my husband had his health and my son was still with us. Yesterday was his 30th birthday I hope heaven for him held the day in glory. We lite fireworks, launched balloons and had a cake for my Mikie too. Hold onto those close family outings, they are incredible and time flies by when our kids are growing up! Love, Lori P.S This coming weekend is the Amish Acres Arts and Crafts festival in Nappanee IN , great juried show and lovely shops as well, maybe I'll even see you there I live about 25 minutes North West of the town! Have a lovely week!

  9. We live in the southern part of Indiana and took our first Michigan beach vacay last summer and immediately fell in love! We went back again this year and again stayed in Holland and hung out there and Grand Haven. Beautiful area and perfect summer weather. Glad you enjoyed it!

  10. I live in Muskegon, was just in South Haven last week! Hope you went to Shermans Ice Cream. There is no better! I can't help you with European trips, but Michigan is a different story! Wonderful place to live! Glad you liked it.

  11. We live in A2 and take many, many day trips to Saugatuck during the summer (3 hr drive). Other favorites of ours: Traverse City and Petoskey (There is a great long bike trail that basically runs near the shore for 30 miles or so). Sometimes when you live in a great town, it IS hard to leave it and explore, but we've really made an effort since we've been in MI for 13 years. We now know how fortunate we are to be here in Winter and Summer (our only two seasons!!)! We've never been to South Haven and have heard that there's a skatepark on the beach, so that's our next mission.


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  13. You and your hubby are so ding dang cute it kills me.
    And Miss Emma and that darling swimsuit?
    Looks like a dreamy trip, JJ!
    Maybe if I dump a pile of sand by my pond I can entice you to come for a visit next summer!

  14. I live in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and every time I travel outside of the state I think about how lucky we are to live in this amazing place. The beaches only get more amazing as you travel north, in my opinion. Glad you enjoyed our great state!

  15. you do know that the coast of maine, especially saugatuck, is my favorite place on the planet. we're so meeting you there next year. also? i took that magazine to last weekend's swim meet. absorbed it. literally. jealous of your getaway to heaven on earth, and yet so happy for you that you got to go. it's a strange little emotion. jealappy? haplous? don't know.

    1. by "maine," i obviously meant "michigan." or "minnesota." there are too many M states.

  16. Oh, woe is me! Our farmhouse is in Saugatuck township and I could have invited your family over for lunch in the backyard! Next year for sure!

  17. such a fun place to be able to drive to and explore. we are about an hour from union pier/new buffalo and go as often as we can. there is nothing better than lake Michigan for me, no sharks :)

  18. So glad you had a delightful time! Thanks for sharing the pictures and special times! :) where did you stay?

  19. I'm obsessed with South Haven and MI and I have photographed that exact building in Saugatuck. So glad you funny people made it up there!

  20. I'd love to visit Michigan someday. It would be a long road trip for us, but it's my favorite way to travel. I was laughing (with you) about your husband's aversion to sun. Mine is EXACTLY the same way. But he's been a real trooper, too, as long as he has a hat and lots of sunscreen;)

  21. i know we were there at the same time, so i know all about the gorgeous weather...we really lucked out! don't you love it there? all the cottages are so adorable and the beaches are great. we were dreaming about buying a fixer upper cottage to stay at and rent out...maybe someday! i love your daughter's swim suit! she is all arms and legs and my girl is like that already at 3! Saugatuck is fun too, have been there twice. Looking forward to going again!

  22. Wow! What a lovely time you had. So glad you enjoyed yourselves. I adore the beach too! Kit

  23. Oh, you are in my old stomping grounds! We frequented South Haven and Saugatuck often with our children when we lived in Kalamazoo MI. My hubbies sisters were all there last weekend.
    Are you from Indiana?
    BTW, I really like your cottage blog header too.

  24. oh jen, it has been way too long since i treated myself to a visit here...
    i have savored every image you have captured and enjoyed your stories...you are such a sweetheart... such a talent... and so inspiring.
    now i want to see michigan, eat yummy desserts, and have a garden that is as pretty as yours is. you rock. period. the end. thank you for sharing your life in such a precious way.

  25. how wonderful! that sounds like my kind of summer too. :) brent doesn't just love the sand either...but i think its more of an aversion to sunscreen with all our fair skin! glad you had a wonderful time...i'm looking forward to our next vacation too!


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