Sunday Night – Four Hours from the Island 5/17/2010

Another day closer to Mackinac Island!  We left Lenoir City, TN around 8 a.m. in the rain, and it stayed with us through the Great Smoky Mountains of Tennessee and Kentucky.  Sometimes I think the Smokies are even more beautiful on a morning like this one than they are in bright sunshine.

Coming around a curve and seeing Cincinnatti spread out across the hills of Ohio is always a special treat.  To me, it is one of the prettiest cities we go through.

We arrived at Whitmore Lake, Michigan around 5 p.m. Sunday afternoon.  We love stopping at this little lake, which reminds us a lot of our lake in Georgia – except for the temperature.  It was a wonderful 69 degrees with sun – a beautiful afternoon.  Our hotel stop here is the Best Western of Whitmore Lake and it is, by far, the best of the pet-friendly hotels we stay in on this trip.  It is absolutely perfect for travelers with dogs.  The rooms are clean and very roomy, and the location is wonderful.  It sits off the highway on a large lot with huge grassy areas for the dogs to romp in.  I can let Bear off his leash, and he can run and chase his ball.  The staff is friendly and remembers us from year to year.  I highly recommend it for travelers on I-75 if you have your “babies” with you.

The Best Western of Whitmore Lake (on the right) and The Outrigger's Bar and Grill on the left. Best yellow perch I have ever put in my mouth!

Wide, open spaces for the dogs to run and play - yes, of course, Maddie is on a leash!

One happy dog - out of the truck and rolling around on cool green grass.

Running free!

Having a heart to heart with Bear.

We hope to be on either the 1:30 or the 2:30 ferry to the island on Monday afternoon.  It’s been an easier trip this year because we have split the traveling up over three days instead of two.  I even drove for about an hour this afternoon and managed to stay on the road while Ted napped (I did nap before I got behind the wheel though). 

I can’t believe we are almost there.  On Monday we will step on the ferry and begin our trip across the Straits of Mackinac to the most beautiful island in the United States (my opinion, of course).  Once more, we will immerse ourselves in the people and the culture and the surroundings that make this place so special.  I’m so glad you are all making the journey with me to my heart’s home, and I pray each of you will have the opportunity to come to the island in person very soon.  I can almost promise you that once you come, you will always want to return.


23 thoughts on “Sunday Night – Four Hours from the Island 5/17/2010

  1. I share your joy Brenda for returning to the island and your opinion of Mackinac Island being the most beautiful island in the U.S. is right on.
    We have traveled down to the Smokies in past years as well, it’s been years since we were last there in fact before we had planned our trip back to Mackinac Island in 07, we were originally planning on going back to the Smokies. I had been doing my shopping online and sent for brochures galore. I then had the bad auto accident and that stopped any trips at all. When the time came to think about making a trip again Mackinac Island came to mind and we scraped the Smokies idea and the rest is history. We fell in love with Mackinac Island all over again and now it’s the only place we want to go. 🙂 We can’t wait to get there in July.

  2. You’re a half hour away from me! I live in Ypsilanti, right down the road from Whitmore Lake. I hope your ride tomorrow is a safe one. Can’t wait to read more about your first days back on the Island.
    Take care!

    • Hi neighbor! We are so excited to be this close to the island. Monday looks like a beautiful day to move back into our condo. Can’t wait!

  3. You went right past our area on 75..we are just 4 exits past Toledo Ohio (in Michigan) glad you had a safe and fun trip so far!! Praying for the rest of your trip..and make sure to say hi to Alyssa when you get into Douds!! So far she has been working the afternoon/evening shift…Be blessed…

  4. So happy for all 4 of you. Kadence LOVES the dog shots.Burton lived at Whitmore Lake for a year while he was at University of Michigan. Lovely stop. We “close our place here on Pine Island one week from today but then spend some time on the East coast before we head “home”. Looks like a nice day for you th finish your trip. We are still praying….

  5. Brenda, glad all is well on the trip north. I know you’ll be happy to once again set foot on Mackinac, even though it’s only been three months since the last visit!

    Probably a bit more luggage this time!

    Drive safely and see you soon.

  6. Hi Brenda! I just got online for the first time since Thursday pretty much and see you’ve been busy. I’m so glad that you and Bear are ok and that you are on your way back to the island! I look forward to keeping up with you this year (I’m still reading through August of last year). Travel safely today! You’re in my prayers.

  7. I can only imagine how excited you must be today, I know I get excited just thinking about going to the island and I still have 3 months to go (sigh!). Everytime I look at the webcam, I get this warm fuzzy feeling come over me. :). I’m glad your trip has been a good one and look forward to all the exciting news and stories from the island. OH, and I totally agree with you, best place EVER!

  8. Glad to hear you’ve had a safe trip up to this point. Bear and Maddie look like they really enjoyed the freedom at the motel. Never been to Whitmore Lake but I will be looking it up for our next trip north. Enjoy the ride across to the Island. I’ll be thinking of you this afternoon wishing I were on that ride.

  9. Brenda, I enjoy your blog so much, always love to read about your adventures. I am so thankful to God that you & Bear were not hurt, God was sure with you. I am looking forward to hearing all about your fun on the island, wish I was able to be there. I can’t, so I will live through what fun you have.
    I pray that the rest of your trip is safe, God Bless…

  10. So excited to start hearing of your Mackinac Island adventures-I read your blog each morning.
    For my parents 40th anniversary this weekend, I’ve treated them to a night at the Grand Hotel, they’ll be there Saturday night. . .I wish I was going, too! I’ve told them to be on the lookout for you and your dogs while they are there! 🙂

  11. Oh my gosh girlfriend…I missed a few days of your blog only to find out you’ve had a “crash” (am so THANKFUL you are o.k.), that you’ve finally crossed all 51 one things off your TO DO list and are actually ON the way to your special place… Today you will BE there- woo hoo! Just can’t wait to hear all the tidbits of island living & see all the adventures of Ted & Bree, Maddie & Bear. Don’t overdue!
    Jane K.

  12. As I write this you are probably crossing on that lovely ferry ride to the Island. I never get tired of seeing the island get closer and then the “cottages” on the West Bluff and then the Grand! Hope you have a wonderful evening getting settled in your home.

  13. I don’t think you’re actually crossing yet, but you must be on the ferry by now and so excited you can hardly stand it. I’ve been traveling with you in my imagination and I must say it’s been a wonderful trip.

    Here’s to a great summer on The Island.

    PS: The ferry just left the Mackinaw City Dock.

  14. Sounds like you and your “babies” have had a good road trip. You must be excited to be there (or almost there) by now. We are planning to leave one week from Friday, Lord willing, and can’t wait! It’s been a little too hot and muggy in Alabama. 🙂

  15. I love the pictures from the mountains in TN & KY, they are so pretty.

    You’re on the Island now getting everything all set I’m sure and just hopefully relaxing a bit from your long journey. Looking forward to reading about my favorite Island this summer.

    I’ll be on the Island this Saturday for the day. Staying over in Mackinaw City for the evening.


  16. Hey Bree!
    I have actually been following your blog since you left the Island I have just been quite! I hope your travel adventures to the Island this season are safe and I can’t wait till you catch me (and everyone else) on the happenings on the island :0)
    Oh…….if you see Trisha tell her I said HI!
    Thanks Bree!

  17. Hi Bree! Great pictures! So glad you had a safe trip! You will probably be exasted tonight!! I love your blog!

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