The Scent of Lilacs 5/26/2010

Lilacs blooming on our "short cut" hill next to the horse corral. The awesome white birch trees offer a perfect backdrop.

Oh, how I wish there were some way I could capture for you the glorious scent of the lilacs and press it into this page.  With all the windows open this morning, the light, sweet fragrance of the blossoming Mackinac Island lilac bushes and trees is reaching into the far corners of the condo, and I know soon I will be lured outside with my camera.

The lilacs here at Surrey Hill are not blooming yet – except for a few down by the horse corral.  I mentioned last year the bushes in front of the condo are “late bloomers”,  so we will have those to look forward to after others on the island have faded. 

It seems everyone is mowing this morning in the Village, and as I sit here writing, I’m transported back to my hometown of Sylvester, Georgia on a summer morning of my childhood.  On hot Saturdays in June, July, and August, my daddy would begin mowing our yard early, so the task would be finished before the heat became oppressive.  I’d awake on a Saturday morning with a breeze blowing the thin curtains out into my bedroom, the sound of the mower outside the window, and the smell of the newly cut grass wafting through the air.  I probably wrote practically these same words last year about this time, and if I did, please forgive me for repeating it.  That little snippet from my childhood is so dear to me that it only takes an open window and the sound of a lawnmower to conjure it up.

We had the best time downtown yesterday.  We walked the dogs down there just because they hadn’t had a good walk all day, and Ted and I both had errands to run.  We had turned the corner at Fort Hill and Market Street and were just in front of The Cottage Inn when a couple approaching us stopped and said, “Is that Maddie and Bear?”  We said “yes”, and it turned out they were from Fort Huron and read the blog daily.  The gentleman said, “I  just said to my wife that the white building over there is the Geary House that was on Bree’s blog the other day.  Then I looked up, and the four of you were coming around the corner.”  We had a great chat.  I love it when that happens.  Jill had already told me that she had three different couples come in the Island Bookstore Monday and recognize her from the blog.  So fun!

While we were standing in front of the Cottage Inn (where Dawn, Mike Forrester, Jill and I stayed during Winter Festival in February), Marge (she and husband Rich are the innkeepers) came out to say hello.  Then Katie from the State Park saw us and stopped to talk.  This is just one of the reasons I love this place. A trip downtown on errands can turn into an hour or two of visiting.  Without vehicles to jump in and out of, people hail each other from the streets or sidewalks.  Then you stop and chat. I love it!

Katie, Ted and Marge in front of The Cottage Inn

Jill and Tamara at the Island Bookstore always have treats for Bear and Maddie . . .


. . . Maddie just can't quite reach the countertop for her's.

 The rest of yesterday and today in photos, with captions:

A Grand Hotel omnibus, on the way to the ferry docks. That's the Governor of Michigan's summer residence at the top of the hill in the center. The fort is on the right.


More lilacs.

Out the bay window of our condo.

I've never seen this yellow private buggy before. So, it's either new to the island, or an old buggy has been given a fresh coat of paint. Beautiful horses too!

"Is that Dad coming up the hill?"


"No, Fur Face, if that was Dad, he'd be pedaling a lot faster than that!"

"Oh, right."

Tomorrow, I have a photo of something you just don’t see every day – even on Mackinac Island.  See you then!


16 thoughts on “The Scent of Lilacs 5/26/2010

  1. The lilacs are beautiful! We’d love to get some Mackinac lilacs to plant down here in Ypsilanti. I was given the number for Webers by Grand Hotel on Facebook yesterday so I’ll have to give them a call and see what they have.

    It makes me laugh every time Bear and Maddie banter back and forth!

    Have a great day, Bree.

  2. Great photos Brenda!!! Everything looks so beautiful..can’t wait to get up there this weekend..have you seen Alyssa in Doud’s yet??? You may see her walking around more this year as she got a new puppy and I am sure it will need lots of walks..Cleo is her name and she’s a rott/husky mix and she has one blue eye and one brown eye.
    I loved the photo of Maddie looking up for her cute..oh of course Bear is too..(don’t want any hurt feelings!!)

  3. I love lilacs! We rode passed a bunch of bushes on our bike the other day and we just had to stop and take in the smell. Love, love, love it.
    So if we stop you or Ted on the street or say HI to Jill, you’ll won’t think we’re crazy or anything will ya? 🙂
    Have a fabulous day!!

    • We will be VERY upset if you DON’T stop us on the street (and I think I can say the same for Jill also).

  4. I love lilacs….as my childhood memories come flooding back, the mere scent of them makes me emotional! My memories as a child growing up with lilacs lined the entire frontage of my parents Englewood, Colorado home. The city wanted to put in a sidewalk, but had to remove all of what must have been 20 very old lilac bushes! These were planted by our neighbor lady (Eileen Fluken) who was a florist/horticulturist. Our entire yard was planted in rare bulbs and plants identified by metal markers. My dad consented (like he had a choice) on the condition that the city made the sidewalk wide enough for his tractor blade so he could plow the snow come winter! Tragic, but true! No doubt about it, we’ll be on Mackinac Island next year when the first blossom opens!

  5. Last year we were too early for the lilacs. I will be crushed if they are gone by the time we get there. I remember so many bushes around our house in Holland and dozens of bushes at the cottage in Cedarville. That is the scent that triggers memories. Maddy and Bear, guard them well and I’ll reward withyou carrots when we get there.

  6. Every time I look at your pics it make me even more excited about our trip to the island. Also makes me wish we were staying ON the island. Can’t wait to get there! Have a blessed day.

  7. Those lilacs are beautiful and love the smell. Too bad we don’t have smellavision for the computer. When is the Festival, middle of June right? I hope some last for all the festivities.

  8. Beautiful pictures! I just love how you capture the island! I always feel like I am right there! I just love this blog!

  9. Brenda,
    Hi! Me again, in AZ. I am getting caught up on your blog after spending 3 nights in the ICU with my son. He is going to be fine Thank God, but it has been stressful. Anyway, The couple that recognized Bear and Maddie, you said they were from Fort Huron. This gave me the most needed laugh! It’s Port Huron, with a P, not an F. It’s my home town!!! Thanks for the giggle and for the lilac pictures. I DO miss the lilacs from home 😦 I am jealous jealous jealous. So glad you’re back on the Island again. I’m sitting in the hospital as I type this, but I swear I can smell fudge and lilacs. 🙂

    • Oops! My apologies to Paul and his wife from PORT Huron! You Michiganders keep me straight, please!

      Marilyn, I’m so happy that your son is healing after your scare. Our children can just take our hearts and just about squeeze them dry, can’t they. Prayers lifting up for his complete and speedy recovery. God bless.

  10. Came across your blog as I was searching for current updates on the lilac progress. Planning to visit the island on June 2 with our 3 adult children. We’re from Ohio, and our kids haven’t been there in many years, though my husband and I come every other October. Have never seen the lilacs in bloom, and hope the timing of our visit will be just right. Thanks for posting the pictures and giving me the encouragement I was seeking!! Maybe we’ll even catch a glimpse of Bear and Maddie!

    • Perfect timing, Chrys! Not all of the lilacs are blooming yet, and the ones that are haven’t reached their peak yet. You couldn’t have chosen a better time to come. Glad you found the blog – hope you enjoy it!

      • We’re fairly familiar with the island, and don’t want to miss the BEST places to see the lilacs. What are the must-see locations?

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