49757 Postcard – #8 8/13/16

Dear Friends,

There’s so much news this week, this will be more like a letter than a postcard!

I guess I’ll just go in order of importance, so here we go . . .

MORE FAMILY!

Ted has gone from being an only child to discovering he has two half-sisters, Sheryl and Deb, and a half-brother, Ross.  He had another half-sister, Rhonda, who passed away in 2011.  He also has an Aunt Marcia, an Uncle Paul –  and an Uncle Ken, who is 93 and lives in Arizona.  Because of some health issues in their families, we haven’t had a chance to meet the half-siblings yet, but something tells me that might happen before the summer is over and we return to Florida. We sure are hoping so!

Today, another first cousin, Kel Bennink and his wife Gwen, arrived on Mackinac for a day trip.  Throughout this process of learning more about Ted’s birth family, we’ve been told over and over how Ted looks like the “men in the family”.  Today we saw how true that is!

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Kel and Gwen arrive this morning on Shepler’s.  Kel says Ted is a carbon copy of his brother Marv, but Ted and Kel look a lot alike also.  At least that’s what Gwen and I thought.

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Standing side by side on the Grand Hotel porch, the resemblance is even more pronounced.

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We had a great few hours with the Benninks, showing them a little of the island and having lunch together at the Chippewa.

We are loving meeting all these new relatives – what a wonderful new family Ted (and I) can now claim!  Happy Birthday on Sunday, Gwen!

WHERE TO NEXT?

Sunday night will be our last night in the condo in the Mission, and boy are we going to miss this beautiful place!  Being able to sit out on the deck and people watch, with freighters passing in the background, has been just about a perfect arrangement.  We are going to be “homeless on Mackinac” for one night (not really, we’re bunking in with friends), and then we’ll move up the hill into the new condo on Tuesday.  We’ve hiked up there a few times already to check everything out.  It’s two hills short of where our old condo was, but the Grand Hill hasn’t gotten one bit less steep.  But, for the first time since we moved into our new house in Florida, we’re going to be in a one-level residence.  I’m going to enjoy that.  As soon as we’re settled, I’ll be showing you around the new place!

PHOTOS FROM AROUND MISSION POINT

Since we’re leaving this area and won’t be down here nearly as much, I wanted to give you one more night of photos from this end of the island.  Mission Point is so beautiful this year.  The Ware family, who bought the resort a year or so ago, is really doing a phenomenal job with renovations, new shops and cafes, and gorgeous landscaping!

I mean really, could it get anymore relaxing than this? Two Adirondack chairs, under the trees, and by the water. Sigh.

I mean really, could it get anymore relaxing than this? Two Adirondack chairs – under the trees, and by the water. Sigh.

A freighter passes as we walk Maddie this afternoon along the lakeshore trail.

A freighter passes as we walked Maddie along the lakeshore trail this afternoon.

Masses of flowers are scattered everywhere around the Mission Point Executive Putting Green.

Masses of flowers are scattered everywhere around the Mission Point Executive Putting Green.

Small Point Inn - across a field of wildflowers. (Thought of you, Irene!).

Small Point Inn – across a field of wildflowers. (Thought of you, Irene!).

The Mission Point gazebo - scene of nearly a wedding a day since we arrived four weeks ago.

The Mission Point gazebo – scene of nearly a wedding a day since we arrived four weeks ago.

Who knows what these are? They grow along the path that runs in front of the resort. At first I thought, "Cherry Tomatoes"?

Who knows what these are? They grow along the path that runs in front of the resort. At first I thought, “Cherry Tomatoes”?

Sound of Gong! Nope, they're a species of Rose. Someone help me out here!

Nope, they’re a species of Rose (at least that’s what someone told us). Can anyone help me out here!

A COUPLE OF EXTRAS

Robert McGreevy, great shot of the US Brig Niagara which stayed overnight

Robert McGreevy’s great shot of the US Brig Niagara which docked overnight a few days ago.  The wooden-hulled brig is a teplica of the ship that served as the relief flagship for Oliver Hazard Perry in the Battle of Lake Erie during the War of 1812.  It is one of the last remaining ships from the War of 1812. 

Thanks to Cousin Kel for this shot of Ted and I today in front of Little Stone Church.

Thanks to Cousin Kel for this shot of Ted and I today in front of Little Stone Church.

That’s it for tonight, I think.  I’ll be back when we’ve made the move up the hill, and we’ve gotten our luggage unpacked – again!

God bless.

An Awesome Day! 8/23/2011

It’s been a grand day!  Begging off from work is not something I make a habit of doing, but it was one of my wiser moves for the week.  Ted, Blake and I enjoyed spending the whole day outside together!

Even though we got a late start – leaving the condo around 11 – we made the most of every minute after that.  A brief stop downtown at the bank and the post office, then we headed east around the island.  We only made to the Bistro on the Green at Mission Point Resort before we decided we might as well have lunch – we needed nourishment for what was ahead!

You’ll notice we’re “layered” today. It was 49 in the Village this morning, and the winds were kicking up pretty good.

Irene – I put this in just for you because I haven’t gotten your Mystery Spot prize in the mail yet. I thought you’d forgive me if you got a new pic of Small Point Inn.

Blake, riding around in the field across from Small Point Inn.

Arch Rock. Ted and I both snapped photos, but I liked this one of Ted’s the best.

This is one of the cliffs just past Robinson’s Folly. I mostly took it to contrast against that blue Michigan sky!

The lavender flowers seemed to tinge the sky and water lavender also.  Am I the only one who can see that?

Ted took this one of Blake and I coming around a curve. He surprised me!

I’ve always loved how the trees form an arch at this particular spot in the road.

So blessed.

Almost-gone Black-Eyed Susans – along the road.  Today we felt the first nip of Fall in the air.

We turned off the highway at British Landing and stopped at Friendship Altar because Blake had never been there.

Two goofs!

At the bottom of the steps to the Lookout Tower at Friendship Altar.

Ted and Blake checking out the view.

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We stopped in at the Community Stable (another new spot for Blake), then rode home.  The guys took naps, and I wrote this much of the blog so I wouldn’t have so much to do tonight.  We’re going downtown for dinner.  See you back here later.

9:32 p.m.  Back at the laptop.  Dinner in the dining room at the Chippewa was awesome – Blake and I had fish, and Ted – of course – had a steak.

There just isn’t a bad seat in the house at the Chippewa!

We picked up some candy at Joann’s Fudge, then boarded a taxi home. The driver made a stop “around back” at the Grand to have a guest’s luggage removed, and while that was happening, I hopped off and ran around to the front. Beautiful sunset tonight, and the Grand is always dressed for dinner.

I just can’t believe I’ll be driving Blake to the airport on Tuesday.  These seven days have gone by way too fast, but what an awesome week it has been!

P.S.  Please send healing prayers up for my good friend Jill.  She has bronchitis and really feels bad.  She got some meds from Medical Center today, but they will take a while to work.  Love you, Jill – get better fast!

All’s Well That Ends Well . . . 9/17/2010

This has been a tough week.  Being sick was no fun, and I really feel like I haven’t put much effort into the blog in several days.  And with the kids coming in Thursday afternoon, I’ll be taking a few days off to enjoy them – so I guess you’ll just have to label this week’s posts as “the blog that almost was” and look forward to better things from me next week.

Before I sign off for the week though, I have a couple of exciting things to share with you, and then I’ll offer up “Random Photos” a day earlier than usual.

The excitement started with an email from an artist in Illinois who wanted to use one of my photos as a model for a watercolor he had been asked to paint.  Spencer Meagher told me that a lady in New York had contacted him about doing a painting of Robinson’s Folly as part of his “Places I’ve Never Been, Things I’ve Never Done” series, which he began September 1 of this year.  She had referred him to a past Bree’s Blog post in which Robinson’s Folly was pictured.  I emailed him the original of the photo, and below are the results.

My photo of Robinson’s Folly (the large outcropping of limestone on the right of the photo). Small Point Inn is also pictured.

Spencer’s watercolor. How cool is that!

In the emails we sent back and forth this week, I learned that Spencer visits Mackinac Island quite often and photographs scenes that he later paints.  For some reason, he had never photographed this particular landmark.  If you’d like to visit his website and look at his other work, some of which includes Mackinac Island scenes,  you can find him at www.spencermeagherfineart.com.

Another day I was contacted by Maggie who is a freelance writer for “The Mackinac Journal”, a northern Michigan monthly magazine.  She was doing a story on the horses leaving the island for the winter and had seen a blog post from last year, with all the photos of the horses coming down the street and entering the ferry.  She asked if I would email her the originals, in their highest resolution, to see if any could be used by their graphics artist to illustrate her story.  I received an email from her today that the photos were perfect, and she will be sending me a copy of the magazine when it hits the stands in October.  I’ll be getting full photo credit, so I’m very excited!

So very, very strange how this blog-thing is turning out.  A lady in New York who reads my blog tells an artist in Illinois to request a photo from me to do a painting she wants.  A writer in Cheboygan finds photos she needs to write a story on the horses leaving the island.

And all I wanted to do was write “letters home” to Georgia friends while we were in Michigan.  Amazing.  And so, so much fun!

I walked downtown – camera in coat pocket –  late this afternoon, knowing my “random photos” would all be done in one probably two-hour session.  I just hadn’t been out much again this week, so my random shots were few, and I needed to add to the ones I had that were usable.  I had in mind sticking to a theme of “Mackinac from Different Angles” and taking photos of places I see every day – but from different perspectives.  And I did some of that.  But I branched out from that theme also – proving once again I am no good at all at “going with a plan”.  Maybe that’s why random photo day is so popular – it’s just my “random mind” at its best!

A red flower, purple leaves plant from The Grand flower garden. Sorry, Mary, but I don’t think we covered this one on the tour. If we did – I forgot!  Sure is pretty though!

Looking across the school playground, through the trees, to the water.

No dogs anywhere, but something spooked the geese in the Burroughs Lot into flying. They are silhouetted against the Mackinac Bridge.

A brightly colored kite flies high against the cloudy sky.

Little Stone Church, as we normally see it photographed.

The Little Stone Church Steeple and bell. On Sunday mornings at the beginning of the service, and at the end of every wedding – as the bride and groom leave the church – a person standing in the center aisle pulls the rope and rings the bell. You can hear it for miles. 

The beautiful stained glass window you see upon entering the church door . . .

. . . . and the one you see as you go out the church door . . .

. . . which is always open and welcoming. As I’ve said before, this church drew me in just as the island did, and that was before I ever had the privilege of hearing Dr. Vince Carroll speak.

One more of the church. This one is from the walkway which goes to the lawn behind the church – where we have our coffee and cookies fellowship on Sunday mornings.

The Town Crier office. Our weekly newspaper is published once a week during the summer.

The windows in La Galerie were filled with beautiful fall displays, like these gorgeous bags.

A scarecrow waves a welcome from his bike.  He’s in the yard of one of the homes used for employee housing on Cadotte Avenue.

A Mackinac Island street in the middle of a Fall weekday. By Friday afternoon the streets will be full again.

A peek inside one of my favorite island shops – Little Luxuries on Mackinac Island.

A row of signs we are very familiar with – Scrimshanders, The Chippewa Hotel, and . . .

. . . what else! The Pink Pony!

Doud’s Market was hopping this afternoon – but it always is! Ya gotta have food, but I could just stand outside and admire the flowers!

The taxi stand. As I walked by, two ladies were muttering that the “phone doesn’t work”. I interrupted them and said I’d be glad to give it a try. I explained that they wouldn’t hear a dial tone when they picked it up. It just automatically rings upstairs to the taxi dispatcher, which it did – and they ordered their taxi.  I remember thinking the same thing the first time I used that phone, which hangs inside a marked box on the front of the building.

The east end of town.

The sign for Harbor Place Apartments, another good place to stay during the winter if you come here to ski, or just to enjoy the solitude. The apartments are all waterfront.

The beautiful Hotel Iroquois, which looks a lot smaller from the front . . .

. . . than it does from this side view!

The Windermere Hotel, as seen from Windermere Point.  Wow – I should have brought Bear and Maddie, the geese dogs!

The back of our lovely library, as seen from the beach. Rocking chairs across the back porch are available day and night for a quiet place to read, or to just enjoy looking at the water and watching the boats.

From the sidewalk, across the street from the boardwalk. A little further down this road is the school, then you are out of town.

I always wonder, when I see this lone tree on the beach side of the street, what made it stronger than the others that must surely have been here in the past.

The pumpkins growing beside the horse barn seem to have doubled in size over the last few days.

A few leaves are beginning to turn now. For some reason, I think the change is going to be fast this year.

Our condo through the trees.

I don’t think I will be writing while Jason and Blair are here, but I will probably post some pics at least a few nights between now and Monday when they are leaving – so check back every now and then just to see what’s up.  Have a great rest of the week, stay safe, try not to get a cold, and if you’re in northern Michigan, stay WARM!  God bless – and thank you for your prayers this week.  I am so blessed.