It’s only mid July and I can already say that this is the best summer our family has had yet. I adore Michigan summers, even when it’s a touch too hot for comfort.
As I was packing boxes I started to question myself on all the ways I’d been talking Michigan up.
Was it really was great as I said it was?
Would we really have a fridge full of local produce and need to don hoodies some evenings just to stay warm?
Did craft beer really abound? Would I see my friends and family all the time as I thought?
Yup. Yes Indeed. For Sure and Affirmative.
The answer is yes. So far our move has blown past our expectations. The weather is surreal and compared to the recent heat of Oklahoma summers it’s been an absolute balm for me and the outdoors. (This week has been a little sticky but it’s been so nice up until now I’m willing to overlook it)
So here’s a short SHORT list of the things about Michigan summers that are blowing me away:
1) 62 degree mornings and still drinking my morning coffee hot.
2) Smiling after trips to the beach when the floorboards of the van are covered with sand and our kids are asleep, sun-kissed in their car seats.
3) Grilled dinners on the deck, multiple nights in a row.
4) Riding my bike to the store to be eco, get some exercise and enjoy the outdoors.
5) Free popcorn and a race car cart for the kids at Family Fare.
6) Driving down Port Sheldon and stopping at one of the many small farm stands for dinner fare.
7) U-picking strawberries and blueberries with my children and watching them prance down the rows, covered in pink or blue juice… respectively.
8) Sleeping with the windows open and leaving the AC off (not this week but generally)
9) The coolness of a basement, the prefect place to escape when the upstairs gets a touch too warm.
10) Great Lake Chinese and “The good Sweet and Sour Chicken”
11) The ability to host my family in our home without anyone packing a suitcase.
12) Reading a book on the front porch while my kids play in the turtle sprinkler
13) No Grocery Tax!
14) A strong up cycle movement that’s easy to get involved in with great thrift stores on every corner.
15) Not having stepped foot in WalMart since we left Oklahoma.
16) Soft green, fescue grass all delicate under our feet.
17) People having bonfires in their driveways
18) Outdoor ice cream stores with picnic tables dotted with happy families.
19) Dinner at one of a dozen local breweries and even wineries.
20) Impressive, gorgeous farmer’s markets two days a week complete with coffee and street musicians.
21) 8th Street grille and the gluten free hamburger buns.
22) Having Wendy’s with my best friend, the maid of honor in our wedding like and having it be just another Saturday in the life, not a big special event.
23) My Aunt and Uncle graciously watching our kids so we can have the occasional date night.
There you are, 23 things I love about Michigan…. 23 is my favorite number. This has nothing to do with Michael Jordan by the way.
Don’t love how all my cool cultural references are at LEAST 10 years old? I do. I ceased being cool… in utero probably.
There are so many things about our lives that are still up in the air and the budget is still tighter than we like it but you guys? We’ve come home. All four of us.
The other night as I snuggled next to Noelle for evening prayers I listed as she thanked God for our new house and for finding someone nice to live in our old house so we could come to Michigan.
I cried. Because Abrahamic risks don’t always pan out, and they’re scary and stressful. I can’t imagine how often ‘Hammy and Sarah snapped at each other while it was all still a “work in progress”
But Michigan summers? They’re real… and they’re spectacular. Come for a visit, yes? Ice cream is on us if you do.