If you have been reading for a few months, you may remember that I wrote about my happy place.

Tomorrow, we are leaving for Northern Michigan for vacation.


Sorry. Didn’t mean to shout.

I didn’t mention it before, but one of the reasons that I hold vacations in Michigan so dear to my heart is because of my grandmother. No, not Mother Lovett. But my other grandmother – the one who passed away suddenly in February.

See, she left this giant void in our life that has yet to be filled. The void is different for each of us – my dad, my mom, my brothers, even my husband, my aunts and uncles, and especially my grandpa.

Sometimes I wake up in the morning and forget that she has passed away, and when I remember it is like someone punched me in the stomach. I still have her scarf on my dresser – it is a scarf that she wore when we were shopping 2 days before she passed away. Some days I can still smell her on that scarf, but the scent is fading too quickly for my liking.

Growing up, this vacation to Michigan was special for many reasons. My grandparents didn’t always live close to us, and this was one solid week that we got to spend time with them. We have tradition after tradition, ranging from restaurants to shopping in wasteful trinket stores to taking pictures of the sunset.

One year when I was young, probably only 6 or 7 years old, I went to Michigan with my grandma early – just her and I – before the rest of my family came. We drove half way and stayed at a Red Roof Inn and I will never be able to pass a Red Roof without thinking about it. I can remember every little detail of that trip – even how I clicked my tongue when she turned her turn signal on and how we had to pick up my grandpa at an airport in a torrential downpour. We fed ducks off the dock and then I had a minor breakdown because I was so homesick and missed my mom and dad. Luckily they came up later that day.

I can’t help but feel that going there puts me a little bit closer to her. Feels her a little bit more. It’s going to be one giant, emotional, nostalgic mess and I can’t wait. I want to reach out and grab the air. Most people dream of having a beach house some day but I dream of having a house up North to relive the memories I have with my family.

No fear. I sold my soul to Verizon to get a wireless network card for two reasons. 1. I may be sick in the head, but 2. I really want to share my favorite place with you. And I want to have a place to document it like I never have before. And of course, I have many treats lined up because I really am sick in the head.

I may never come home. But if I don’t, I can share much delicious fried white fish and lots of wine with you.

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34 Responses to “Off to My Happy Place!”

  1. #
    Becki @ HikeBikeEat — July 29, 2010 @ 5:53 pm

    Have a wonderful time! Sounds like it’s going to be an incredible experience with all your memories :)


  2. #
    Lisa @bakebikeblog — July 29, 2010 @ 5:56 pm

    Oh what a perfect trip you have planned :) Have a wonderful time!!!


  3. #
    Kristina — July 29, 2010 @ 5:56 pm

    I know how valuable those memories can be… (I’m actually tearing up as I read this… thinking of my own grandparents and how lucky I was to have them as long as I did…)

    Have a wonderful, memorable experience. :) I really look forward to reading about it…


  4. #
    homecookedem — July 29, 2010 @ 5:56 pm

    Best wishes for a safe and HAPPY trip to your happy place!! :) I love the way you write about your memories and the people you love. I can just feel the love you have for them! :)


  5. #
    Lisa — July 29, 2010 @ 5:58 pm

    Have a great vacation. It sounds wonderful!!


  6. #
    Lizzy @ LBBakes — July 29, 2010 @ 5:59 pm

    Aw, sounds like you have a lot of great memories up there. Have fun, can’t wait to vacation vicariously through you!


  7. #
    Ashley — July 29, 2010 @ 6:00 pm

    Such a beautiful post. I’m so excited for you and hope you have an amazing trip. I know just how magical N.MI is and I don’t even have all of the deep family connections there. Have fun lovely :) xo


  8. #
    Jessica @ Rawtumn — July 29, 2010 @ 6:04 pm

    New England holds the same sort of nostalgia for me so I definitely understand! <3 Have an amazing trip!


  9. #
    Wei-Wei — July 29, 2010 @ 6:17 pm

    Wow, what an amazingly heartfelt post… I hope you find all that you’re looking for in Michigan, and don’t forget to have a great time. :)



  10. #
    kay (eating machine) — July 29, 2010 @ 6:23 pm

    have a fun trip lady!!!


  11. #
    Heather — July 29, 2010 @ 6:29 pm

    i’m so glad you shared all that with us :) i can’t wait to see your trip! except for i’ll be super jealous, but you know, whatever!


  12. #
    Daisy — July 29, 2010 @ 6:35 pm

    that is beautiful.


  13. #
    Pure2Raw Twins — July 29, 2010 @ 7:36 pm

    Have fun on your trip :)


  14. #
    Jolene (www.everydayfoodie.ca) — July 29, 2010 @ 7:37 pm

    Beautiful post. I hope you have a spectacular time reminiscing.


  15. #
    Anne @ the doctor takes a wife — July 29, 2010 @ 7:44 pm

    We’re probably going to be right next to each other, at the same lake. We’re going on vaca too!!


  16. #
    Lizzy — July 29, 2010 @ 8:01 pm

    Up North is my favorite place to go during the summer months in Michigan too! its amazing. I’m from Michigan and every summer if i dont make it up there atleast once, it just doesnt feel the same! i hope you have fun! :)


  17. #
    Eliana — July 29, 2010 @ 8:53 pm

    Sounds like a wonderful place. Hope you have an amazing time.


  18. #
    Maria @ Oh Healthy Day — July 29, 2010 @ 9:31 pm

    Such sweet memories of your grandmother. I hope this trip gives you time to heal. Looking forward to you sharing your happy place with us!


  19. #
    Jenn (Jenn's Menu and Lifestyle Blog) — July 29, 2010 @ 9:48 pm

    Have fun!! Enjoy that fish, it sounds delicious. 8-)



  20. #
    Anne @ Food Loving Polar Bear — July 29, 2010 @ 10:52 pm

    Have a wonderful trip! :)


  21. #
    MelissaNibbles — July 30, 2010 @ 2:45 am

    Have a fun trip. I’m relaxed just looking at those pictures!


  22. #
    Liana @ femme fraiche — July 30, 2010 @ 2:47 am

    Isn’t there something about nostaglia that’s painful yet addictive all at the same time? I hope you your trip is just as special as you hope…though I’m sure it will be. I’m looking forward to some posts about your memories in your favourite place!


  23. #
    Katie @ Health for the Whole Self — July 30, 2010 @ 3:37 am

    My grandmother passed away two years ago, and reading this post just flooded me with wonderful memories of her. Thank you for sharing your story, and have a wonderful vacation!


  24. #
    Erica @ ericaunmasked.blogspot.com — July 30, 2010 @ 4:29 am

    I am sorry to hear about your grandmother. I smiled when I read your words about her scarf. I have a scarf of my grandmothers (along with her collection of Ferragamo’s:) – luckily we were the same size) – and I could smell her too. I asked my parents to buy me her perfume – which turns out to be this strange, very hard to procure Eurpoean perfume that she got when in Switzerland. she lived there half the year. Funny though – it’s not the same. I am so happy you have a happy place. Mine happens to be the water as well. I am hoping to be there next week:) have fun and I can wait to read more.


  25. #
    Shannon — July 30, 2010 @ 5:26 am

    What beautiful memories this trip brings up. I hope youhave a wonderful time :) Grandmothers are so special!


  26. #
    Morgan @ Healthy Happy Place — July 30, 2010 @ 6:16 am

    you are truly a beautiful writer…your words give me chills! I’m from Michigan, so I know how special a UP vacation is. have a wonderful time :)


  27. #
    Kacy — July 30, 2010 @ 6:43 am

    Looks so gorgeous. I love your posts like this, you are such a fantastic writer. I hope this trip brings you some healing.


  28. #
    Tracy — July 30, 2010 @ 6:49 am

    Looks like a lovely place…have a wonderful time cherishing all of those memories with your grandmother!


  29. #
    Lindsay @ The Ketchup Diaries — July 30, 2010 @ 6:52 am

    I loved reading this. It made my heart so happy. I know you will have THE BEST time. And just remember, it’s okay to bawl your eyes out once you get there..thinking of all of the happy times.


  30. #
    Jamie — July 30, 2010 @ 11:11 am

    Northern Michigan is my happy place too! Enjoy!!


  31. #
    Jen @ My Kitchen Addiction — August 3, 2010 @ 4:21 pm

    Hope you have a lovely trip (though I’m leaving this comment a bit late… sorry!) Northern Michigan sounds wonderful!


  32. #
    Emily @ Perfection Isn't Happy — May 26, 2012 @ 10:57 am

    I know this post is old, but I just wanted to say that I can relate sooo much. I spent my summers in Northern Michigan every year until I went to college, and I miss it so much right now. It’s always been my dream to own a cottage on the lake.



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