Pure Michigan

Part…3 at this point? This amount of content devotion is warranted as I am clearly the first person ever to visit Northern Michigan. I’m a pioneer and need to report on my historic discoveries. Mostly I just want to share some pretty pictures and answer some questions I got.

Where were we?




Specifically we were in Bay Harbor, at the hotel, which is a resort located between Charlevoix and Petoskey/Harbor Springs. We were invited to our dear friends wedding (more on that later) in Charlevoix/Harbor Springs and since Pete spent his summers in Michigan, and I had never been, we decided to make a family vacation of it. Pete’s mom came up from Chicago, and we spent the week exploring the surrounding towns. The pictures above are from Fish Town near Leland Michigan, a still operational but historic fishing port that Pete used to visit growing up.

What all did we do?




Well thanks to all of your comments and emails, pretty much tore it up toddler style. Which obviously meant there were bubbles. Everywhere and always. We also just enjoyed our time at the lake, when we weren’t out exploring.





Then in Charlevoix we had lunch on the deck at The Weathervane, and got to watch the bridge open not once, but twice for boat passage. Which was terribly exciting.




In Harbor Springs we spent a lot of time in the park by the water. We went to The Rocking Horse toy store on the main street and Grace picked out a toy. Which was, incidentally, a small truck she calls her “choo choo”. It was really enlightening for my narcissistic parenting neurosis. At first I was all smug proud that my little girl picked out a truck. Attaway to buck gender stereotypes! What a unique spirit! But then I was like…am I too proud of her? Did I project this on to her? Did she really want a baby doll and I somehow projected my love of quirkiness and she sensed it and chose the truck to tickle me? What does this all mean!? And then I got a life.

Just thought I would share a peek into crazyland.

We also, on an email rec, hit up Howse’s Candy Haus fudge which was insane. And, thanks to your comments and emails, also enjoyed the scenic drive along Beach Drive through Wequetonsing- which was like a posh-er Bay View. Loved them both.

Unfortunately, we didn’t make it out to Mackinac Island- though it sounds, dare I say, enchanting. The weather turned our last few days when we were planning on visiting, but that gives us something to look forward to next summer!

Otherwise, we spent most of our time in Petoskey.


At the American Spoon. There is apparently one in Charlevoix as well. And Traverse City. And it is delicious. We literally ate there for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Never all on the same day, but we definitely had a few lunch/dinner days. They just had the freshest, cleanest, most delicious food. Michigan has some of the best produce/farm stands around. Which I know because every farm-to-table restaurant I have ever been to has some major Michigan representation. #science But we didn’t find a whole lot of clean eating restaurant options that took advantage of this like American Spoon did.




Next visit (which we are already dreaming of for next summer) it would be fun to rent a house or stay somewhere that we could cook some of the produce we saw at the farmers markets. Because, I mean, who wouldn’t want to be a part of all those wholesome smiles and hugs.



We also loved the shopping/walking in Petoskey. Symon’s General Store, the parks that were buzzing with gallery walks and concerts. Grace especially loved the concert we happened upon. Little ginge-ish head cocked to the side, that’s her serious listening stance.



She pretty much killed it with her signature dance move- run around in dizzy circles.


This. Broke my heart. Too much sweetness. This precious man was killing it with his own moves on the other side of the pergola for awhile, and then twirled his way over to Grace who was delighted to have a dancing partner. They jigged it up like this for awhile before he thanked her for the dance and said, “Not bad for a 70 year old, huh?”.

And…The camera. After two years of taking pictures of my girl with an iPhone (sub par technology to document remarkable beauty) Molly finally convinced me to upgrade. So I got a Canon EOS 60D. It came with a standard lens that can capture pretty near and far, but Molly also convinced me to invest in a set focal lens (EF 50 mm I believe) which is what I use most of the time. It is tricky because you have to stand real far away from your subject, but it does some really pretty blurred background stuff that I enjoy. I am still trying to figure out my tricks, but so far I really love that the camera does incredibly as a point and shoot while I learn how to get fancy.

And now I am off to enjoy the exact opposite of the wholesome life and fresh air of Michigan, in Dallas at retail market, in a giant windowless building for two days. Anything you wish we had at Biscuit that I should look out for? Have I convinced any of you of the wonders of Pure Michigan, or did you all already know? Do you think Tim Allen needs a sidekick??


  1. Steph June 24, 2013 at 8:58 am

    You are a great photographer! Love all your pictures!

  2. Betsy June 24, 2013 at 9:33 am

    Michigan is such a special spot- we used to go to East Tawas every summer when I was growing up. My husband and I went to Leland last summer and absolutely loved it- I can’t believe it’s taken me so long to get to the other side of Michigan! It’s stunning. We stumbled upon the Leelanau Conservancy’s fundraiser, where Mario Batali showed up and waxed poetic about how much he loves that part of Michigan. It sorta put the icing on the cake that is my love affair with the mitten state. Totally dreamy- if only it weren’t so freaking cold in the winter!! You should go to Mackinac Island sometime if you haven’t been already.

  3. Rachel June 24, 2013 at 11:03 am

    It makes me to happy to see the pictures of Howse’s candy and Symon’s. My mom is in love with the caramel at Howse’s. It reminds me of every summer growing up that I spent in Petoskey and Harbor Springs. We have stayed everywhere, but our favorite was the couple of summers we spent in Bay View (gorgeous!). Oh, how I miss it!

  4. caitlyn June 24, 2013 at 11:30 am

    Grace is amazing.

  5. Shane June 24, 2013 at 11:51 am

    I honestly had no idea there are so many charming places in Michigan. Thank you for sharing! Lovely photos.

  6. Maris June 24, 2013 at 1:59 pm

    So glad you loved it up there! We got married in Petoskey on Walloon Lake, you MUST stay there and rent a house next year! Perfect spot, 10 minutes from downtown Petoskey.. you will not see water that is more beautifully blue! You will absolutely love it! Perfect place to recharge the batteries and hug on your loved ones.

  7. kkrs June 24, 2013 at 3:26 pm

    I second the walloon lake recommendation. Perfection.

  8. rebecca June 24, 2013 at 5:37 pm

    ,,,i love that sweet grace and the ‘ol man had a sweet dance together albeit 12 feet apart. (smile),,,

  9. Nicole June 25, 2013 at 6:48 am

    Gracie does have great style, all that Bonpoint kills me!

  10. Kate June 25, 2013 at 12:27 pm

    You should check out: http://www.chimneycornersresort.com/
    It is right in the middle of some great towns (Frankfort, Glen Arbor, Beulah…)
    You can be super active or just lounge.
    Love it there!!!

  11. Anika June 25, 2013 at 2:38 pm

    As a Michigan native now residing in Los Angeles, you just made me seriously homesick! I used to ski in Harbor Springs and spend summers by the water in Petosky and Gladstone. It’s so beautiful!

  12. Kristen July 1, 2013 at 9:33 pm

    I’m from Petoskey originally and, although I haven’t lived there in years, my family keeps a summer home with an AWESOME kitchen a stone’s throw from American Spoon Foods. It sleeps ten comfortably… holler if you’re looking for a vacation rental next summer!

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