Saturday, January 10, 2015

New Years Day - 2015's First Road Trip

My Beloved and I are big on road trips.  There are just so many opportunities to find places you would have never thought to visit, little gems like The Hermitage or The Lane Motor Museum or The Museum of Appalachia or even The International Towing & Recovery Museum.  And do you know what I lovedy, love, love about my Beloved? He will stand there and read all the plaques with me, listen to the guides and even if it ain't his thang he doesn't get impatient and try to rush us along.

He is an awesome road trip buddy.

Every New Year's Day we pack up some sandwiches & sodas, fill a couple of water bottles and our coffee cups, grab a bag of chips and a map book and hit the open roads to be touristy in our own state.  We only take the back roads and the two lane highways heading in a predetermined direction or taking a certain road.

One year we took Grand River from our house all the way across the state to Grand Rapids, another year we decided to head up to the tippy top of the "thumb" where we saw the Pointe Aux Barques lighthouse, Grindstone City and Port Hope.  One year we drove up to Traverse City despite blizzard warnings,

This year I got a hankerin' to take Michigan Avenue (US 12) across the state to where it ended at the Michigan state line in New Buffalo - it starts at Campus Martius in downtown Detroit and ends in Washington state (!) - I didn't want to drive down to Detroit to start there because I felt it would take up too much of our morning and we were getting a late start as it was.

As is tradition I fried up a pound of bacon and we had a whole mountain of scrambled eggs (instead of french toast) before we headed out.

Road Trip Essentials: A camera, a map book and your besty

Ready for a million picture pictorial review of our day? Good, 'cause I'm giving you one.

Chelsea, MI - Home of Jiffy Mix
Relatively close to home & our first encounter with Michigan Ave. 

Muuuuch of our drive looked like this: farms/farmhouses and fields
*You can tell how old a farmhouse is by its proximity to the road!

Bronson, MI - Where they get purple street signs with Vikings on them.
Also, where US 12 is called Chicago St.

Our sister street!
Interrupting the pictorial for a history lesson:
My mom always used to tell us that our grandmother proclaimed that her children (eight of them) were going to send her to the poorhouse - I'm not going to go into detail about poorhouses but you can Google the term and read about them.  Fascinating stuff! Anyway, Poor farms were poorhouses, subsidized by the county's government, on farm land where the able bodied had to help to take care of themselves and the other poor/disabled who lived there.  The poor farm for the county that I live in was across the street from our house, hence the name County Farm Rd.

St. Joseph County Michigan - Poorhouse/farm.
And here it is today

Sturgis, MI

I wish I had gotten a picture from the front
but I didn't know I would find an awesome historic one

I wonder what this is for!?

The one and only historical marker we stopped at (?)
See? He gets out of the car to read the signs!
Which shamed me enough to actually get out of the car
One of the original pylons 

We made it!
We made it to Michigan/Indiana border and had lunch in New Buffalo, MI where my hubby went to truck driving school.  Afterward we decided to drive up the Lake Michigan coast and wander toward home.

I think that the Great Lakes are incredibly beautiful

Pure Michigan

See what I mean?
And as the sun was setting I didn't get any more pictures after this.  Except this one as we were in line waiting for our Taco Bell dinner.

I stole his hat and was wearing it at a jaunty angle

Friday, January 2, 2015

2015: The Prospective

I had wanted to get this post up yesterday but my Beloved and I were on the road for a good 11 hours doing our Annual New Year's Day Road Trip (post coming soon) and I was too pooped out afterward to do much of anything other than put some Taco Bell down my gullet while we watched 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea.

I don't make public resolutions because I don't need to be reminded of how many things I resolved to do yet didn't achieve.  I'll keep all of that to myself, thank you very much.

We are going to make this year different though.  So here goes, I plan to:

1.  Say "I love you" more
2.  Knit more
3.  Find something, anything, at least one tiny morsel of happiness in every situation
4.  Read more
5.  Smile more
6.  Blog more
7.  Be more patient

All achievable, right? Nothing too strenuous there (I think).

Number 7 brings me to the whole "Word of the Year" thing that I have been reading about for a few years on other peoples blogs.  It just so happens that this morning I was reading a blog (or five) and one word kept popping up.  Patience.  Which I have laughably minuscule amounts of.  Most especially with myself.

1. the quality of being patientas the bearing of provocation, annoyance, misfortune, or pain, without complaint, loss of temper, irritation, or the like.

2. an ability or willingness to suppress restlessness or annoyance when confronted   with delay

I tend to get very frustrated when things: don't go according to my plans; the way that have envisioned them needing to happen; when other people don't know my vision of the perfect _(anything)_; with the way that it's supposed to be!  Wow.  Wow, wowy, wowzers.  Selfish much?  

I also need to remember that not everyone moves at the Speed of Poppy.  My Beloved for instance, he does things at a slow, even pace.  He's methodical, deliberate.  He's all kinds of slow and steady wins the race! Me? I'm all kinds of instant decisions! and damn the torpedoes! and full steam ahead! and we'll deal with the consequences later!  So, yeah, there's that kind of patience to work on too.  

Hey, you're welcome for the insight into my internal struggles.

Moving on to muuuch better things, another thing that some of the fo'real bloggy peoples I have been stalking for years have been doing is their Saint of the year.  Well, I'm not Catholic and there is no Greek Orthodox Saint Picker out there -which is why I haven't ever participated- but this year is different, right? 

So I went to Jennifer Fulwiler's blog Conversion Diary, which is what the other bloggy peeps use, and I had the generator choose one for me, one for my Beloved and one for "the house" (my little homesteady family).

Here's what it came up with:
Image of St. Valentine 

He is the Patron Saint of affianced couples, bee keepers, engaged couples, epilepsy, fainting, greetings, happy marriages, love, lovers, plague, travellers, young people. He is represented in pictures with birds and roses.

Excellent! I love love, birds, bees, flowers, my happy marriage and traveling. It'll be a good year with this guy being on my team!

Moving on to my Beloved-
And I was all "nuh-uhhh".... But, there you have it.  St. Isidore the Patron Saint of farmers and laborers who had a great concern for the proper treatment of animals.  Another great addition to our team - I pray that he will keep my Beloved safe while he is out there driving that big ol' truck and working his behind off in order for us to move closer to being a little homesteady/farmy family.

And, lastly for our house/homestead- 
St. Benedict

He is the Patron Against Erysipelas; Against Fever; Against Gall Stones; Against Inflammatory Diseases; Against Kidney Disease; Against Temptations; Agricultural Workers; Civil Engineers; Dying People; Farmers; Monks; People in Religious Orders; Servants Who Have Broken Their Master's Belongings; Speliologists; Spelunkers; Students

Would you look at that? It looks like someone is cheering us on this year!

I hope that you all have a beautiful, wonder filled 2015 - FULL STEAM AHEAD!