Julie and I stayed downtown Grand Rapids for a couple days at the City Flats Hotel while I prepared for and had some routine medical tests. It was great to walk around the old neighborhood along the river checking out all the new building over the last year!
We had dinner with our friend Fr. Geaney at our favorite Grand Rapids restaurant, the Chop House, and we were not disappointed!
Wednesday we took a nice walk in the city again,
before joining the "city workers" Mary Beth and Jim for lunch. We then went to dentist appointments in the afternoon before joining Julie's brothers and their wives for dinner at Jack's in Spring Lake. It was great to visit with them all.
On Thursday we had lunch in Holland with our friend Marty and caught up on a few things with him. Then we were off to join Mom, Courtney and Julie's Uncle Bud at my Mom's where they were paying cards. But....it was not to be. A warning light went off on the dash of our rental showing low and then lower and lower tire pressure on the driver's side rear tire. Long story short, no spare in the car (just and air compressor) and a nail in the tire. So we called Hertz and they called a tow truck. So we got a ride with a nice young man in the tow truck to the service facility in Grand Rapids to get a new rental car.
We had promised Nancy and Scott, our "house parents" a nice home cooked dinner. But with the rental car issues that was not be either. So we met at a local pizza spot instead. We enjoyed a nice sunset from their condo though....
On Friday Nancy took us for a great walk around the expanding neighborhood and then I put together a craft table that Nancy had ordered.
The supervisor(s) checking out the assembly job.........
Friday night Nancy and Scott invited over Tony and Terrie and Rod and Jody, other friends we have not seen for quite some time. We had a great grilled dinner with fresh sweet corn and such. It was a great evening catching up with everyone! Tony needs to brush up on his corn hole throwing skills (me too) a bit though....somehow Scott and Rod won.....
Sat morning we headed out for a day trip to Sleeping Bear Dunes / Glen Arbor. We had a nice hike on the Empire bluff and Sleeping Bear Point trails.
After that a great lunch at the Boondocks Restaurant
and a little shopping. We also checked out the resort that Nancy and Scott like on Little Glen Lake. What a great little spot!
On the way back to Allendale, we stopped in Frankfort. We were able to see Nancy and Matt and Sherry and Mike, who moved their boats there this year. We where also surprised to see Amber and Mark, and Lorelei and Chris from our old marina in Muskegon there for the weekend! It was great to see all!
We also had a great dinner at the Blue Fish in Manistee on the way home. Julie and I ate there a couple times last summer when travelling in our boat and we were again very impressed with the food.
Sunday we went to Mom's for church and then off to meet all my siblings in Kalamazoo, a good meeting spot for all for brunch. Deb was ill so she and Don could not make it unfortunately. We hope to catch up with them before we leave to go back to NC to our home (boat). It was great seeing everyone, some of which we had not seen since Thanksgiving when we were last in Michigan. Sorry no pictures....too busy visiting to take one!
We also got to tour Jordan and Eliza's home in Kalamazoo and they reviewed with the group all the restoration and improvement projects they have going. The home is truly a classic and they are doing such a great job restoring it!
We arrived back in Muskegon at Mom's and stayed the night. After a nice zucchini dinner, we of course had some popcorn with her, a Sunday night tradition!
On Monday we went to Carol and Bill's in Spring Lake. We brought dinner to cook and had a wonderful home cooked and grilled meal with them on their patio.
Tuesday we went to the local lumber yard, D Baker and Sons to see the large photo they have of the 1870's crew. Included in this crew is Julie's great grandfather Alex...he is the third from the left in the front row. The picture is from 1878.
The fifth generation is running the business and years ago had posted a notice in the local newspaper that they would like to identify the people in the photo. One of the 5th generation daughters, Ann, spoke with Julie about some of the history of the company. So Julie was able to help with their request from the 1960's newspaper request.
On Tuesday evening, Carol and Bill invited Denise and Steve to join us for a beverage and then we all went to Docker's Fish House (one of our old regular spots!!) for dinner on the deck. It was so good to see Denise and Steve, who we last visited with at my retirement party over a year ago!
We had some nice walks along the waterfront in Muskegon and Grand Haven. To all our Looper friends who experienced a rough and foggy August 2015, this is the Lake Michigan we love and remember.
Muskegon Aug 2, Looper (unidentified, we could see the Looper burgee but could not make out the boat name) entering the harbor. We miss our boat.......Home.....
.....from the North pier in Grand Haven on Aug 3 2016.
On Wednesday, we were invited to Cindy and Gary's on Spring Lake for a boat ride on their new tri-toon and dinner. It was nice to be back on the water on Spring Lake! And the dinner at the Spring Lake Country Club was great....the place has sure changed since I worked there in the kitchen during my high school years!
Thursday morning we left Bill and Carol's to do some errands, one of which is posting this blog. We used the facilities at the Hackley Library in downtown Muskegon...check out the great stained glass in the library. It is a wonderful historic library building.