Saturday, September 27, 2014

Neighborhood Friends

My daughter has been asking my husband for a while now if we can all sit out on the roof of our porch (through her bedroom window, of course,) so we can watch the stars. Last night was relatively warm, so we all climbed out her window, got comfy, and watched the sky. In addition to stars, satellites and shooting stars, we also heard some of our neighbors whooping it up on a Friday night.

First we heard the island coyote pack yipping and barking. It was most definitely a group of them, and they were really talkative about something. Coyotes have been on the island for quite a while now. Back in summer of 2006 a number of cats "went missing" from the village - most likely eaten by coyotes. I personally haven't seen one, but my husband has seen them, on several mornings, ramble through our backyard just as the sky was lightening. Luckily, it's always been a single animal. Our neighbor has also seen one walking on our street as she's been leaving for work early in the morning. Needless to say, these days, we have an indoor cat...

Last night we also heard several barred owls "hooting." Hoot really isn't the right way to describe the sound these owls make though. The Cornell Lab of Ornithology describes their call as "Who cooks for you? Who cooks for you-all?" It's really amazing to hear them calling back on forth to one another so close to the house. It's so nice just to sit out there and not have to listen to traffic.

Mackinac owl picture courtesy of Zach Coston, coyote courtesy of, 3rd Rock From the Son is owned by The Carsey-Warner Company.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Back Again...

When we're in the neighborhood, we just can't resist stopping at Kitch-iti-kipi, also known as The Big Spring. We don't usually stay for long, but it's so interesting we just have to stop.

The kids love "driving" the raft (A.K.A. turning the wheel to pull the raft across the spring,) and, of course,

watching the trout swim around beneath them. Something like 10,000 gallons of water feed into the spring each second, so watching the sand erupt like little volcanoes on the bottom of the spring is pretty cool, too. 

The hardest part for Allen and K was not being able run back to the car to get their fishing poles. So many trout, but no fishing is allowed in the spring. Sigh.

I'm going to look into taking my class there this fall for a field trip.  They have a naturalist  on staff who may be able to put a program together for us, and I'd be willing to bet that not many of my students have ever been there.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Back in the Saddle

The kids and I have been back to school for two weeks now. As much as we love summer, we tend to be a routine oriented family, and being back into the routine of school feels good...

Sunday, September 7, 2014


When you live on Mackinac Island, going grocery shopping off the island can take all day, so sometimes it doesn't happen all that often. In addition to the cupboards being bare, this time of year we start stocking up on stuff we'll need over the winter. Today, those two things made for our most expensive shopping trip ever. Luckily, except for fresh fruits and veggies, I won't need to shop again for quite a while...