Wednesday, July 7, 2021

Invasion


It is a damp and rainy day here in Northern Michigan - a perfect day to pop off the Island for an orthodontist appointment. On our way, my son and I noticed a seemingly unending line of UPS trucks.  (Click on the picture to make it bigger.)

There must be a distribution center down that way. We sat and watched for a few minutes and the trucks just kept coming.

Sunday, July 4, 2021

Happy Independence Day


Everywhere you look there are flags on Mackinac.


It seems as if everyone is in the mood to celebrate.


Happy Independence Day!


 

Thursday, July 1, 2021

In Action


My husband (and others) spend a lot of time working on the Mackinac Marine Rescue Boat.  A few days ago, as I was on the ferry coming back to the island, I heard my husband's voice on their radio. The Rescue Boat was out helping a kayaker in distress. It was neat to get to see my husband in action; usually I just get to hear about their runs after the fact.

Wednesday, June 23, 2021

Jackpot


My youngest child and I were in St. Ignace the other day to get their Covid-19 vaccination. We happened to have a few minutes to kill before catching the ferry home, so we popped into the local thrift shop for a quick peek. Nestled in with the rubber stamps I found these beautiful made-in-West-Germany cookie molds. Happy happy joy joy! 



The cookie molds are typically used to make traditional German springerle cookies, like the ones pictured above (from 2018.) To buy the molds new is quite expensive, so you can imagine my joy at finding the whole lot for $5.00!

Sunday, June 20, 2021

Get Away


Lots of people ask me what people who live on Mackinac Island like to do to get away. For us, it usually means a quiet place where we can meet family, relax and my husband can fish. Something like this fits the bill perfectly.

And can you think of a more ideal place for morning yoga?


Or for cousins to get together to hang out?


For us, it's pretty much the perfect place to get away.

Tuesday, June 15, 2021

A Lilac a Day, Day Fifteen


Lots of the lilacs are starting to fade. It's probably a good thing they don't bloom all year - I don't think I would appreciate them nearly as much if they were here all the time. 

Monday, June 14, 2021

A Lilac a Day, Day Fourteen

This little lilac bush is just down the street from me. It's shaded so its blooms are sparse, but it more than makes up for it with how incredible it smells.

Sunday, June 13, 2021

A Lilac a Day, Day Thirteen


Just a lovely little walkway to share with you this morning...

Saturday, June 12, 2021

A Lilac a Day, Day Twelve


Nothing says June like a bright blue sky and lilac blossoms. It's a perfect picture for the first day of summer vacation...

Friday, June 11, 2021

That's a Wrap


These boys and I finished up their fifth grade year today, with ice cream, as is tradition. Words cannot express how delightful they are. I can't imagine having to spend a year teaching through a global pandemic with any other kids!

A Lilac a Day, Day Eleven


These bushes were planted to disguise the addition we put onto the school back in 2000. When we added the "Big Gym," it doubled the square footage of our building.

Thursday, June 10, 2021

A Lilac a Day, Day Ten

This year the lilacs have put on a beautiful show! These were planted at a house in my neighborhood that was just built last year.

Wednesday, June 9, 2021

A Lilac a Day, Day Nine


Lilacs, the lake and the lighthouse - pictures don't get much more "Mackinac" than that. I snapped this one on my way to the Post Office yesterday after school. 

Tuesday, June 8, 2021

A Lilac a Day, Day Eight


I've often wondered why some trees, like this one, seem to be covered with blossoms, while other have virtually none. I initially assumed it was due to how much sun each tree received, but it can also be due to improper pruning. Lilacs bloom on the growth from the previous season, so they should be pruned within a week or two after the flowers have faded. They can  also be over fertilized (they don't like a lot of nitrogen). And, of course, they do need a minimum of  six hours of sun light each day.

Monday, June 7, 2021

A Lilac a Day, Day Seven


I think this may be my favorite lilac picture of the year. I love all the different shades...

Sunday, June 6, 2021

A Lilac a Day, Day Six


The lilacs on the Island just keep getting prettier. These are across the street from the Post Office.
 

Saturday, June 5, 2021

A Lilac a Day, Day Five


White lilacs aren't my favorite but they're still pretty, especially against that beautiful blue sky. Luckily I snapped this picture yesterday, after school, because the sky is gloomy this morning. I just hope the clouds bring some much needed rain.

Friday, June 4, 2021

A Lilac a Day, Day Four


I love the pinky color of these lilacs. They are right on the corner near my house, and when I come around the corner the scent is amazing.

Thursday, June 3, 2021

A Lilac a Day, Day Three


The lilac bushes in Marquette Park looked beautiful yesterday. I just love those dark purple ones.

Wednesday, June 2, 2021

A Lilac a Day, Day Two


I pass these every day on my walk to and from work. Every morning a few more blossoms are open, and this morning they smelled wonderful.

Tuesday, June 1, 2021

A Lilac a Day, Day One

This year's lilacs are just starting to open. It is a perfect way to start June...

Friday, May 28, 2021

Downward Facing Pig?


Not much is cuter than a little piggy doing downward facing dog. Every time I see that tail, I giggle...


Monday, May 17, 2021

Animal Crossing Birthday


My youngest child turned 15 this spring and asked for an Animal Crossing themed birthday party. For those of you without kids, Animal Crossing is a video game. Players take on the role of a human who lives on an island inhabited by different anthropomorphic animals. Players create and build a village, interact with villagers, collect fossils, fish, and generally live out their happy lives in the village. Interestingly, Animal Crossing simulates the passage of time and players move through the different seasons in real time, or so my kids tell me.


For me the best part of this birthday was copying the cake from the game. (If you play AC on your birthday, the villagers throw a party for you - complete with a cake.) The only issue was - my kiddo is not a strawberry fan, so using real fruit on the top was not going to make them happy. Once again, my 3D printer came to the rescue.


I found a strawberry on Thingiverse, edited it in Tinkercad (changing it from solid shape into a cavity within a solid shape which I then cut in half) and printed out a strawberry mold. From there I just dyed some marzipan red and and made my own non-fruit strawberries. It sounds like a whole lot more work than it actually was.

At first glance, they look amazingly real. In the end all that mattered was the newly-turned 15 year-old was happy with it. Sadly, Grandma and Grandpa didn't get to have any because Grandma tested positive for Covid a few days before and had to quarantine! Thankfully, she'd been vaccinated and her only symptom was a runny nose.


Happy birthday K.
I hope you know how much we love you
and how proud we are of you.

Saturday, May 15, 2021

Funny of the Day



I was out walking with my students a week or so ago for ACES (All Children Exercise Simultaneously) when I noticed these hitching posts on the West Bluff. I laughed out loud. I hope their neighbors appreciate their sense of humor.

Wednesday, May 12, 2021

Spring has Sprung

As you know, I'm a sucker for flowers. So when I noticed these beauties all lit up by the evening sun, I just couldn't resist. 

I'm not sure what these are, but they looked beautiful at the side of the road.

Saturday, May 8, 2021

Truth in Advertising

Homemade bread in less than one hour? Let's look at the directions:

 

Hmmmmm. Let rise for two hours, rest for 40 minutes and then bake for abut 25 minutes - that adds up to three hours and five minutes. Shame on you Krusteaz, shame on you. I know what you're thinking -they were talking about the baking time, but that's not what 75% of the people picking up the box will think. It's a good thing I have all day...

Wednesday, May 5, 2021

Tasty


Darn it! I've been dreaming of a heaping spoonful of flour all day. I mean, really? I did some digging, and apparently, contaminated flour is a thing.

In 2015 General Mills recalled 45 million tons of flour sold under Gold Medal, Wondra, and Signature Kitchens brands because 46 people got sick from eating it raw - 13 of those people got so sick they had to be hospitalized. And in July of 2019, 21 people from nine states got sick from eating E. coli contaminated flour. Kind of makes me rethink my raw cookie dough addiction.

Source

Sunday, May 2, 2021

Yoga at School

The teachers at the Mackinac Island Public School are incredibly lucky. Not only do we live and work in an amazing community, and have fabulous students, but we also have incredible support. The Mackinac Island Community Foundation is one of the organizations that provides that support.

This fall I made a grant request to MICF to start a yoga program with the 3rd, 4th and 5th grade students at the school. In December we were  given the funds to purchase a mat, blocks, a strap, a blanket and a carrying case for each student. Since the start of the second semester, the students, the 3rd-4th grade teacher and I have practiced yoga two to three times each week. We're hopeful that by starting this program with elementary students we can help them gain some of the benefits of yoga, especially an increase in their abilities to manage stress as they get older and move up to high school. One third grader told me last week, "I always feel good after yoga." Comments like that make it all worth while...


Friday, April 30, 2021

Pinch Me


I think I must live in one of the most beautiful places in the world. I doubt I will ever get tired of the Straits of Mackinac. It's my happy place...

Sunday, April 25, 2021

Even More


Every day I am seeing more signs of spring. Believe it or not, on this day it wasn't the tourists I noticed first- it was the trash can. Those trash cans are only out during the season, so their reappearance around town means spring is here. Of course the big group of tourists walking around was a big clue, too.

Tuesday, April 20, 2021

Signs


Spring comes late to Northern Michigan, and even later to Mackinac Island. It makes sense - were surrounded by million of gallons of cold water. It takes a great deal of energy to heat up all that water, so Mackinac Island typically has late cool springs. Even though spring is not my favorite season, I do tend to keep an eye out for signs of spring, and crocuses are a sure sign that warmer weather is almost here.

Sunday, April 18, 2021

The Wheels on the Bus


We bought a new bus! We use to own half of a bus - one we shared with another district, but it had their name on the side. This is our first ever bus with our name on it! If you ever see us driving down the road, be sure to wave hello!

Thursday, April 15, 2021

First Attempt

I have always liked the look of cookies iced with flow icing, but I've never tried it. Until now. My youngest child decided they wanted an Animal Crossing themed birthday party this year, so it seemed a perfect time to try. 

I 3D printed an Animal Crossing cookie cutter and got to work. I will never again complain about how much these cookies cost! Not only are mine marginal at best, but decorating them took forever - and I only flooded one color! I shudder to think about how long it took to make cookies like these


K loved them, but due to Covid-19, we had to enjoy them at home and pre-packaged doughnut holes went into to school to celebrate. Despite the gigantic mess in the kitchen (and trust me, there was green icing everywhere) it was fun to give this new technique a try.

Tuesday, April 13, 2021

Spring

Another sure sign of spring on Mackinac is Worm Day. We joke as a family and call the first day each spring, when the worms come out en masse, Worm Day. It's still a little early for the invasion, (that usually occurs in May,) but it was nice to see that things had warmed up enough for them to start coming out. I noticed this little guy this morning...

Monday, April 12, 2021

Monday Morning


Foggy mornings on Mackinac are a sure sign of spring. Luckily the boats are running, because if we had to fly this morning, we would have missed our appointment.