Friday, May 26, 2023


 Today you become a high school graduate.

The past 18 years have been a blur -
a loud, colorful, fabulous blur.

Weren't you five, like yesterday?

To some people, graduation is an end, but I see it as a beginning; your adult life begins tomorrow. You've got the intelligence, the drive, and the skills to shape that life into anything your heart desires. Focus on your goals and work toward achieving them, because the life you envision for yourself won't just happen; it has to be crafted. I know, you've got this...

Your dad and I will be here, if you need us, and trust me - you will still need us occasionally, and that's OK. If you don't need us, that's OK, too, but we'll still be here cheering you on.  Try to remember through all of the craziness of this weekend my tears aren't tears of sadness. Of course, I will miss you next year, but moving on is what you are supposed to do; I'm not in the least bit sad to see you go off to college. I'm thrilled at the thought of you heading off to Northern Michigan University. 

Know that we are incredibly proud of you and how hard you've worked to arrive at this moment.  And remember when I am crying, uncontrollably, don't worry about me; I'm just overwhelmed with feelings of pride, joy, and unconditional love for you.

Thursday, May 25, 2023


Tomorrow you finish high school. 

I remember that day; you were wide-eyed with wonder and excited about each new experience.  You were unapologetically true to yourself and were not about to compromise about the face painting style you wanted. Even at seven, you weren't afraid to be yourself, and I've always admired that about you. I was proud of you then and I am so proud of the man you have grown into.

Wednesday, May 24, 2023

Three Days

Only three more days until you walk across that stage  and get your diploma. Wasn't it only yesterday that you were taking your first walks around our neighborhood? Where did the time go?

Tuesday, May 23, 2023

Four Days

Four days until your adorable little bucket hat gets replaced by a mortarboard.

Monday, May 22, 2023

Five Days

Five days until this guy graduates from high school. 

It's hard to believe it's been 18 years since you came into our lives; early, but healthy. 

18 years since my Grandma Mary told my mom there was an emergency and that she needed to fly home from Malta that same day. (For the record, I was on "limited mobility" and not allowed to be more than ten minutes away from the hospital, but the emergency return to the States was really for my grandmother's benefit.) 

18 years since the overwhelming joy at your arrival after years of trying and a miscarriage.

It's hard to believe there are only five days left until you are a high school graduate...

Sunday, May 21, 2023


One of the most iconic signs of spring on Mackinac Island is the bed of tulips growing in front of Grand Hotel. Lots of tourists don't realize that all those beautiful bulbs are used for a single year. Well, by Grand Hotel, that is. You see, after they are pulled out and thrown on the hotel's compost pile, locals (like me) bring them home. No sense letting them go to waste, right?

Friday, May 12, 2023


Spring arrives later on Mackinac Island than it does most places, but when it finally gets here, it's worth the wait.

Monday, May 1, 2023


May arrived on Mackinac, as it often does, with a chilly rain. I tried not to let it dampen my spirits and instead I focused on the flowers that have started to pop up. No tulips yet, just a few crocuses, snowdrops, and daffodils.

I'm told that because crocus has a Latin origin that croci is also grammatically correct, but croci just doesn't sound right to me...

Wednesday, April 26, 2023

Little Shop of Horrors

We started on March 12th for an April 21st opening night. 40 whirlwind days full of singing and rehearsing. And although tech week nearly did me in, I had an absolute blast. Needless to say, there was little time left in my schedule for blogging - especially in April!

For a tiny town of around 500 people, let me tell you - Mackinac has got some talent

I was cast as the Act One voice of Audrey II, a carnivorous plant with a deep voice and a taste for blood. I was also a member of the Derelict Chorus - A.K.A. a wino on Skid Row (hence the ragged shirt and trench coat.)

Working with the puppeteers to align my voice with the puppet's mouth movements (without being able to see one another) was a challenge, but we pulled it off.

Travis took over as Audrey II's voice when the plant grew and needed a deeper voice. (That's us at curtain call in front of the full grown Audrey II.)

For me, one of the highlights of Little Shop was getting to work with my youngest. K was the puppeteer for the smallest Audrey II. They were so excited when the prop builder said little Audrey II could come home with us. 

Truth be told - singing with a live band, in front of an audience, was pretty cool too. I never really understood the draw of participating in community theater until I was a part of it. Now I completely understand why people are willing to put so much work and effort into a play! 

Saturday, April 15, 2023


I mean just look at that face.
So. Stinking. Cute.
I think
Professor Minerva McGonagall,
or Minnie, for short,
is the most adorable
kitty around.

Monday, April 3, 2023

Mackinac Island Carpool

Without a bus, Mackinac families "carpool" via snowmobile. This time of year, when we don't have much snow, kids get a ride as far as there is snow - usually to "the top of Grand Hill." Once there, they have to walk the rest of the way to school. At the end of the day, kids walk to the top of the hill and then ride the rest of the way. 

Friday, March 24, 2023

Good Luck

This kid, along with the rest of The Great Lakers (Mackinac's robotics team), is off to Lake Superior State University today for his second competition. The entire team  worked hard on building this robot, so I hope they do well. It's pretty amazing to me that we can field a competitive team considering we only have about 30 students in out entire high school!

Thursday, March 23, 2023


The flight from St. Ignace over to the Island may be quick, but it always puts a smile on my face. 

Wednesday, March 15, 2023


Soylent Blue and Soylent Black might be OK, but there's no way they'll get me to try Soylent Green, even if it is mint flavored. 

I would love to talk to their marketing department to find out just what they were thinking. 

Sunday, March 12, 2023

Today's the Day

This afternoon was out first read through of the script. I am so excited to be a part of this. Everyone involved is so incredibly talented; I just hope I am worthy of being included.

Tuesday, March 7, 2023


As I was cleaning out a closet the other day, I came across a box full of notes I'd saved from high school. Don't ask why I saved them - I really don't know, other than I tend to be a packrat... 

As I sat on my bedroom floor reminiscing and happily attempting to decipher the handwriting of my high school friends, it struck me; neither of my children have experienced the simple joy of finding a page-long, hand-written note in their locker. Nor have they ever been quickly handed a note in the hallway while they rush to class. Of course they don't write notes any more - kids text. Even in our little school with only 30 high school students, who are always together - they text, or use Snapchat. 

Writing a note took time - it took commitment and you didn't do it for just anyone. A page-long, hand-written note only went to someone who mattered to you; maybe that's why I saved them. It makes me wonder if any of the notes I wrote back in high school are in the back of someone else's closet. 

As silly as it sounds, I'm really glad I didn't grow up with a smart phone in my pocket.

Friday, March 3, 2023



It's going to be a lot of work, but I think it's going to be a blast! I've helped out with costuming several community theater shows recently, but I've not been in one since before my kids were born. And even though I won't actually be on stage, I'm looking forward to doing a little voice acting. And I get to sing!  Though I'm sure my family will be sick of my one song well before show time.

Monday, February 27, 2023

School Closing

We had to send the kids home last Thursday (2/23/23) due to a power outage on the School - Grand end of town. It's the second time in my 30 year career we've had to do that. Without power the fire alarm, door locks, heat, etc. don't function; not to mention the lights and laptops.

Today two different people pulled me aside to tell me how impressed they were with my son. Apparently, rather than hopping on his snowmobile and heading right home with the rest of the high schoolers, he went down to the elementary end of the building. He helped the elementary teachers keep the young kids calm and entertained until their parents could get to school to pick them up. 

He's such a good human around children. He tells me he's planning on teaching kindergarten and I think he's going to be an incredible teacher.

Thursday, February 16, 2023


This is what a full parking lot at the Mackinac Island Public School looks like: snowmobiles as far as the eye can see. I took this picture during Winter Festival's Sunday Brunch. 

We haven't had a Winter Festival since 2020 (due to Covid.) It was wonderful to celebrate again.

Saturday, February 11, 2023

Happy Valentine's Day

There it goes...

My Valentine's Day present...

My husband packed up the kids and headed for the 9:00 am boat and then onto a weekend of fun. Leaving me home alone. All alone until I have to leave for work on Monday morning. I'm looking at two glorious days at home, all by myself. I can't even remember the last time I was home alone. I may do laundry, but I may also binge watch The Crown, or Star Trek. Only time will tell.

Wednesday, February 8, 2023


I am often asked what people on Mackinac do to keep busy during the winter. If you went around town and asked 20 different people you might get 20 different answers, but most people would agree on one thing. On Mackinac you have to entertain yourself - or better yet, organize something you'd like to do and invite people to join you.

We are lucky enough to have a very active Recreation Department, who are always organizing activities for both adults and kids. Pre-Covid I signed up for a stained glass making class. Unfortunately, the class was shut down when Covid hit, and my project has been languishing on a shelf for the past three years. Last week I decided enough was enough - I dug out the glass making supplies and set out to finish my piece. I'm shooting to have it done by March first. Wish me luck!

Thursday, February 2, 2023

Playground Duty

Kids on Mackinac are tough. So when we head outdoors for recess on a day where, after factoring in the windchill, it felt like it was five degrees (- 15 C), it's no big deal. The kids had a blast and I was toasty warm inside my Lands' End parka.

Thursday, January 26, 2023

Meals on Snowmobiles

Did you know that Mackinac Island has a Meals on Snowmobiles program? 

Our YAC (Youth Advisory Council) kids volunteer and deliver the meals after school on Tuesdays and Thursdays. It's a wonderful way for the kids to give back to a community that gives them so much support. Tonight's delivery included:

baked ziti, a garlic herb roll, veggies, Caesar salad, and cake a la mode.  My mom gets meals when she is here and really appreciates them. 

Sunday, January 15, 2023

Teen Night

Mackinac Island teenagers don't have a lot of options when it comes to "hanging out." To give the seventh through twelfth graders a hangout space, the Island community created "Teen Night." Each Saturday night during the winter, St. Anne's Catholic Church opens their meeting space for the kids to come together. The church basement has a pool table and an air hockey table, in addition to lots of room to just chill. The kids bring the music, the Mackinac Island Community Foundation provides the pizzas and pop, and parents organize baked goods and activities. It takes a village, right?

Recently I got the kids to participate in an epic Superfight battle. If you are not familiar with the game of Superfight, it's a hoot! Players draw cards to create a character who will battle another player's character. For example The Mario Brothers with the ability to turn all they touch to humus while carrying a magical protective blanket, might battle the Pope with a mustache that can stretch at will armed with holy hand grenades. (One student actually dew those cards!)

To battle the players argue about who would win and why. They argue like their lives depend on it, because the lives of their characters actually do. Once the yelling, I mean debate, dies down, the other players vote to determine the winner. The champion of that fight goes on to battle the next player, and so on, until the ultimate champion is crowned. The funniest moment of the evening was when our high school math teacher hit Darth Vader over the head with a very heavy Algebra II book. Sadly, she was not match for the Force...

Friday, January 6, 2023

Just Another Day

What happens when a student's
zipper no longer works? 
Mrs. Burt fixes it during recess of course.

Just one of the many benefits of keeping
a sewing machine at school.