Sunday, July 31, 2011

Michigan Vacation Part 2

I realized that I need to do my Michigan trip posts quickly before I forget all the fun things we did.  Saturday morning after leaving Valerie's and several stops along the way, Shawnee, James and I made it to the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.  Before I get any further, can I just tell you all that it is absolutely BEAUTIFUL up there!  I wouldn't mind having a summer home there.

This was the view we had from the living room window:

It doesn't seem like we really did too much on that Saturday afternoon.  We had pizza for dinner as the Dill Family Tradition states we must do the first night of a vacation.  Then we just kind of walked around and explored the great town of St. Ignace.  It truly is an awesome little city!

James, Shawnee and Grandpa on our walk down into town:

Brayden at the pier:

Dad & Grandpa waiting for the fireworks:

The gorgeous sunset:

Nola, Jenna, Shawnee and Grandpa...I'm guessing Nola didn't know this one was the "silly face picture"

Oh and that night the moon looked so cool...It was so big and red-orange.  It was awesome.  I tried getting a picture of it, but this was the best I got:

Every Saturday night in the summer, St. Ignace does a fireworks show.  It was a pretty awesome show, but no pictures.  It took forever for it to get dark enough and then it seemed that they may have been having some technical difficulties, but it was worth the wait.  It was fun!  By the time we got back to the house from the fireworks show, Karri, Jared, Darcy and Logan had made it up to the house.  It was so good to see them and everyone else that made it on the trip!  This trip was really the first time that I have been able to get to know Jared and first time to really be able to play with Jenna and Darcy...both who are just too adorable.



 Sunday was a pretty good relaxing day.  We went for a few walks and walked through downtown.  I don't think we did anything too exciting.  That night was played games and really just hung out together, which are some of my most favorite times.  Josh also came on Sunday night so it was good to see him and be able to spend the rest of the week together especially after he had been gone to Houston for a week.

Just thought I'd throw this picture in.  Logan seemed to do a lot of this.  I don't know how he could sleep as long as he did:

That's all for now... Part 3 Coming Soon to a Computer Screen near YOU!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Michigan Vacation Part 1

We recently spent a little over a week in Michigan with friends and family.  We had such a blast!  I'm not sure how many parts I am going to have to do to cover the whole if you get bored, just stop reading :)  I came home with about 1500 pictures on my SD card.  So there are lots of pictures to go with all the fun we had.

It all began on Thursday night.  I headed up to Detroit straight from work.  I stayed with my bestest friend ever, Valerie :)  We went to see Harry Potter opening night at midnight!  We got there early and were surprised that tickets weren't sold out yet and hardly anyone was there!  We watched Part 1 at the theater first, maybe that had something to do with it.  But by the time the show finally started, the place was packed.  It was such a good movie, but I'm a little sad there is no more Harry Potter :(  It's all over!!  That just seems totally wrong.  Anyways...We watched it in 3D with special Harry Potter 3D glasses :)

After my last midnight showing, I swore I'd never do one again!  But how can you say no to Harry Potter???  Luckily, this time around wasn't so bad.  I'm not sure what it was, because I didn't really sleep in that late but I was fine.

The next day, I just kinda of lounged around with Valerie and her kids.  We ended up exploring Detroit a little.  Don't worry we didn't get into the heart of Detroit, but we did see what had to be a drug deal!  It happened right in front of us as we were stopped at a red light.  Two guys came from opposite sides of the street, stopped in the middle for a few seconds.  Guy #1 handed guy #2 some cash while guy #2 handed guy #1 something in exchange and then they both went their separate ways.  It was soooo strange.  We couldn't believe it.

Shortly after the drug deal, we made our way to the park and got out to explore it a little.  It was such a cool park with the potential to be an AWESOME park.  It was right on the lake.  I never realized that Canada was SO close!

This would be the great downtown Detroit:

Valerie and her kids with both Canada and Detroit behind them:

We even played in the water for a little while:

Anyone know what this type of boat is called?  I can't think of it and it's been bothering me ever since we saw it.  It was HUGE!!!

That night I picked up Shawnee and James from the airport.  It was so good to see them.  We all stayed the night at Valerie's.  She made us all pancakes and eggs for breakfast!  Thank you Valerie!  You are an awesome hostess :)  And we had to get one group picture before I left:
It was so good to see Valerie and her family!  Josh and I both miss them all terribly!  Thank you for letting me crash your house for a few fun days!  Hope to see you all soon!

After leaving Valerie's...Shawnee, James and I headed up north...way north:)  And that will continue on part 2...

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Independence Day 2011

We had such a great 4th of July!  Josh and I decided to go to one of our favorite places in Ohio...Amish country!  We have been down there several times; yet every time we go, it's a completely different experience and this time was no different.  We decided that we wanted to go on a tour and learn more about the Amish.  It was really good; I feel like I understand them a lot more and found it interesting that some of their believes are very similar to my own.  It was just a great time.   

Our tour included two houses, a barn and a school.  Neither the houses nor the school are used today except for the tours.  It was just so interesting to learn about their believes and lifestyles.  This community is actually the largest Amish community in the world!  There are about 80,000 (I think that's the right number) in the area. 

Believe it or not, some of the Amish still cook on stoves similar to this one:

The grounds there are so well taken care of.  It's just beautiful.

One of the houses was built back in 1866 by the man who first settled in the area and it still in pretty good condition.

They had TONS of animals there: Cats, dogs, ducks, horses, mules, pigs, etc, etc...I'm not really into cats but this kitten was just too cute and I loved this picture:

Like I said, this part of the country is just absolutely beautiful!

Our tour also included a ride on one of these...

For some odd reason, I have also wanted to have a buggy ride.  Now the buggy ride was nothing extravagant, just a loop around this little circle trail, but I still enjoyed it :)  The Amish guy that drove us around, even took our picture for us:

After the tour, we went to a few other shops and stores.  We were a little disappointed that quite a few shops were closed for the holiday, but we still had a good time in the stores we did go to. 

This was inside a store called Wendell August.  You may have heard of them before, they aren't really Amish, but have AMAZING metal engravings.  In fact, I almost bought this tree topper for $50!!!  It's a good thing I was able to talk myself out of it.  I still may buy it; but I'm gonna have to save up for a little bit.  The store was amazing though!  Inside the store, and probably the only Amish thing in the whole store, was this buggy.  This is actually the largest buggy in the world.  I wish I could remember the dimensions of it, but I don't.  It was HUGE though.

That night, I dragged Josh along with me to go see fireworks.  We really didn't want to get into the big crowd so we park about a mile away and then walked a few blocks down to watch.  It was still an amazing show.  However, not a great spot for taking pictures as you will see the big telephone pole in the middle of the pictures :)  Oh well....we were able to get home before most people were probably able to get to their cars...well worth it to me this year.

Happy Independence Day!

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Christmas in July

Yesterday, Josh and I went with some friends to the house where "The Christmas Story" movie was filmed. It was a lot of fun and we learned lots of great little facts about the movie. This house was actually only used to film the outside scenes and scenes that occurred inside the house were done off set because of the large equipment.

This car was used in the movie, but was not used as the family's car....It was just casted as an "extra."

The leg lamp...

Street view of the house with the lamp in the window.

Once we were inside the house, they let us play and touch anything in the house.  It was really neat.  All of the important, untouchables were in the museum across the street.  I got the BB Gun for Christmas and Josh got a bowling ball :)

We went with some friends so we actually got pictures of us together!  So nice :)

It was really neat and fun to go to.  I love this movie!  It made me want to watch the movie again soon.  We are so happy that we were able to go and cross it off on our list of things to do in Cleveland.