Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Our newest little bundle of joy...

So when I last left you, I told you I was going to introduce our newest addition!  Leah, our daughter was born back in April.  And here she is!
We have had here around for 3 months now, and it has been a change in the house.  I can honestly tell you we were spoiled by our first child.  Eli was much easier that Leah has been.  But now we do get to sleep through the night, so that is good.
She is getting along great with the dog.  As you can see, and Eli is loving being a big brother.  He likes to give us "play-by-play" of what she is doing.  We will be driving down the road, and here Eli say, "Leah is asleep", or "Leah is sucking her thumb."

But he loves to love on her.  He wants to help.  He likes to get stuff for her.  He even throws diapers away...as long is they are just wet.

All in all, we could not be happier as a family.  We are truly blessed to have our little boy, and our baby girl!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

A weekend getaway...part two

So when I last left you, I was standing on the breaker wall in Holland Michigan, enjoying the view, when from the water below I hear, "HELP".  Wow, that almost sounded like the first line of a really good novel.  Anyway.  As we look down there is a man getting pulled out into the lake by a rip current.  He had a kickboard, but you could tell he was not a great swimmer, and was not in the best of shape!  I stood there not knowing what to do.  All the sudden some younger guys grabbed a life ring off the fence along the breaker wall, and threw it to the man.  Meanwhile some other guys were swimming to him to help.  It was a stressful few minutes.  Next thing we know there were three or four more people being pulled out.  A crowd had formed on the wall.  Everyone was watching and helping.

I see another guy being pulled out, and he starts to yell.  There was one more life ring mounted on the rail beside me.  A lady looks at me, and says here, throw this.  I make my way down the rocks to the edge of the water.  She is following me.  I assume she is holding the rope as I prepare to throw the life ring.  I send it sailing out into the water, and as I see it splash, I see the end of the rope following it out into the water.  Well, that is not going to do a lot of good.  By the time I had done this, someone had swam to them, and helped the rest of the people out.  There were no lifegaurds on the beach.  As we are walking back to the beach, we look and see signs clearly posted that say "No Swimming Area - Rip Currents in this Area"  Shouldn't that be your first clue NO TO SWIM THERE?

After that excitement we went back to the hotel to chill out for a little while.  We got cleaned up and headed to the "Downtown" area.  Lots of shops, stores, and resturants.  We stuck around for a while.  Not much for me.  A lot of the stores were the same you would find in a mall.  So after a little walking we decided to head back to the room before dinner. 

When we got back I thought I would find a nice place to eat dinner.  We settled on "The Piper."  We had driven by it earlier while we were checking out the super expensive houses along the bay.  It was located next to the yacht club.  Yes, we were high society.

Like the look of it, it was VERY expensive.  And like I have found at more expensive resturants...the food is not as good as you get at some "cheaper" places.   But it was right on the bay, and very romantic.  Our favorite part was hearing a couple next to us talking about how they were trying to decide whether to build on to their mansion, or buy a bigger yacht...decisions decisions.

After dinner it was out for a night on the town.  Come to find out, they roll up the streets of Holland around 9pm. 

We did have an alright time in Holland.  I think we enjoyed our stops in South Haven and St. Joseph on the way home a little more.  Our next stop up Michigan's West Coast would be Muskegon, but we are thinking about another weekend in South Haven first.

It was nice to have a weekend OUT of headphones.

The next post, you will finally get to meet our newest addition, Leah.  That coming soon!  I promise!

Monday, July 9, 2012

A weekend getaway...part one.

One of our favorite places to visit is Michigan's west coast. Several years ago we stumbled across St. Joseph Michigan, and fell in love with the lighthouse there, and the shops, the beach, and the whole atmosphere of the area.  So over the past 8 years or so, we have been to St. Joe a few times. 

 A couple of years ago we decided to start working our way up the coast. Next lighthouse was South Haven. Another beautiful beach town with shops, restaurants and more right by the beach. We feel in love South Haven too.  The Lighthouse was beautiful, and the shops and restaurants had that small beach town feel.

So when Sarah said she wanted to get away for an early birthday present, I thought, why not go to the next lighthouse.  I did a quick search, and found that Holland would be our next stop.  When I was doing the research, I found out that "Big Red" was the most photographed lighthouse in Michigan.  It was beautiful and picturesque.  Then I was reading about things to do it Holland.  Websites spoke of their quaint downtown with shops.  I started thinking, "Sweet, we are going to love it!"  We reserve a room at a cheap hotel.  I mean, we only sleep there...we don't need anything fancy.  We pack up the car, drop the kids off at the in-laws, and we are north bound. 

We are making great time up 31 out of Kokomo.  We are in Lapaz, just south of South Bend.  All the sudden a state trooper pulls up beside our car, with lights and sirens.  I look over to see him pointing at me.  I pull to the side of the road, and he continues on.  OK...that was weird.  About a half mile up the road, I see the same trooper in the left turn lane behind a car.  He jumps out of "The Cruiser" and starts pointing at me.  I have never seen an officer do that.  So I pull over behind him, and he tells me to follow him.  We pull into an empty lot.  He comes back and tells me I was speeding.  I tell him, sorry, I am from out of town, and was just going with the flow of traffic.  He says, yeah, you were, but I picked you out.  WHAT?  Did I look like I might be muling drugs up to Detroit?  Why pick me out.  So he goes back to "The Cruiser" and we are waiting.  He comes back and tells us we are only going to get a warning for the speed, but...But WHAT?  He informs me that the back of the vehicle registration is not signed.  OK...is that a problem.  I guess it is, because we GOT A TICKET FOR IT!  Really?  It is early in the month, are you trying to reach your quota for the month in the first week?  So we have to find out how much that is going to cost.  Great way to start the trip.

So after the stop we continue on our way up the coast.  We drive through the two cities I mentioned before.  It was a beautiful as we remembered.  Back to the interstate to make it up to Holland.

We get into town, and realize it is bigger than the other towns we had stopped in.  We drive to the lighthouse, only to discover if you want to get close, you have to be one of the select few in the "vacation rentals" near the coast.  So we drive all the way around the bay.  When we get there, there is a line of people to get to the beach in the state park.  $8 gets up in to find barely a parking spot to be found.  We do walk down to the shore, and wade in a little.  The water was beautiful.  And we did get to stare at the lighthouse for a while. 

We start walking down the breaker wall, and all the sudden we hear a man shouting for help.  A riptide was pulling him out along the breaker wall. 

I guess you will have to tune into part two for the rest of the story.