Most of our group got up very bright and early on Thursday morning. They took two charter boats out to go salmon & trout fishing. Kaia & I slept in & then I did some of our sandy, icky laundry!
We were fortunate enough to stay some of the time with some new friends, Mike & Dorothy. Mike took Kaia & I to meet the fishermen as their boat came in.
Here are both crews and their combined catch of the day.
Dorothy is an artist. Her house is filled with her beautiful paintings. Her gardens are so gorgeous that even though it was extremely hot, I had to get out there and take some photos.
We had a lunch of grilled fresh salmon & trout along with roasted new potatoes. For dessert we had two kinds of homemade pie. Yum. I think it was the best meal of the whole trip! After we ate though, we had to pack up & head back down to Ludington.
We went out for supper & then walked down to the harbor. We tried a couple of times to get ice-cream but both times we walked by the shop the line was out the door. We found another less busy place that was very good & then headed to our hotel. That's when things got interesting. I booked our hotel on Priceline and somehow things got messed up. They had reserved a room with 1 king bed and a jacuzzi tub right in the room! Uh-oh, that doesn't quite work for 3 adults & 3 kids!! Unfortunately all the rooms were booked so there was nothing we could do. Luckily we had our camping gear & some were able to sleep fairly comfortably with camping mats & sleeping bags!
I must have been tired on the 4th, because these are the only photos I've got! We had breakfast over the campfire & then slowly started packing up. We dumped off our camping gear and then headed to another lake. I can't even remember the name of that one. We had kayaks, a paddle boat & a wave runner at our disposal. We enjoyed those toys until it was time for supper & then got cleaned up and went to a gospel meeting. Some friends of Kendra's (from North Dakota) met us there and followed us back to where we were staying. We got through Traverse City for the most part & then stopped along the lake to watch fireworks. When we noticed the kids were playing with their glow sticks more than watching the fireworks we loaded back up and called it a night!
Tuesday was a big day spent by the big water. We went to Sleeping Bear Dunes to hike and check out the views.
I took this photo to give you an idea of how far down the hike is to the water. The tiny specks in the surf are people. We didn't go down right here, because we don't think Kaia could have made it back up.
We got in the vehicle and drove to a different location with an easier hike for Kaia. We had a picnic lunch there & then hiked through the woods to the dunes. The big dune way off in the distance is the one we went to first.
Even with the easier hike I couldn't get Kaia to walk down the dunes. Her butt trail cracked me up!
Once we got down we walked way down the coast to where we had left a vehicle parked.
Then we drove to a beach and spent the rest of the day swimming, lounging & burying each other in sand. We camped that night & I did not take one photo of our beautiful campsite!!! My only excuse is that we didn't make camp until close to 8 and then were busy making and eating supper. I saw a few photo ops, but was always busy at the time & then I just sort of forgot about my camera. Oh well, this post is long enough!
Sunday was a nice day of fellowship. After our morning service we had a potluck lunch. After our afternoon service we headed to a park with several other families, picking up pizza on the way.
Kaia found a cute puppy to pet.
Auntie Jenny & Kendra made sure the kids got at least a little bit wet!
Ayla made some new friends very quickly. Brooke is 9 and Mckenna is 8. They asked for our address, so I'm hoping this is the beginning of a new friendship for them all!
That evening we went for a long walk with Brooke & Mckenna's family on their land. One awesome thing about Michigan at this time of year is that it doesn't even begin to get dark until after 10. We were walking home after 10 and we could still see just fine. As you can imagine that made for some very late nights!
We enjoyed breakfast in our hotel, a morning swim, a yummy coffee shop in Manitowoc and a tour of this submarine before catching our 2:00 ferry. The sub tour was very entertaining for all. I can't imagine a worse job. I could barely breathe by the end of the tour. I can not imagine being crammed in there with 80+ men. Let alone operating it in hot humid conditions. The average temp. was 90 with some areas of the sub. around 130 degrees! Think of that the next time you see an old service man in a parade!
Relaxing on the S.S. Badger. This is not the cheapest way to go, but it was very relaxing & fun for all.
At the end of the day we met up with Auntie Jenny. She had made a gluten free fruit pizza in honor of Craig's 40th. The 40 was made out of dark chocolate which he was nice enough to share with us all!