stay frosty

frosty morning

We woke up to freezing temps here this morning and there was definitely frost on the ground during our morning walk with Melody. I had to stop and appreciate the little ice crystals that had formed on each individual blade of grass and the fallen leaves in the yard. After having such a fantastic, pleasant fall, the seasons are soon to change once more…

by Valerie | 11.09.15 | For Funsies | No Comments »

Weekend Getaway and All Hallows’ Eve

Up North - October 2015We spent a really fun weekend in northern Michigan; we saw some beautiful sites and were pleased to see there was still plenty of amazing fall color. We visited Kilcherman’s Christmas Cove Farm, where they not only have an impressive selection of antique apple varieties, but they also have one of the largest pop bottle collections on display; we chatted with one of the owners, who was so kind and friendly – she said her husband had gotten into growing antique apples because he used to play baseball in the orchards. When I asked her what her favorite apple was, she explained that they didn’t have it anymore as the tree had died after the hard winter they had, but we did take home her second favorite apple and a selection of a few others too. Kilcherman's Christmas Cove Farm

Kilcherman's Christmas Cove FarmWe also stopped by the Gwen Frostic studio; such a charming little place and what beautiful paper products filled with images of flora and fauna! It was almost too perfect, as we were checking out a little chipmunk darted across the shop floor – to which the staff happily commented, “He lives here, he’s getting ready for the winter.” Before we left, we also made it to the Grand Traverse Lighthouse, Pierce Stocking Scenic Drive in Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, some beautiful hiking trails, Fishtown, and no trip to the area is complete without a stop for pasties and apple dumplings at Mr. Foisies

Up North - October 2015Up North - October 2015Fish TownUp North - October 2015Melody was happy to join us on our adventure too. And we enjoyed celebrating Halloween and making DIY masks during our weekend getaway as well. Up North - October 2015DIY Halloween masks

You can view more photos from our weekend here.

by Valerie | 11.02.15 | For Funsies, Holidaze, Princess Puppy Pants, Travel | No Comments »

“I’m so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers.” ― L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables

fall y'all

Apples, mums, pumpkins and gourds, oh my! Continuing to watch the leaves change and the weather turn cooler with each passing day. Fall is a glorious, glorious thing here in Michigan – just take a look at thisfall at the Produce Station

fall at the Produce Station

fall y'all

by Valerie | 10.12.15 | Around town, For Funsies, Princess Puppy Pants | No Comments »

suddenly, it’s October


Suddenly, it’s October; it seems as though it snuck up on me somehow. Ryan did an artist talk at Savannah College of Art & Design this week and our friend, Lisa Waud, is doing this amazing project and was featured on Martha Stewart…hey, I know them! In other news, the fall weather is still really beautiful here and there’s definitely that cool, crisp, fall nip in the air; I’m just itching to turn on our fireplace for the first time this season and I might just have to do that over the weekend. I’m loving Oktoberfest this time of the year (Wolverine and Great Lakes make a good one!) and the amazing selection of antique apples here in Michigan too – we picked up an assorted bag of them at a local grocery store the other day. Finally, I wish you all a very happy college football weekend…unless you’re routing for Baylor, in which case I really hope you lose (go Red Raiders, wreck ’em Tech)! fall leaves

by Valerie | 10.02.15 | Around town, For Funsies, Travel | No Comments »

fall y’all

fall y'all

If there was ever any doubt, it’s clear now – fall is here… Leaves are starting to collect in our yard (going to have to break down and start raking soon). It’s shifted into that perfect weather; highs in the 70’s during the day, lows in the 50’s at night, windows open and crisp, fall air filling the house. And we made our first pot of chili last night, yum! fall y'all

On another note, one of our neighbors has planted a variety of dahlias in their front yard and it’s so nice to see them all bloom en masse – the different colors, heights, and petal variations are beautiful. This one, catching the late afternoon sunlight, was just too perfect not to share…


by Valerie | 09.21.15 | For Funsies | No Comments »

labor day weekend

early September sky

I don’t know about you, but I feel like I need more holiday time after my holiday weekend… We had a very productive Labor Day weekend: cleaned out our garage, moved a very heavy, solid wood, vintage typewriter desk up the basement stairs (the same one the former owner left for us because it was too heavy and too big to move up the stairs – now I know why…) and then back down the stairs again (because even after we removed the door from the frame it still wouldn’t fit through), then disassembled the desk, moved it back up the stairs once more and got it outside where we reassembled it and placed in on our curb with a “free” sign – luckily, less then 24 hours later, someone picked it up. We also managed to move all our basement items, which had a temporary home in our guestroom, back downstairs and reorganize our basement and that resulted in half our office filling up with piles of things to donate; it feels really good to clean up and clean out and start to prepare for fall. Now if we can just find time to tackle the growing list of projects we still have left… We enjoyed watching Texas Tech win on Saturday, several longs walks in the sun with Melody, Ryan managed to squeeze in a couple bike rides, fried green tomatoes with house-made hot sauce and dinner at Zingerman’s Roadhouse followed by a movie at the theater, really tasty pancakes on Sunday morning at home, and we found some fun stuff at a few estate sales as well. Melody took advantage of football Saturday by taking a nice long nap too. Go Red Raiders!

Zingermans fried green tomatoes with house made hot sauce makes me ridiculously happysleepy pup

by Valerie | 09.08.15 | Around our home, For Funsies, Holidaze, Princess Puppy Pants | No Comments »

signs of fall

signs of fall

Although it’s still in the high 80’s here, there are definitely signs of fall…leaves changing, college football, and shorter daylight hours. Fall is my favorite season and I welcome its arrival!

“Autumn…the year’s last, loveliest smile.” – William Cullen Bryant

by Valerie | 09.04.15 | For Funsies | No Comments »

weekend haps

Leaves as big as yo face!

“Leaves as big as yo face!”, some lovely flowers from Pot & Box (see photo below), daylight savings time, Target is partnering with Faribault Woolen Mill, and it really did snow here on Halloween…

I’m already planning for the upcoming Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays; doing my best to get a head start on Christmas gift shopping and thinking about what we might do to entertain family visiting over Thanksgiving. I have quite a few Halloween and Christmas movies, but not so many Thanksgiving holiday movies as they seem harder to come by. Any suggestions on some good Thanksgiving films?


by Valerie | 11.03.14 | For Funsies, Holidaze | 2 Comments »

All About That (Upright) Bass

Fall afternoon walk in my neighborhood

We’re still enjoying a glorious fall here; neighborhood walks are truly a thing of beauty! And now for some fun, random internet things that made me smile…

And the sunrise this morning…


by Valerie | 10.27.14 | For Funsies | No Comments »

So nice to be up North…

Up North - October 2014

We spent a fantastic, long weekend up in northwest Michigan in the Traverse City area. I honestly don’t think I can come up with the appropriate words to really describe how breathtakingly beautiful it was up there (especially with the fall color on display)! As you may already be aware, fall is my favorite season – so this weekend I was in my happy place…seeing the fall views all around me (so much color!), wearing sweaters and scarves, enjoying a warm fire (don’t forget the s’mores -we had those too), stopping at an apple orchard (more on that below), etc. I was like a kid in a candy store and it was great! Why can’t I stop using exclamation points…yep, fall does this to me, I can’t contain my excitement!!!

We spent some time hiking around where we stayed (Lake Ann, MI) and also enjoyed a hike in Sleeping Bear Dunes, we drove around and stopped in Leland, visited the L. Mawby and Big Little tasting rooms, made it out to the Grand Traverse Lighthouse, and did a bit of shopping and dinner in Traverse City too. The lakeshore colors are stunning and it was beautiful watching the waves crash along the shoreline.

We are lucky, here in Michigan, as there seems to be no shortage of apple orchards to visit and enjoy this time of year. I had the pleasure of visiting an orchard that was like none other I’ve been to before; one of the highlights for us was stumbling upon Kilcherman’s Christmas Cove Farm where they grow and sell antique apple varieties. I was fascinated at how many varieties of apples they had available – most of which I’d never heard of or seen before. We picked up 3 small containers to take home of Sheepnose, Spitzenburg (supposedly Thomas Jefferson’s favorite), and Ashmead’s Kernel apples; we ate Almata (these are pink on the inside) and Macoun apples on the spot, before we got back to the car. They also ship gift boxes and the woman who rang us up was the owner’s granddaughter – so charming and such an interesting stop along our way.

You can view more photos from our trip here.

Kilcherman's Christmas Cove Farm

Up North - October 2014

Up North - October 2014

Up North - October 2014

Up North - October 2014

Up North - October 2014

by Valerie | 10.20.14 | For Funsies, Travel | 1 Comment »

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