Hey there my beautiful blog family! I’ve missed you! It feels like FOREVER since I last sat down to write (really it’s only be a couple days!) and I’m happy to be back.
I hope you all had super nice bosses that let you have Friday AND Monday off, and you’re all feeling refreshed, well rested, stupidly happy and slightly sunburnt. (All the signs of a perfect 4th of July weekend!)
I know that this morning, I was! However, I was also absolutely DRAGGING. Getting back into the swing of real life, after such a perfect weekend away is always SO hard for me!
If you know anything about me, you know that I love Fourth of July. It’s my second favorite holiday. I mean… any holiday that calls for parades, fireworks, bbqs, beach days and beer has my name written all over it! Plus, there is just something extra great about celebrating America because let’s be real… we’re pretty dang lucky to live in the Land of the Free. This year, Fourth of July looked a little different than “normal”, but it was a lot more like the Fourth of Julys I know and love from life before Covid.
Our weekend started out Friday when I got out of work. Because I closed, we decided that it wasn’t worth it to fight traffic all the way to Manistee on Friday night. I get out at prime rush hour time and it looked like it was going to be a 5 1/2 hour drive. We decided to go out to dinner and pack and then get up on Saturday super early and head North.
So Friday evening, we headed to dinner at a restaurant near our house called The Avenue. I got the BEST salad I’ve had in a really long time. Seriously. It was sooooo yummy! It was a Brussels sprouts salad with flash-fried Brussels, shredded romaine, bacon, gorgonzola, candied pecans, dried cranberries, crispy onions with a Maple Balsamic Vinaigrette. It was delicious and giant and I can’t wait to go eat it again!
After dinner we came home and packed. We cleaned up the house, made sure the fish feeder was working and packed up the car so all we had to do when we woke up was make coffee and hop in the car.
We left our house at 5 am on the dot Saturday morning and were in Manistee before breakfast! When we got there we drank more coffee, visited with my parents and got ourselves ready for the day.
We spent Saturday afternoon doing all the Forest Festival things. It was nice to have some of my favorite Forest Festival events back. However, this was a “Forest Festival Lite” so not everything I love was there. We started our afternoon at TJs for lunch, and then we went to North Channel Brewing for a beer before wandering around shopping for treasures at the downtown shops.
Next up we headed towards the beach to check out the events near the lake. I was SO EXCITED to get an elephant ear!
Later that evening we headed to my Grandma’s for our annual Fourth of July BBQ!
We finished out the night on the beach with a sunset! I was so sad because it was pretty hazy and the sun ended up disappearing. We totally got robbed for a pretty sunset… but at least we had a beautiful night to sit on the beach.
Saturday we slept in and then got ready to hit the river! We took our kayaks down the Big Manistee from Tippy Dam to High Bridge. It was about a 2 1/2 hour trip and it was the most beautiful morning on the river! It was really peaceful and the weather was perfect.
When we got home, it was lunch time. So we ordered Big Al’s! I planked my butt in the hammock while I ate and promptly fell asleep reading about 10 minutes later.
Sunday evening we headed to my mom’s BFFs house for a fireworks party! We had so much fun and had the best view of the fireworks! Oh. And the sunset was STUNNING.
After the fireworks we headed home to hang out with our Jacksy Cat. He’s not a fan of fireworks, and is always super afraid on Fourth of July. We all fell asleep on the couch 😂
Monday morning we woke up and our weekend in Manistee was over. I was so sad to leave, it went by WAY to quickly. We packed up and said our goodbyes then took one last beach ride and got our favorite Wesco donuts on the way out of town.
When we got home we did our grocery shopping and had every intention to clean up the house and unpack for the week. But we ended up doing yoga and reading instead. Which was a wayyyyy better choice to get ourselves in the right frame of mind for the week!
And today? We’re back to our normal routines. We’re snuggled in for the evening watching The Match on TNT.
How were your Fourth of July weekends?! Were they super different than normal? I hope that no matter what, you still found some time to smile, relax and enjoy time with those you love most!
Alright my loves, I’m signing off for the night. I’ll be back tomorrow!