Chill Michigan

July 29, 2013

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This was our third time (in the past 4 or 5 years) to be invited to spend time up at Liz’s family’s cabin in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan on Lake Superior. The familiarity of the drive from the teeny tiny airport to the cabin, the cabin itself, the fireplace, and of course the people, made this holiday feel less like an adventure and more like home away from home – in the best possible way. It’s the kind of vacation that calls for 3 hours of chilling out upon waking to enjoy a cup of coffee (which I did, even after being coffee-free for 6+ months) – possibly spiked with Bailey’s (Jeremy). You can easily spend an hour meditating upon waves crashing into a perfectly crooked dock.

Liz and I met, about 7 years ago, when she interned at the ad agency I worked at. She was hired on as a designer right out of school. It wasn’t best friendship at first sight. No, this friendship was more like a balsamic reduction – acidic, sweet, and built on a slow simmer. It’s one that has seen many phases and mid-20s milestones. One of the many things I love about spending an extended amount of time with Liz is that we daydream in the same language – a language that includes texture and subtleties that only she seems to understand (and often translate when I don’t know exactly what I’m saying) – the kinds of reliable insights that often elicit the response “EXACTLY.” We also have enough history and inside jokes to properly reminisce. “Remember that time you sent me a copy of your divorce decree in an InDesign file across our company network so I could DIY my own too-young-starter-marriage divorce?” and “Remember that time in oh-nine when you got so beat up from slip-n-sliding in the park that your parents thought you were in an abusive relationship?” But we’re not just about relishing (or rehashing) the past. We’re all about moving forward. Big and little dreaming to design the kinds of lives we want to live.

But enough of my public love note to a very special friendship – and back to the cabin on chilly Lake Superior. Here are some of the highlights from this trip:
+ The Einstein Bros. bagel(s) I devoured in the Detroit airport – both on the way there and back.
+ S’mores. Fact: I didn’t have my first s’more until I was 15! And in the past few years it’s a treat I’ve only enjoyed while up at the cabin.
+ Gluten, cheese, sugar, and coffee. Yup. There was some serious nutritional off-roading happening here but it’s truly worth it for cabin cooking (and baking).
+ Sleeping with the windows open, under a full moon, to the sound of the lake lulling me to sleep.
+ Tackling a crossword puzzle (or five) with Jeremy and Liz.
+ Jeremy naming Liz the godmother to our bebe. I’m woo-woo, Jeremy is atheist, and Liz was raised Catholic so it’s the closest our babe will get to a legit godmother. Basically, we think it means she’ll give our kid it’s first drink. Either way, I thought it was a really sweet gesture.
+  Hanging out on the beach with Megan and Mike (of The Fresh Exchange and Wild Measure). Megan became my soul sister when we roomed together in Palm Springs last year – and then I got to meet Mike when we all shared a condo together at Alt Summit in January. I loved getting to introduce some of my favorite people to my other favorite people.
+ Jeremy and I practicing birthing techniques in Lake Michigan (okay, actually he was helping me pee.)
+ Making tasty homemade pasta!
+ Biking around Mackinac Island.
+ Making veggie lasagna for Liz’s mom and dad.
+ Watching the beach bon fire and a distant storm, under a full moon.
+ Speculating on spirit animals all week.
+ Riding on a ski jet with Jeremy (I felt like Lara Croft and P. Diddy).
+ Liz’s mom’s homemade cookies.
+ A Kanye soundtracked road trip.
+ A wild variety of weather. One day we were in bikinis – the next we were in sweaters and down jackets.
+ Swimming in Lake Michigan (Lake Superior without being able to sauna first was just a little too chilly for me).

You can see more from the trip on my Instagram hereand if you need more Liz visit her blog here.

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