Thursday, May 25, 2017

Greetings From Florida

 

 

 

 

 

This post is coming to you from Florida and I couldn't be happier. Of course, I miss Michigan, my daughters, all my friends and everything familiar and I will always be a Midwestern girl at heart, but there is something about Florida that is stealing my heart too.

We have been busy, but have made time for some fun too. We tried the dog beach and my puppy hated it with a burning passion, but will try again when the surf is a little calmer. We have enjoyed lunch sitting outside as much as possible and in spite of the heat, with shade and ceiling fans going, it really quite comfortable. Today we went to a beachside restaurant and with a strong gulf wind blowing and the waves crashing, it was really a wonderful and relaxing way to spend the afternoon.

Yesterday was spent furniture shopping and we found some great things. We will have a neutral base with added color; turquoise, greens and blues. It was a bold choice for this northern girl, but my kitchen bar stools are a pretty blue-green shade and I love everything about them in my all white kitchen. We close on Friday and new furniture deliveries start coming that same day. Unfortunately, the moving compsny gave us a delivery date later than we hoped and since we need to move out of our rental, we will be camping out in the new house one or two nights. We could move into a hotel, but frankly, just want to be finally at home. Luckily, a new king size bed is one of the things we purchased here.

I'll keep you posted when I can.

 

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Life Lately

 

 

 

Mother's Day was just lovely. I very much missed Megan, but got a sweet phone call and it was enough for now, to hear her voice across the miles. Melissa and my husband went out of their way to make me feel special with gifts and a delicious brunch in one of my favorite metro Detroit cities, Birmingham. My Bloody Mary was perfect (not too spicy) and on the buffet was the most delicious apple, blueberry baked French Toast, served with whipped cream. After brunch, Melissa and I had pedicures and I loved spending precious time with her.

 

 

Our sweet friends that we will miss dearly, hosted a going away party for us on Saturday night and it was just perfect. So many people we love were there and the hosts went out of their way with incredible food and decor. They served two of my favorite desserts, with both cheesecake and key lime pie on the pretty dessert table. It was so hard to say goodbye, but we know the distance will not matter in the least.

 

 

This is the latest photo of my new kitchen in Florida and as you can see everything is pretty much ready to go. We will be driving there at the end of the week and doing a walk through on Monday. My next post will be from sunny Florida! (Are you following me on Instagram? I will try to post a bit as we travel to Florida.)

Finally, we are very much in the midst of wedding planning and the texts, emails and phone calls are coming fast and furious between Megan in Pittsburgh, the wedding location and her fiance's parents in Grand Rapids and my husband and I here. We have a date, a venue, the priest that Megan grew up with and is so special to us and we are working on finalizing the church. We are all so excited and I love all Megan and Adam's choices so far.

Happy Wednesday!

 

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Some Favorites

 

 

As I reside in this in between time, there is really not a lot that I need to do, besides a few errands here and there. I am basically recharging after the busyness of moving out of our house and reserving my energy for the Florida move in. I have been catching up on favorite television shows, discovering new shows and reading some good books. Here are a few of my favorites.

 

Home Fires (PBS)

Unfortunately this is the final season, but I highly recommend this quiet little show about life in a small English village during World War II.

 

Call The Midwife (PBS)

This is another great season of this touching series that in my opinion, keeps getting better every year. They are now deep in the 1960's and the cultural references are so interesting.

 

Southern Charm (Bravo)

I definitely have Real Housewife fatigue and only watch a couple of the shows anymore, but I do love Southern Charm and its peek into the Charleston social scene.

 

Beauty and The Beast

I was pleased to finally see this movie and actually be pretty happy with how it was adapted. Was it only me or were others (Downton Abbey fans) wishing we could see more of Dan Steven's handsome face :-)

 

The Second Mrs Hockaday

I stumbled across this Civil War historical novel on Amazon and it became one of my favorites this year. It is written in a series of letters and it's one where you know something bad happened, but don't discover until the end what that is. I found it to be a real page turner.

Happy Wednesday!

 

Friday, May 5, 2017

Fashion Friday - Finds for Florida

 

 

My wardrobe right now consists of one half winter clothes like wool skirts, boots and dark colors. I am positive that will change one I get used to living in Florida. I will end up keeping a few things for when we travel back to Michigan in the winter for the holidays, but the majority of my closet will change to sundresses, sandals and bright, fun colors. The goal will be to be as cool as possible on those hot, muggy days and I love throwing on a sundress and some cute sandals or flip flops. To me, it's comfortable and and easy to put together a polished look. I think that the Lilly Pulitizer store will become my favorite spot.

Here are some Florida finds I have been saving to my favorites list.

 

Barbara Gerwit

 

Barbara Gerwit

 

Nordstrom

 

Tory Burch - Nordstrom

 

Lilly Pulitzer

 

Lilly Pulitizer

 

Cover Up - Modcloth

 

J Crew

 

Lilly Pulitizer

 

Kendra Scott - Nordstrom

 

Have a wonderful weekend!

 

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

In Between

 

 

 

It is a very strange time in my life right now. I am in between two things and I feel unsettled to say the least. We are living in a small rental condo and while it is very nice and even has private outdoor space (and a blooming lilac tree), it feels temporary and it isn't home. I am counting the days until we get to Florida and finally move into our new house, but am also dreading saying goodbye to everything here. I know everything will be fine in the end, but getting there is bringing up emotions I would like to get past.

This is the time of year when I would be thinking about planting flowers at the end of the month and watching my established flower gardens coming alive after the long winter. But, in this in between time, there is no need to wander the aisles of my neighborhood greenhouse and I will miss that. The bright side of my Florida house and gardening there is that I will be able to have year round flowers; not just in the summer and many new more tropical varieties to try.

These last few weeks will be busy with final arrangements, appointments and goodbye dinners and even a party. There is a lot to keep me busy and I'm concentrating on moving forward rather than looking back. The beach and a new life is so close. Yet, it feels so far when you are waiting.

Happy Tuesday!

 

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Another Goodbye

 

 

 

 

It seems to be a parade of goodbyes lately and it hasn't been easy at all. My neighborhood Bunco group met on Friday and since it was my last time, they were so thoughtful and sweet to commemorate the occasion with cake and a lovely gift.

I have been in this group for 21 years. That is a lot of rolls of those dice. Members have come and gone over the years and I still haven't wrapped my mind around the fact that now I am the one that is leaving. I had to drive there, rather than walk down the street. And, I had to pass by my old house which is also strange.

The memories come fast when I am with these women. There are memories of playgroups, carpools and many days outside chatting while our children played in each other's driveways. Memories of birthday parties, backyard barbecues and 4th of July Fireworks in the street. And, memories of a group of neighbors that were always there for each other. Goodbye Glengrove Drive - I'll miss you.

Happy Tuesday!

 

Friday, April 21, 2017

A Born To Run Book Club

 

 

 

 

 

This was a book club all about Bruce and it was such a fun night. One of our members is a huge Bruce Springsteen fan and she really wanted us to read his autobiography, Born To Run. And, she went all out on bringing the rock and roll atmosphere to us, with all the Bruce Springsteen memorabilia she has collected over the years. She showed us her favorite album covers, concert t shirts and precious photos of concert memories. She really is the cutest when she talks about her love for Bruce. We discussed the book with a concert playing in the background and we all agreed it was an interesting and well written story and we enjoyed learning about his life.

I must mention our wonderful dinner, pre book discussion. Our hostess served lemon chicken, a salad with kale, cabbage and cranberries, fresh asparagus and a wild rice dish with brussel sprouts, sliced almonds and Gouda cheese that was absolutely delicious.

And, to top off the evening, there was a surprise for me. I will be going to one more book club, but my wonderful friends surprised me with a going away gift and my favorite dessert. While enjoying strawberry topped cheesecake, I opened their lovely gift that I will always treasure. They gave me a Pandora bracelet with a state of Michigan charm, as well as an additional book charm to symbolize our years together at book club. A few tears were shed and lovely words were shared about how they will miss me. I really hate goodbyes, but we all agreed that a yearly book club get together in Florida is going to happen.

Have a wonderful weekend!

 

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Good Friday Tradition

 

 

 

 

 

It's going on ten years now that we have celebrated Good Friday together as a group and it is a day I look forward to all year. We mix together faith and fun as only Catholics can do and we come away stronger with a true sense of community.

At the Polish Yacht Club in Detroit, we sit at the same long table every year, surrounded by others who have the same tradition. We partake in the worst Bloody Mary's imaginable, trying to improve them with a lot of salt and pepper, but laughing at how bad they are is also a tradition. There are platters of perch, potato pancakes and pierogis, as well as a basket of Easter colored Jell-O shots passed around for dessert.

Over the years we have gone to other churches for the last hour of the Good Friday vigil, but the last few years we have gravitated to the beautiful Gesu, right in the heart of the vibrant University of Detroit - Mercy neighborhood. The service is moving and the music is wonderful and you leave with a sense of peace.

This year after church, we headed to the historic Dakota Inn for German beer and snacks. A few of us even stopped at another bar on the way back home to the suburbs, meeting one of our friends who was unable to miss work that day. The sun was shining, a beautiful Easter weekend beckoned and we were with good friends - why not extend the day?

Of the many things I will miss when we move, this lovely day of faith, friendship and tradition will be high on the list.

Happy Tuesday.

 

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Finally Moving Day

 

 

 

I suppose I should be sad and it definitely is bittersweet, but mostly I am relieved that this part of the process is over. We have been working towards this for at least a year and I've had more than enough time to mentally prepare myself. Though I loved my house, like any 20 plus year old home, it had its quirks, as well as a list of things that needed updating. I feel happy to be out from under that and starting fresh with everything brand new.

My daughters were sad, but they also had a long time to process things and I think we are all looking forward to making new memories in Florida. We have almost two months, before we leave Michigan and I plan to fit it many favorite things. Melissa is planning to visit us in Florida about a month after we move in and that will help make the goodbyes a little easier. And, we have a wedding to plan here in Michigan and I plan on being a part of that as much as possible. I won't be missing that wedding dress shopping day!

 

 

 

 

As I sat in my back yard for the last time today, on a beautiful spring day, I couldn't help but think that as hard as it was to think of what I would be leaving, I am going to something even better. The three pictures above are things that make me most excited; the view from the living room and lanai, the pool surrounded by palm trees and sunsets at the beach. It will be a lovely life indeed.

 

Happy Wednesday!

 

Friday, April 7, 2017

Moving On

 

 

The last box will be packed this morning, as I empty the last cabinet in my master bath. I am trying to process how I feel about leaving my house of 22 years and while I should be sad and nostalgic, I'm not yet feeling any of those emotions. It really has been a year long process for us and I think I have already mentally moved on. We have been diligently downsizing; selling, donating and throwing things out and generally making all kinds of hard decisions over the past few months and I am ready for it all to be over. My Florida house and lifestyle beckon and that pull is stronger than any attachment I have to a house.

I have been pinning on a board called "All Things Florida" just to get a feeling for what I want my Florida house to look like. I plan on taking things slow with decorating and finding just the right touches for every room. I'm looking for a coastal style without being too tropical or beachy, except possibly in the guest room. We will be buying quite a bit of new furniture and will be looking for neutrals and adding color with accessories. Below are some of the pins that caught my eye.

 

Pinterest

 

Pinterest

 

Pinterest

 

Pinterest

 

Pinterest

 

Pinterest

 

Pinterest

 

Pinterest

 

Pinterest

 

Pinterest

 

Have a wonderful weekend!

 

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Still Celebrating

 

 

 

 

 

We spent another weekend celebrating my daughter's engagement and it was loads of fun. We also enjoyed having everyone in the house for a final time, despite the fact that a lot of the furniture was gone and we basically had 2 beds and 1 couch for 5 people. We spent a lot of time around the kitchen table and it was fine.

Saturday was the Green and White spring football game at MSU and we met Megan's fiance's family there. It was really great to see them again, because the last time we saw them was at The University of Michigan on college graduation day. It is a wonderful thing when two families come together to celebrate their children's happiness and we happily toasted the well loved couple several times. The wedding and all the events leading up to it will be much anticipated and everyone all seems on the same page with the type of wedding we will be planning.

The next thing to do is pick the venue within the next couple of months and come up with a date. I keep telling Megan if she makes a list and checks off one thing at a time, it will all get done, without a lot of stress. There are a million and one details, but we will make each and every one add up to the perfect wedding that reflects exactly who they are.

Happy Tuesday!

 

Friday, March 31, 2017

Life Lately

 

 

 

 

 

 

Now that the sale our house has officially closed, I can update you on what is happening with our move. We have about 10 days until the movers arrive. They will finish up the packing ( all the breakables) and move everything out and put it in storage. Then, it's off to a temporary condo here in Michigan for a couple of months until our new house is ready. It has been a whirlwind of activity with a lot of packing, organizing, donating and selling furniture. The house sold in 3 days, thank goodness, because being out of the house for house showings (with a dog in tow) is not fun.

We are in constant contact with our builder in Florida and he sends us photo of the progress, along with our real estate agent. The photos I am showing you are a few weeks old, so there has been even more progress since they were taken. We just heard that the tile in the master bath shower is in and I can't wait to see that. We picked everything out so long ago, it's hard to remember what it is supposed to look like, but I am looking forward to seeing it all come together.

Once we are out of our house here and basically living out of a suitcase, I will be so ready to finally be home again. We are having incredibly dreary weather here too and I am longing for sun and warmth. Thankfully it won't be long until those sunshiny Florida days will be the norm. I can't wait to take you along.

Have a wonderful weekend!

 

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