Monday, August 27, 2012

Road Trip Report

I'm back home after four quick days through five states! Whew! My head is still spinning. It was a whole lot of fun.

Thurs., Aug 23, we left Minnesota and headed to Milwaukee, Wisconsin. I've been to Wisc many times, but never before to Milwaukee. Not sure what I was expecting, but it is a beautiful city with lots of nice, old architecture and things going on. We had dinner at a delicious Greek restaurant, walked around exploring, found a Jazz in the Park event, saw sailboats on Lake Michigan, and lots of interesting people.

This is the main reason we wanted to stop in Milwaukee: the beautiful Milwaukee Art Museum. Wow! It's the coolest building, inside and out. Really nice. We toured it on Fri., Aug 24, our 37th wedding anniversary.

Next on the itinerary was continuing our journey on the ferry that crosses Lake Michigan. It was probably our only time to experience this as it is quite expensive, but worth it for an anniversary treat; we relaxed, napped, ate lunch, and watched the lake and sailboats for 2.5 hours instead of sitting in Chicago traffic. Nice, eh??

After landing in Muskegon, Michigan, we drove on to Grand Rapids. There we settled into our hotel, walked around a bit and then ate a nice anniversary dinner at TGIF's. We had a very friendly and helpful server and had a good old time.

Saturday, Aug 25 was the original impetus for taking this trip: a quilting work day for Margaret's Hope Chest. I have participated in this charity before and love what they do and their passion for making a good thing come out of a bad. It was really fun to meet the MHC creators, Carol, Carin, and Amy. Special guest was Amanda Jean, author of Crazy Mom Quilts blog and the new book, Sunday Morning Quilts. What a neat bunch of people!!

There were about 15 people in attendance: from Minnesota, Cincinnati, Chicago, various other places in Wisconsin, Illinois and Michigan. Several were bloggers. How fun to meet in person the author of a blog one reads! We were crowded but very productive. Look at all the beauty!

Sun., Aug 26 was our long day on the road. With stops for breaks it took us 12 hours to drive from Grand Rapids, Mich to home in Minnesota. No luxurious ferry ride for us this time. It was all on the road! We hit Mich, Indiana, Illinois, Wisc and Minnesota all in one day.

"Are you going to behave this time, so I can get in and drive?!"

We had a great time. No regrets! I'm grateful to my wonderful, supportive husband who is willing to jump in the car and drive 1100 miles so I can make some quilts (something I can easily do in my own house), and he manages to have a good time, too. What a treasure he is!

Oh, in case you are wondering, Yes, I was in Grand Rapids during the AQS quilt show but did not manage to get there. I could have, if I'd pushed, but I didn't want to make every minute of the trip all about me and my quilting. We needed some relaxing time to enjoy our anniversary, after all. So I missed the special exhibits I would have liked to see, but I'm content with the trip and how it all played out.


joe tulips said...

Where to start?
That building reminds me of a ship or a modern church. Why didn't you whisper into the maintenance guys ear. The viewer is left wondering...what is she telling him?? Is he even listening? The ferry was only 2 1/2 hours? Wow. It looked a lot newer than the one I remember, back in the old days when ships were slower I guess. I thought it took longer to cross than that. The quilts are all beautiful. So much color.
Very good trip!

Carol E. said...

That would have been cute.. whispering to the guy. Instead I was trying to just stand in line, bored.

Those wings on the building open and close. It is the coolest thing.

Sextant said...

That building is really cool, but wow, I would want to be there in a windstorm. It looks like it is ready to lift up and soar! Very cool but was there any art in it?

My wife and I had an anniversary trip to St Joseph Michigan in 2004. We took that trip around the bottom of the lake because we wanted to do a geocache in Illinois. Never again. Pure hell, construction all over the place, at one juncture a crane lifted a jersey barrier over our car! We went someplace near Jolliet, and came back to Indiana on US 30 with lots of traffic lights and made better time. Hats off to you but I would have paid to go back across the lake on that ferry. That would have made a nice addition to our trip, I wished we knew it was there.

Whoa! I just took a better look at their rates. Holy mackerel! I thought you were only saving the car rate, they charge the vehicle + each passenger + fuel surcharge X 3 + security X 3. Did you have taxes on both sides? Wow, that is getting pricey!

Hmmm! Still from what I can remember of that trip around the bottom of the lake, I shudder.

So what does poor hubby do while you go off a quilting'? Damned quilts.

Well it sounds like you had a lovely trip and a wonderful anniversary celebration. Congratulations on 37 years, and many more to you!

Nann said...

Congratulations on 37 years! A husband who will accompany you across two states and a lake to go to a quilt show is definitely a keeper. :)

We live halfway between Chicago and Milwaukee, on the lakeshore. MKE is a great city to visit. The museums are much less crowded than those in Chicago.

For our 30th anniversary in 2010 we took the S. S. Badger from Manitowoc, WI, to Ludington, MI. The trip was great fun and we enjoyed "pure Michigan," as the advertisements say.

Anonymous said...

It was great meeting and sewing next to you Carol!
My husband and I did the ferry to Milwaukee from this side! What a great art museum. When we were there they were hanging a quilt exhibit and actually let us wander through it before it was open! Don't ask, don't get, I say!
Glad you made it safely back!

Mama Pea said...

It was really fun meeting you! I love all the photos from your trip. What a great trip you had. That building is amazing!