Phew, long time, no see! I didn’t mean to take a couple of weeks off there, but we’ve just been so busy lately with traveling and wrapping up summer. Plus, it’s good to take a break every now and then! I’ve been blogging for 9 years now (my blogiversary was Labor Day) and it’s so hard to constantly be “on” all the time with the blog and IG. So those two weeks were needed, and now I’m feeling inspired to get back into it! I have one final summer post (with a lighthouse, of course) before I move into the desert from our trip to Phoenix! And after that… autumn content begins! I’m super excited. I love fall and can’t wait for all things apple, pumpkin + fall foliage related. But for my final post of summer… here we go!
Last weekend, Eric and I had the amazing opportunity to be lighthouse keepers for a weekend at Big Sable Point Lighthouse! Well... not exactly lighthouse keepers, but we were able to stay for the weekend in the lighthouse! This opportunity isn't available to the public, so I jumped at this chance! Long story short, I hosted a social media workshop for their board last winter... and in exchange they offered to give us a free stay at Big Sable. This lighthouse has so much meaning to us, so of course, I was thrilled. It was the first lighthouse Eric ever took me to (as a surprise), and we also have our names engraved on a boardwalk here. Plus, it's one of my favorite lighthouses in Michigan. I absolutely love that you have to walk two miles to get there. It's just such an adventure, and this weekend was exactly that.
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After biking it around the island and kayaking out to the lighthouse, I was excited for some relaxing at the Grand Hotel! Eric and I changed for dinner, and walked over to the historic hotel to tour the lobby and gardens and grab a drink in their upstairs cocktail lounge. It was so pretty. It's on my wishlist to stay here someday. I'm glad I finally got the chance to visit though, take a peek around, marvel at the insanely beautiful gardens, drool over their outdoor pool, and grab a fancy cocktail (ahem, most expensive cocktail I've ever had). Hahaha. It was definitely a fun experience while staying on Mackinac Island! I'd say the $10 tour is worth it alone for the gardens.
The Jean Jacket in Pinter Wash c/o Madewell
Floral dress c/o Pitaya (similar)
Madewell Indio Sunglasses
Woven Circle Bag via Etsy (similar)
Tassel Earrings via Artists Market of Mackinac Island (similar)
Pittsburgh Ease Flat in Black c/o ModCloth (similar)
Seeing the Round Island Lighthouse up close was a major bucket list item crossed off my list. This is by far one of my favorite Michigan lighthouses. I've seen it multiple times on the ferry to Mackinac Island, but always dreamed of stepping foot on the island and seeing it like this. They were doing yearly tours until conditions became too unsafe and they stopped doing them... but I had no idea you could kayak out to the lighthouse until just this summer. As soon as I saw that was an option, I immediately booked the trip and off we went! It was the best experience. I honestly just stood there for a long time taking in the moment of being there. I felt so lucky that this is such a huge part of who I am... exploring all of these lighthouses. It's honestly meant so much to me.
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After our bike ride adventure around Mackinac Island, we headed back to our bed and breakfast to freshen up and head out to dinner! We returned our bikes and walked down to watch the sunset by Biddle Point. Since you can't technically walk to the Round Island Passage Light (it's a shoal light), I've considered this one "checked off my list". I'm over halfway through seeing all of Michigan's lighthouses! My rule is... if you can travel there and set foot on the land the lighthouse is on, that's a must in order to check it off my list. If it's a shoal light, or on private land, and I can only see it by boat/plane, then I'll consider it checked off the list. I have so many more to go! It's taken me about 8 years to see 65 of them, so this will be going on for a while. And then maybe I can make it a goal to see all of the lighthouses on the Great Lakes! ;)
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An absolute "must" when visiting Mackinac Island is... riding bikes, of course! There are no cars allowed on the island, so the only transportation is walking, biking, riding horses, or taking a horse-drawn carriage. One of the best things to do on the island is to bike all the way around (which is an 8-mile loop). It provides some of the best scenic lookouts, and gets you away from some of the crazy crowds down on Main Street! We rented bikes on this trip, but I really wish we would have brought our own. We just thought with all of Eric's drum equipment it would be too hectic getting it on and off the ferry, but it would have been worth it. These bikes were expensive to rent... and we only had them for a few hours. Plus, my bike is way cuter. Haha! So pro tip... if you can, bring your own bikes!