Cottage Living

Northern Michigan, C. Chitnis18 This past month has been one of healing and rest, family-time, quiet moments and great adventures. There is no place in the world like Northern Michigan. We are so blessed to spend the month of July with my parents at our cottage. My husband comes for the first week, heads off to India for work, and then returns for the last week. It’s a pretty sweet deal. I’d love to share with you some of the beautiful moments that unfolded over the past month. Northern Michigan, C. Chitnis Northern Michigan, C. Chitnis14Northern Michigan, C. Chitnis8 Northern Michigan, C. Chitnis10 Northern Michigan, C. Chitnis17 Our cottage sits on the shore of Torch Lake, on an unpaved road near the teeny town of Alden. We’ve been lucky enough to call this ours for the past 25 years, and most of the families on our lane have had their cottages for generations. A few of our neighbors are now on their fourth generation of ownership. It is extraordinary to watch our children now play together as we once did- picking wild black raspberries, running down the lane from house to house, whooping wildly while playing king-of-the-raft, sunset games of badminton and late night s’more roasting. Northern Michigan, C. Chitnis7 Northern Michigan, C. Chitnis15 Northern Michigan, C. Chitnis4 In all honesty, I hardly took any pictures this year. I was too busy sailing, paddle boarding, reading, boating, hiking and enjoying the time with my kiddos. I wish I had captured the joy on Vijay’s face the first time he popped up on water skis. And I wish I had a picture of Vik, sound asleep on a windy sail across the lake, the waves soothing him to sleep. I especially wished I had captured the many moments my boys shared with their grandparents, uncles, aunts and friends. These precious moments will have to live in my memory.Northern Michigan, C. Chitnis27 Northern Michigan, C. Chitnis12 Northern Michigan, C. Chitnis22 Northern Michigan, C. Chitnis23 Northern Michigan, C. Chitnis24 Northern Michigan, C. Chitnis25 Northern Michigan, C. Chitnis26 I did take quite a few pictures on the roadtrip my mom and I took one day through Old Mission Peninsula. It was a bright sunny day, perfect for exploring all the little farmstands and antique shops that dot the peninsula. We stumbled upon a lavender farm, a u-pick flower farm, countless gorgeous barns, adorable farmstands, a stunning field of sunflowers, and off-the-beaten path antique shops. I came home with a stunning bouquet of snapdragon and a few new graniteware items to add to my prop collection. And the prices (especially compared to Brimfield)- SUCH a steal!!thrifted finds Northern Michigan, thrifting Northern Michigan, u-pick We ended our day in Traverse City, grabbing a late coffee at the new and incredibly hip BLK \ MRKT and savoring one of the best meals I’ve ever had at Alliance. We also popped into Wood + Cloth and Darling Botanical, all housed under one roof in the Warehouse District of Traverse City. I also made a stop into my all-time favorite antique shop, Wilson Antiques. Wood + Cloth Darling Botanical Darling Botanical1 Darling Botanical3 Darling Botanical2 MRKTAlliance, Traverse CityIn all, a gorgeous roadtrip and the icing on the cake of a gorgeous month. Well, to be honest, the real icing was celebrating Vik’s FOURTH birthday (my baby is four, what happened??!!). It’s really the highlight of the summer- a celebration with friends and plenty of old-fashioned games (pin the tail on the donkey, drop the cloths pin in the bottle, sack races, face painting and hot potato). Vik's 4 birthdayVik's 4 birthday1Vik's 4 birthday2 I’ll leave you with a few pictures of the sun setting over a vast field of sunflowers, and our nightly sunset show…because, you know, Michigan likes to show-off every now and then! Sunflower fields, C Chitnis1 Sunflower fields, C Chitnis Sunflower fields, C Chitnis2 Northern Michigan, C. Chitnis9

Your thoughts on “Cottage Living

  1. I really don’t know what to say! I actually think I might be lost for the words that would adequately describe how beautiful all these photographs are. They are actually so beautiful it’s almost got me weeping with longing to be there myself! I want to get lost inside that antique shop and sip that cocktail while watching the sun set. I want to spin myself giddy among those sunflowers and just endlessly wander about while taking it all in. Sheer bliss! Thank goodness Northern Michigan is already on my itinerary ‘cos I wouldn’t miss it for the world! No wonder it has your heart, I think a little piece of mine just went there too 😉 xoxo

    1. Oh girl, if you come to Northern Michigan I am taking you EVERYWHERE! Every farmstand, flower field, antique shop, restaurant…seriously…everywhere! Plan on a month (or three!).

  2. Your Julys are pure bliss. So great that you make Michigan happen no matter what. An annual pause for you and indelible memories for the boys. And I like that some of your memories will live on in your mind vs. captured images. Sometimes I look at old pictures and wonder if I am remembering the actual moment or simply the image that I’ve seen so many times. Thanks for sharing Michigan in all its glory!

    1. Thanks so much Cynthia, they really are pure bliss! I know what you mean about remembering moments versus images. However, I have a terrible memory, so pictures help to jog it! My mom keeps telling me I need to jot down all of these precious moments with my boys- the cute things that they say and do- she’s been telling me since they were babies. I have yet to do it, and now I have forgotten so much of the sweet little ordinary moments from past years. We should all listen to our mothers, moral of that long-winded story 😉

  3. July in Michigan with your parents…what a glorious gift for all of you! This was the most perfect “R and R” after your book tour…and the making of such wonderful memories for your boys! If we could only slow our lives down, unplug and enjoy the simple pleasures of summer…a big lesson here for all of us! Thanks for sharing your beautiful photos, as always!

    1. It is such a gift, Maureen! You’re right I feel so blessed to always have this month to slow down, unplug and share in summer’s sweetness with my family. I never take for granted what a blessing it is to have such a place! xoxox

  4. It does look very pretty up there. What a treat to have a cottage in such a lovely place for you and your family to enjoy.
    I love the striped barn roof, what a great idea.

    1. I know- that striped roof was very cool! I just wish it hadn’t been high-sun, as I could have captured the colors a bit better. Next time…!

  5. I was wondering if you were going to Michigan this summer. I always love to see your pictures from your time there.

    1. Thanks so much, Nina. It is easy to take beautiful pictures in Northern Michigan because everywhere you turn, there is beauty waiting for you!

  6. I feel like summer slipped by so quickly this year. Your photos are a beautiful reminder to slow down a little more. Living so far from my family, I love the idea of spending a summer month with them. You’ve inspired me to come up with our own tradition.

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