60 Interesting Facts About Michigan

60 Interesting Facts About Michigan

This came to me via email from my wonderful Commerce neighbor, Karen. I had saved it as a draft but never published it. Since I'm heading to Michigan to see my boys today, I thought it was an appropriate piece to share. Detroit is known as the car capital of the world. Alpena is the home of the world's largest cement plant. Rogers City boasts the world's largest limestone quarry. Elsie is the home of the world's largest registered Holstein dairy herd. Michigan Continue reading

Kayaking in Alligator River National Refuge

Kayaking in Alligator River National Refuge

I love kayaking, gliding along in the water so close to the surface, without the noise of engines is so peaceful. I especially love how that allows me to come face-to-face with wildlife. Today, that wildlife could be alligators! When Coastal Kayak called early Thursday morning to confirm a tour to Alligator River that afternoon, I was ecstatic! They wouldn't take people for kayak tours amongst alligators if some of their tourists were eaten.... right? We met DJ, our guide in Kill Devil Continue reading

Pea Island

Pea Island

A short drive over a long bridge took us to Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge known for its abundance of waterfowl.  We took a short hike over to the beach area. The land had obviously been under water during the storm as the sand was still very wet and, in places, quicksand-like.  I'm glad I still have my flip flop and that James was there to pull me out! There were an abundance of shells.... more than I've ever seen on a beach in one place. It seemed to be a favorite fishing Continue reading

Bodie Island Light Station

Bodie Island Light Station

The Outer Banks were notorious for shipwrecks and pirates.  Turned out it was a great place to hide for those who knew how to travel the waters.  Several lighthouses were erected to help direct captains through or past the challenging shoals of the area. At the northern-most end of the Cape Hatteras Seashore is Bodie Island Lighthouse, well recognized with its black and white design. We paid our $8 fee for the privilege of being able to climb the 200 stairs to the top.  Tours are well Continue reading

Swirling in Sea Foam

Swirling in Sea Foam

What many guests will appreciate about staying at the Sea Foam Motel is the convenience of being able to walk to so many services! Restaurants, Tanger Outlet Mall, souvenirs, convenience store, recreational activities and Jennette's Pier which was a fabulous backdrop for our pictures. We hiked along the beach well past the pier, cameras in hand. I was particularly enamored with the sea foam! The motel name seemed even more fitting. I'd seen foamy water before but this foam was more Continue reading

OBX Escape

OBX Escape

What I love about living in Richmond Virginia is that in a short few hours you can entirely change your view. A couple of nights away from normalcy is often the best prescription for what ails you and a beach view is equivalent to vitamins by intravenous. We were specifically looking for something affordable that overlooked the beach. Something that rivaled everything we love about the Sea Vista Motel at Topsail Beach. But closer. Easier to escape for a couple of days when we needed it. We Continue reading

Roads

Roads

I love this song and thought I'd share before I head out on another road trip. This one is special because my boys will be with me for two weeks. Look out Vancouver Island!  Here we come!   Roads Written by Tebey Ottoh, Sebastian Thott, Didrik Thott, Carl BjörsellThere are roads, in this life that we all travel There are scars and there are battles where we roam When we are lost, or wherever we may go They will always lead you home There are roads, that have led me to Continue reading

Why I’m At Home on the Road

Why I’m At Home on the Road

In the past year: I sold my house on the river and moved into an apartment 1/4 it's size. Sold almost everything I owned, except the basics that would fit in said apartment. Saw my youngest through his first year of university. Said a sad goodbye to my 13 year old, four legged friend, Caesar. It was definitely a year of changes, although it's always sad to let all these things go, I've chosen to focus on the gratitude & celebrate the success of my experiences. I kept our family Continue reading

Gluten Free Stuffing for Turkey or Chicken

Gluten Free Stuffing for Turkey or Chicken

This stuffing based on an old family recipe passed down from my Great Grandmother. We grew up calling it "dressing" instead of "stuffing". I've also changed the recipe slightly over the years by including apple and cranberries. Recently I've begun to make it gluten free and it tastes just as good as the regular version. The recipe has been taste-approved by my two non-gluten-free kids. Ingredients 1 Loaf EnerG White Rice Loaf (Gluten free) 1 tbsp olive oil, dairy free butter or butter. Continue reading

Whoooooshhhhh!!!!

Whoooooshhhhh!!!!

Whoooooshhhhh!!!! Did you feel that? Nearly a year just went by with all the adrenaline, expectation, hair flying, air displacement and let-down of a subway train going straight past my platform. This was a year, in which there were many endings, a few beginnings, some ups... and multitude of downs. At times it felt as though I was hanging onto a rocket by my bloodied finger nails, terrified I would spiral off in mid-air. Things have finally come to a stop and like a child who can never Continue reading

Red-Tailed Hawk Visit

Red-Tailed Hawk Visit

Had this beautiful juvenile Red Tailed Hawk hang out on my deck for a half an hour. He seemed he was drying his feathers. I say "he," but after some investigation, there doesn't seem to be a way to distinguish male from female when flying solo. He could very well be a she. Either way, our hawk seemed to enjoy being watched and did a little strutting for our benefit. As soon as we walked away from the window he flew away. Continue reading

Chocolate Banana Pie – Gluten Free & Dairy Free

Chocolate Banana Pie – Gluten Free & Dairy Free

This is the second dessert I've found since changing my food to gluten & dairy free. This pie is easy to make, delicious, and you will not be disappointed! I found this recipe at www.SimplyGluten-Free.com but made a few quantity changes to accommodate my 12" disposable pie plate. Ingredients Crust 2 cups blanched almond flour 7 large medjool dates, pits removed, chopped finely (found them in the produce section of my grocery store) 1/8 tsp sea salt 3 tablespoons coconut oil (more if Continue reading

Chocolate Sprinkled Coconut Macaroons – Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Egg Free

Chocolate Sprinkled Coconut Macaroons – Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Egg Free

Since going gluten, egg and dairy free I haven't had any obvious choices for dessert - which is probably a good thing! Now that it's Christmas I'm missing cookies and I want dessert with my Christmas dinner! I don't like to spend a lot of time grocery shopping or preparing, so the following recipe is one that was adapted from several and is based on what was already in my kitchen. Ingredients 4 cups of coconut (I had two types flaked & desiccated, used all of it) 1/2 cup of almond flour Continue reading

Putting the Cart Before the Horse

Putting the Cart Before the Horse

Sometimes it's necessary to put the cart before the horse. Sometimes you need to know how much cart you're going to require before buying your horse. Once you know how big the wagon and heavy the load, only then can you determine if you'll need a Clydesdale or a colt. I've been struggling in my mind with a cart and horse issue. Or more accurately a vehicle and RV issue. I want an RV but I don't know what style I want. There are so many! Motor homes, converted buses, converted vans, towables Continue reading

Stephen Clark & Pirates on the Straits Lakes

Stephen Clark & Pirates on the Straits Lakes

Typically a homebody, lately my calendar has been chock full of social events! Saturday night I interviewed Stephen Clark of WXYZ Action News for an upcoming post on CyberCletch.com and he and his wife, Larenne, were kind enough to invite me to a party on one of the Straits Lakes. The water provides a completely different view of a neighborhood and its residents. One of the "pirates" told me there was "nothing like lake living," I'd have to agree. Stephen Clark wrote & performed "Pink Pirate Continue reading

Coming to Terms with Body Image

Coming to Terms with Body Image

Those little cells that hold the fat in our bodies have been the bane of my existence since high school. I look back on how I felt about my body from the time I was a teenager and realize I've never been happy with it. There were always a few pounds I had to lose and I tried to manage it with some very extreme diets. In my early 20's I quit smoking and gained a few more pounds, then I had children and gained a lot more, while raising children, even more crept on. I've always been active Continue reading

New Math

I love teachers who integrate alternate methods of teaching - and styles of learning - into the regular classroom work. My son's math teacher gave Cayce and two of his friends a video assignment for her class. My son worked on this every day last week and we all had a great time watching him create the scenes and observe how he weaved them together. This kid has a vision before it gets filmed. Perhaps this will be part of his future? Can't see the video? Click here. I'm a little Continue reading

Backyard Rainy Days

Backyard Rainy Days

I love the sunshine but can't deny that my backyard is most beautiful on overcast, drizzly days like today. The wildlife comes out and even buds beginning to burst make the landscape look green and vibrant. While I was waiting for my tea to steep, I decided to try to capture the robin and babies who are nesting under my deck. I wasn't so successful with capturing the skittish mom in a clear shot with her babies, but I did capture a few other things... Continue reading