You CAN go home again, albeit briefly

Jenn and I capped off our whirlwind “too busy to spend a weekend at home” tour this past weekend. We spent 29.5 hours in the Michiana area visiting family in Edwardsburg, Niles and Cassopolis, Michigan and narrowly avoiding the glut of happy Purdue and angry Notre Dame fans as we flew into and out of South Bend. We crammed a TON of stuff into that time, which I’ll try to recap here.

For such a short trip we were able to fit in stops to both of my Grandparents, the Garver Lake Golf Course (owned by my great uncle), a wedding reception for a childhood friend and a nice afternoon visit with my great grandmother. We were lucky enough to get a photo with 5 generations and brighten the spirits of my Gramma Leist, who just had one of her legs amputated and hasn’t been doing so well. To have her meet her great great granddaughter and Jenn for the first time was incredibly special. It was the reason we made the trek in the first place and it was worth every minute.

The weather was so awesome that when we picked apples after our visit to the nursing home, the cool fall air just right for the bright blue sky and wonderful sunshine. Jenn and I took close to 80 pictures during our brief stay and a few of them may just make the Christmas card. The coolest photos are of the original deed to the Miller farm (1876, signed by Ulysees S. Grant, 29 and 66/100 acres) and the marriage certificate of my Great Grandparents (Gramma Miller’s parents, the Griffiths, Oct. 30, 1906). I know I’m always saying “stay tuned” for pictures, so this time I’ll just say “sit tight”. They’re worth the wait, especially the ones of Raelyn in the orchard.

The other main event of the weekend was our tour of area lakes. Jenn was surprised to learn that I had grown up with such immediate access to water. We’re both water lovers so it was cool to show off all the places we swam/boated/jumped off of/skied to her. Our only regret was the autumn air (I’d have leapt off the Adamsville bridge) and the camera (we should have snapped some shots of all our ancestral homes – especilly the old Miller property, despite it’s lack of buildings). I had an amazing weekend and I’m so glad that Jenn and Rae got to see where I grew up.

And I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the fact that I survived Saturday afternoon NOT watching the second half of UGA/LSU. Thank God for GPRS/GSM cellphones. I cheered wildly after seeing the 45-16 final on my screen. GO DAWGS!

With our return home last night (30 minutes early on our flight but they lost a piece of luggage) travel season is officially over. I’m not getting on another plane or driving in excess of 100 miles until Graham’s wedding next May. I mean it. I’m becoming a homebody out of desire and necessity. I don’t think I could survive another Summer like this, no matter how much fun it was.

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