Showing posts from November, 2009

Luminary Festival, St. Joseph, Michigan

Friday, November 20th, was the evening of St. Joseph's annual Luminary Festival. It was a bit of a challenge for D to get off work a couple hours early so we could get across the state by 6pm but it was worth it. We had a wonderful time!

The town looked very festive with all the decorated lamp posts and store windows but the luminaries are what really set the holiday mood. They lined State Street and its intersecting streets and set the town aglow.

We were lucky enough to get a parking spot on Broad Street right near State which I was very grateful for. We grabbed our cameras and set off for a fun evening of shopping. Our first stop was Moxie's Boutique where we did a little shopping for some bling and sampled the homemade Christmas cookies.

It was apparent that this was a very popular event as the streets were already crowded by 6pm. That just increased the excitement!

Our next stop was the Crowley Fine Arts gallery where we bought a little more bling and sampled even more Chris…

White Tailed Deer in St. Joseph

Last Sunday, November 15, was the opening day for firearm deer season in Michigan. To mark the occasion in a humane way, D took some pictures of deer he saw in a field near our condo. Here's a family of four. Aren't they cute?

After a few minutes, two of them scampered off, leaving two for D to catch in HD video :-) The minimum width of this video may display larger than the area allowed on this blog. If it doesn't view well, here's the link to view it at YouTube.

Bit of Swiss Bakery

On the way back from Weko Beach, we stopped in at the Bit of Swiss bakery in Stevensville, Michigan. My friend Ch had driven me by here before but I'd never been inside. D is always happy to explore anywhere that has food, so he was more than willing to stop in.

The inside was warm and welcoming. There were shelves with lots of interesting loaves of breads. And the smell... ummmm, good! There's nothing quite like the smell of fresh baked bread, is there?

This bakery is not limited to just bread though. They have several cases of scrumptious looking pastries. It was hard to decide what to buy. We couldn't go home empty handed!

They had some pastries available for sampling too. :-) These brownies were delicious!

They had a special going on the chocolate croissants, buy one get one free. So we got a couple of those and a variety box of Christmas cookies. I know it seems a bit early for Christmas cookies but we were planning to put up our Christmas tree this weekend and that sort …

Christmas Comes to St. Joseph

In the span of one week's time, St. Joseph went from autumn to Christmas. In preparation for the Luminary Festival which will be held tomorrow, November 20th, the town is getting all dressed up for the holidays. The light displays along the bluff are all in place, and the lampposts in town are looking festive!

I captured these photos last Saturday evening after a fine dinner at Schu's where we watched the sunset.

D and I ended the evening with a short stroll around town looking in the holiday-dressed windows and thinking about Christmas shopping.

I'm really looking forward to the Luminary Festival this weekend!

November at the Beach

Last Saturday was such a nice day in St. Joseph! The weather was very mild, reaching the mid-60s once again. D and I took the opportunity to visit Weko Beach in Bridgman, Michigan (a 20 minute drive from St. Joseph). I know, I know, November is an odd time to visit a beach. We meant to get there during the summer but we just never made it.

We didn't go to Weko Beach with the intention of swimming of course. We just wanted to check the place out and take a few pictures. It was a lovely day for that! The beach was empty as was expected. It did look like a very nice beach though. The grasses on the dunes and down near the shore had faded from green to brown. The sand was brown as were the snow fences on the beach. But we did find one bright spot of color. I'm not sure what the structure is, a water intake valve perhaps?

We discovered a nice observation platform high on a dune with many, many stairs to climb to get there. D & K took on the challenge while I volunteered to stay …

Barefoot in the Park (in November!)

What a warm and wonderful weekend we spent in St. Joe! I brought my new camera along and took advantage of Saturday's sunshine and blue skies to take some early morning shots at Lookout Park.

Then I moved on to the ramp area behind the water treatment plant. Nice panoramic views from there!

I took a drive over to Tiscornia Beach to catch the lighthouse in the late morning sun.

While I was there, I watched these guys kite boarding. It seems like it would be too cold to be out in Lake Michigan but I'm told these wet suits keep you pretty comfortable.

Then I made a stop at Silver Beach. It looks so barren and cold. But honestly, it was very mild.

The high temperature officially got up to 66F but the thermometer on my deck shows it closer to 70F. :-)

Took a break and watched the Michigan vs Purdue football game at the condo. That was a real heart breaker. Michigan played really well the first half but fell apart the second half and lost to Purdue. :-(

After the game D and I went to the O…

St. Joseph vs Lakeshore Again!

I'm listening to the St. Joe vs Lakeshore HS football playoff game on the radio, Go Bears!

At half time we took a quick run into town to the Chocolate Cafe for a rich, smooth, hot chocolate. YUM!

I had a small regular hot chocolate and D had a medium dark chocolate. Both were delicious! While we were there we listened to a couple of musicians sing some golden oldies :-)

Right now the Bears are ahead... I hope they win! Go Bears!!!

Update: The Bears won 19-16 over Lakeshore and will go on to play in the regional playoff! YEAH!!!

And Then it Was November

After the wild weather on Friday and Saturday, Sunday's sunshine, blue skies, and calm winds were a welcomed sight!

As you can see, there was still a nice bit of color in the trees. The lake was calm and deep blue. Along Lake Bluff Park you could still see color in the trees too.

D and I strolled along the bluff and caught the Amtrak train pulling into the station. It saddens me to think that the Amtrak route through St. Joseph may be discontinued due to state budget cuts. We haven't ridden the train out of St. Joseph yet. We need to do that one day soon!

A look along Lake Bluff Park in the other direction shows us a peek of what's to come. On the right is one of the Christmas light displays starting to be assembled.

And farther down the bluff we saw that the top of the Maids of the Mist fountain has gotten some lights too.

Just a few weeks ago the Compass fountain was still entertaining children of all ages. Now it sits quietly waiting for spring and the sounds of children'…