Monday, February 20, 2017

Page 51 - The Bug

With the warm weather over the weekend, and the wandering we did because of it, I've got the travel/get out of town bug again.  I've always loved road tripping and exploring new cities and towns.  I would love to just drive from town to town, stopping wherever and whenever I felt like it for the night/day/whatever.  Unfortunately, that type of life was never realistic.  I've lived and worked in the same metro area my whole life.  With a few vacations and long weekends here or there, I've been able to travel through and see a lot of the states in the U.S.  I've been to 35 states, 36 if you count changing planes in Denver, CO on a couple different trips, and I'm always itching for more.  LM and I have a scratch off map of the U.S. for all the states we've visited together.  We haven't scratched off 35 states yet, but we are working on it....and well on our way to 50.  Hopefully, we'll get at least a couple more to scratch off on our next trip.
Right now that next trip is making this bug a lot worse.  We haven't locked in on a specific destination(s) as of yet.  So it's something I am really looking forward to....but it's hard to not be able to plan anything regarding the trip just yet.  Normally at this point in February I would probably just be wishing for a warm weather destination, but with this burst of warm weather....I'm not getting that feeling that Spring is right around the corner, and our trips always start in late Spring.

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Page 50 - Chelsea

Both LM and I have been all around Chelsea many times....but never went into the city to check it out.  While the above photo is pretty old, I can definitely point out exactly where it was taken from....and the town doesn't look like it's changed all that much.  The road is now paved, thankfully, but the buildings look the same and the clock tower looks almost identical.  We stopped in to have lunch at Cleary's Pub, and both of us really liked the food.  The service was absolutely fantastic, and we left one of the bigger tips (percentage wise) we've left for a meal in a long, long time.  Our server didn't have many other customers, but I don't think we could have gotten better service if we were the only ones in the place.  I would go there again, without hesitation.
The downtown area was pretty small, and very walkable.  Even though we walked a bit around Plymouth before heading out to Chelsea, and walked around all of downtown Chelsea, neither one of us came close to our Fitbit step goal.  Thanks to the 60 degree plus weather, the streets seemed really vibrant around the city and gave it a little extra me, anyway.  It kind of reminded me of hanging out up north for the summer when I was a kid and we would go "into town".  Another cool thing about visiting Chelsea was finding out that it is the hometown of Jiffy mixes.  When I looked online at the recommendations for things to do in Chelsea, touring the Jiffy plant was one of the first things I noticed.  I always new it was a local company, but never realized it was in Chelsea.

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Page 49 - Visiting the Capitol

Seeing as neither LM or I had ever been to the Capitol, we decided to take a trek out to Lansing and check it out.  The weather was better than expected, and we decided to walk around the surrounding area before going in to tour the Capitol.  After checking with Mr. Google on places to eat lunch, we headed over to Kewpee Sandwich Shop to fill our bellies.  The place was nearly full, but we still got a booth as soon as we walked in.  The fact that everyone came in at the same time just before us, though, slowed down our service a bit....but we had absolutely no problem with that.  Our waitress was fantastic, and we found out in talk to her that she used to live only a few miles from us.  The food was ok.  Pretty standard fries and onion rings, my club was pretty good (really good turkey, good bacon, average ham) but I would have chosen a different bread than the standard Texas Toast if I were going to have it again.
Aside from the Capitol, we walked around Lansing Community College, as well as the "Old Town" area,  We stopped into Pruess Pets, which is a really cool pet store that we never knew was there.  The only drawback was the Girl Scouts that set up shop right at the entrance of the pet store.  Thankfully they were too busy to bully me into buying some Thin Mints as we entered or exited.

Friday, February 17, 2017

Page 48 - Looking Ahead

This weekend should be another unseasonably warm one.  We will be close to, if not above, the record high tomorrow.  On another Friday where I need something to look forward to, this really helps.  Enjoying the weather is one thing, but getting the feeling that Spring is just around the corner (in the middle of February) really helps combat the winter blues.  We've got no plans for the nice weather as of yet, but even if we just sit outside for a while when we'd normally be sitting inside each day....that will make it a nice weekend.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Page 47 - Miller's

So thankfully, my "Bro..." was able to swing by yesterday while I was selling the jukebox to the guys who came by to look at it.  I was very happy to hear that they want to fix it up and give it life again.  He seemed very happy with what he was getting for the price, so I figure that it was a great transaction on both sides.  We got more than the least that Uncle Dwaine would have taken for it, we didn't have to move the heavy old thing, and the guy is a collector who will probably get it running again and enjoy it for years to come.
After they were gone, Bro suggested we head to Miller's to have a burger and hang out for a bit.  We talked a lot about a wide range of things and he ate more than I did....which I don't think anyone would have bet on, lol.  It was nice to be able to just chill and hang out with him again.  It seems like forever since we've had a chance to do that.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Page 46 - Juke Joint Jezebel

This afternoon I'll be taking a detour on my way home to (hopefully) sell my Uncle's Juke Box to some random guy my mom found on Facebook.  It sounds like this guy is serious about buying it, and it would be nice to get it out of the basement and out of my mom's hair.  If it happens, it'll definitely be worth the short detour I'll be taking.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Page 45 - Valentine

Look at that....another national holiday, less than a week from the last.  Again, far be it for me to not celebrate a holiday.  While I'm rarely a fan of holidays that pressure you into buying things you don't need, just to keep the bottom line of the companies pushing that holiday healthy....I don't think Valentine's Day really fits into that category for me.  Most of us have busy lives.  Rarely do we take time to show the loved ones in our lives that we appreciate them.  Ideally, we would do that on random days throughout the year for no reason at all.  I try to do that, but am not always all that great at it.  Today is one of those days that kind of forces me to do that, though.
And I'm not saying that in a bitter way, but more out of appreciation.  I don't have to buy anything to show that I care.  And if I do, I can do so mindfully.  It's rarely the object that carries any meaning or value, it's the action.  The experience.  In the end, that's all life really is.  A collection of experiences.  I could give LM dozens of gifts and spend hundreds of dollars in the process.  I could also spend zero dollars, and do something for her.  Both would be very memorable. 
In the end, one mindful gift is all that I gave.  I know LM loves fresh flowers, so it was a perfect day to bring flowers into the house again.  Although that was easier said than done..  It took me three cycles of the traffic light for people in traffic to allow me to turn into the florist, and when I finally got into the parking lot....the dude that pulled in behind me and parked further from the shop ran past me as I was approaching the door, just to make sure to get in before me.  The guy thought he was pretty slick too when the woman helping him told him that he got the last dozen red roses left in the shop....but when she cam back, she let him know she was mistaken and that he had to change his order, because they were out.  It was even better when I picked up my waiting order, gave him a smug look, and walked out before he got anything....while he watched the Doctor who had bought all the roses he wanted, walk out the door with them right in front of me.