Tassel Sun Hat DIY

I love sun hats for gardening, the beach, even driving. The problem is the cute ones are so expensive and don’t always match what I already own. So here’s a fun DIY to customize your own sun hat from the dollar store, enjoy! Supplies: Scissors- already owned Sun hat- Dollar Tree $1 Favorite color of […]

A Rocky Beach In Winter

One of my favorite places to visit as a child, a beach full of the prettiest rocks any kid could dream of. With a steep sand hill plunging 100 feet down to the water’s edge this small section juts out into Lake Michigan causing rocks to wash up from the fathoms below.

Just three feet off shore you can wade out and scoop up rocks by the handful and sort through them. If you look long enough you may find some lucky glass, agates, or even a Petoskey stone.

As the cold wind and rain blew us around the beach I relished showing my daughter the beauty of the rocks and promised to come back in the summer. Getting back to the car she inspected her rock finds, proudly holding them up and yelling, “One more.”

We will be back.

Starting off my toddlers rock collection right only took a couple extra minutes. After cleaning the rocks, I took some clear nail polish and coated the rocks allowing them to look wet and vibrant all the time. She plays with them regularly keeping them in her jewelry box like treasure.

Runaround America-A North Carolina Detour

Meeting interesting people is one of the things I love about back roads America. People can be interesting in different ways. On this day, while driving down Gerton Highway US74A we came to the little mountain community of Gerton at the base of BearWallow Mountain. To our surprise, nestled in the side of the mountain was a little dirt floored home with a wilting roof, and a sign imploring us to stop in for a visit.SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURESBefore the sign was crashed it said, “Original Carolina Hilbilly, pictures OK, Stop Meet Sam.”  With this open invitation coupled with the desire to see the carved walking sticks, we pulled over to meet Sam.SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

Being from Michigan, I had met one other self-proclaimed Hillbilly before, so grabbing my camera I proceeded to the front porch where Sam sat whittling away on a mountain stick. If you feel uncomfortable meeting new people try using this technique. My husband and Sam had something in common and that was an interest in walking sticks.SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

So while they talked, and with Sam encouraging me to take pictures I did just that.

Choosing from a pile of hatchet chopped native sticks my husband handed it to Sam. With quick motions he began slicing off the bark saying it would only take a few minutes to carve.

As he carved, he talked. Speaking of mountain life and his family who lived on that mountain since the roots of our country. Indeed, the streets were even named after his kin.


Ever once in a while Sam would spit into a old crusty bucket. I moved my foot back watching him carve. Soon his wife joined us. She opened the door revealing a dirt floor and one lone light bulb.

We left there, newly carved walking stick in hand,  feeling more blessed than when we arrived.