I was looking through my pictures the other day and realized I never posted any photos from the couple weeks we spent in Michigan with family this past July.
My parents are originally from Michigan and I was born there and lived there until we moved to Colorado when I was 1.5 years old. Growing up, I always loved going back to Michigan to visit relatives. My dad lived on a farm that had a huge pond and a large woods that we loved exploring via canoe, paddle boat, 4-wheelers or on a trailer with all our cousins while being pulled behind Grandpa’s tractor. I also loved playing hide and seek in the corn fields while the sprinklers were going with our cousins.
I haven’t had the opportunity to see my dad’s side of the family, especially my grandparents, for a couple years and with my grandpa’s health not doing too well, I definitely made this trip a priority. It was fun to spend time back in the old stompin’ grounds and to show the area to my hubby and my two nephews.
Before leaving, we stopped by my great grandma’s house (a couple doors down from the house my dad grew up in and where my grandpa still lives) to get a 5 generation photo for my sister with her boys. I guess you could also say this is a 5 generation photo since I’m 5 months pregnant here. L-R: My grandpa, my dad, my sister, my bro, me and great grandma in front.
After visiting my dad’s family in Cadillac, we travelled south a couple hours to enjoy some time with my mom’s side in Grand Rapids. One of our favorite things is to visit the Grand Haven lighthouse because we have lots of fun stories from this place (such as my mom falling off the end of the pier into Lake Michigan and my dad and I pulling her out to reveal a swamp monster…thankfully we can laugh about it, but many people have lost their lives falling off that pier). Hubby had never seen a Lake Michigan sunset (one of the most beautiful sunsets you’ll ever see) so we headed out for a fun night. The sunset wasn’t the best because there were no clouds, but it was still pretty.
Braden was so cute riding on Grandpa’s shoulders. Whenever he’d see something he wanted to look at closer, he’d take his sunglasses off, squint one eye and point. It was so cute! He is such a smart little cookie and I loved spending time with him and seeing him and hubby start to bond.
L-R: me, my sis, her two boys, cousin Casey, my brother, Casey’s hubby, my mom, cousin Aaron, Uncle Scott (mom’s youngest sibling and Aaron’s dad), cousin Shelby, Gram (Bibi to her great grandkids), my dad, my hubby
In addition to indulging in many excellent mom & pop ice cream shops, and lots of laughs, we also had a scary glimpse into my mom’s future when she came out wearing one of my grandma’s wigs:
Braden looks like he’s striking a pose for muscle beach. Me & Gram chilling on the blanket until little Caleb came and dumped a pile of sand in my hair. He’s lucky he looked so cute toddling after those seagulls it was impossible to get upset!
And, the main reason we were in Michigan this summer was for the Bultema family reunion that my mom and grandma were in charge of hosting this year.
I made the postcard invite last year (featuring my great grandparents) for them and it was fun to see it used in a slideshow they made honoring all the different members of this LARGE (my mom has over 50 1st cousins) Dutch family.
We took a picture of the tallest and shortest at the wedding. The tallest guy I believe is one of my mom’s 1st cousins. The shortest was my grandma’s oldest sibling.
I love this pic of my grandma and her two siblings who are still here on this earth. My grandma is the youngest (of 7 I believe), next to hear is the oldest sibling (I think she’s older than my grandma by at least 20 years) and on the left is the sibling closest in age to my grandma (but still 10 years older than her).
Summers in Michigan are always so much fun!