Kid-Free In Saugatuck


So, last week, Ken and I road tripped to Michigan with our friends for really no reason at all except that it was time for a grown-up getaway. This was our first kid-free trip together, and we were so cliche in our childcare preparations that I won’t even go into detail here, except to mention that there were approximately three pages of instructions given to grandmothers that have raised six children between them and two of those children are pretty much perfect in every way (US, IF YOU’RE KEEPING SCORE.)

We actually scheduled our return on Bee’s 2nd birthday, which seems kind of insensitive now that I’m thinking about it, but also not because I worked really gosh darn hard two years ago, didn’t I? I mean, we have photos. I was there. So, in celebration of the birth of our first daughter, I woke up in Michigan to no alarm, no toddler tantrums and a Bloody Mary. I might be a genius.


If you know me at all, you know I’m mildly obsessed with Michigan’s tiny little beach cities (Exhibit A, Exhibit B). I cannot get enough and have intense fantasies about buying a chunk of waterfront land and building 4 little shipping container homes to rent out to adventurous folks that aren’t nervous at all about sleeping in a giant plastic box. One will be ours, obviously, and we will name it Captain’s Quarters, because Ken’s nickname is Captain. (I cannot at all remember why this is his nickname.)

And GUESS WHAT. WE STAYED IN MY FANTASY. They weren’t shipping containers – they were tiny cabins – but they were just these perfectly little miniscule morsels of oak and weird and there was even a stuffed duck statue on the fireplace mantel, of course. Howard, we called him. It was bliss.


We took a nap on the dock and strolled boardwalks and bought fudge from this cute little downtown eatery and no one – not one person – asked me to change their diaper or cut their strawberries or buy them stickers. It was unreal.

We for sure could have stayed in a Walmart parking lot and it would have been relaxing because of the No Kids Factor (we love them truly, so truly, so much, but you know what I mean), but the beach naps and the park concert and the lightning storm and the waterfront fish and chips was just over the top. Michigan does that; it just makes a complete spectacle out of itself. Jazz hands and everything.


I should note here that the above photo was Ken’s completely unintentional attempt at securing the highly acclaimed title of Official #PureMichigan Advertisement Photographer for 2015 and beyond. Bullseye.

Still, I prefer #PureMichigan ad option #2:


You like that one better, don’t you? Me too.

And yes, we did golf, if you were wondering. I don’t get it either. I’m terribly terrible, but I secretly love it, the hilarity of golf. I can’t get enough laughter when I see someone (usually just me) miss the ball, because I cannot comprehend how it is possible (for me) to miss hitting a tiny ball with a giant stick, but it never makes me not laugh (at me). So, golf. It’s good for the soul, plus you can do it in a dress. My kinda sport.


We played euchre and ordered eggs benedict and ignored emails and it was good and real and necessary. And when we packed up the van and set out to return home to smother the birthday girl with one million kisses, I think I heard my soul sigh.


(It might have also been Howard.)

  • OMG – euchre!!!! We cottage in Ontario each summer (just got back from a few weeks there) and euchre is THE game. I even IG’d a sign from a small town near the cottage advertising a biweekly euchre tournament.

    Cottaging is my fave time of year. It could even top my annual NYC trips but don’t let my family know that!

    Waterskiing, wakeboarding, swimming, s’mores, reading books, board games, hanging out – it’s THE best. And all in a 100 year old tiny cottage with an outdoor shower.

    Love it.

    • OMG you’re making me nostalgic for a place I’ve never been! Must put Ontario on my list stat. ;)

  • Any chance you are able to share your cottage find? I live in Grand Rapids and am always looking for getaway spots on the lake.

    Love Saugatuck dearly. Uncommon Grounds is my go to coffee shop when I need a morning to think and read and dream about the future. Then it’s off to the city beach in Douglas to play in the water. #puremichigan at it’s finest!

  • my family has a tiny little spot on the water in Glenn (smack dab between South Haven and Saugatuck), and it is by far my favorite place on earth. lake michigan has this crazy ability to fill your soul up with warm and fuzzies like nowhere else can!!

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