Corn, Cows and Coffee

Corn, Cows and Coffee

Ralph, Charlie and I decided that it would be fun to take another long road trip after we put Toga to bed at Shelter Island boatyard outside of Vancouver.  We spent a little over two weeks cleaning, sorting, organizing and winterizing the boat before we loaded up the car (amazing how much stuff we haul back and forth) and took off.  Since we took the route through Canada last year, we decided that it would be interesting to take a different route this time.  Our planned destinations were: Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN to see my Amy and my Dad & Mary; Canton, (outside of Detroit) Michigan to visit Ralph’s brother Ken and his partner, Diane; and lastly, Belleville, IL to visit my brother Curt, my sister-in-law, Stacy and their family.  

We headed south through Washington and then east through Idaho, Montana, North Dakota and arrived in Minnesota.  The Fall colors were very striking this year, especially around the Idaho, western Montana area.  We thought Couer d’Alene was very lovely and would love to visit some time.  Our visit to Minnesota was fun and an added treat was that my niece, Jacie, was there!

We decided to drive from MN through Wisconsin and around the upper peninsula of Michigan, where Ralph spent time as a boy camping and visiting his relatives.  We traveled along the western shore of Lake Michigan and the eastern shore of Lake Huron and there were some really pretty sand beaches along the lakes.  We spent the night once in a really quaint throw back motor lodge and ate Pasties – a cornish meal that traveled from England with the miners that relocated to Michigan. While in Michigan we visited the University of Michigan campus, the Henry Ford Museum and had a wonderful stay at Ken and Diane’s house, visiting relatives and having a lovely time.  The weather was perfect most of the time!

From MI it was a one day drive to Illinois, where we had a sweet but brief visit with my brother’s clan.  They are so fun – we really enjoyed ourselves.  From IL we decided to take the southern route home – over 1800 miles.  That was a long slog.  Not much to say about it except there is a lot of open space here in the USA.  

On the trip we saw so much corn, so many cows (we know where the beef is) – and of course, no road trip is complete without that sweet companion, coffee. 

After stopping at home for a respite we got back in the car and visited Jacob in San Luis Obispo – had to get some Jake time in!

Now we are back home and trying to get our land-based lives back together.  We have many projects going on and are busy, as usual, but it’s great to be home.  We hope we can see all of you soon.  Thank you for following our blog and sharing our adventures! Love to each of you. 

Cows in SLO

Happy times

Curt and his lovely bride, Stacy

Noah (17 – my nephew), Abra (18) and Jacie (21) my nieces!

Ralph, Matt (Ralph’s great nephew), David (Ralph’s nephew), and Ken

Ralph, David (Ralph’s nephew), Ken and Mike (Ralph’s great nephew)

Ralph and Ken’s childhood home in Detroit

Ralph and Ken indulging me at the Henry Ford

Fiery colors everywhere

This one is for me – at the Henry Ford

Hot wheels at the Henry Ford


Majestic University of Michigan (Ralph’s alma mater)

Not a bad view

Fall foliage

This is a pastie, which contains beef, potatoes, onions and maybe carrots.

Lake Michigan

Lake Michigan

Jacie and her pal, Charlie

Minnesota apples

Road tripping


Tired, but adorable, law students (Alexis in foreground, Amy and Kate in background)