Christmas in Northern Michigan

For the last five years, my family has gathered in the small town of Empire in Northern Michigan for a week or two to reconnect. We rent a big house together, and spend our time cooking together, hiking, bicycling, swimming, and kayaking. We have witnessed incredible meteor showers while laying in deserted streets, eagerly introduced the newest members of our family to our favorite beaches, and uttered crazy dreams around the campfire. This year, my parents' dream was that they would take steps to move north, and within three months of our last vacation, they were closing on a new house. Dreams come true. 

So this year between Christmas and New Years, my entire immediate family (now 8 adults and 3 children) crammed into our new 3-bedroom home. We spent the evenings playing cards and our days slowly, driving into town for groceries, walking down the lane to see the horses, visiting Lake Michigan and cooking meals. We settled into our new home together, and I look forward to the many memories this place will hold in the years that come.  

Happy Thanksgiving!

Thanksgiving is my all-time favorite holiday. Food, family, friends, and more food...what's not to love? Last year was my first Thanksgiving ever spent outside of Michigan, and I celebrated in Southern California with Isaac and some of our friends. Lucky for me, my little brother lives in Pasadena, so he was able to join us and thus make me feel a little less homesick. We had the best weekend together, and it was a good lesson for this prone-to-homesickness girl that it is possible to find home in many different places. 

This year, we are celebrating Thanksgiving in the same way- with our good friends in Southern California, eating dinner outside under party lights. I never got around to sharing photos from last year's holiday weekend, so I thought I would do so today! I hope you are all able to celebrate this holiday of gratitude with those you love. Cheers!

After our weekend in Southern California, Isaac and I drove up Highway 1 on our way home, and spent a couple nights camping in Big Sur. These are a few of my favorite images from our time.