Monday, December 31, 2012

Christmas, Take Two

The husband, Maren, Sully and I returned yesterday from Michigan where we were visiting my in-laws.  There, we had our second Christmas.  The kids received a few more gifts, the best of which was just getting to spend time with their grandparents.  The husband and I got the gift of two afternoons spent with just each other.

Thursday we walked the street(s) of downtown South Haven.  We visited a few antique stores and had lunch at a local cafe.  It's a very picturesque little town situated right on Lake Michigan.  There were actually quite a few people wandering around along with us, probably due to the relatively nice weather for December (a balmy 40 degrees or so,) but I can imagine it's quite a bit busier during the summer months.

Friday we decided to do some wine tasting so we drove to the Fenn Valley Winery.  We skipped the tour and went straight to the tasting room.  I liked the Edelzwicker and the Lakeshore Demi-Sec, both sweeter, lighter, white wines.  Chris really liked the Meritage and I must admit it was quite good, a very strong, dry, red, but I can only imagine the headache that would ensue if I actually chose to drink a glass of it so that one didn't make our list of ones to buy.

After wine tasting we wanted some lunch.  Whenever we're in a new place I google for the best local restaurants and search for a place that isn't a chain and that the locals rave about.  We really wanted to try Ranch House Ribs but they are only open in the summer months.  Major bummer.  A very nice clerk at the winery suggested Salt of the Earth in Fennville, but they aren't open for lunch.  Major bummer.  So, we ended up at his second suggestion, Phil's Bar and Grill in Sagatauk.  Let me tell you, if you like chicken wings and are in Western Michigan, this is the place to go!  I wish I had taken a picture of them because they were bigger than any chicken wings I've ever seen.  And, they weren't covered in the traditional buffalo sauce or bbq sauce, but instead were tossed with an ancho-chile citrus glaze, which was out of this world.

We made one more stop at Bob's Meat Processing to pick up some bacon because I read that their bacon is even better than Neuske's.  We bought thick cut bacon as well as some maple smoked bacon which we tried yesterday and it was very, very good.

Saturday, Chris and I realizing we couldn't possibly sleep one more night on the air mattress, drove home with Maren and Sully.  Shannon and Quinn got to stay in Michigan for a few more fun filled days.  It's weird being home without them.  Today I made a bowl of popcorn and no Quinn appeared smiling coyly not wanting to say she wants some but clearly wanting some.  I miss them.

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