Travels // Labor Day Weekend in Michigan




Our friends invited us to spend Labor Day weekend with them at a cabin in Michigan on the Muskegon River. They found the most wonderful listing on AirBnB. The cabin was in the middle of Michigan overlooking the river, and there was room for the nine of us comfortably. The main house had the kitchen, dining room, and living room. There was a second building with additional bedrooms and bathrooms for our big group. There was a 20-person outdoor picnic table near the fire, and a hammock in the trees. There was even a hot-tub that looked out into the endless trees, and a sauna too. For the gaming type, there was a bow, and arrows, and horseshoes too.

Once the sun went down we couldn't see the beautiful surroundings as we drove up. We arrived late at night after work, and a fire was already crackling outside. We had one drink around the fire before heading to bed. By morning, the fire was barely smoldering, but still letting off the iconic campfire scent.

In the mornings I would drink my coffee on the upper deck, on an Adirondack chair overlooking the river. The yellow tubes of people floating by looked like Cheerios in a bowl of milk from that high up. The deck stairs led down to a second deck that was more immersed in the surrounding trees. I would read my book in the afternoon there, and it was so quiet that I could hear every creature rustling in the leaves. The stairs continued ever farther down into the forest floor, taking you right on the river's edge. Following alongside the stairs were the smallest waterfalls, quietly trickling their way down.

The first day, we went tubing down the river for hours equipped with wine, beer, and snacks. The second day, we packed a truck up with canoes and kayaks, and paddled around the nearby lake. We found a small area where we floated in the water, enjoying the sun above us and the trees around us.

There was a small downtown area not far from the cabin with antique shops, restaurants, and bars. One local bar was called Sportsman's, which is the name of a bar in Chicago that we love, so we had to check out Newaygo's version! The common element: taxidermy on the walls. We felt right at home!

We were especially spoiled with our friend, a chef, that brought ingredients for amazing dinners throughout the weekend. There was gnocchi, steaks, mussels, and corn roasted right on the fire. There was always wine flowing, and a fire crackling. The nights around the dinner table, all together, were my favorite. While I love to cook at home and entertain, it was really nice to be treated to an in-cabin chef all weekend. Cleaning up the dozens of plates, silverware, and piles of pots was well worth the trade for the incredible meals that we shared.


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