South Manitiou Island

241 :: After Hiking Seven Miles

On the last Thursday of August we took the Manitou Island Transit Ferry across the big lake over to South Manitou Island. In all my years in Leelanau, I had never been to visit this incredibly beautiful place! We hiked to the valley of the ancient white cedar trees and marveled at some of the only “old growth” forest left in Michigan. (In the Midwest?) Why were these trees (many of them well over 500 years old) not cut down in the 1830s and 1840s when the rest of the island was logged to fuel ships? The wind blew in such a way that the massive tree trunks collected sand from the dunes, and the sand dulled the blades of the loggers saws; and so a beautiful grove of white cedars was left to grow and grow. Walking among them truly feels like entering another time. I loved watching the girls and Wallace marvel at the trees after our epic hike through the woods together.

241 :: This Moss

241 :: Ancient White Cedars

241 :: Little Lake

241 :: Lighthouse Lookout

241 :: My Boys

241 :: On Our Way to South Manitou Island

241 :: Pyramid Point from Lake Michigan

Pyramid Point

245 :: Port Onida Beach

on an overcast day at the beginning of September,
when you want to hold on to summer
even as you know it is slipping away,
come here:

245 :: Greens

find all the colors of the rocks
and gather them up in your hands
and then,
throw them back into the lake
for next year
maybe

245 :: Rainbow Rocks

Together

180_pure_magic-180704-1.jpg

Mothering these two beautiful children, ten years apart in age, is one of my greatest challenges and also one of my greatest joys. The connection between them is a tremendous gift. He looks up to her with such unconditional affection and awe. She nurtures him with such adoration. Quite often these days, she is her most expressive self with him.

And he is getting quite an education from her. Today I asked if he wanted to look for tadpoles when we went down to the beach. He looked up at me and said, in his most matter-a-fact way, “We can’t go into their habitat.”

Now I wonder where my 2-year-old learned that?

Dog Days of Summer

169 :: Morning Walk

Theo boy is living a dog’s life over here. And growing so fast! He has tripled in size since we brought him home two months ago. The girls have been diligently training, walking, washing, brushing, giving swimming lessons . . . and generally taking Theo out to explore the world. I know I’ve said this before, probably a dozen times, but I just love to watch them nurture their pup.

168 :: Lavande

169 :: Shake

171 :: Baby Dog

172 :: Sister Photo Shoot

172 :: More Training

178 :: Under the Umbrella

178 :: Wet Doggie, Dog

182 :: Littermates

184 :: Evening Light

Full Moon Swim

174 :: Full Moon Swim

Watching these three in the big lake, splashing under the rising June full moon, it’s hard to believe there was ever a January when I felt so cold and dark and lost. Back on the beach, standing on the threshold of all this life, next to my love, watching our babies — I am so deeply grateful