Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Just the Two of Us- after 21 years

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We recently celebrated (last week) our 21st anniversary. I am blessed to have a godly man for a husband, and I love him very much!

He made arrangements for us to go away for two days to a house at 'Lakeside, the Chatauqua of Lake Erie'. One of his clients has a home there that they were willing to let us use for a nominal fee. What a blessing! It was wonderful. No responsibilities and no chaperones for 48 hours! This is a painting of the house we stayed at. It is a more complete representation than any camera shot I got of it.

This is the view from the front side window. You see some tennis court and then the lake. It was really calm and peaceful. The first day the lake was absolutely flat.

At Lakeside everyone gets around by either bike or golf carts. The house we used had two bikes. It was a lot of fun to cruise around this quaint little town.

Part of the charm of Lakeside is their daily cultural presentations. We were there for Civil War Week. They had a woman (Dr. Smith) come in and do a portrayal of Nurse Nellie Noye, a civil war nurse at age 23. Her letters have been recently discovered and also a photo album she had put together. Dr. Smith has transcribed them and uses that information in her portrayal.

Here is Dr. Smith portraying Nurse Nellie as a 60 year old civil war veteran reminiscing and telling the story of her days in the military. She was a widow at this point. She had married one of the young men she had taken care of. She lived into her 90's. Her home is still standing in Grand Rapids MI. This information tied in so well, after visiting Gettysburg the week before.

Lakeside has many beautiful flower gardens. All the downtown area is well maintained and landscaped.

It was so nice to sit and relax down by the lake. Hubby enjoyed the fact that they provided shade. Lots of quiet time to talk.

We enjoyed a round of miniature golf. I was winning handily until he got a hole-in-one on the last hole and I choked. It ended up tied. He actually got a hole-in-one on the first hole as well. I was more consistent, he was more spectacular. We both had fun!

For dinner that night we went out to the Crow's Nest. A very nice restaurant off the grounds. We got there by 5:45 so we were able to take advantage of the Early bird Menu. Roger had the lake perch and I had chicken oscar. Both were very good!

We checked out a nearby state park after dinner. It had a very nice beach. This is a picture of Lakeside from across the bay. It was so nice to be able to relax and talk together without constant interruptions.

Here's my handsome hubby at the door of the house we stayed at. We stopped in briefly before we headed out for the evening's entertainment.

They have an OLD concert hall. I am not sure how old, but it was fascinating. They passed out old fashioned hand fans and kept the large windows totally wide open to let in the night breezes. In some ways it felt like my Grandpa Reader's old airplane hanger, because of the shape.

My honey was fascinated by the all wood ceiling and trusses. There were no posts inside. It was really pretty in a structural sort of way.

The group that played was 'Shepherd's Folly'. A traditional Celtic group. They were from MI. They did an excellent job.

This was our breakfast on Wednesday morning. We had gone to a farmer's market on Tuesday morning and bought strawberries, peaches, raspberries and a cantaloupe. We ate it with homemade granola that we brought with us and milk. It was a totally yummy breakfast!

We enjoyed shuffle board again. Lakeside has about 30 courts. We played a couple games, one before and one after lunch. The weather was starting to cloud up and there were a few rain drops, but nothing that slowed us down.

We had lunch at Sloopy's. They had really good pizza! Everything was homemade. We ate it outside on a park bench. After lunch we rented a golf cart and toured the whole compound. I think there were about 800 houses and condos. Some of the really old houses were pretty neat. It was fun to cruise up and down the hills. A strong breeze started blowing of the lake out of the North East and there was a definite change in temperature. I really like the cooler air of fall. It makes me feel so alive!

We went back down to the lake and watched some small sail boats in the harbor race back and forth int he stiff breeze. It looked like fun to me.

We did take time to walk about the hotel there by the beach. It was built in the 1870's. I heard a bit about it when the tour guide was talking about it to her tour. They had a two story outhouse when it was built. Who would want to use the first floor? The porch is all screened in and they have lovely rocking chairs and checker boards. No one else was out there because of the wind. I loved it!

We walked around on the inside. They say every guest room is different in this hotel. I can tell you that the stairway is most unsafe. It is so old that all the stairs lean in to the center. Also the railing is way too low. I would have to bend over to reach the railing. Not real useful. There was also about 10 inches between the spindles. A small child could easily slip between them. It was about three stories down. They must not have to follow safety rules. It would make me nervous to have children there and I am not an old fuddy-duddy.

We spent the last part of our time there walking along the lake and sitting and watching the waves crashing. It was really relaxing. We only moved on when the rain started.
The lake may have been rough but it was peaceful with us. We thank God for the 21 years He has blessed us with. There have been rough times, but God has always given us 'more grace than we deserve'. (one of my DH most used quotes). It has been so neat to see the spiritual growth in my husband through the years. A good marriage truly does get better as the years go by.
Thanks sweetheart for planning a real special time.

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