A View of My Quilt Life

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Road Trip Detours or How Long Does it Take to Drive 120 Miles

Since I drove up from Harbor Country, Michigan to Grand Rapids on Interstate 196, I decided that to take a different route home - Highway 131.

 I had to be back to my folk's place Thursday evening and it's only 120 miles taking the new route. My decision was based on a few things - I love exploring new routes, I had a bookmark/coupon from Dancing Dogs Quilt Shop, and I wanted to see the Gun Lake Casino. How much longer could that take?  The route up was 106 miles and took an hour and a half. So I figured the new route would be an hour and forty-five minutes plus shopping time, for a total of 2 and a half hours - putting me home around 3:30-ish - perfect!  Ah, optimism is a fun state of mind.
On the Road - I was able to finally drag myself out of the Quilt Show right around 1 pm - it was soooo hard to leave. I could have easily stayed until close on Saturday.  That would put me at my folks about 3:30 p.m. Traffic was minimal, road conditions clear and directions easy.  Off I went, heading south and made it about 20 minutes before I found the first distraction - a Western tack and saddle shop.

Off the Road - I saw Jackson's Western Store (Wayland, MI) billboard advertising boots, boots and more boots. The place was huge and well stock, including a great pair of RED cowboy boots that I almost drooled on. I'm always on the lookout for used saddles of many kinds.

On and Off the Road -  Back on the rode and just a few miles south, I stopped briefly at the Gun Lake Casino to check it out.
On the Road and Off Again - Just a bit further down the road, I pulled off the highway again to check out the Dancing Dogs Quilt Shop (Plainwell, MI). What a neat little quilt store!

The staff was friendly and they cut fat quarters.  A quilt hanging on the wall really caught my eye. They call it the Colored Pencil Stripe Quilt.  It made from the Michael Miller Siren Song Group, utilizing 8 inch finished blocks.  While the sample was cool looking, I didn't like the larger blocks so I decided to buy the kit anyway & just resize the blocks, recalculate the yardage and cuts, alter the layout, oh and I later found some yardage in two other colors (giving me a total of seven colors to work with) that I neglected to buy while I was there. I wonder why I can never just leave well enough alone...

I was told Plainwell has some awesome ice cream that I didn't stop & try but now have one more reason to head north :)  I did some research after the fact (insert head smack here) and discovered that the Plainwell Ice Cream Co. has been in business for 36 years, have over 30 flavors, was voted in the top 5 ice creams in all of Michigan and is located just blocks from Dancing Dogs Quilt Shop.  Now I really, really need to head back north.

 So back to fabric -
Here's the final selection I picked out of the collection (I added Twilight & Grass). I love how the colors actually run together from fabric to fabric.  I'm house sitting for friends this weekend and planning on getting started on this quilt. Just need to do some math...
On the Road - Back on the road, it was time to put some miles behind me. And then I realized, I really didn't have a schedule to keep (for once) and there was a sign for the Lemon Creek Winery (Berrien Springs, MI) and they didn't close until 6 p.m.
Off for an Adult Beverage Adventure  - I had always wanted to taste their wines & I wasn't disappointed! I focused on the sweet wines on this trip so I have a reason to stop back and taste the dry whites & reds.  They craft 28 different wines including 2 ice wines. Of the wines I tasted, I brought home the Cherry Wine and the Peach Spumante.

Okay, so how long does it take to drive 120 miles  - this time, about 5 hours! I think that may be a record for me.

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