Summer Vacation

Happy… almost not summer anymore.  I’ve been plugging away at various projects, but really, all I’m here for today is to show off photos from my summer vacation.

Every year since… 1989?  1990? My family has made the trek three plus hours north of Detroit to our family cottage in Oscoda.  The house belonged to my uncle, but he eventually gave it to my parents when I was in high school.  It sits in the middle of the Huron national forest.  We think the cabins out there were railroad cabins from the 20’s.  Someone else suggested they might have been part of a Greyhound bus waystation in the 40’s.  Either way, our house started life as a one-room cabin built on a foundation of sand and, almost a hundred years later, is still sitting there, slowly sinking.

I take one week vacation, over the fourth of July weekend, and go back to Michigan to spend a week in the woods.  I spend more time at the cabin than I do my childhood home.  But, I guess in a lot of ways, it is my childhood home.  It’s certainly where my heart lives.

(Cameo by my dad)


The thing about northeastern Michigan is that it’s nothing like northwestern Michigan.  Northwestern Michigan has Traverse City and huge houses and hipster bars and tons of money.  Northeastern Michigan has aging hippies and tumbledown shacks and a town that still looks like it’s waiting on the return of the lumber industry.  I like it that way.  (We did get a hipster bar this year, and they have KILLER chicken and waffles.  But it’s kind of an albatross.)

The other thing about northeastern Michigan is that it’s the only place I still take photos.  I’ve been a photographer for a while and, while I still shoot Vaudezilla’s student showcases, the only place and the only subject matter that really gets me going is the north woods.  It’s where I shot my first pictures on my first ever camera. (I shoot the same photo every year, it’s this one:)

It’s where I went, driving halfway across the state and back in one day, when I needed photos for my college art classes.  It is a place that I wish could exist eternally as it is in my memory, and I make sure to preserve it as best I can.

Most of these photos are either from Iargo Springs or Sturgeon Point lighthouse in Harrisville, MI.  The hats and antiques are from Penny Lane antiques in Tawas City.  Penny let us in as she was closing up shop on Sunday afternoon.  I was wearing the little velvet dress from the 20’s that I bought last year, and my brown crocodile Florsheims.  We were enthralled by each other.  She invited us out to her house to dig through her vintage collection, but I had to decline, which is something I regret somewhat deeply.

Hat and high chair

Fur House label

green glass bottles

Zenith radio dial


Oh, and I was going to keep this a secret until I got photos, but I also obtained a pristine Lilli Ann jacket from the 40’s.  For $40.  (She did not come from Penny Lane.  I’m not giving up the source of this one, sorry not sorry.)  I promise I’ll take photos soon.

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