Thursday, September 19, 2019

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

A visit to Charlevoix

One more thing we did while on vacation was to visit the city of Charlevoix.  It's about an hour away from Traverse City.
We wanted to go to see the Mushroom or Hobbit houses.  They were built by Earl Young between 1919 and 1970.  Most of them have a distinctive wavy roof, are built of stone, fit into the natural landscaping and a lot of them have a rock fence of some type.
We were able to walk around one area and see a lot of them, then drove to see a few more.

Upon arriving in Charlevoix, we found they had lots of beautiful buildings, including these churches.
We found the visitor center, got a map and started on our walk.

 This was the first house Earl Young built for himself.  The main house is to the right.  The house above the garage is a guest house.

 Isn't this stone work incredible?

This is the original Mushroom House.

 This is the Half House.  It looks like it was cut in half.  Earl Young built it for his daughter when she got married.

 The current owner has a sense of humor and has a gnome sleeping on the roof.

 This is the Thatch house - the only one with a thatched roof.

 This was Earl Youngs second house.  If you can see the chimney, you will see that he made it to look like the concrete was melting.

This house is named Abide.

 This house was built for the owner of Speedway and is right on the shore of Lake Michigan.  It's since been sold and is now owned by the Bolthouse Farm family.  They produce lots of baby carrots!

 This home has this stone fence that seems to go on forever!

Some of the homes have mailboxes that go with their homes.

 We caught glimpses of Lake Michigan as we made our way around the city.  It was looking a little rough.

We had packed a picnic lunch and we ate it on a bench looking over the pier.

After lunch we went through this old home.  It was the home that Earl Youngs wife grew up in.

 Then it was time to head back.  It got darker and darker as we drove.

 Soon we were in a deluge!  We were happy to get back to our little cottage.

It was a good evening to read and relax!
The next day we packed up and drove home.  We had a restful and enjoyable time and some day we hope to return!

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Historic Farms Botanical Tour

The next day, we did a tour of the Botanical Gardens that are now on the grounds of the farm that supplied the Hospital with fruits, vegetables, meat, milk... for many years.

 One of the first things we saw was this gravestone.  The only thing buried on all this property is here, and it's a cow.  This cow was a world champion who died in 1932 and still holds records today!

They let Bob drive a golf cart for this tour.  He had fun doing it!

 There were lots of beautiful flowers...

The barns were beautiful too!

This barn burned at one time - the darker brick is the newer part.

 They took very good care of the animals.  They had cork bricks for the cows to stand on, the barns were heated, and each stall had fresh water plumbed in for them to drink.

In one of the barns was another tunnel.  There was a root cellar here, so they were able to get the vegetables through the tunnel.

This is the original horse barn.  It was unable to be restored, so they saved the foundation and made it into a walled garden.

 This is what it looks like now.

The flowers are planted as the barn was originally laid out, with flowers in the stable area.

It's hard to see, but there are 2 Japanese Lion sculptures on either side of the opening.  They were a gift from Japan to a U.S. General and he recently donated them to the gardens.

 When you walk through that opening, there is a Japanese Garden.

 Such a gorgeous place!

Here's  mystery to end the post.  These flowers were next to a sign explaining the history of the barns.  Our guide said that flowers appear every week.  They come in a variety of containers; pitchers, vases, canning jars.  However, no one ever sees them get delivered or picked up!