Tuesday, October 26, 2010


Mark and I celebrated our 10th anniversary on Thursday the 21st. Ten years! It does not feel like it has been that long already. We have been very blessed with the relationship we have had in our marriage.

In celebration we planned on a weekend away. My amazing husband offered to take me to Michigan to meet Sharlene MacLaren, a Christian fiction author who's books I absolutely LOVE! :) And of course I wouldn't turn that offer down!! So, as it turned out she had a book signing that very weekend so off we went!

My dear friend Missy opened up her home to my children for the weekend, and after a prayer for her strength and sanity we took off.

The trip was good until we entered Chicago. Three hours later we left it. Who knew that in some places going 16 miles would take an hour and a half. I am a very happily spoiled country girl!! Anyway, the rest of the trip went well and we arrived at our hotel at roughly 11:00pm, an hour earlier than we expected since we had completely forgot about the time change. :) It was a nice surprise!

We stayed at the Country Inn in Holland, MI. It was a lovely hotel and was rather remote as it was neatly tucked away from traffic. It also had a convenient location as we were smack in the middle between the book signing and downtown Holland.

After eating our delicious continental breakfast Saturday morning we headed downtown to stop at a music store. Downtown Holland is beautiful! A must see for anyone who visits the area. Beautiful shops and brick sidewalks dotted with quaint little cafés.We also learned from Sharlene that the sidewalks and streets are heated during the winter so the snow melts as it hits the 70 degree pavement. Amazing! I need this installed in my drive way and all around my house. Honestly, an always 70 degree floor inside my house wouldn't be bad either!

We decided to stop at a neat little corner café/restaurant called the AlpenRose. It was beautiful inside! Everything was made of wood and carved so beautiful. The ceilings were carved wood, the decorations were carved wood, and all of it very elegant. We both ordered lunch and received some amazing food in double portion! So, two meals for the price of one is not bad! :) And for the quality of food it was already an amazing price!

Next up was my most highly anticipated event of the trip! Meeting Sharlene MacLaren! We had such a wonderful time with her! What a wonderful person! I'm thinking we will definitely make this trip again! We talked for a couple hours and I hated to go but I didn't want to take up her whole book signing time, especially since we stole her away from her table. Okay, maybe I did want to, but I was afraid I would wear out my welcome... Lol! Too much of Mark and Sarah might not be a good thing? Haha! Anyway, it was so easy to talk and we enjoyed ourselves so much! I am so grateful that God allowed everything to work the way it did so that our paths would cross! God is amazing, isn't He?!?

We did a few things more that day, nothing quite as fun of course. :) We stopped on the way back to the Hotel at an antique and collectibles shop. From the outside (it was in a strip mall) It looked small, but from the inside it looked as big as Wal-Mart. Huge! It took us the rest of the afternoon to walk through every isle. If you were to really look at everything and dig through every pile and bookshelf it would take several days, at least!

Back at the Hotel we ate our supper and watched a movie then turned in to prepare for our journey back. Thankfully, Chicago was much calmer at 10:00 in the morning on Sunday then it was during Friday rush hour. We passed through easily.

We had such a wonderful trip!! I am so thankful for Scott and Missy who were willing to take in my kids for the weekend. What a blessing they have been! And thanks also to Mom and Richard in Texas for helping make it possible! Love you all!

It was a great experience for us and it has been a long time since we have had time for just us. Though, I did miss my kids and was very happy to snuggle them again. :) What an amazing weekend!

1 comment:

SHARLENE said...

Sarah, what a great blog! I loved reading about all your adventures. Sorry it took you so long to get through Chicago, though. Typical for a Friday night, I guess. At least you breezed through it on Sunday morning.

Meeting you two was such a huge blessing to me. (Isn't that a goofy picture of us? I love it.) I believe it was God-ordained that we meet, don't you? Like you, I love the way He orchestrates things, piling blessing upon blessing on us when we are so undeserving. His mercies are new every morning!

So glad you loved Holland. I think you will love Grand Haven just as much or more - only because it is RIGHT on Lake Michigan. From the beautiful downtown you can take the boardwalk past the channel and right out to Lake Michigan and the gorgeous pier and lighthouse. I do sort of describe how it looks in Hannah Grace, the first book in my "Kane" series.

You have a great week. Sending squeezy hugs your way!