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  • Writer's pictureAnthony Manuel Ramos

A Late Summer Night’s (and Day) Dream

Summertime at the lake is dreamy to say the least. The weather can turn from bright and sunny to dark and stormy without any warning. The lake itself is also an ever-changing vignette with the play of light, waves, and wildlife all making a distinct mark on its beauty and allure. With August firmly supplanted as ‘late summer’ here in mid-Michigan, the month of July is now a treasure trove of memories tucked away. With family visiting, impromptu Tuesday night dinner parties with our neighbors, day trips, and my attempt of learning to water ski and wake surf has all made the entire month a non-stop fun and exciting couple of weeks.

On day trips with friends, we explored the quiet countryside of Clare County. There is a large population of Amish people that make their home here. The Amish general store is chock full of everything and anything you can imagine. Need a new handle for that axe?, a mini cast iron skillet?, muck boots?, handcrafted farm sets for your kids?, jingle bells for your horse?, yep, you can find it here. I can spend a good hour looking at everything for sale and I always find something I could use or need for the new house.

Most recently, a jaunt to the alpaca farm was a favorite outing – Living the Good Life Alpaca Acres is a home to more than 30 alpacas and other assorted farm animals. Their gift shop is filled with items created from the alpaca wool they shear such as hats, mittens, scarves, wraps, dryer balls, and the warmest, softest socks I’ve ever purchased. The proprietors have eight female alpacas ready to give birth too. And a fun fact, (maybe not for the alpaca) is that the gestation period is 11.5 months! Also, alpacas are always born in the morning. It was a fascinating excursion and what was even more astonishing – they also poop in a giant litter box!

From alpacas to pottery, on another spree, we discovered Earthshine Pottery – an artist’s gallery of handmade pottery that just opened this summer. The owners, Susan and Bob, were so gracious and lovely and their work is top-notch, organic and simply dazzling. I absolutely love pottery, the way it feels in your hand, how specific glazes sparkle or stay muted and moody, the natural designs shaped by hand – and the longevity of the art form bowls me over – (no pun intended). I purchased two pieces that I am gaga over, and I am excited to go back to see what is new on the shelves of the gallery.

As summer slowly edges along toward fall, at the end of the day, Marc and I sit out on the screened porch and have that quiet time to talk about our day, the upcoming weekend’s plan. We enjoy our dinners along with the sounds of nature with chirping crickets, croaking frogs, and that wild and mysterious call of the loons. This summer we are fortunate to welcome a baby loon on the lake and are thrilled to watch its growth. At bedtime, my brain recycles the day, my eyes close, and I wade into a dreamy sleep nestled into our home in the woods.

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