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Sunday, July 29, 2012

Summer Home

the Giant at Rosebud
Ah, the summer home… 

I’ve been lucky – both my friends and family have invested in summerhouses, and I’ve been able to be their guest on more than one occasion… Michigan has been a favorite haunt: Crystal Lake, White Lake, Northport Point, Munising, Hazelhurst Camp, Lakeside… I’ve got great friends. I’ve also been to some less than memorable spots in Wisconsin. Once I spent a weekend at Laguna Beach, CA (I think they call them weekend homes.)  My childhood spot was Rosebud in Montana… at Dewey's cabin in the mountains.  Can you see the Giant sleeping in the picture of Rosebud?  

I asked my parents once why we didn’t get a summer home. Their answer was pretty practical… why do we need a summer home? We live by a lake. I think my folks liked to see new places. I was lucky in that respect as well. We camped in the mountains in both Canada and the US; we canoed through the Canadian boundary waters, and we toured fascinating National Parks. As we got older, we eventually saw Europe as a family.   

I kind of feel sorry for the kids today.  They fly everywhere or miss the scenery by watching their videos in the car.  We REALLY got to know each other on those long car rides to go visit grandparents and see new sites.  We sang songs and made up games and kept lists of state license plates.  My dad taught me how to calculate miles per gallon and how to read road maps on those trips.  I became his personal assistant in that regard.

Last weekend I was up in Leelanau Peninsula visiting family and friends and attending a good friend’s wedding. As always, it was fabulous to be in that part of the world. The weather was a wonderful relief from the sweltering heat wave we have been enduring.

I stayed at two different summer homes. Interestingly enough, both owners are artists – and both homes reflect their owners. One is wildly colorful, whimsical and relaxing. The other is stunningly subdued, but gorgeous. Both homes have been magnificently situated to enjoy glorious vistas of their respective lakes… the artists’ need to create a studio within the home.

And the details… they both have outdoor faucets to rinse the sand off ones feet. They both have easy exterior access to boating and bathing paraphernalia… they both have wonderfully large and decorated windows to showcase the lake views. They both have kitchens that open to main living areas, so the cook isn’t removed from the family and guests. I know the two artists didn’t see each other’s plans, yet both knew intuitively what it would take to create perfect summer homes. 

Yes, I’m lucky. 

Are you thinking about that summer home?
Money Crashers: Buying a Second Vacation Home – Pros & Cons, Things to Consider

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