Amish Paradise- Great Amish Breakfast in West Michigan

Our family shared an experience that took us back to a simpler time. We traveled about an hour north for an old fashioned Amish breakfast. We found out about it through word of mouth. There is no website or phone number to call. You just show up. At first the directions I was given were by roads and landmarks. I was relieved when I received a gps address. That’s the only way we would have found it.

Amish crossing sign

After several dirt roads and an obvious change in residents we finally found the house.
At first we didn’t know where to go or if this was really where you could get breakfast.
We were told to go through the door.
Amish Paradise- Great Amish Breakfast in West Michigan
We immediately saw the room with tables set up.
Amish Paradise- Great Amish Breakfast in West Michigan
Basically you just sit down and they will bring you want you want to eat.
You have the typical breakfast food options. We choice the best of both worlds with the “Sarah Special.”  It gave you a sample of everything.
Amish breakfast
It was also served with my favorite breakfast food, bisquits and gravy.
Amish Paradise- Great Amish Breakfast in West Michigan
This southern girl was not disappointed. The homemade bisquits and gravy were amazing. In fact everything was so good. All of the kids were happy.
Amish Paradise- Great Amish Breakfast in West Michigan
The food is all cooked on a wood burning stove.
Amish kitchen
It was such a great experience for our family and friends to have with a subculture we don’t encountered very often.
The meals are by donation to help with the cost. We like to give a little more because this is helps them do what they do….and it’s one less meal I had to cook. We also purchased some cinnamon rolls on the way out.
They also sell homemade rugs and a few other items.
Amish rugs
There is a cheese factory down the road that we stopped at on the way back.
Amish cheese Farm Country Cheese House
They don’t make cheese on the weekends but you can still stop by and try samples before you buy.
Amish cheese
I highly recommend taking some time to appreciate the Amish way of the life.
Amish house
If you live in the Grand Rapids area and want to visit, click on this image and print this card when you go.












You can visit the Farm Country Cheese House site for more details of their daily operations.

Please comment if you have found an Amish place that you enjoy visiting near where you live.


Family Circus Class with Cincinnati Circus Company

Family Circus Class with Cincinnati Circus Company

I think watching the 80’s/90’s tv show “Circus of the Stars” planted the seed in my mind that anyone could try being a circus star. So I tried trapeze with friends…..

………and then we tried trapeze as a family.

So then the logic was that if your family is a circus already …might as well learn a few skills to impress the neighbors.

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Fly Fishing Adventure


Fly fishing adventure Cover 2

One of the perks of having friends with diverse interest is when you get to share one of their dream adventures. I recently joined my friend on an 8 hour guided fly fishing trip. This experience was WAY out of my comfort zone. My friend and I both operate from different sides of appreciating nature.

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The Adventure List Made Simple


Check out my adventure list so far and get inspired to try something new too!

*Just click on what you want to read more about.


Classes I’ve tried


Square dancing

Family Circus class

Hula hoop class

Aerial silks and hoop class

Hot yoga

Good Form Running

Laughing Yoga

Belly Dancing 



Winter Activities

Luge winter track


Driving a dog sled

Intro to curling

Moms Hockey


On, In and Under Water

Stand up paddleboarding SUP

Guided Fly Fishing

Underwater Hockey


Inside Fun

Indoor trampoline arena

Indoor rock climbing

Indoor Segway Ride

Attending a Roller Derby

Participating in Roller Derby Practice

Indoor rock climbing


Outdoor Fun


Luge summer track

Picking blueberries

Police Ridealong

Zombie Walk

Flash Mob

Becoming a Guiness Book of world Record Holder

U2 Concert

Shakespeare in the Park

Working with a community garden


TV Shows

Tv show extra for Travel Channel’s “Bert the Conqueror”

Live taping of The Oprah Windfrey show with the cast of The View



Sprint Triathlon

Mud Run

Color Run



Group teambuilding/ awareness exercises with horses



Mega Deal Destination

Gap Clearance Center (this is not an “outlet”)


Specific Destinations

Sleeping Bear Dunes

Nelis Dutch Village

Heidelberg Project

Garden of Hope

Cincinnati Zoo

John Ball Zoo

Hell, Michigan

University of Cincinnati football stadium (open to the public)

University of Michigan football game

Heartside Art Gallery

Hittsville, USA (Motown Museum)

Rabbit Hash, KY

Greenbrier Hotel, Sulphur Springs, WV (bunker tour)



Tom + Chee

Screams ice cream Hell, Michigan

Culinary School Restaurant lunch

Authentic Amish breakfast


Cool Annual Events

Art Prize


Cultural Event 

La Travita Cincinnati Opera 


Adventure Articles I’ve written for


Tallship ride (Michigan Maritime Museum)

Sleeping on a submarine (USS Silversides Museum)

Sand Dune ride (Saugatuck Dune Rides)

Underwater hockey (Holland Aquatic Center)

Saugatuck Sunset Cruise

Car races (Berlin Raceway)

Train excursion (Coopersville and Marne Railroad)

Cable wake boarding (Placid Wake Park)

Stand up Paddleboarding (Wet Mitten Surf Shop)

Pure Barre exercise class

Windmill Island Garden
















Walk like a ….ZOMBIE?

zombie cover

My husband and I recently participated in a zombie walk. We are not the type of people who normally like to dabble with the dark side but I was really curious to check out what this experience was all about. I honestly had never even heard of a “zombie walk” until I saw promotions about one that was going on downtown. Our kids were spending the night with their cousins so we had to make the most of a kid free night. You can’t waste free childcare when you get the opportunity!

We drove downtown to check out our first zombie walk.

They were supposed to meet at a plaza and then parade all over downtown. We got there a few minutes late but some bystanders told us which direction they were headed. We had to speed walk to catch up but found the group. There were all varieties; friends, families, musicians, all decked out as different types of zombies. We observed them from a rooftop parking garage and then decided to go in for a closer view.

Zombie Walk

We followed behind them for a while walking behind the tuba zombie.

Zombie Walk

We walked several more blocks behind them so that we could get a get look at all of the costumes.

So as we were on our way back to the car, we got inspired by the simplistic costume a dad and his two boys had. Basically a white t -shirt cut up over their clothes. I knew of another zombie walk going on at a college campus at 10:30 that night. That gave us enough time to create an outfit and get there. My husband agreed to participate and the price of free was perfect. We couldn’t waste a kid-free night just sitting at home watching tv and we didn’t have the budget to go out to eat or do something else. So why not be undercover parents, who’ve been married 13 years with two kids, pose as zombie college students.

We were starting to get into the idea of crashing a college zombie walk.  We began looking for old clothes to shred up. My husband found an old t shirt with a pre existing hole. I was struggling to find something. I generally like my clothes so it was really hard to find something to dice up. After about 10 minutes of searching I remembered my mother in law had a bag of clothes in the car that she was giving to goodwill.  I figured they were fair game. After dicing up our clothes to zombie level, it was hair and make up time. This is were my husband put me to shame. He came out of the bathroom with a better make up job than me.

I teased my hair to get the full effect and we were ready to go.

We had to laugh at the idea of our kids finding out what their parents were doing while they were gone. We got to the campus a little early and parked at the nearby campus housing. We just kind of hung out in the parking lot waiting for everyone to get to the meeting location. There were busses that were also shuttling people over from another part of campus. I would say we were the only people there who didn’t at least no someone else.

Zombie Walk

We found some stranger to take our picture and then observed the other zombies around us.

Zombie Walk

There was a Snow White, an Osama BinLaden, meat processors, nurses and  regular college student zombies to give a lot of variety.

We waited for a while for the other buses to get there and then started our walk. Lots of the zombies were totally getting into character and even running up to people on their doorsteps. Some even went into a few apartments if the door was open from them observing the crowd.

A car load of students was leaving the area and they were immediately swarmed by zombies. No doubt it would have felt very creepy and claustrophobic, seeing hundreds of people surround your car. They were instructed to move away from the vehicle after it started to get out of hand.

We walked around for about 20 minutes. It was SO COLD! We were ready to go when it was over. Overall we were glad we got out of our comfort zone and did something we would have never imagined doing. It was fun to dress up, step into character and pose like college students.

Ever wanted to try a zombie walk?

Check out this site for an upcoming event near you.

Many zombie walks across the nation are used as fundraisers to help local food pantries and check out  worldzombieday so you can be on your best zombie etiquette.

Adventures In Exercise – Why it took me so long to try a Spin Class

Why it took me so long to try a Spin Class Cover

“I’m soooo sorry, Are you ok?,”- that’s what the old lady in my hydrorider class said to me after she accidently dropped her 55lb bike on my head as I was helping her get it into the water. I was fine but had to hold an icepack on the side of my face for the whole duration of the water “spin” class.

We had joined our gym a few years ago and it took me the longest time to even try a group class. I always thought the women that attended those were genetically superimposed with the DNA of superheros. I was so intimidated to stare at myself in front of a mirror with a bunch of other women doing exercises or dance moves that looked ridiculous.

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Spontaneous Date Night

I recently saw an article in a Grand Rapids magazine featuring a local artist who lives downtown who creates libre inspired art featuring women. I had to laugh out loud because we went to his loft on a spontaneous date night. Our kids were invited to spend the night at their cousins last second around 8ish. I immediately began researching fun options because I was not going to waste a kid-free night. It’s a beautiful thing not to pay for childcare.  So after checking out the options, I narrowed it down to an indy band playing at what seemed to be a Mexican restaurant down town. It was close to a sketchy area of town but that doesn’t really phase us. We went to a college in the ghetto in Dallas where we witnessed our first drive by together while walking on the track. Romantic huh?

I had written down the address along with the name of the restaurant but we could not seem to find it. So finally I asked a group of people inside what look like a store front. Turns out we had crashed a mustache party complete with mustache hors d’oeuvres. The hostess guided us thru her party to the back door and told us he lived upstairs.

So now we are going to someone’s home! We had to go up the stairs anyway to leave to our car so we decided to follow the music to the door instead.  It was really awkward because the music was low key and we walked into someone’s loft living space. We were charged $5 at the door and told we could sit or stand wherever we wanted.

We stood for a while and then sat on the couch. It was a true bachelor pad with true bachelor furniture; backless couch cushions in all. As we sat packed in closely to a room full of strangers, we couldn’t help but notice that -1. most people seemed to know at least a few people there and- 2. there were a lot of  libre style canvases all over the walls.

So here we are sitting in a strangers ‘s home, on his couch, listening to a band we’ve never heard of while gazing at art with women in wrestling masks. It was comical and awkward to say the least. After about an hour or so there we gradually slipped out of his home back to our house. We did have an unpredictable date night to change up the temptation to do something less out of the box. I’m glad we went anyway and no doubt will think about our date night every time I watch Nacho Libre with our boys.

Need some creative date ideas? Check out  date ideas