Helllllllllo my lovlies! I hope you’re all having the BEST Monday. I’m still riding high on all the happy feels that come along with a weekend at home!
This past weekend was Sleighbell weekend in my hometown! It’s my absolute favorite festival they put on during the year, and I start to look forward to it as soon as August rolls around. Spending the weekend in Manistee during for the Sleighbell Parade and Old Christmas Weekend is literally like stepping back in time. My weekend was filled with family, horse drawn carriages, Christmas trees, spiced wine and smiles.
It was ALMOST a perfect weekend. The one thing that was missing was Trev. He was in Texas for a conference. We like to make a joke that he can’t come to Sleighbell multiple years in a row… his tradition is to miss it. (We’ve been together for almost TEN years now and he’s only made it to 3 parades. HAHA)
But, while I missed him, I still had so much fun!
My weekend started out as soon as I got out of work on Friday. I hopped in the car, grabbed some McDons, and headed North! I spent the first half of my trip catching up on some podcasts. But the second half? Taylor Swift’s new Christmas song was on repeat! I love it so much!
When I got home I snuggled up on the couch with Manly and Jacksy and visited with my parents.
Saturday we woke up and were ready for all things Sleighbell! We headed downtown at 10 am to do some shopping and get pictures by the Big Tree. I was so excited because I was able to pick up quite a few unique last minute Christmas gifts. I love shopping small when I can!
After stopping in all my favorite stores we of course headed to TJs Pub for lunch. We got festive drinks and yummy food. I love TJs because not only is the food great, but the atmosphere is SO cozy and everyone knows our names and our orders by heart. It’s the kind of place you see on a Hallmark movie but in real life. Cozy fireplace and Christmas decor included.
Once we finished lunch we took a little walk on the beach (it was too chilly to stay by the lake too long!) and then headed to visit both sets of my Grandparents! After my visit we headed to the arts and crafts show where I found the most perfect addition to my gift for my in-laws!
Then, we headed home to get on lots of layers before heading back downtown for the parade!
We had hot cocoa, ate roasted chestnuts (I literally try one every year, and every year I hate them), and visited with family and friends as we waited for the parade! It was SO COLD this year! I honestly thought I was going to turn into a Popsicle about an hour into the evening.
We secured our spots across from The Vogue Theater (where we always stand for this particular parade) and watched as the Victorian themed entires marched their way down Riverstreet. (Want to see a little bit of the parade? Head over to my Instagram and click on my “Pure Michigan” highlight reel! You’ll see some of last year’s parade!)
The best part of the parade is at the end, everyone follows the massive tree down to the end of River Street to watch it get lit. It’s just so dang pretty! And there are fireworks!
After the parade, we grabbed some Big Al’s and headed home to eat and decorate my parent’s Christmas tree. This year was super bitter sweet. It’s our first Christmas without our sweet Mojo. We smiled and told stories when we pulled out his Jingle Bell collar that he loved so much. But we also cried a lot when we hung his special ornament and his stocking.
Then, we ended the night with the new Hallmark movie!
Sunday we woke up early to go to Church and breakfast! We got to eat at another one of my favorite places in town, The House of Flavors! They have such a yummy diner breakfast. (The best kind!)
After breakfast we packed up my Jeep and it was time for me to head home. My weekends in Manistee always FLY by. When Jacksy and I got home, Trev was home too! He had a good time in Texas, but he was sad he missed out on Sleighbell!
We spent our evening catching up, meal prepping and filling out Christmas cards! (We’re like so behind this year. We’re just hoping to get them to our family before Christmas eve. HAHA)
Tonight we’re snuggling in with dinner and watching something Christmas-y on TV! We’re not sure what yet… I’m sure Disney+ will help us decide 🙂
Have a fantastic rest of your Monday my friends! I’ll be back tomorrow 🙂