black and white NYC amatuer style

Hello loves!!! my blog posts have been missing but I have been traveling, organizing and working on a novel. I recently went on a fabulous trip to Boston and NYC for my nephews eleventh birthday. I may have to gloat a bit. He is amazing! So needless to say I spent some awesome quality time with one of the coolest, funniest and smartest eleven year olds on the planet.

I ate fabulous food, drank fabulous drinks and spent a lot of time snapping photos. My sister is one of the most impressive people in the world and like me a supreme scheduler. So without further ado!

Here is my less wordy more imagery post on NYC black and white amatuer style:


Central Michigan

I randomly decided to pay a visit to my friend Rachel at Central Michigan University. I am currently sitting in the living room of her dorm listening to dorm life quietly awaken on a Saturday morning.

I arrived yesterday evening and we went to a play. A Skull in Connemara  at the Theater-on-the-side on Central’s campus. It was a delightful Irish story. The actors did a pretty good job on their dialects. I may be a wee bit spoiled after spending so much time in Boston enjoying Irish accents. All in all they did a great job.

Now to get some coffee and continue my weekend of theatre adventure back down state to The Whiting in Flint to see Dracula. 

What a beautiful day for an adventure.

I am back

Wow it feels likes I haven’t posted in forever. Sorry about the delay. I have contracted the mid-winter cold from hell. It’s been a week and a half of stuffy, runny, sleepy and headachey. But I did manage to adventure for a couple of hours last weekend to the Snowfest in Frankenmuth, MI. For those unsure of this magical place it is located just north of Flint and home to famous fried chicken and the world’s  largest Christmas store, Bronner’s.

So in my dilapidated sickness I headed north. I arrived on Saturday at about 10:30 am. I was sure I would find parking so I opted to skip the shuttle service from Bronner’s christmas store and find my own spot. Yes I am a wee bit stubborn. I drove many circles in the small downtown before ending up at Heritage park. After crossing the length of the park and scaling an icy hill I was at the famous covered bridge. 246

Such a beautiful bridge and I finally got to drive across it. Amazing  little downtown filled with wonderful shopping. Fudge, cheese, cuckoo clocks and tantalizing finds everywhere. I have been to Frankenmuth many times but this was my first Snowfest. They were celebrating 25 years of Snowfest and the turnout was incredible. 250

There were people everywhere and snow and ice sculptures a plenty. Such talented people and art converging into this winter fantasy was purely breathtaking.

I walked around a bit and then stumbled upon the Lager Mill. Did someone say lager? I was in for a visit. It was a beer store and museum. I was totally impressed at the craft and micro brew selection as well as the meads and ciders. It has been around for about five years and it will definitely be a stop whenever I head there again. I was looking for a snack and a pint though so I was now on a quest. 266

I knew there was a brewery in the vicinity. Google can be a lifesaver especially when you are craving a lovely pint. Yes Frankenmuth Brewing Co. Perfect. I got in the car and parked a half mile north. There was a quite intense wait but me on my solo travel snagged a seat at the bar decided on the porter and a bowl of beer cheese soup. I was not disappointed. It was the perfect remedy for the chill in the air and me nursing my cold.293

All in all a wonderful successful adventure in Frankenmuth. I do love travels and adventures even when I am slightly under the weather. Until next time. Cheers!!!

Hey hey hey 

It’s Thursday my usual post day but this post will be a baby post. I have spent the majority of my week sick as a dog. You know the stuffed up can’t breathe sick? Then the instantly your nose is running like a nonstop faucet sick? 

Yes both and yes everyone should buy stock in Kleenex. I hopefully will be able to write about a fabulous adventure soon. I suppose I could just talk more sickness but that’s no fun. 😊 

So yes I am off to bed because my body feels like it’s been trampled on by a fleet of bunnies wearing Doc Martens. Yes the cold medicine is lovely. I will be back soon thanks for the love.

Artist Spotlight: Derick James Miller

In my travels in and around Flint, MI I have seen many great artists works. One that particularly caught my eye was the work of Derick Miller. Derick James Miller, 46 is an illustrator originally from Boston, MA who resided in Flint for almost 10 years. He has been doing art for about 15 years and painting for about five. His works have been on display at several Flint locales such as Churchill’s bar and he also has a mural he created at the Whisper  bar and

I had a chance to catch up with Derick and this is what he had to say about Flint. “My favorite part of Flint was the history and the people. The true struggle and overcoming certain issues.” He currently lives in Ithaca, NY but plans a trip back in the spring and is hoping to meet some new cool people.  Here are just a few of his Flint inspired works.


Derick’s illustrations are created with Prisma markers and acrylic paints. He also works with airbrushing and one shot. He is a professional framer for his artworks as well as others. You can view Derick’s works at He is on Facebook  dmiller.artworks/ and Instagram:  derickmillerart.

Derick has traveled all over displaying his artworks. Here is Derick with his son Mike as a vendor at the Bo Huff  Rockabilly show in Ontario, CA.



I love Derick’s free flowing fun vintage style that really encompasses the automotive culture in the Flint area. He is one artist to be on the lookout for. A very talented man who embraces the Flint culture in his artistic vision.


Hello! Snowy and bitter cold week here in Michigan. This week’s adventuring led me to do one of my favorite things…thrift shopping or thrifting or bargain hunting. I found myself venturing to my local Goodwill to see what I could scoop up.

My love of thrifting started when I was 16 yrs old and a junior at Linden High school. I wanted so badly to fit in with the preppy kids my sophomore year. I begged my mom to let me have some money so I could buy my own clothes that year. She grudgingly agreed. I took the cash super excited to go buy my Polo rugby shirts and my Girbaud jeans. Yes, I was very happy with that one pair of jeans and two shirts. Lesson learned. The next year I asked her for the same thing. You see after not having a wardrobe the year before I learned to pick up items on the cheap here and there. Thrifting became my art and I was going to buy a gallery for senior year.

That was a long time ago and ever since I have been thrifting, garage saleing and rummaging to get the coolest retro and vintage styles for an awesome deal. For  my challenge today I was going to buy a complete look for less than fifty dollars. First stop the local Goodwill. The shirt was on the new items rack for $4.99. Goodwill stores get brand new items from Target stores and sell them on the cheap. Not just clothes but things like iPhone cases as well. I got my last case there for three dollars. Then I found the skirt bargain priced at $3.99 but it had a purple tag so my lucky day…half off. Most thrift stores such as Goodwill and the Salvation Army will have color coded tags on all their clothing. As soon as  you enter the store make note of what color is the sale color. Skirt ended up being $1.99. Onto the shoe section. I spotted the boots right away and snatched them up for a mere $4.99. I was just about to wrap it up when I saw the brown crushed velvet Guess bag for $7.99. Goodwill store total: less than twenty bucks.

I was then looking for jewelry. One of my favorite places to buy jewelry is estate sales but since it’s winter those are few and far between. My next favorite place to shop is Target. They have pretty cool and funky jewelry and their clearance section is decent. They also have Starbucks and my coffee love is great. Off to Target with a mission of a statement necklace and a triple grande nonfat latte. Success! I found the perfect smokey quartz rhinestone necklace for $8.48. SO my grand total for this look:   $29.08. Under thirty dollars!

I love clothes and love thrifting so I will be sure to have more snow days to share with you soon!

It’s freezing! 

First snow day of the year around these parts. I was fortunate enough to make it out this past Friday night to Churchills in Flint for the Art Walk.

Lots of exciting things going on in Flint and so much great art to be seen. I had the privilege of talking with several great people. I am just starting to get reacclimated to this great city where pride and love still are very much present.

What this upcoming adventure holds? Who knows? Keep checking back and I will be sure to keep you all posted! Until then enjoy the bitter chill cuddled up to your favorite person or book.

Thanks for enjoying my adventures. Still to come a field trip with my friend Ken exploring the Art House and the green spaces in the city.

Ice skating is back!

Adventuring again in the great city of Flint I discovered the opening of a public ice skating rink. University of Michigan had reopened the historic rink that was once part of Water Street Pavilion before it closed in 1990. Yes my pulse quickened and my heart got that fuzzy love it gets.  Then I remembered I really don’t skate that well.

This is the rest of the story…

I saw that it opened on the 2nd of January. Opening day on a Saturday – no thanks! I plotted my skating debut for the Wednesday night, less crowded, edition. The weather was fair and I was excited. When I say excited I mean a ball of anxious, nervous, what am I doing?!?  energy. I haven’t skated in well over a decade and I have never skated on a public rink. I grew up near a local lake where there were maybe three other people (tops) sharing the same patch of ice. Now challenged by- not as graceful aging, lack of skill and a whole lot of what if I run someone over? I set my course.

The skating rink is located at 303 S Saginaw. Parking was a breeze up and down Saginaw Street. I began my walk down to the rink. As I approached I noticed it was beautifully lit with holiday lights and there were people. Lots of people, smiling people, uninjured people. Maybe I could pull this off. There were a few U of M police officers overseeing the rink and I mentioned to them before I went down that, I in fact did not have my life alert necklace on and to keep a close eye on me.

They chuckled, but for real. They have the rink encircled by bales of hay which is perfect for putting on skates, resting a bit and stopping flying out of control skaters. They do have free skate rental for those in need but I had brought my own. I laced up my two-decade-old garage-sale-find skates and watched. I watched for a good five minutes. I watched the smiling faces of young and old alike. I saw  children slip, slide and smash into each other. I could do this. Part of the adventure is doing something that is new right?

I stood up and got my legs. A push here, a push there. Holy crap I was skating. I rounded the corners with ease and before I knew it I was smiling and exhilarated with this new-found love. I felt so confident I grabbed my camera and started shooting… while skating! Craziness! Out the corner of my eye I noticed one of the police officers had got on the ice to skate as well. I snapped a photo him and then lapped him.

I must say for being a little nervous and scared it really wasn’t that bad. I stayed on the ice for about an hour then changed into my boots and headed back towards the car. I was passing Churchill’s and decided to pop my head in and grab a pint. Success! They had my current beer crush on tap- Founder’s Breakfast Stout. I chatted with Laura, who was tending bar and Jimmy the chef for awhile about the city, the people and life in general. Jimmy and I got into a pretty deep discussion about fishing and come to find out he fishes Lobdell Lake the lake next to where I spent a lot of my childhood fishing. Small world.


All in all another great adventure in my city! Can’t wait for more and this weekend I will be checking out the Art Walk downtown Friday night. See you soon.

Chilly Monday…my coffee game is strong.

Happy Monday!!! First one of the New Year. I have been daydreaming about my next adventure but also recalling several I have had looking back at 2015.

This past holiday season was my first time seeing The Nutcracker. I saw it at The Whiting Auditorium in Flint. Having my BA in theatre design I can honestly say I was blown away.

The set was fantastic as well as the costuming. I was fancily mystified by the snowflakes dancing and equally intrigued by The Rat King. Let’s not forget that Sugar Plum fabulousness. Amazing dancers and choreography has led me to believe I will be a repeat show goer every holiday season in Flint.

I went out to The Machine Shop concert lounge a couple of times and both times got to snack on some Vehicle City tacos. Dreamy. I might have to do a feature on them so I can overindulge for journalistic purposes. If that adventure is pursued I may have to treat myself to a tasty burger at The Torch for my bravery. 040

They opened the ice skating rink in downtown Flint this past weekend (after 25 years of being closed). They are open Saturdays and Sundays noon- 4pm and Wednesday evenings 6-9pm. 303 S. Saginaw. I am not saying that I will skate this Wednesday but there is a definite possibility! The weather is supposed to be a balmy high of 36 degrees. For January I will take it and enjoy it!

Stay tuned my next adventure is right around the corner.

In search of coffee…

It was a typical start to my day, a to-do list ready for my structured plans. Ready to be assaulted in my take charge and pragmatic way.

1. Feed the cats

2. Make coffee

Make coffee…hmm…No coffee. I had just arrived home from Boston a day prior. Christmas holiday with my sister and family. Boston is a lovely city. Skip coffee onto number

3. Go to Flint and get some photos for tonight’s post.

Geared up and ready to explore, off I went. I didn’t have any trouble finding a parking spot right on Saginaw Street by Third. I gathered some loose change and proceeded to the meter. I had 56 minutes to complete my task. No problem, it was chilly and my caffeine deprivation still lingered.

Mission: To gather as many images as possible of this beautiful city.

I noticed right away it was eerily vacant. After spending a week in Boston, it was a stark difference. I wandered around the corner and saw the Capitol Theatre ,a very hopping place in my heyday of Flint. I started shooting. I was amazed by the enormity and detailed beauty of this building. 019

Then I began immersing myself into the beautiful details of many of the buildings surrounding me. I walked and walked seeing surprising tidbits of artistic detail and history at every turn. I found myself meandering down Buckham Alley. Taking photos of this interesting side street, I saw the Torch, a great little place to grab a beer and have their famous Torch burger. Yum.

Food…Coffee…yes that was still a deficit in my morning. I had about 12 minutes left on my meter to locate coffee. I am in a city. I am downtown. There has to be coffee. I was just visiting a city with a cafe on every block. No problem! I turned the corner. Nothing. I would give it one more block or perhaps have to deal with a meter maid without having my morning fix. That sounded terrifying.

Then I saw it, like a beacon of hope on my horizon. The Ground Floor Market. Approached…open. Entered and yes coffee. The was a young man behind the counter, later to be known as Cameron. There was also a security guard hanging out. All I had was my debit card. They had a five dollar limit. I tried to barter with Cameron offering him my Darth Vader zipper pull but then he showed me his Lego Storm Trooper key chain. No dice. At that time he did tell me that all of the sandwiches in the cooler were free today and that a man had purchased all of them earlier to be given away. Pretty awesome.

I settled on a large cup of Great Lakes coffee and an energy bar from Fenton’s Crust bakery. As I prepared my coffee we talked Star Wars. Realizing the clock was ticking I told him of my photos and that I was starting a blog about Flint. His first question– was is it going to be positive or negative? Positive, of course. I laid out my game plan to him about how I want to focus on Flint’s art, music, food and culture –all the things this great city has to offer.

We were then joined by Cameron’s co worker, a lovely woman named Estela.We chatted about the city and the changes going on in the last decade. We also talked more about the Ground Floor Market. (feature on them later this month.) Worried about my possible meter maid interaction I mentioned I had better hustle. They told me parking was free today. Free sandwiches and free parking! Loving Flint.

Then the security guard who had slipped out stepped back in accompanied by a woman that he directed towards the free sandwiches. She was kind of shocked that they were free and kept asking “are you sure?” uneasily as if there was a catch.

Just free. Just a kind New Year’s Eve gift. She hesitantly selected a sandwich and was very appreciative. She gave us all the most heartfelt New Year’s blessing and before she exited, Estela gave her a cookie as well. With a turn and a beaming smile the woman exited back into the cold vacant street. After she left Estela commented that the scarf the woman was wearing was from a project a group in the city did tying scarves around town for those in need.

I then realized as much as this blog is about an exploration into Flint’s art, music, food and culture, it is also about heart — the kind of heart that makes a forgotten city like Flint still beat warmly and openly on cold vacant winter days.096

I hope everyone is as excited about the New Year as I am and I hope you all come back soon to read more on my adventures in this awesome place I am proud to call my city.