Ann Arbor and You Can’t Make This Up.

Ann Arbor and You Can’t Make This Up.

We spent the majority of today in one of our most favorite spots in Michigan – Ann Arbor.

It’s mostly our favorite because of this place.

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Truly. Hank said that when they interview people before hiring, their first question is, “Are you nice?” I thought it was “Are you a hippie?”, but that usually means you’re nice anyway. :)

Introducing Olive Oil Aisle, aka Heavenly Goodness.

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Zingerman’s also has a mail order side to their deli, and might I just leave you with the best advice?

Order something.

Anything, really. They even sell Kosher.

You so won’t regret it.

By the way, they’ll also ship to the military for free. How awesome are they??

This ultra cool kitten invited me behind the bread and goodies counter to take all the pictures I’d like. Loved her.

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I looked at the ingredients on their cookies, and I could pronounce all of the words. Words like “flour” and “sugar” and “chocolate”. There were only about seven ingredients in the whole thing, so if you’re wanting a cheat-treat, it’s just plain goodness.

And their jams? No sugar added. Zippo, zilcho – only sweetened with fruit juice, which is plenty sweet enough.

Just love that place.

Post lunch, we explored downtown. FELL. IN. LOVE. Omaword what a fine browsing spot. We found this little shop right away, and I was drawn in by chevron patterns, baker’s twine, and washi tape.

The boys took the name literally and Rock-Papered-Scissored who got to go in first. And by the way, you can follow this delightful shop on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

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We picked up this piece of wall art. Perfect.

After feeling a little guilty for dragging all men into that cute little store with me, I looked across the street to see this place for Happy Hank, our resident beer connoisseur. We met these fine folks at the last GABF.

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He made a purchase and we kept on going, through Moosejaw, back to the car, and on down the road to Whole Foods and REI, which happen to be right next door to each other. That’s kismet at its finest.

So here’s where I stop the photo story of the day and, believe me, it’s something you’ll appreciate.

And Robert, if you’re reading, I love you.

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But I would be doing a GREAT DISSERVICE by not sharing this story, and since I hate talking on the phone, it must be via the internet.

My father-in-law drives like a bat out of hell. Not all of the time, mind you, but there is this switch that happens and you’d just better thank your Great Aunt Betsy that most cars nowadays are equipped with handles all over so that you can just hang the hell on.

And by the way, since I’m ratting out my awesome FIL, he should also know that he’s in good company with my BIL, Rick, and my longtime friend, Brad.

You guys should ALL install special pockets in your cars with the airplane throw up bags. Just sayin’.

So anyway, here I am, sitting in the back of the car with the 3yo to my left and the 7yo behind us in the 3rd row, and I start giggling to myself and keeping a mental tally of how many people we pass who are passionately flipping off my FIL (of which fact he is oblivious). And this is not far from Detroit, ya’ll. They’ll put a cap in your something. Every once in a while, I take a break and focus hard on the car right in front of us for several minutes to keep my own carsickness in check (I’ve got a great track record of carsickness – goes way back to when my mom used to bring extra washcloths and bags and my own little special yellow Tupperware pitcher of water since I ALWAYS threw up on trips).

After the 5th bird, I tweet this:

My FIL just got flipped off for the 5th time in traffic today. I want to hold up a sign in the back that says, “I KNOW, RIGHT?!”

No sooner had I hit “post”, I look over at little Ewan, who has been intently drawing sea monsters with rogue eyeballs in his new Field Notes book, tongue sticking out like he’s creating a mega masterpiece, and I notice that all of a sudden he stops.

He nervously licks his lips.

His eyes glaze over as he looks at me, a little freaked out and helpless. Hopeless. Pleading.

Oh crap.

“Does your tummy hurt?” I squeak out.

His face gets all contorted and he starts to cry.

This little dude has an iron stomach. As in, he’s only thrown up two times previously, and one of those was from being carsick.

PULL OVER!!! I yell and start beating Hank, who’s in the front seat, on his arm.

You guys. You know that you’re a loving parent when you offer freely to CATCH YOUR KID’S VOMIT.

Yes, I just took you there. Sorry about that.

And my FIL pulls over like he was cordoning off a crime scene, as in right in the mouth of an intersecting street.

Lord help me.

We pull Ewan out, I sequester him around to my side of the car away from traffic, and peel Pukey Boy right down to his skivvies and tennis shoes, making him look like a European track star who’s sponsored by Diego.

I peek back in the car to check on Holden, who has THE WEAKEST STOMACH IN THE HISTORY OF WEAK STOMACHS, and he’s all pale and starting to make the very beginnings of cat-coughing-up-a-hairball noises and I look at him sternly and say a forceful, “NO,” while jabbing my finger in the air at him. “You are FINE. Do not be a sympathy puker.” That child will either be the most pathetic fraternity boy ever in college or everyone’s favorite party trick.

And then I pass out peppermint gum as if my life depended on it to calm everyone’s tummies.

Immediately, of course, I tweet this:

NO LIE – my 3yo just puked in the car. See previous tweet.

Ewan looks at me weakly and whispers,

I didn’t really like that cereal.

I have no idea how to respond, so I just wink and hold on to my handle.

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