After a busy day of fun, I couldn't help but sleep in. The bed is just oh so comfy. However, it's another day of adventure for me! I head downtown again for a quick stop at Global Coffee Company because I need to pick up Cops and Doughnuts for my kiddos. This place is another favorite of mine and my kids too. They have delicious coffee drinks, but they offer gourmet toast options like avocado, or peanut butter, banana, and honey, as well as bialy and acai bowls!
Oh, and I definitely need a new candle for my living room so I purchase something clean and masculine smelling from Kymora Kandles just across the street, along with a few other items. You will never buy candles anywhere else. They have fun scents too, like "Andy T's gourmet sweetcorn" (a local farmer and entrepreneur just outside of town) that is famous for his sweetcorn, or another seasonal scent like "cider mill cinnamon donuts." We have two great cider mills that are family friendly, buzzing in the fall but during the year too with their hard ciders and locally made gifts and baked goods. Phillips Orchard and Cider Mill and Uncle John's Cider Mill. And while you are visiting the cider mills, you can check out The Emerald Golf Course for a round of golf, or their pickle pizza. Jay and Katie Eccleton take great pride in this facility, it's actually titled "The gem of Mid-Michigan" for good reason. Anyway, I digressed again.
I make my way to Pictured Home a new little shop on Main Street. It's a remodel and design studio but they have home goods too. If you are looking for an interior designer, or a consultation on what remodel would be best, this is the place to go! Next I hit up owner Emily Badoux's Rise Up Co. another new shop on Main Street. I love the casual, slightly boho, clean aesthetic and I end up buying a shirt, pants, and sweater! I also love that she is all about women empowering women. Why not lift each other up in a world that sometimes feels so broken? Even though I don't need anything else, I have to go visit Chris and Corrine's The Mint Door Boutique for shoes and jewelry to match my new clothes! They have a TON of other items to choose from too. After shopping for myself, I head into AdornMint Gift Shop they have all sorts of fun things for gift giving, hence the name of the store! My favorite is anything custom that store owner Emily and Jamie etch, burn, or ink. I always laugh out loud at the hilarious sayings plastered across everything, including dishtowels and wine glasses. I end up buying a dishtowel that has a picture of a knife on it that says, "chop it like it's hot."
I am starving, and I can't wait a minute longer. Swany's has the best burgers and I'm in the mood for a Bosco burger. It has onion rings, pepperjack cheese, and jalapeno ranch. Owner, Dana Swanson, uses all her own recipes for her breakfast, lunch, and dinner options. Plus she has a heart of gold. Recently an iconic town restaurant closed down and Dana asked the staff and cooks if they would come work for her. How AMAZING is that? You can watch the Swany's story here. We do have a pretty cool Fresh-Mex place called the CRAVE Shack. Everything on their menu is good and you can either make it burrito style or a bowl. This is the healthier of the two lunch options for sure, so if that is what you are going for than I suggest CRAVE. After lunch I go change and head over to the city park to snowshoe the trails, they are not long, but they are pretty any time of the year. You can park at the sledding hill, and the trail entrance is straight past the hill on your left entering the woods, there are two or three loops and they are marked by green, red, or blue shapes. Which definitely mean something but I'm not sure what. Just stay on any of the trails, and they will get you back(ish) to where you need to be. Besides trails, a sledding hill, and the other common "city park" things, this park has frisbee golf and an ice skating rink (manmade). Sleepy Hollow State Park and Motz County Park are just outside of town and they both have outdoor adventures year round, but that is for another day because it's time to head over to ArtExplosion at Agro-Liquid. I LOVE that they feature local artists, it's like a tiny Art Prize and I think everyone needs more art in their life. I also have a friend that has entered some of his work and that makes me so happy!
Is it time to eat again? Probably not, but for this weekend it is! Tonight is pizza at Lil G's. Lil G's is a great option if you are gluten intolerant. Funny because the owners of Lil G's come from Italian beginnings, but they've learned to cook and bake what is missing from other restaurants in the area, keto and gluten free options. But, their pizza is delicious and filled with gluten so that's what I am eating tonight. I go with a few specialty pizzas, because I can never choose just one, so I order the "house special," "lil g's," and the "calabria margherita." I head to Ryan's Roadhouse for a night cap and if I was interested in watching a sports game, I could do this here. Ryan's is a lodge type style restaurant and bar and it's been around for a long time! I celebrated my 21st birthday here! It's like the "Cheers" of St. Johns, you walk in and everybody knows your name. You see the same people sitting at the bar, you know the serving staff and the bartenders, and Ryan is always there too. And in no way is this a negative thing. It evokes a sense of comfort and community really. Is that weird? Maybe. Oh and Ryan offers a salad bar and brunch too! Anyway, as I'm having my night cap I decide that I'm not quite done for the evening and I feel like going night sledding in the city park because it's a full moon, and the snow is sparkling like diamonds, the wind is still, and everything is silent.
Sunday morning for me includes sleeping in, another trail run, another gourmet breakfast at The Nordic Pineapple and then off to church. We have many to choose from in town, Catholic, Lutheran, Baptist, Methodist, and Non-Denominational. Here is a list of some of the churches and services. After my morning activities, it's time to head back home, back to the reality of life, but I really need a staycation from my staycation. I do want to mention depending on the season, we have a spray park, concerts, farmers market, and other pop up events, checking the community Facebook page is ALWAYS a good idea for what is happening around town. And the highlight of the summer? The annual Mint Festival which takes place the second weekend in August.
I would be remiss if I did not include East Lansing and surrounding areas. We are a twenty minute drive from Michigan State University, or our Capitol, Lansing, and we are about an hour from Grand Rapids. If you are looking for a college or minor league sports game, you will find them in one of these locations. If you are looking for upscale dining or other craft breweries or distilleries, those also are found here, there is shopping, and art galleries too, but that is a post for another time, this one is still ALL things St. Johns, MI. I hope you enjoyed following along with me as I ate and played my way through our town!