Since arriving home from our trip to northern Indiana, I have been thinking about all the things we could have done but didn’t while we were there. And that has convinced me that we need to go for another visit. Like this weekend. OK, not really, but we would if we could!
With that said, I thought I’d take the opportunity to share some of my most favorite places in northern Indiana with you, just in case you’re ever in the area and want to have some fun.
- Lake Michigan. Go straight to the lake. Do not pass go, do not collect $200. We didn’t make it to the lake this trip, but that’s probably a good thing, because as nuts as my kid is about sandboxes, we’d still be there today. She would have lost her mind upon seeing the beach. We go to Washington Park in Michigan City the most often, where you can see the Chicago skyline on a clear day. Love it. And it’s not just a great beach during the summer…also totally gorgeous (and not crowded) in the winter months, too. Please go.
- Lighthouse Place. Conveniently right across the street from Lake Michigan and Washington Park is Lighthouse Place, the best outlet mall in the world. Sarah and I spent a glorious afternoon there last week, and I purchased many, MANY things for my children. It got a little out of control at The Children’s Place outlet, but holy moley, there were majorly good sales. It made me very happy. The only downside was that the Vera Bradley outlet wasn’t open yet, and I was planning on shopping there for a new and improved diaper bag…but that turned out ok. More on that later.
- Potato Creek State Park. Love me some Potato Creek in the summertime. We didn’t make it there this trip, but that’s probably because Jon wasn’t with us. Potato Creek is his idea of how to spend a vacation. Trails, hiking, biking, FISHING, camping, barbecuing…it’s the best day outdoors you’ll have in a long time. Totally relaxing.
- Shipshewana. In my brother’s neck of the woods (kind of) is Amish country. Shipshewana is nirvana for people who love the simple life, farming, baking, sewing, and just plain living. Besides the fact that the country scenes in this area are simply beyond gorgeous, there are shops and auctions and flea markets galore. Cheese factories, homemade pretzels, hand-carved pieces of furniture…there is so much to see and do and taste. It’s the type of shopping and sightseeing even my husband can handle, and that’s saying something.
- St. Vincent de Paul. Yes, it’s a thrift store. And yes, it’s one of the places that I always, no matter what, visit when I’m home. St. Vinnie’s (as my father lovingly refers to it) is always chock-full of bargains. And since I’m always hunting for bargains, it’s a match made in heaven. You never know what you’re gonna find, but you can almost always count on it being a heck of a bargain. Goodwill and Salvation Army don’t even come CLOSE to St. Vinnie’s on the spectrum of thrift shopping. And be still my heart, they’ve opened a second location in the South Bend area…sigh. Heaven on earth.
So that’s my heart felt list of 5 of my favorite northern Indiana stops. There are loads more, of course, but these are some of my “old faithfuls” that truly make me feel like I’m home.