JJ’s Northern Adventure

There’s really not much to do in our area and JJ never found a close friend who shares his interests. Over the years we’ve looked for interest or hobby groups but none were available. Last February we finally found a writing class offered through the community program at a public school in a nearby town. JJ was disappointed that he was the only student since he was hoping to meet people his age with similar interests. However, it turned out to be a blessing. The teacher was a writer and journalist who helped him with the book he is writing. She actually made few suggestions or corrections but encouraged him greatly. In fact, she felt he was such a wonderful writer that after the four-week class ended, she continued working with him at no charge. He called her last week to tell her that he wouldn’t be able to continue the class–I’ll describe the reason in the next paragraph. At their last session she hugged him, offered to be a job reference for  him, gave him a $25 gift certificate to Barnes & Noble and a card in which she wrote, “Never forget you’re a wonderful writer! It’s been a joy working with you.” JJ was incredibly touched and encouraged.

Large frozen waves. Photo from the blog, Our Adventures Up North.
Large frozen waves. Photo from the blog, Our Adventures Up North.

Anyway, JJ was feeling bored, discouraged,  and restless so I suggested he go up north with his Dad. He couldn’t go last week because he had to have his port flushed at the Cancer Center. We told the nurse flushing his port that we were moving to the Emerald City. She told us that while she wouldn’t want to live up there where it’s so cold and snowy in the winter, it’s a beautiful and amazing place. She said one winter she went there and the large waves of the nearby Great Lake had frozen. Crowds of people were walking onto the frozen lake and climbing the waves. When we got home, I look found pictures of it on the Internet. It’s beautifully amazing and I can’t wait to climb frozen waves in the winter.

Last Friday EJ arranged for a two-bed hotel room so JJ could stay with him. The receptionist didn’t even charge him extra for JJ, which I thought was nice.

When I suggested JJ join his Dad, EJ was working from 7 p.m. until 3:30 am., which is in sync with JJ’s night owl schedule. JJ would be still awake when EJ got home from work, they’d sleep at the same time, and then they could spend the day together. However, last week EJ began working first shift, which means their schedule is incompatible and JJ would be alone most of the day and spend only a few hours with EJ before he has to go to bed. I didn’t know how that would work. I encouraged JJ to not stay in his hotel room, but to explore and interact with people.

When they reached TC yesterday, EJ showed JJ where some of the main roads are located. We ordered a GPS from Amazon last weekend to help him (and later me) find our way in the area, but JJ won’t be able to get it until next weekend, so he has to learn his way this week. In many ways I think it’s beneficial to JJ because he can learn to find his own way and have his own adventures.

This morning JJ dropped EJ off at work and then he went exploring. He stopped at a restaurant for breakfast. He is keeping me updated on his adventures through text and phone calls. He told me, “I am terrified, but I am making myself be bold.” At the restaurant he talked to some of the locals, including the owner. JJ found out that the owner is scoutmaster and he told him he is an Eagle Scout. The owner gave JJ some suggestions about where to look for a job.

I found the location of the library on Google maps and told JJ where it was. The library in the town we live is very small. JJ was amazed that the library up north is HUGE and two stories and filled with all sorts of wonders and amazements. He sent me several texts:


“Am now lost inside library.”

“They have copies of fav comic…” 

“I am having fun”

“Talked to library peeps about card. I do need an address but, aw well, am awesome at the moment.”

“I am in natural element. This is so cooool!”

Vashta Nerada
Vashta Nerada

I couldn’t resist warning him to be careful of the shadows in the library, which is a reference to a Doctor Who episode in which the Doctor and his companion landed in the 51st century to visit the greatest library in the universe, encompassing an entire planet, but are baffled when they find it deserted. They discover the Vashta Nerada, carnivorous creatures living in the shadows, are responsible. All they have is one warning—count the shadows. After my warning to JJ, I told him that I was glad he was enjoying the library and to have fun with his exploring. He later called me to describe all the wonders he was discovering at the library. “This is the best library EVER!” He said books and movies can be borrowed or they can be downloaded onto computers and tablets. He told me that he can look out the window and see the Lake. “I also saw a poster for a Film Festival in the Emerald City!” he exclaimed. I told him that the Emerald City has lots of festivals and activities going on all the time. I suggested he ask the librarians if they knew of any writing groups. He did and said they weren’t aware of any, but they did have several Book Clubs meet in the library. JJ might explore those.

JJ said, “I finally know why you and Dad love Michigan so much. This is an awesome area and very beautiful. There is so much to do here! I love it!”

I love hearing about his adventures, but I mostly love hearing the delight, joy, and wonder in his voice. This move has been so good for my guys. Now they just need to get me up there.

They are working on it. Last week the realtor showed EJ a really nice house–which I mentioned in my last post. EJ says it’s the best place he has seen so far. The house is in the Enchanted Forest. It sits on a hill, surrounded by trees, and can’t be seen from the road. It’s on five acres, although some of the land includes deep gullies to either side, making only about 3 acres usable. That doesn’t bother us because EJ says that no one will ever be able to build right next to us, which gives us space and privacy. I think of it as being a castle with a moat around it. There’s lots of storage, including a pantry that is bigger than our current kitchen. The carpet could use replacing, and we’d paint the walls to colors we prefer, but otherwise it’s move-in ready. The garage is as big as the house so EJ would have an awesome shop. It sounds perfect.

EJ wrote an offer after he saw the house. The house is about $5,000 more than we are qualified for so we offered less. The problem is that the sellers still owe about that much on the house, which means they cannot lower their price. We really wanted a less expensive house, but EJ says this house is more than worth the price. So he has to talk to our loan person at the bank and see what we can do, and then decide whether to get the house or look for another.  The price makes me a bit nervous, but the house is a good one and I really want to join my family.

So we shall see what happens next.

4 Comments on “JJ’s Northern Adventure

  1. I’m happy for JJ and hope that the house will be yours…….did you already sell yours??? Or did I miss that???? ❤


    • Events moved so fast that we need didn’t have time to get needed projects done on our current house. Our projects will add to value of the house so we will get more from it when we sell it. We plan to move up North first and then figure out how to get projects done. Then we will put the house up to sell.


  2. WoW that’s kind of a luxury to do it like that. Here in The Netherlands they did something like that years ago but it is not possible anymore. You have to sell first and than you’re been able to buy another property. There are to many people who would end up with a house that isn’t selling and already having a new one so they end up with to much to pay on both Houses. I hope you’ll find the right house very soon and been able to move to be together again. That would be a comfort and a blessing.


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