Swedish Crayfish Party!

Ever heard of a Swedish Crayfish party? I hadn’t either until I started dating Brian a few years ago and began hanging out around his Swedish childhood friend Conrad. From what I understand this kind of party is about eating lots of bottom crawlers and making toasts, calling out “SKOAL!” before each one. I kid, I kid, well sort of… there are also lots of songs that end with “SKOAL!” and a shot.

Now, I’ll admit that while I did get a bit tipsy I mostly sipped my shot with each skoal, and I didn’t actually try a crawfish… but it was still an awesome party with a great backyard party atmosphere. Conrad got married last summer and I think the new wifey might have had something to do with the pin-worthy decor ;-).

Swedish Crayfish Pary (Images by ReadySetSarah)

I’ll let trusty old Wikipedia tell you a little more about it:

“A crayfish party is a traditional summertime eating and drinking celebration in the Nordic countries. The tradition originated in Sweden, where a crayfish party is called a kräftskiva. The tradition has also spread to Finland via the Swedish-speaking population of that country.

Crayfish parties are generally held during August, a tradition that started because crayfish harvesting in Sweden was, for most of the 20th century, legally limited to late summer. Today, the “kräftpremiär” date in early August has no legal significance. Dining is traditionally outdoors, but in practice the party is often driven indoors by bad weather or aggressive mosquitoes. Customary party accessories are comical paper hats, paper tablecloths, paper lanterns (often depicting the Man in the Moon), and bibs. A rowdy atmosphere prevails amid noisy eating and traditional drinking songs (snapsvisa). The alcohol consumption is often high, especially when compared to the amount of food actually eaten (crayfish shelling is tedious work).

It is culturally correct to suck the juice out of the crayfish before shelling it.” – Wikipedia

I think I know who really enjoyed the party though…

Frenchie at the party (Image by Ready.Set.Sarah)

It certainly wasn’t these guys…

Crayfish pile (Image by Ready.Set.Sarah.)

Mutt March with Nelson & Co.

Nelson, a beauty named Sam, and little Ella Deville at the Michigan Humane Society Mutt March – Image by Ready.Set.Sarah!

PUPPIES! I just got home from a sun and slobber filled morning at the Michigan Humane Society’s Mutt March. The Mutt March is an annual event held on the sprawling green grounds of the Edsel and Eleanor Ford House estate in Grosse Pointe Shores, MI on Lake St. Clair. This was our second year walking with Nelson, and this year he brought his little buddy Ella Deville along for the fun.

Here are some glamour shots of Nelson, the brindle French Bulldog that stole my heart-

Nelson the Frenchie – Image by Ready.Set.Sarah!

Now, it’s hard to admit, but the landscape sort of stole the show from our four-legged friends. The Edsel and Eleanor Ford house sits on a large piece of land dotted with weeping willows and tall old trees. Designed by Albert Kahn, the houses on the grounds are all done in the style of Cotswold village cottages (according to their website). The whole place gives me a sense of having stepped back in time.

Houses on the Edsel and Eleanor Ford House estate – the pictures hardly even capture how lovely it really is. Images by Ready.Set.Sarah!

Last year during the walk they were taking down what remained of a wedding reception and even half disassembled the scene was impressive – chandeliers hanging from trees, crisp white lounge areas tucked into bright green trees. This would be an AMAZING place for engagement or wedding photos if you are looking for something in the Detroit area 😉

The details in the architecture are hard not to drool over, the stone facades caped in ivy, the rounded doors and tiled roofs. One of my favorite structures is the gate house –

The beautifully design gate house. Image by Ready.Set.Sarah!

The grounds were designed by landscape architect Jens Jensen. After finishing a lap with the Mutt March we decided to spend a bit more time exploring the paths along the lake. I would love to come back and spend a day picnicking along the water, there were perfect spots to set up a blanket all over the place!

The trees and views, this place is lush and serene. Images by Ready.Set.Sarah!

I can’t wait until next years Mutt March… and maybe by then we will have our very own little furry friend to take along! Fingers crossed.