Monday, September 23, 2013

Autumn Awesomeness

My favorite season. I love it as much as the dog playing in the leaves in the video below. Pure joy.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Monday 5 List #33-Fall Favorites

The weather has changed in Chicago from dresses and sandals to boots and sweater season. We still have the occasional day of 80+ temperatures but the evenings are cool and the air smells like leaves. So for this week's Monday 5 List, here are my favorite things to do in the fall.
  1. Football. For the Bears season opener Paul and I joined friends at one of our favorite bars in Chicago to enjoy watching the game, eating bar food and drinking beer. This will likely be our normal routine for the season.
  2. Road trips. We just returned from a weekend road trip to Bloomington Indiana where we tailgated at the Indiana University v Bowling Green football game. Go Hoosiers! My son's best friend plays Offensive Tackle for IU and it's much more fun to watch college football on a college campus. Our next road trip might include apple picking, whiskey tasting, hot cider and antiquing in Michigan in October.
  3. Fire. We had out first backyard bonfire last week and expect to spend many more evenings sitting around the firepit on cool nights. Pulling out cozy sweaters for enjoying the outdoors is also a favorite part of the season.
  4. Chicago events. The first weekend in Chicago we went to the Guinness Oyster Fest a street festival in Roscoe Village. Great neighborhood, not overly crowded with 2 stages (mainly Irish style music), and lots of Guinness and oysters. This weekend we will be attending Chicago in White, a pop up dining experience where attendees dress all in white and do not know the location until right before the event begins. The last weekend in September we are playing tour guides to friends visiting from Ohio and expect to spend the weekend at a boutique hotel in Chicago, wandering the city, and visiting the Impressionism, Fashion, and Modernity exhibit during it's final days at the Art Institute.
  5. Friends. Fall seems to be the best season for catching up with friends. Maybe it's all the opportunities for watching sports together, maybe it's the fun of getting together before it's too cold to enjoy being outdoors. We seem to be busier than ever in the fall whether it's a party or just having pizza and jumping in the hot tub. Whatever you do this fall, I hope it's a great season for you.
If you are looking for more ideas of what to do in Chicago this fall, read this great article

Wednesday, September 11, 2013


As my son enjoys his college life of classes, sports, fraternity and fun I'm settling into being an empty nester. Last year during the months my son was in the military I never quite got used to living alone, most likely because I felt very unsettled due to worrying about him. This year I've adapted nicely to having the house to myself (well with the exception of my beagle Eloise, she is great company even though she's incredibly high maintenance). Paul and I are both empty nesters, his children are also away at college and we have our own routines around work and home. When we are not working, exploring Chicago together, traveling or with family and friends time seems to be longer with more time to linger. I find that I wander about. I wander to my book shelves, I wander through the yard, I wander through the neighborhood, I wander into the kitchen... Sometimes I play dress up, sometimes I cook ridiculous meals, sometimes I drink martinis and watch bad movies, sometimes I talk to the dog and solve the problems of the world. I pitter patter about really and it's a delight.

A friend recently shared a photo on Facebook and I think it captures where I am in life. Home is my little bungalow surrounded with my books and my garden and my treasures. It's lovely having Paul just down the road and my son as close as social media and a text away. What I'm learning is that even at my age I'm still growing up and growing into my skin.