Small Mercies

It’s been a tough fall. Tough schedule, tough travel, challenging projects (in mostly good ways), tough politics, tough times.  But today I had such a rush of pleasure from the littlest things.  That I needed the car and my loving spouse was willing to take the train (which he hates) and that we live in … Continue reading

Travel Tuesdays: Revival

I recently came across my Travel Tuesday stories: a short-lived weekly ritual exploring places I had been as we waited (and waited and waited) for the uncertain future to transport us to America. I felt strangely jealous.  Delighted to revisit places I fondly remember, surprised and rather chuffed at being transported by words I don’t … Continue reading

Old Friends

As a Michigander in Chicago it is inevitable I run into people. This place is full of past. For me, my family, my friends. But the particular domestic pleasure of walking through Andersenville on a sunny morning is multiplied when you recognize an old friend in the dappled crosswalk. The gaunt gait and long jaw … Continue reading

Teens in the hood

The older I get the more I love teenagers.  At the time I found them (and myself) terrifying and highly unpredictable. Mercurial, petty and weirdly opaque.  I sometimes think I just needed to get some grounding. Self confidence is some kind of adamantium armor.  Because now moody teens and social politics are almost charming. And … Continue reading

Home Sweet Home (hacks)

I honestly didn’t know how we’d fare in a 800 sq ft apartment after a palatial Georgian flat in Edinburgh and a stint in my parents’ (classy) behemoth in the suburbs. But we’ve passed the one-year mark in our little city pad and I still love it to pieces. Initially it was a single-year commitment, … Continue reading

Soft summer mornings

By now, dear readers, you know I’m part-selkie; that my quality of life is directly proportional to the distance between me and my nearest bodies of water; and that there are some magnificent things about our neighborhood beach. I like my predictability in these things. Knowing what matters makes it much easier to prioritize. Knowing … Continue reading

Things I Like — Sonja Thomsen

After success with free concerts, and my eternal love of free museums (fueled by my need to put pretty things in my eyeballs daily), I popped into DePaul University’s Art Museum. The semi-truck turned giant-pinhole-camera photographs were neat. But Sonja Thomsen‘s arresting explorations of light, prisms and rays stole the show. There was a large … Continue reading

Things I Like — Free Music

I may bemoan the lack of free museums in this city, but summer heralds a cornucopia of affordable musical fare. Finally attended the Dame Myra Hess Concert series under the beautiful Tiffany dome at the Chicago Cultural Center. Bite-sized classics, today a cello sonata, for lunchtime listeners. (You can tune in live on WMFT‘s website … Continue reading

Things I Like — PRIDE

Windy City Bucket List Item #6: Big City Parade! Sunday we hopped to Boystown to celebrate this momentous, historic moment with laughter and Carnivale-worthy costumes. It was great catching Mardi Gras beads and just being silly. (The Village-People-styled ROTC unit dancing to Uptown Funk with choreographed rifle drills was freaking adorable.) But it wasn’t all … Continue reading

Things I Like — A Greater Whole

Belonging to a family. United voices in a choir. Teamwork in its biggest sense. There are many names for this uniquely human experience. Regardless of linguistics, this raw, awesome power of being wholly involved, and simultaneously so with other equally passionate people; coming together to create something bigger than anyone on their own; this I … Continue reading

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