Tail-end of Memorial Weekend

What do you do when you’re faced with a very cloudy day and it’s a holiday weekend? Go to the zoo!

A fogged-in skyline

With guests in town, we found ourselves indoors at the Lincoln Park Conservatory and I was absolutely thrilled to bring the camera along for the journey and practice of my macro-without-a-macro-lens photography and with light.

White and yellow flower

This beauty was captured with a shallow depth of field focused on the center, but the way the light was hitting was scrumptious.

Glistening, little tree

The light hitting this badboy just right, and with some post-processing I drew the eye in just a little bit more.

Beautiful orange flower

This orange fella just pops off the green background, with its very delicate leaves.

Curly leaf

Last but not least the curl on this one reminded me of a leafy tongue.

Memorial weekend

This weekend I found myself in the thick of humanity. With so many people in town visiting, I was only so happy to wander around with my partner and her parents taking it all in. We spend a lot of time on south end of Michigan Avenue and Millennium Park. And in the few hundred snaps, there emerged the theme of family.

Father and son walking Father and son checking out snaps Baby attention Peekaboo rock Happy baby with mom

Hope everyone enjoyed their holiday weekend as much as I did.

Dear Mom: Happy Birthday

You would’ve been 64 this year, but you wouldn’t have aged one bit for as long as I have remembered you. I know you would’ve wanted to look younger, but your salt and pepper hair was just so beautiful against your dark, smooth skin. It just worked.

Had you been around, we would’ve come to visit you and made you some homemade tres leches cake, with about 64 candles on it (just to be obnoxious). We would’ve laughed a lot, and had a lovely dinner. For you this year, you might’ve noticed I lit a candle for you and kissed you on the forehead.

Your birthday has always been a quick and private affair with dad. This year would’ve been different only because one realizes the shortness of life when it stares you straight in the face. One has to take advantage of every moment, celebrate every precious minute, because you just never know if it’ll be the last.

Your life has taught me that. And it’s something I won’t ever forget.

Dear mom: Miss you more today

I cannot explain why today more than any other day I miss you more. Maybe it is a reminder from finishing out the show The United States of Tara. E and I started watching that show a while back and just became emotionally hooked.

I think it is because when to came to you I am glad you did not suffer as much and that we all had a chance to enjoy your company even if toward the end it was a little unpredictable. The fact was —  is —  you are a wonderful mother, friend, and wife.

And although it feels okay for the most part that you are now gone, free from pain, there’s something missing in my life that doesn’t feel right. Coming up the stairs on the Blue Line is lonely without reaching for my phone to talk with you. Or when I come to visit you would always stay awake to greet me, no matter what time it was.

I miss you. A lot.

Coolest thing from the NRA 2013 Show

Definitely not the gun show, but the National Restaurant Association’s annual show at McCormick place. This is an add-on you can install on a cooler that plays video directly on top of the glass. It’s VERY neat and really grabs your eye.

From a consumer perspective, this could be totally distracting. But from a marketing perspective, it will definitely draw your eye. I imagine a QT or 7-11 iwth a whole bank of these in a row. Wow.

Oldsmobile Museum 2013

I remembered the Olds museum at the very last minute, so I was more than thrilled that it was open and only cost $6 to get it. The afternoon was full of memories and I learned a bunch of new stuff, too.
1980s Oldsmobiles1960s Oldsmobiles1963 Oldsmobile Starfire Coupe grille1963 Oldsmobile Starfire Coupe headlights1964 Oldsmobile Dynamic 88, 2-door Hard Top Coupe emblem1981 Oldsmobile Toronado XSC hood ornament
1963 Oldsmobile Starfire Coupe fender logo1942 Oldsmobile logo1942 Oldsmobile hood ornamentHydra-Matic emblem1957 Air conditioner?1957 Oldsmobile hood ornament
1957 Oldsmobile logo1954 Oldsmobile hood ornament1954 Oldsmobile logo1972 Oldsmobile Vista Cruiser 442Oldsmobile stamping on head covers1963 Oldsmobile Starfire Coupe along right
2009 Cadillac CTS front1969 Hurst/Olds front grille1969 Hurst/Olds rear emblemAurora V8 EngineLast part at Lansing Fabrication: 2007 Cadillac CTS front fenderSide view of Saturn EV-1

Oldsmobile Museum 2013, a set on Flickr.

Avondale Restaurant Crawl 2013

Close of a successful crawl!Stop 11: Urban Belly with shrimp/tofu noodlesDelicious and spicy mac and cheeseStop 10: The Orbit RoomStop 9: Square Bar's loaded potato skinsdh_AvondaleCrawl_13cx
dh_AvondaleCrawl_12cxStop 7: The Beer TempleTwo Brothers' newest SideKick Extra Pale AleSit down service with pork and cornbreadStop 6: Pork ShoppeStop 4: Jai Yen's california roll, teriyaki chicken and fried rice
Stop 3: Honey Butter Fried Chicken with homemade caramel popcornStop 2: Prop ThtrPromoting their shows with cheese & crackersShepherd's Pie, fried fish and grilled vegetable crustiniStop 1: Chief O'Neil's Pub & RestaurantStarting the crawl at Chef O'Neill's

Avondale Restaurant Crawl 2013, a set on Flickr.

We decided to take a stroll around Avondale to enjoy the first (annual?) restaurant crawl, a quick jaunt north of where we live. Here’s what we saw!

Dear Mom: Happy Mothers Day!

Hey there! Today would have been a lovely day to celebrate you. I imagine this year I would’ve come to visit and we would have finally tried to get to Cafe Roma in Detroit like I always wanted to try to take you.

I thought about you a lot and had a good dose of memories heaped on me. I am remembering the way you would always make something very special for our birthdays, for instance, and am craving your chicken and dumplings recipe. I know you didn’t like how it turned out but it seems that we have some of your tamales here too. Cannot wait to dive into those soon.

The little things usually mean the most the more you think about them. For some reason today’s comfort comes from food and how much love you put into them every time you made something. Perhaps that’s what I immediately think of taking you out to dinner, to give you a break on your special day, and to have another adventure.

Love you tons, and talk to you soon.

Dear Mom: Oopsy-dropsy!

Dear mom,

We heard a big loud crashing sound last night. We got really scared because we thought we were being burgled. Turns out it was just that big, green-and-magenta painting in the hallway that fell off one of its hooks, and swung against the wall. Really spooky sounding.

I told E about it and she said the cross that was on the bathroom door fell on the floor, and under the big metal shelf in the kitchen.

I assumed it was you trying to navigate our home. Door’s always open for you — you don’t have to knock everything over. 😉