Dear mom

It’s not home without you. Knowing you always wanted to be the first to see us — no matter the hour – was just the kind of thing I always loved about you. The caregiver of all caregivers.

Now you watch over us from a different place, guiding the way and helping to make sure no evil befalls us. I cherish the thought that although you are not physically with us, you are here on spirit and in our hearts.

Today I wanted to see you, to share with you. And I am sad that I cannot, but at peace. It seems like you are there making these moments come to life from wherever you are now.

In that way you live on to love us and take care of us. In death as was in life, I humbly thank you for all you did and are doing for us. Thanks for looking out for us.


In all the years I have been in Chicago I haven’t actually been to the Chicago Botanic Garden. At least not to look at the beautiful plants and flowers, but to ride there at the end of the North Branch Trail. After doing a tour of the greenhouses in the area, we decided to spend an entire day outside.

Bokeh'd water fountain

A beautiful bokeh effect off one of the shimmering ponds with direct sunlight overhead. I am used to larger bokehs, but this one is nice because they’re like champagne.

The fountains of the esplanade

There were a few fountains, and so I thought I would start to play with shooting water jets at high speed. The results don’t look anything like water.

Boy waiting for parents

This little boy was sitting in the pagoda waiting for his family to return. He was quiet and peaceful.

Walking between the trees

One of the walkways is lined with beautifully manicured trees, leading you into a blue sky.

Purple flowers

I rarely see purple or blue flowers in the wild, so I was very delighted to see so many here. These were all grouped together. That hint of purple in there also made it so pretty.

Yellow flower

The Gardens also offer opportunity for more timid plants. In the shade, this little yellow flower looked almost surprised to see us.

Hidden leaves

And this green plant almost seemed to wake up when we came up to it.

Cannot wait to get back out there. In the six or so hours we were out there I discovered the need for a macro lens. So one of these times I will head out there with a rental and see how that’s different.