Monday Wins Again

Despite my best efforts, I can’t seem to quite get ahead of the game. One circumstance or another has managed to thwart my efforts of seemingly simple daily activities, such as writing on a daily basis or working out.

Last week, I learned the sad, sad news that a close family friend had passed away. Ellen Brown is my sister’s best friend’s mom, so we’ve known her and her family for many, many years. She has five beautiful daughters, many grandchildren with one on the way, and a husband she’s been married to for more than 30 years. She was diagnosed with terminal cancer last fall, and she passed away on Sunday, May 5. 

In light of this news, I changed up my weekend plans a bit. I drove home to Iowa on Thursday so that I could attend the services on Thursday evening and Friday morning. I got to spend some time with my family, and most importantly, with the Brown family to help them celebrate their mom’s life. 

On Saturday morning, I was woken up by crazy Sloanie, banging on my door and playing” Thrift Shop” on the phone. She must have known that I had to wake up early to pack up and drive back to Chicago. Christine (sister-in-law), Matt (her boyfriend) and Aly (my niece) drove to Chicago on Friday to visit us for the weekend, and I wanted to get home to see them, too.

Obligatory Sloanie photos, plus Jess & her beautiful friends.

The rest of the weekend we spent playing local tourist, which is fine by me once in awhile. When you live in city like Chicago, it’s easy to forget all of the things that make it what it is and what attracts so many others to come visit. We went to Navy Pier, the zoo, the aquarium, the Bean. We ate pizza and went bowling. (Where, by the way, I scored a whopping 40, coming in 4th place behind Aly. True story.) We had a nice Mother’s Day brunch, and we spent some evenings all together at home. It was the perfect mix of activity vs relaxing. Side note: I hate zoos. Poor little animals all look so sad. Free the animals!
Matt, Aly & Christine on the Navy Pier Ferris Wheel; Aly patiently waiting for bowling; Christine & I boozin' it up!

And I couldn’t get enough of my sweet niece. She’s 5 and although it sounds weird, she finally likes me! you see, we went through a long phase of her only caring about Bryan. Every time I called her, she’d answer and say “Where’s Bryan?” Don’t get me wrong, she still loves her uncle—she said her favorite thing about visiting Chicago was tickling Bryan—but all this weekend, she just wanted to hold my hand, sit by me, walk with me, etc. It melts my heart.

 Lions and tigers and bears, oh my!
 Monkeys and gorillas.
 Pretty polar bears.
Giraffes and zebras.

The only downside to the weekend is that Matt left this morning with a temperature and not feeling well, so cross fingers I don’t get sick.
Cheers to making it through another week!

Mingle 240


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