Well, it’s September. Holy cow. How did this happen? The summer has flown by in a blur, but there were a few pockets of awesome mixed in too. Here is a quick rundown of some of the things I loved (or learned) over the past few months.
I went to a professional soccer game. It was crazy fun. Did you know that fans throw beer into the air after each score during DC United soccer games? Yeah, me either. They do. (Pro tip: do not wear your suit to the game even if you are going after work. Dry-cleaning is expensive.)
I ate a lot of not-so-great restaurant food, but I also enjoyed some pretty yummy DC meals during my lengthy hotel stay. For example, have you ever eaten a scotch egg? It’s a soft-boiled egg, wrapped in sausage, and then breaded and deep fried. I think. I tried this one at the Copperwood Tavern in Shirlington (Arlington), Virginia. It was delicious.
During the rare minutes I wasn’t working or traveling this summer, I mostly (a) went to dinner with friends or (b) watched Netflix in my hotel room. But one weekend when H was in town we drove out to Theodore Roosevelt Island for a little wilderness. Did you know that even though they drained all of the water out of the fountains on Theodore Roosevelt Island and closed the island’s bathrooms for repair, the landmark is beautiful in a weirdly Soviet way? It needs a lot of love and attention and Teddy deserves better. I was excited to finally visit the Island and — disappointment all around.
I took a four-day weekend over the Fourth of July and flew to Chicago to drive to Detroit to spend the weekend with extended inlaws. I caught two huge fish and one tiny perch and bought my own fishing pole (named Ice) and a camo fishing hat from Bass Pro Shops. It was potentially the best weekend ever.
This summer I also saw two pretty cool people get married, ate a TON of Kansas City barbecue, went to brunch with some pretty fabulous people (really, tons of Brunch. That’s my kind of summer.), and learned a lot at work. After 60 days away, I’m feeling pretty comfortable in my skin and more confident about what I want out of my life. Which is to say, a cool job is cool but it isn’t enough.
AND THEN I came home. It was beautiful. I crashed the first night in Chicago and then got to work, making our two-bedroom condo overlooking the city mine. My return home was one year after our move to Chicago (weird how anniversaries work, isn’t it?) and only a few days before our fourth wedding anniversary, and I didn’t want to enter this new year without fully unpacking from our move and settling into our space. We still had a few boxes of photographs and art pieces that needed to be hung, and we had crammed all of our excess belongings into the guest room closet (seriously, it was treacherous), and it was time to dig in and clean out. We made a huge contribution to Goodwill and have a few more furniture pieces headed that way next week.
I built these flower boxes on my balcony when I got back to Chicago. And by built, I mean I purchased them from Home Depot and encouraged my husband while he attached them to our balcony with screws. But I planted them myself and so far only 1 out of 10 of these plants is showing signs of death. And only a slight shade of death, so that’s a pretty successful planting experience for this black thumbed girl.
Here is a photo of my beautiful clean kitchen. I emptied every cabinet, dusted and cleaned, scrubbed the appliances, rearranged our dishware and even set up a cookbook display to add some extra color. It doesn’t look exactly like this every day, but we are trying to maintain.
And, while cleaning and sorting and donating has taken up a lot of my non-work minutes, we’ve also made sure to spend a little time out in the city. Chicago is a beautiful place to live, and I’m so happy to be home.
Today’s post is part of Leigh Kramer’s What I’m Into Link-Up. To join the link-up or check out other posts, please click here.