Mother’s Day Weekend

I love it when a plan comes together.

This time last year, my husband and I were enduring a tough season in our marriage.  A difference of opinions turned into an issue, that issue turned into the revelation of a bigger issue swept under the rug.  What was found under that rug was a monster of an issue.  It was hard.  It was hard for both of us.  Unfortunately, this situation exploded just before Mother’s Day.  I was a complete wreck.  On Mother’s Day we barely spoke and there was an obvious tension between us.  And not the “you didn’t follow the grocery list to a tee” type of tension.  It was real. It was deep. It was dividing.

Here we are a year later and because God is faithful we are living out the truth that God truly does and can make everything beautiful in its time – which I’ve come to understand is HIS time {Ecclesiastes 3:11} and all things WORK TOGETHER for our good.  Even the bad things. {Romans 8:28}.  This isn’t just a passage of scripture…it’s a truth that has become more and more real for me in the last few years.

Originally we planned to travel to celebrate with a high school friend who struggled with various health problems over the last few years and is now coming to the end of a healthy pregnancy!! She and her husband are a sweet, hilarious couple and we were looking forward to celebrating the bundle on the way.  Imagine my surprise when my husband announced that we were traveling to CHICAGO and not West Virginia! EEK!

The first night we ate at the Grand Lux Cafe.  Let’s get something straight. I LOVE the food at the Grand Lux! Potato Spring Rolls, Buffalo Chicken Rolls, Pasta Carbonara, Seafood Salad…..GAH!!!! Fantabulous food! In fact, last year my sister and I spent 5 days in Vegas for a women’s conference and ate at the Grand Lux every. single. day. Not even kidding.  Unfortunately, our experience this round wasn’t anything to write home about.  My husband ordered the Kobe Meatballs (meh), and I chose the Turkey burger (under seasoned).  We’ve since decided that the next visit we’ll just go to Chick-fa-la around the corner.  Less expensive and a lot more “fa-la”.

After dinner we walked around the city admiring the beautiful architecture.

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This city is filled to the brim with old buildings, skyscrapers and luxurious shops and restaurants.  It would take at least a week to soak it all in.

Being the party animals that we are….we were in our hotel room and watching the play offs by 9.

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I have to be honest.  There was something magical about staring out of our hotel room as the sun set, listening to the taxis and conversations below our cracked window.  Between the light breeze and the company I was enamored.

The next morning I woke up before my husband and ventured down to the chic lobby of our hotel which smelled of jasmine and lime.  It was intoxicating.  Although the room left much to be desired, the lobby & staff more than made up for it.  I sat in the lobby for an hour and wrote to my heart’s content.

Later we met our nephew (who’s a student at University of Chicago) for lunch.  Let’s be honest. You haven’t had pizza until you’ve had Giordano’s. 

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Thick, pastry-like crust. Rich sauce.  Pie filled with chunks of toppings. OH-MAZING. Just as entertaining was a nearby plant with long branches sticking out from the patio where we were sitting onto the sidewalk in the way of many a pedestrian.  We watched as person after person was either so engrossed in their cell phone conversation, staring at our pizza, or looking up at the various buildings, that they walked directly into this branch and were inadvertently SMACKED right in the face.  One woman actually got stuck directly in the eye.  We shouldn’t have laughed…..but….

Here are a few more photos from our 2nd day :

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I’ve been to Chicago many times.  This was by far the most enjoyable.  We took the time to just sit and take in the city.  The buildings, the culture, the sounds….it was incredible.

When heading home late that night, I thought back to the previous 24 or so hours , took a deep breath.  It was befitting that I was wearing this shirt.

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Sometimes in the hustle & bustle of life we as moms are so used to DOING , even when we don’t feel like it.  It felt amazing to be asked , “What do you want to do next?” “Where would like to eat for dinner?”  or the most surprising….”Here’s the remote.” 🙂

Here’s to motherhood, traveling, & memories!

 

 

 

 

Glitter and Glue : A Book Review

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I have a confession. I tend to judge books by their covers. 

I have another confession.  I usually don’t like to read books (or buy music for that matter) when it’s popular.  I like to wait until the fanfare dies down a bit and I have an opportunity to indulge in the book (or music) simply of my own choosing and not because of some subliminal message. 

I waited weeks until I even read the synopsis of this book.  I’d heard raving reviews of this author’s book “The Middle Place”, but never took the time to read it.  But this one….I couldn’t ignore.  After weeks of skipping the “New release” display at Barnes and Noble, I found this book in an end cap mistakingly placed in the wrong area.  It was fate. 

The fact that it took me 7 weeks to read this book is no indication of how much I enjoyed reading it.  

Picture this : 

A know it all just out of college student who makes it her business to travel, kiss as many guys as possible, (16 or so according to her journal), and prove her seemingly dull, controlling, predictable mother wrong.  Through an odd tenure as a nanny for an Australian family, an unexpected connection with said family, and later becoming a mother herself; Corrigan finds out what many of us have learned (or are currently learning)…..we are who we are because of our mothers.  All of our mothers – however strained or carefree our relationships with them may be – have at some point been the glue that holds our family unit together, and the glitter that creates the glow that surrounds us. I laughed knowingly and repented as a daughter.  I despaired and reflected as a mother.  From start to finish, I enjoyed this book. 

Other than a few colorful curse words, I hung on every word. 

A solid A…..and a new Kelly Corrigan fan. Even if she is popular. 🙂