Wednesday, October 20, 2010


Oh, Chicago. We spent the last five days over there in that big, grand city. It was a week(end) of amazing views, time spent with amazing people/couples, walking (endless walking), trees, coats, lazy mornings, (more) sports (than I could handle), conversations, hand-holding... In short, it was amazing.

We stayed with our sister and brother in a little apartment that looked out over this:

And I sat on a couch in a sunny yellow room with my dear, dear friend Jenny and talked. We caught up on nine and a half months of life - months that have been filled with love and new experiences and joy. And then we met Eric... and ate dinner and laughed and played games and drank cider... And it made me want to move to Chicago. Or perhaps they could just move to Denver. It's smaller and much easier to ride your bike across.

And then we ventured up to the suburbs, where my love grew up. We ate Mexican food and drank coffee and wandered through forests (with autumn trees that were a real disappointment). We caught up on life with more friends, and I wanted to soak it all in and explore this place that David spent the first eighteen years of his life. Our time there was short, but so good.

The rest of our time in Chicago was spent walking. We just walked and walked around the city. We ate great food, drank great coffee, bought great shoes and sweaters, laughed and processed and enjoyed being together.

I love fall vacations.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Soul food.

Swedish pancakes are my soul food.

They remind me of warm Sunday mornings, gathered around the dining room table. Fighting over the biggest corner piece with my dad and brother, pouring maple syrup (the fake kind) over the smooth buttery goodness.

They remind me of quiet Saturday mornings, creeping into my grandparents' kitchen where the table is already prepared with grapefruit halves, orange juice, and coffee. Of vitamin holders and newspapers and calm "how did you sleep"s. Of mornings preceded by Rummikub and card games, of quietly reading Reader's Digest in a dimly lit room, serenaded by something on the record player. Always quiet, calm, peaceful. Of the pink room that was once lime green and orange. Of creaks on the stairs and the comfortable change of spending the night across town, up in the hills.

Of the months I spent in Spain, asking my Swedish friends if they loved Swedish pancakes. Of laughter, as they informed me that those were, in fact, German Oven Pancakes, but that they would still make them for me. Of a smattering of English, Spanish, Swedish, German, Basque... And we ate and walked endless miles and got lost and always, always followed the river home to the ocean.

I made some soul food this morning, and my husband understands only a few of the memories that come over me when I eat Swedish pancakes. But he cooks the bacon for me, touching the raw meat that I refuse to, and enjoys the end result with only the enthusiasm of someone who does not normally eat breakfast, but loves his wife and her crazy idea of soul food.