Approaching The End Of Summer

The days are busy but in a good way. I liked a lot how productively we spent time with Boris, especially the last three days when he was here when we went kayaking, to a concert, and to the Art Institute, and found a new gelato place, and did the bike shopping, and went for a long bike ride just before it started raining.

And now, when he left, I am still doing something interesting every day, and my work days are full. Even though I know that I am missing a lot of summer events, I do not feel like I am “missing out.” I feel like I am living this summer to the fullest.

Today I managed to go on an hour-long bike ride in the morning, even though the sun was rising later these days, and then worked with my current customer with no unproductive interruptions and went to the beach for my lunch break. And after work, I had a friend over – we didn’t see each other in person since before the pandemic.

I have something planned for almost every day until the end of the month, and it feels very good 🙂

Rogers Park Adventures

I still can’t believe that Lena and I did each and single thing we planned for that weekend! Today, it was raining in the morning, and I thought both our biking and swimming were not going to happen. But the rain suddenly stopped at 6-30 AM, and Lena didn’t leave me an option to think about whether it was too late or too wet – she just emerged out of her room and said that she was going to walk to her car to get her helmet :).

We biked to the “Windmill” and returned to a late breakfast, then went swimming, trying to catch the time before the lifeguards would be in. I was skeptical about swimming at 72F and with no sun, but it was perfect -the water was already so warmed up that even the cool temperatures of the previous two days did not affect it.

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Chicago Adventures With Lena

Yesterday, my friend Lena from Ann Arbor came to visit me for the weekend, and today was a blast! Not even mentioning how much I enjoy Lena’s company, what a fun person she is, but we did tons of cool things together.

We started the day with the Millennium Art Fair on Michigan Avenue, where I bought two rings with flowers inside, and Lena bought a pair of earrings with butterfly wings (they explained to us that they collect the wings from dead butterflies).

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California Trip

We are visiting my friend in Campbell CA – I decided that I do not need to have an excuse of a conference to visit her, so I exchanged the tickets for San Francisco one more time and added Boris to that trip.

Yesterday we were on the go for the whole day: we visited the Rose Garden, the St. Juan Bautista mission, and Monterey, and I have a million pictures 🙂

As usual, not sure whether I will have time to write in detail about all of it, but here are some:

More to come!

Lots Of Presents

What else about Christmas? There was a lot of cooking and a lot of washing dishes, as I already mentioned. And there were presents. 

Nadia spent a lot of time coloring the wooden ornaments, and then she packed them for different people. It was great to see that she already understands the joy of giving.

 

I was very happy with the presents I picked for my granddaughters. I got insider information from Anna that Nadia thinks that Baba will give her ice skates for Christmas. I was happy to follow up :).

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People’s Connections

The last several days were filled with visits and conversations, making me feel very good. Yesterday, Anna and her family visited me, and the highlight of the day was going skating at Millennium Park. I told Nadia a long time ago that I would teach her to skate, and we pretty much did it yesterday! She was able to glide for a bit, and she got the feeling of skating rather than walking on ice. I am sure that next time she is on the skating rink, she will skate on her own.
We also had a short visit to the Art Institue and saw the Neapolitan Creche, and then we came back to my house, and Anna made dinner for everybody. Initially, we didn’t plan to eat at home, but we ended up having lunch and dinner at my house. Lunch was a takeout, and then Anna made an awesome paste dinner. I rarely make pasta for myself because it is challenging to make pasta for one :). So it was all good.

I received two presents with my Saturday mail: one from my very dear friend in Chicago and one from my friends in Ireland.

We haven’t seen each other in person for a while now, and my friend made a collage of several photos of us together
One more ornament – love it!
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I Have An Out-Of-Town Guest!

I have a first out-of-town guest who is not a family member! Lena came to visit me from Ann Arbor, and it feels like in the old days, only it is easier now to get to all city attractions. She arrived Friday afternoon, and I started work early in the morning so that I could be done for the day by 3 PM.

After a brief tour of my new place, we headed to the Loop. We went to the Art Institute and saw Obama Portraits and Bisa Butler exhibits; then we went to the Millennium Park for the Classic Broadway concert, and then we strolled the night Riverwalk, and we even had time to have a late-night tea on my balcony!

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