One Month Down

February 23, 2017 at 1:10 pm (Uncategorized) (, , , , , , , )

So, we’ve had a new President for just over a month. To show my dissatisfaction with the backward policies, discriminating executive orders and general douchebaggery that’s coming out of the White House, I marched in Chicago on the one month anniversary of the Inauguration.

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We need a leader, not a creepy tweeter!

I was not alone. Scott and I ran into a few friends at the beginning of the rally and we managed to lose them in the march. At one point, they were an entire three city blocks behind us as we all marched down State Street towards Federal Plaza, so that gives a small indication of crowd size. As we rallied before the march started, the entire crowd parted to let through a chanting line of Muslim men, women and children who were all embraced and supported by the group. We were proud to march with our immigrant neighbors and stand by their side and everything from fair and comprehensive immigration policy to upholding LGBT rights was stood up for.

We’re not stupid and we know that marching might not change the things we want to change. But we’re still showing up and voicing opinions and people are mobilizing to stand up for their beliefs like never before. Personally, I’m still writing postcards and making phone calls to Senators and other members of Congress and I’m still trying to financially support nonprofits where I can. I’m holding people accountable and I’m more politically aware than I have been in a long time. And I’m not sitting down or shutting up. Our current administration has made it clear that this will be a marathon and not a sprint and even though I truly hate running, I’m sticking with the race.

FULL DISCLAIMER: I was NOT paid or reimbursed in any way for my marching, chanting, protesting or blogging. Neither was anyone else at that march – we just really are that upset.

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February Freeze?

February 21, 2017 at 3:42 pm (Uncategorized) (, , , , , , , , )

This is what the weather looked like on my walk home on Friday, February 17th:

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Just ducky.

The temperature was in the upper 60’s…and this is not normal for February in Chicago. Hell, this isn’t even normal for May in Chicago! We’ve had a warm streak all weekend and it looks like it’s going to last a little longer before we dip back down to the 40’s…which is still quite warm for this time of the year in this part of the country.

It’s disquieting. I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t nice to open windows and walk around in a t-shirt but it’s pretty strange and I’d also be lying if I said I didn’t miss winter. We’ve had maybe two snowfalls all year and they didn’t even last – where’s this record-breaking snow we were supposed to get? Thanks, Farmer’s Almanac. I’m sure if we were in the midst of a blizzard I’d be complaining about that but it was seriously eerie to see so many people in shorts over Presidents’ Day weekend.

But I still managed to overlook my guilt for our busted-ass planet long enough to enjoy the weather. I had a nice walk by the lake Friday as I went to work an overnight at the Museum, then on Saturday Scott and I walked the beach for a few hours before dinner with a friend. Sunday was spent protesting the current administration and their bat-shit crazy policies (more on that later this week) and then at a BBQ with my girlfriend from the Women’s March on Washington. Monday was also spent enjoying the weather, which I plan on doing as much as possible. Before the world turns into nothing but tsunamis and forest fires, that is.

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Things I Love

February 14, 2017 at 4:15 pm (Uncategorized) (, , , , , )

  • My husband (we’re lovingly spending our first Valentine’s Day as a married couple apart – he’ll be in class all night so I’ll be cuddling with the cat – welcome to marriage!)
  • My family – even the crazy ones (and even my sister who is on a cruise to Bermuda right freaking now)
  • My wonderful, freaky, nerdy friends
  • My sickly, silly cat
  • My job (most days)
  • The country I live in (most days)
  • Chocolate
  • Cheese
  • Pizza
  • Wine
  • Museums, volunteering at museums and staying the night at museums with tons of kids and their families
  • Books and reading
  • Journals and writing
  • Also – Netflix
  • That feeling when you have freshly shaved legs and put clean sheets on your bed and jump in
  • Traveling and experiencing new places, people, ideas and things
  • Panko – this is a new discovery and I’m obsessed
  • Sunshine
  • My purple hoodie
  • My couch
  • The view of Chicago from the Field Museum (and the view of the city from just about anywhere else)
  • The fact that I’m getting better at yoga and can now kick my foot up over my head without falling and busting my ass
  • Being vegetarian
  • The fact that I can feel strongly about things, find like-minded people and then take action to do what we feel is right – without getting beaten up or jailed
  • Did I mention wine?

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Hot Hot Hot

February 9, 2017 at 3:37 pm (Uncategorized) (, , )

The temperature dropped here this week and it coincided with a promise I made with a friend to attempt hot yoga for the very first time. I’ve branched out to yoga and Pilates this year but hot yoga seemed…well, like a gross pain in the ass. But I went and while it was gross, it wasn’t as much of a pain as I thought it would be!

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Truth.

The place we went charges $25 a class (though yours truly was there on a free week pass) so the entire facility, down to the locker rooms, was much swankier than where I go to the gym for $25 a month. The room where we had class was lit by candles and had soothing music playing while the instructor softly called out our poses. It was also like 104 degrees. But honestly, the heat didn’t bother me so much as all my damn sweating did. I put a towel down on my mat because my feet kept sticking to it and I was dripping wet before we got through the warm-up. It wasn’t a super intense class though so I managed alright and was pretty proud of myself at the end of the hour. Mostly for not puking or passing out. And I can tell you that the 17 degree Chicago air felt pretty amazing when I walked out of the building.

So how did my friend and I celebrate? Tacos and margaritas, of course. Gotta stay hydrated somehow!

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Find the Helpers

February 7, 2017 at 3:53 pm (Uncategorized) (, , , )

Mr. Rogers once said, “When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, “Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.” To this day, especially in times of “disaster,” I remember my mother’s words and I am always comforted by realizing that there are still so many helpers – so many caring people in this world.”

The things coming out of Washington frighten and dishearten me so I choose to post something today that made me feel good instead of bad.

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Ahh! Paper Monsters! 

About two weeks ago, 70 coworkers and I went to one of the most economically-challenged elementary schools in one of the most notoriously gang-ridden parts of the city. I don’t think any of us had ever been to this neighborhood before and it was eye opening, to say the least. We spent the day doing a Day of Service for the school and we did everything from build bookshelves to run a Science Fair to paint murals on their walls. The school itself was a vibrant, happy place full of excited and eager children who were glad to see us. I worked on some paintings myself and then read Where the Wild Things Are to classrooms full of first and second grade children. And it was awesome! I forget how much I miss working with children (luckily this year’s museum overnight programs are starting up once again!) and I managed to turn our storytelling into a game. We read the book first and then everyone made monster hand puppets with brown paper bags, then we read the story again but the kids got to show off their monsters while yelling monster yells every time I said “Wild Things”. They. Ate. It. Up. And we gave their teachers a well-deserved break !

The day gave us an opportunity to engage with coworkers outside of the office setting but also immersed us in a part of our community that we might not otherwise see. These kids walk to and from school every day in a part of the city that I would feel worried about walking around by myself but they live with the danger there on a daily basis. Luckily, the staff of the school we worked with is clearly invested in the success and happiness of the children there and we felt lucky ourselves for being a part of it for just a day. I also feel lucky that I work in a place that gives a damn about things like these, because I’m not entirely sure our new President or his administration care at all.

Look for the helpers. We’re here and we’re not going anywhere.

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