Last weekend, a friend of ours from Texas was visiting Chicago, and we drove to the city on Sunday to spend time with him. Trips out and about are feeling less daunting, the older Cooper gets. And this past Sunday was no different. We had a wonderful time and having him with us made the day feel even more fun.
We parked our car in Lincoln Park and walked to meet up with our friend, and then strolled around the neighborhood, admiring the homes and the tree-lined streets, and stopping for pizza at Homeslice (it was good). Nicholas wore Cooper in our baby carrier, which we have since come to love and use all the time, especially now that Cooper is a little bigger. He was wide-eyed, taking in all there was to see, before getting a long nap on Nicholas.
After a late lunch, I grabbed some coffee while the guys talked, and then we walked to Lincoln Park itself, down to the lake. It was already sweater weather, and of course it felt colder by the lake, thanks to the wind. Cooper got to see another side of Lake Michigan (different than his first beach trip). Have I mentioned just how much I love the Great Lakes?? In all the seasons.
We walked back towards the car and parted ways with our friend, and then Nicholas snapped a few quick photos of me wearing my recently completed Vertices Unite shawl. Then we headed home, a sleeping baby in the back, knitting in my lap, podcast playing, and my sweetheart in the driver's seat.
It was a good day made even better by the company of our little guy.
Fall feels like a number of transitions, one right after the other. We are now bridging into late fall, with lots of frost in the mornings, first sightings of bare trees, and darker, cozier evenings at home. Of course, there is talk of Thanksgiving and Christmas on the horizon too, along with early preparations for those. I do tend to be swept by the momentum of this season, if I'm not careful. I'll admit that Christmas music accompanies us throughout the day sometimes, and I've already done most of our shopping, but I do want to be intentional to savor the almost-but-not-yet. To not wish away November and it's baring of trees in favor of the glow of Thanksgiving and Christmastime. There is great beauty and contentment in this month, as well. I don't want to miss it.
We've taken to a regular "cozy hike," as we've termed it. A nearly wooded path, my favorite spot for fall color, a wagon, an eager toddler, a cozy blanket, and snacks. I look for the bright red leaves, since those are a favorite for both of us. And we also look for acorns and pinecones, treasures on the ground.
I'm typically in a rush to wish away the hot days of summer, to exchange them for cozy days, sweater season, cool mornings. I'm an optimist, and that optimism frequently couples itself with being future minded. Constantly looking forward with hope, but also sometimes looking forward with misplaced longing that can inhibit me from being present. But this past weekend, the events of both days were lovely, and being present felt easy and good.