Simpler Times

East central Illinois is firmly into 2014’s version of spring; some days it seems like summer (it was over 90 degrees just over a week ago) and others it seems like late winter (it was 38 degrees a few nights ago, making for a chilly morning). Saturday before last, the full B-K clan (Cody was even home) were at the Illiac Music Festival in downtown Urbana, sweating it out with the hula-hoopers and everyone else. By Wednesday, we were suffering through Lilly’s soccer team’s loss to a much-loathed rival in unfortunate 45 degree/windy/rainy weather. Even Saturday was kind of crummy – chilly and clouds threatening to take over, though the farmers market was bright with spring food, including strawberries from a couple hours south of here.

But by 5 PM it had cleared off and the sun had warmed things a little and suddenly it seemed a fine night for a crawfish boil.

CrawBox

Cooked bugs

Yum

Dinner

It was a lovely evening at Douglas’ sweet abode, but having partied ourselves out at Prairie Fruits Farm, followed by some hilarity at our friends the Hxes the night before, Jim and I were in bed by 10, dreaming of a Sunday above 60 degrees. Such is middle age. If this is how it is, I don’t mind it a bit.

But. I find myself yearning for more. And less. Not necessarily the way it was for us a decade ago, when we had an 11 year-old and a 5 year-old and we were still living at 1005 and my main (and formidable) task was guiding their education – and, as it happened, my own. I’m talking about more (and less) within the framework we have now. Work (ours) and school (hers) plus soccer (theirs) and outside activities (ours) means, lately, coming home each night to a house that looks like a cat fur bomb has gone off, non-existent dinner plans for hungry people, and a garden full of plants I don’t want (AKA “weeds”). While soccer is mostly over and school is nearly out, a summer including family travel, at least one wedding to attend, team tryouts, driver’s ed, and a list of home projects as long as my arm is a bit intimidating. The house stuff really needs to happen, as we’ve lived here at 909 for nearly 10 years and a few things are finally starting to show their age. I’ve gotten right with one thing: The things keeping us occupied are things we love, so we just have to make room in all the budgets to make life work. I’ll confess: While there’s a part of me that relishes the challenge, there’s also a part of me that just wants to sleep. I need to know, guys. How do people far busier than us keep up?

Coming soon to screens and airwaves: Tim, the other half of the BYI enterprise, is finally back from a work trip to SF and we’re about to start intensive video editing work on two video episodes. Upcoming radio episodes will include musings on co-existing with urban wildlife (I’m headed out today with this guy), making food with edible flowers, and what local food means in a country-to-be-named-later. It’s the time of year I dreamed about during the polar vortices. It’s a time of… more. And for that? I’m grateful.

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