Cape memories

My wife and younger daughter are on Cape Cod this week, and it’s been quiet around the house in their absence. But I wanted to share some old pictures before they left, because time moves so fast, and one day’s little kids become another day’s adolescents/teenagers. Enjoying this process–as I’ve always tried to do–is theContinue reading “Cape memories”

On Dreams We Will Depend

Nothing says “summer” to me musically like Van Halen’s 5150 album. I turned 18 in the summer of 1986, and was determined to enjoy one last summer before going away to college. I bagged groceries by day, drank whatever I could get my hands on by night, and listened to the fusion of Sammy HagarContinue reading “On Dreams We Will Depend”

CYW/OB Accomplished

Last summer, I wrote a piece about being by myself in a house on Cape Cod. At one point in my life, that would also have meant consuming alcoholic beverages throughout the evening. I never considered myself to be an alcoholic, but I never passed up the chance to have a drink, either. Alcohol wasContinue reading “CYW/OB Accomplished”

Feels something like summertime

Today is the final day of Summer for my family and I. It doesn’t start on Memorial Day, like most people’s summer does, because my kids are in school until the middle of June. This year, it was almost as though summer began in March, when it hit 90 degrees on the day of theContinue reading “Feels something like summertime”

Remembering the places we’ve been

When we moved into our house many years ago, there were some corkboard squares on the wall in a corner of the basement. They seemed to be crying out for something to cover them up, and so I put up a world map on the left side, and a United States map on the right.Continue reading “Remembering the places we’ve been”

Jake-on-the-spot

It’s now two months away from the Bruce Springsteen show at Wrigley Field. Now that my much-anticipated trip to Cape Cod is over, that’s the next big thing I have to look forward to. The Cubs are usually how I mark my time in the summer, and that won’t work this year. The heat waveContinue reading “Jake-on-the-spot”

What I love about this place

Friday morning, Wellfleet, Mass. I’ve been here on the Outer Cape for the past two weeks, and today is my last full day here. I’m not looking forward to getting back to my life in Chicago, but I have to do it. My home is there, my kids are in school there, and every tangibleContinue reading “What I love about this place”

My favorite founder, and a place that shares his name

Friday morning, Paine Hollow, Wellfleet, Mass. No American ever had a better year than Thomas Paine did in 1776. That’s a pretty presumptuous thing to say, but I believe it, all the same. And since I’m the jury on this one, nobody’s going to change my mind about it, either. Paine was plucked out ofContinue reading “My favorite founder, and a place that shares his name”

I love a good used bookstore

Lincoln never fails to inspire me. He’s more than just my middle name, although he is that as well. He’s the inspiration behind several things I’ve written in this space. And when I’m in a bookstore, as I was yesterday, I always know what subject to look for. And, fortunately, Lincoln books are always availableContinue reading “I love a good used bookstore”

Life’s too short to be sorry

Wednesday morning, Wellfleet, Mass. Summer vacation stretches endlessly before me, even if I know that’s not the case. Summer is never endless, except in a few places that I wouldn’t want to live. And vacation, well, if it were endless I could never afford to take one. But it sure felt that way earlier thisContinue reading “Life’s too short to be sorry”

Finding some magic in the kitchen

Sometimes parenting takes patience, or creativity, or understanding. Sometimes it requires a combination of all these things, and sometimes it requires something else altogether. It’s an ever-changing puzzle, trying to get a handle on what a child needs. And once in a while, it makes for a good story. Such was the case with myContinue reading “Finding some magic in the kitchen”

Walking through the park and reminiscing

I spent my birthday on the road yesterday. I woke up in Cleveland Heights, Ohio and, by the time the day was finished, I had made my way to Cape Cod. A week at the Cape usually relaxes me to a degree that nothing else can, and this year I’ll be here even longer thanContinue reading “Walking through the park and reminiscing”

Looking ahead already

One month from today, I’ll find myself on Cape Cod. The outer cape, to be exact. I’ve been there a few times before, and the picture above was taken on our last visit in 2010. Some people are lucky enough to go there every year, but every other year is OK with me. There willContinue reading “Looking ahead already”

Mr. Lincoln and me

For my family, the school year ends in late June. ¬†Classes always begin after Labor Day, which turns Memorial Day into a day off from school, but not the beginning of Summer that is for many families. It might sound like a drag to keep the school routine going for a few extra weeks eachContinue reading “Mr. Lincoln and me”