Tag Archives: J109

the dance.

31 Jul

“Trim.”

The whirl of the winch, the spin of the handle.

“Good.”

The sound of the waves rushing past, rapping the hull like a rhythmic drum verse; a pulse as we ride up the mountainous swell and surf down the other side, deep into its trough.

“Trim.”

Whoosh. Arms and hands a smear of gray as they spin around and around pulling in the ease on the sheet.

“Trim!”

“It’s me! I’m coming down, I’m coming down.”

A flap of the chute, a snap really, as it settles back into position. Full and bright. A parachute tugging its charge down a watery path.

“Trim.”

The early morning sun is starting to wake. She stretches her glittery rays up above her head tickling the high clouds and winking a soulful “good morning!” to the rolling waters of Lake Michigan.

The sailors pause a moment, faces angled to the east, embracing the golden warmth of the rays, drinking in the colors of the birth of a new morning.

A moment later, the chute, indignant that it be ignored in the face of a new day, signals its displeasure with a loud snap as it folds into itself.

Startled, the sailors return their attention to the roiling waters, the wind, the sway of their vessel.

“Trim.”

trim

winterspring/summer

25 Jun

A photo montage of life to date.

 

 

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a glitzy girls weekend.

18 May

Guys, I am officially O.L.D.

I was in Chicago a week ago “sending Mer on her marry way” (aka Mercedes’s bachelorette extravaganza) and it has taken me exactly a week to feel like myself again.

A WEEK!

Last night I was in bed at 9:30pm and did not wake up until 8:00 this morning. Sorry to Ms. May as her legs were crossed by the time I finally lugged myself out of the cozy confines of my bed, but thanks for allowing me to catch up on some much need Zzzzz’s, I feel like a new woman!

Anyway, our girls weekend in the Windy City was everything a girls weekend should be, and more. Mer had no idea what was in store until the activities unfolded one by one and watching her eyes light up as we began each event was priceless. I have never been a fan of bachelorette parties (I know,I know, what chick doesn’t like all the glitz and glam associated with a “bride’s final fling”?) as they generally bring about the worst kind of nasties in the girls involved; someone always cries, someone else always gets too drunk and tosses her penis-shaped cookies, and there is always unnecessary drama when it comes to the planning. And while last weekend’s shindig consisted of lots of penis-shaped confetti, sparkles, champagne, and toasts to the bride-to-be, I was shocked to come to the realization that the entire weekend was A BLAST. There was no drama, we didn’t break the bank, Mer had the time of her life, and the amount of giggles heard throughout was endless.

Mer has a total of three bridesmaids. Myself (Mer’s bff from the mountains), Kait (Mer’s bff from middle school), and Sara (Mer’s bff from Purdue) and other than an endless string of emails churning back and forth between the three of us, the bridesmaids had never met before this weekend. The entire weekend consisted of the three of us showering the bride (as well as my fab parents who hosted us on Slapshot on Saturday, thanks mom and dad!) with our love and excitement for her future. And the cool thing was, even though we had all, with the exception of Mer, just met for the first time upon our arrival in the city, it felt like we had all known each forever by the time we went our separate ways on Sunday afternoon.

Here is the complete agenda, along with a couple of thoughts on the activities.

Friday

Lunch: Giordano’sin my mind the first place prize for the battle for the best pizza in the land will forever go to Giordano’s.

Dinner: Siena Taverndelicious food, flavors were well-developed and diverse, though not a bit overpowering. The four of us split the grilled octopus appetizer, the burata appetizer, the Carne Pizza, and the Roasted Carrot Tortellacci. We probably could have ordered an additional pasta, but because of our pizza lunch we were fine with the above. The only downside to me was that the staff was a bit uppity and seemed to think that the patrons should feel lucky to be eating at Siena Tavern. Being that three of the four of us also make a living in the service industry, I do not appreciate being made to feel as though I am putting the staff out by being asking them to serve me. 

Post-Dinner Activity #1: Drag Show at The BatonOMG. This was an absolute riot and the perfect way to set the stage for an easy-going girls weekend. Tickets were $17/person and Sara did all the legwork to order them in advance. There is a two drink minimum and they make the drinks strong, so be sure to order a water with your beverage! 

Post-Dinner Activity #2:  Howl at the Moon, live music and dancing?! Always a good way to end the night!

Saturday

Activity #1: Silks Class via TSNY, ChicagoI was a bit wary of this activity prior to our arrival as my upper-body strength is similar to that of a noodle, but I absolutely loved every minute of it. We learned four tricks and it was a great way to start the day, as you got a bit of exercise in, plus it made for great photo opps. If I still lived in Chicago, I would definitely sign up for additional classes. 

Activity #2: “BYOB Cruise” on Lake Michigan. Originally we had talked about booking a boat cruise out of Navy Pier, but when my dad offered to be our Captain aboard Slapshot, the girls and I happily jumped aboard. 

Dinner: Union Sushi + Barbeque Bar, loved the hip, yet casual vibe. Delicious rolls and snazzy drinks. We shared the Beef Filet, the Prosciutto-wrapped Scallop, the Cauliflower, and the Squid from the bbq bar and then ordered four sushi rolls. It was perfect, though I loved the beef filet and squid, so I probably could’ve ordered another of each 🙂

Activity #3: Bye, Bye Liveran improv drinking show that pokes fun at the bar/drinking culture in the city, complete with drinking games. Hilarious.

Sunday

Breakfast: Bub Citynot impressed. Found bones in my breakfast sandwich (Sausage, Egg, and Cheese Biscuit Sandwich), service was terrible. The bartender and our server seemed like they were completely disinterested in being at work and the bartender was sucking down her Starbucks like it was nobody’s business. Won’t be back, which is unfortunate because I had heard great things prior to my experience.

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chicago yacht club race to mackinac.

19 Jul

It’s not often that I feel homesick for the Windy City.

I am very lucky to live in an outdoors(wo)man’s paradise; in a little apartment nestled in a lush green valley, that’s cradled by tremendous 12 and 13,000 foot peaks. Heck, my humble abode even boasts a bubbling creek in the backyard and I often eat breakfast on my deck with the hummingbirds, as they zip in for a taste of the sweet nectar in my cheery red hummingbird feeder. On my “weekends”, I hike 14ers, hang out at the lake, and venture through the woods for a glimpse at the wonders of Summit County’s mammoth rock walls and brightly colored wildflowers.

But this particular week always pulls at my heartstrings and makes this homegrown midwesterner second guess her decision to move away from the great city of Chicago. You see, it’s Mac Week. The start of the Chicago Yacht Club’s Race to Mackinac, a 333 mile (289.4 nautical miles) regatta starting at the Chicago Yacht Club and finishing in the confluence of Lake Michigan and Lake Huron off of Mackinac Island, Michigan.

For freshwater sailors, the Mac Race is the pinnacle of their year. Crews spend the majority of the spring and early summer training for this 333 mile dash up through the deep blue waters of Lake Michigan. A dash that can be as quick as 24 hours and take as long as 80.

In our family, the legacy of the Mac Race began with my Dad, well actually with Blair Vedder. An avid sailor, Blair taught my dad to live and breathe the ever-changing winds of Lake Michigan, to be enamored by the cold fronts and summer storms that roll in off of the temperamental lake, and how to read the sails and the rocking and rolling of a hull like the fluidity and rhythm of his own body.

The Mac is a test of patience, a challenge of the wits, and the best adventure a boat lover can experience. The race is highlighted by moments of adrenaline fueled drives to survive; where the excitement that’s pumping through your veins is all that’s keeping you alert and moving lightening quick on a deck that’s pitching and bucking like a bronco stung by a bee. There are other moments (sometimes days) of extreme quiet where you crave a bit of movement in the air. Just enough to see the speedometer reach 0.01 knots and if you hit 1.00 knots, a round of cheers ring through the quiet air from your fellow crew members and the boats drifting around you. The race is punctuated by the scent of pines trees wafting through the air as you make your way down the Straits, the feeling of elation as you cross under the Mac Bridge, breakfast with the sunrise, and dinner with the sunset.

Sailing and boats have been part of my life since I was just a few weeks old. I’ve spent nearly every summer enjoying the cool spray of Lake Michigan on my sun-warmed skin. I’ve fallen asleep to the soothing rocking of Slapshot as she settled comfortably into the deep waters of Lake Michigan with her shrouds singing a calming lullaby as they rang against the mast. And I’ve completed the Mac Race three times. And while I love the cool summer air and scent of the Earth as I hike through Mother Nature’s masterpiece, my summers on Lake Michigan are never far from my heart.

Fair seas and following winds to all the 2014 Mac racers out there. To the crew of Slapshot, I have a brown drink on order for your finish.

Track Slapshot’s progress here! Boat name Slapshot 124

mac 14

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SLAPSHOT.

16 Jul

SLAPSHOT.

Congrats to Slapshot’s motley crew for their exciting Mac finish! Wish I could be up on the island to help you celebrate!

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