Sunday, June 21, 2009

Rally for Social Services in Illinois

Tracy and I had the privilege of attending the social services rally in the Thompson Center last Thursday with thousands of other people affected by poor legistlation. Tracy recently lost her job as an adoption preservationist due to budget cuts across the state of Illinois. This is a terrible loss for her but more importantly it represents a loss for many low-income families who will no longer receive critical mental health services. Below are interesting statistics as well as some of my favorite pictures from the rally.

It is estimated that this cut in services will affect 16,000 children and 40, 000 families state wide. A total of $460 million will be cut from the state budget with 90% of the cuts being made in social services.

Cuts among the DCFS workforce will result in caseloads of 15 children per caseworker increasing to 50 children per case load. Causing inadequate care and and an increase in unfounded and unaddressed calls.

Among the services cut will be adoptions, daycare, after-school tutoring and pregnancy and teen-parenting services. Some of the most critical to at-risk populations.

Take the time to contact your elected representatives asking them to fund HHS programs at 100%.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Farewell Wachendorfs!

Our best friends are moving to Evanston today. They live behind us now and we've spent three years running back and forth from apartments. Big changes ahead. Best of luck Adam, Carrie and Anna. We love you guys!

Saturday, March 7, 2009

A Glimpse of Spring

Could it be, winter in Chicago is behind us? Yesterday, was a lovely warm 65 degree day. I sat in a bar with dear friends, windows open enjoying a beer, donning sandals and a short sleeve shirt. It's hard to believe Chicago weather can go from the depths of winter to the warm relaxing days of Spring. Just a month ago, I took this picture of the icicles on our back deck, it was a cold, long winter. The icicles are gone and in a few months will be replaced with inviting window boxes, where we will enjoy long summer nights with wine, good food, and friends, encased in the warmth of summer.

Monday, December 22, 2008

December, what a lovely month.

December 1st was my birthday; Josh threw me a birthday party at Volo, a wine bar just down the street from us on Roscoe. The night was filled with delicious food and wine along with all of my closest friends. Neighbors, dear friends from the city, coworkers from Whittier, childhood friends, college roommates, and family were all in attendance, what a blessing to have all the avenues of my life intersect for one fun-filled evening.

Dear Josh who did such a lovely job planning the party in the darling barn at Volo

My oldest friend Becky who was also celebrating her first weekend living in the city. Becky has definately celebrated more birthdays with me than any other friend. Love her!

My neighbor Carrie who was in attendance without Adam (sick again); our family in the city. Tom was also came with his beautiful wife Robin (pictured below).

Robin gifted me with a darling candle from Asrai Garden, which I have been burning with delight since.

Tracy and Kristine. No birthday is complete without my sister.

Shelly, my college roommate for all four years at Hope. Soaking up every moment of her living in the city. Also, you may notice, we were just back from our Caribbean vacation. ;)

My birthday also not complete without these dear coworkers from Whittier. Megan and Annie, always the life of the party.

I had to include this picture of Josh and Bill, Megan's husband. These two can talk for hours about Indie music and biking through the city.

Also that weekend was the annual Wachendorf Christmas party; this time complete with our very own Santa Steve. It was, as usual, a fun evening. This year involved many calamities, which really made it all the more memorable. There was a plethora of spilled wine, a few broken glasses and plates, spilled soup, and the cake topper, a sort-of broken chair. Really though all of it made for intense laughter. Josh and I were reminded of how blessed we are to have such a wonderful group of friends. Living in such a large city can feel lonely at times but when you have evening with friends like these it feels perfectly like home.

Our gracious hosts who have such an amazing open door policy at their house.

Anna, with Robin, was dressed in her Christmas best

We added an ornamate exchange to this years festivities, Josh came home with a fabulous ornament from Steve.

Santa Steve, Adam and I

Love these two, Joe and Sarah

Hmmm, Sarah is so handy, here she is fixing the chair!

Another Christmas tradition for us is the Kriskindlemart at Daley Plaza. This tradition started two years ago when four new friends ventured downtown on the coldest day of the year for gluehwein and schnitzle. We went back this year, on a much warmer evening, this time with a fifth member in the group. The only disapointment was that the wine was no longer served in tacky, red, ceramic snow boot cups, it was served in a more typical, and much less exciting, red Christmas mug. We ended the night at the Paramount Room, which I would highly recommend to anyone; the restaurant is actually owned by the creators of Volo.

Group photo, this year plus Anna, in front of the Daley Plaza tree

Our family

And theirs

Still a celebratory city

Anna, very bundled and uncomfortable

Its been one of the coldest and snowiest Decembers in years, We've been busy at work with new positions, report cards, and Christmas parties, and Josh and I have been shopping for gifts at every spare moment. Such a crazy time of year, but we have certainly been intentional about enjoying the season with the people we love most. December, what a lovely month.

We wish you a very merry Christmas!

Sunday, December 21, 2008


Right Now for
Chicago, IL (60618)

Fair and Windy
Feels Like
Updated Dec 21 08:25 a.m. CT

Friday, December 5, 2008


Think the US government is complicated?  Check out our friends to the north...

Thursday, November 6, 2008

yes, i voted for the mutt

The Today Show asks the tough questions and gets right down to the important matters on hand now that Obama has been elected.