Thursday, July 1, 2010

Fireflies & fireworks

Well, I'm still behind three days on bicycling, but with my shoulder all cocked up, I don't know if it's worth riding tomorrow. Who am I kidding, though -- I'm gonna do it anyway. I miss the ride.

And the summery challenge is clipping along okay. I -- aw crap. I can't remember what the hell I did on Tuesday. Oh wait! Movie in the park! The movies in the park program has easily been my favorite city perk in recent years. There is something so magical about watching a movie, new or favorite, under summer stars. Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs was showing at Portage Park, so even though we'd seen it before, we packed up some blankets and settled in for an evening of film and merriment. (When you have kids, Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs counts as film.) AJ had tweaked his knee in football camp that day, so he mostly just lay on the blanket and texted people as Hannah crawled all over him and played with her dad's iPhone. Of the four of us, Peter and I were by far the most invested in the movie. Sadly, I missed my favorite part, where Earl/Mr. T squinches up his butt in preparation for judo moves. I guess I had a good time anyway...I guess.

Last night, I kinda hosed it. I mean, I could say the grilling steaks counts as a quintessentially summery activity, but it really doesn't -- I grill year-round. In the winter it's not uncommon to see bare footprints in the snow on our deck leading up to the grill -- I mean, if you want a bratwurst and it's cold outside, you can't let that make you do something crackheaded like steam the bratwurst, can you? But the day and the night got away from me, and before I knew it, I was asleep.

But tonight, Hannah and I caught fireflies in a jar, chasing them up and down the block, ferreting them out of tomato and pumpkin vines, jumping in the air to pretend to grab them. They wouldn't light up in the jar, though, so we let them out, and that seemed to make them happy; all of them lit up as they flew up into the sky. We turned on the lights strung in a tree in the side yard and read books in the pool of yellow light. We played a couple of games of Bingo on the deck, where we could see fireworks that our up-the-street neighbors shot off -- not just bottle rockets and roman candles, but big sparkly colorful jobs, too, that made Hannah squeal. I didn't just enjoy the summer night, I enjoyed my little girl in a way that I don't get to, or don't allow myself to, very often. Good things happen when you go outside.

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