This weekend, Saturday in particular was quite eventful and so much fun. I started the day at the gym as I knew I’d be eating very well and without holding back for two celebrations.

The first was at Radio Flyer’s 102nd Anniversary Barbecue that I attended with my brother Bill who works in their warehouse as the “Prince of Parts”. I was so impressed by the building and grounds, the cheery dispositions of his colleagues, and the execution of a lovely family-oriented party. It was picture perfect out, if a little muggy, but it certainly was ideal for this outdoor party. There was mini golf, face painting, balloon art, and fantastic food available including a corn on the cob station, a DIY macaroni and cheese station, pulled pork sandwiches, great salads, fruit, and ice cream. Not to mention an open bar and an actual pig roast (the latter was not so much my speed).

The decor was delightful; the picnic table runners were red and white gingham, very appropriate given Radio Flyer’s colors, topped with happy yellow sunflowers. Bill and I participated in a water balloon toss with a large number of people, which was very entertaining. I met and chatted with some of his colleagues, including former temps of my firm that have since become full-time employees, as well as our staffing contacts there. People could not have been nicer and I can tell Bill is well-regarded for his hard work, fun personality, and his punctuality in the cafeteria at lunch hour!

We stayed for a few hours until it was time for me to head to Arlington Heights for Emma’s 5th birthday party at the Newmans’. Unfortunately, it seemed that the Lyft drivers in the area near Radio Flyer were not keen on making the trip. Eventually, after nearly 25 minutes of waiting, I was picked up and taken to the suburbs, though the driver seemed skittish of the highways, so it took much longer than I thought and the pizza was already getting cold. Luckily, I enjoy cold pizza as much as I do warm!

I said hello to all the adults, then the kids. I played with Izzy for a while in the backyard. She is a toddler now and still as smiley and fun as ever. We admired the many planes flying overhead that she pointed to and the beautiful pink sunset. The Iowa vs. Iowa State game was on in the backyard and everyone was enjoying themselves with drinks and good conversation. Later on, I housed a few slices of cold pizza. It was a fun night and Emma’s gift was a success since it was on her wish list and she screeched when she opened it!

The next morning I headed back to the city with a few bug bites on my ankles but feeling good. I took the Metra and a Lyft from the Clybourn Station to my place. Cleaned, did laundry; the typical Sunday activities. It’s an Indian summer out there. The locusts are buzzing rhythmically and Chicago’s clinging on to humidity. I’m not too mad about it, though I am always ready for fall. It will be a few short weeks until my 30th birthday, which is hard to believe, but I’m looking forward to celebrating. Life has so much to celebrate.


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