in a perfect world of yancies: July 2006

24 July 2006

Last Few Days

I've been asked a few times how the packing's going; here's a photo of about a third of our books . . . at least they're all boxed up now; and at least we don't have to carry them.

Anyway, we've been trying to enjoy our last few days here, and so have been taking plenty of breaks from packing. Thursday, we went and played Brainville one last time (unless we go this week . . . who knows?); didn't win, but had fun (sounds horrible written out, but it's true). Afterward (and I swear this was hilarious at the time; guess we'll see how it holds up), Jesse regaled us with tales of underage smoking while, yes, smoking (and smoking).

Saturday, we had some damn good food at the India Palace. Damn good. And of course we went to Free State (maybe Friday night?).

That afternoon found us at the Centennial Park disc golf course.
Mimi driving:

I tried to make this shot, and came close, but it was just one of those days (or whatever is said in such situations):

Mimi "sinking" a putt:

That evening was beautiful; we had to invite Nathan to meet us at the fabulous Replay Lounge.

Sunday: packing, swimming and Burrito King. In between all of that, we saw the quite good film Wordplay (IMDb) at Liberty Hall (beer on tap and "art" films (?): what could be better?). A warning about the link to the film's site: that "challenge" is pretty fun, but quite time-consuming, since you must go to multiple sites to get the clues. . . .

Anyway, soon we'll be in Rock Island; please enjoy the themed song now playing. Cheers.

18 July 2006

Lost Saturday; Books Cased; My Shrinking Love; Wedding Bonus

If I'm going to stand outside in Heat Advisory weather to water someone else's flowers, I've got to at least take advantage of the deck, no? So we had Nathan and Jesse over for some fresh corn salad (it was awesome--just corn, onion, olive oil, cider vinegar, salt and pepper, and lots of basil).

Enjoying Tom's deck

The night--after a stop by the Replay--ended in our kitchen, where someone discovered the fan/hat that Merrica sent Emily from Malaysia. . . .

Nathan dons the fan/hat


Otherwise, my days have been spent packing for the move. Here's a couple shots of our deconstructing living-room:



I can't believe it: the Times, in a cost-cutting measure, has decided to shrink its pages. One of the things that makes it fun to read real newspapers like the Times is that it's huge, it feels like a newspaper. Damn.

Lastly, Rodrigo sent me some of his pics from the wedding, so please enjoy these bonus shots:

Yancy and Keisuke

Rodrigo and Keisuke

"Leeroy and the Suke" (Rodrigo's title)

Mimi and Rodri

12 July 2006

On the Farm

Mimi on the tractor

Our recent vacation ended with a visit to Fran & Dave Hughes' property in central Indiana, the Black Oak Farm. We hadn't been there in a couple of years, and the changes were impressive. A fun visit, start to finish--how could anything that finishes with Emily driving a tractor not be fun?

Mimi and Fran the evening we got in

That first night we slept in our tent, since the "cabin" only sleeps two:

our lodging
The next night, we stayed in a hotel. Showers are nice, especially after a day spent walking through the woods.

And that's just how we spent our Saturday:

among the tall trees

Now, since we hadn't visited in a while, we thought a tour of the 80+ acre property would be fun; so Emily, Fran, and I set out that morning.

Fran makes her way through the property; as you can see, it's a bit overgrown at points, and there aren't many trails . . .


Meadow number two, I believe

and it was fun . . . but the property lines aren't exactly marked . . .

in a field of young trees; where are we? One thing we knew for certain: we were no longer on Fran and Dave's property . . .

And then, after about an hour "off the map" we spotted some power lines, which would surely take us somewhere we (by which I mean Fran) would recognize. Unfortunately, the power lines passed over a small, um, swamp.

Mimi, knee deep in cattails

and then

wait a minute . . .

we came out on state road (?) 54, about a mile south-east of the property . . . there's a map on the Black Oak Farm website: if you zoom in two times, you can see the property and 54; that pond is what we were looking for, though we never did find it. . . . If you switch to the 'hybrid' view (sorry if this is more than anyone wants to know), you can see how the trees go down to 54: I'm pretty sure that we came out just to the right (east) of where the trees end (directly down (south) from the edge of the Black Oak logo).

Mimi after our walk; those are some muddy jeans . . .

We did make it back in time (well, about an hour late, plus the hour spent waiting for Dave to come back from his search for us) for a late lunch with Fran, Dave, and Grandpa Hughes, who also visited for the weekend.

on the deck

After lunch, we helped (?) Dave clear a spot for the barn.
Please enjoy this video of Mimi driving the tractor and pulling down a tree:

Yancy disposes of what's left of the tree:

Good times.

10 July 2006

Got to Love These Guys; and a Bog; and Rock Island

Emily, Yancy, Keisuke, Paul, and Rodrigo, making good use of Mary and Alan Moss' hat collection. As you can see, we're almost ready to attend Trace's wedding--which, alas, took place as Brazil, alas, was losing to France (hence my shirt, which I did finally take off for the ceremony).

So anyway, we recently returned from a 10-day trek througout the midwest; we covered Chicago, Rock Island, central Indiana . . . who knows? (not all will be included in this post; more will soon follow, gentle reader).

The main reason for the trip was the aformentioned wedding of our friend Trace to his girl Julie; for us, that meant a chance to catch up with some old friends, and some old Irish whiskey. . . .

Paul, Yancy, Emily: some things never change.

Keisuke, Alan, Trace (cograts!), Yancy, Rodrigo, and Emily

Paul with the indomitable Sam Jones

Makes me look good, doesn't it, being surrounded by such beauty

Chris, with Keisuke and Rodrigo

Though we weren't invited to ride on the marriage trolley (?), Keisuke, Rodrigo, Paul, Emily, and I sure look like one happy couple

Thanks, Mary and Alan, for the photos, and for putting us up for the night, and for the great time.

After the wedding bells had rung, and I had driven Rodrigo to the airport at like 6am, Mimi and I were off to McHenry, where my mom treated us to a hike through Volo Bog.

Emily near a bird

My mom and I enjoying the view


Mimi in front of the visitor center

Myself and my mom and some cattails

And then we drove west to Rock Island to find an apartment.

on the Augustana Campus

Welcome to our new apartment! We will soon move into a brand new loft aparment in an 80 year old former warehouse in downtown Rock Island. !

This link has some information on the Voss Brothers building, for those interested.

Mimi checks out the loft area.

View from above

The kitchen; should be done soon . . .

And here's the view as you walk in our new front door (that sawdust should be gone soon . . .).

04 July 2006

Monday in the Park with Braxton

Okay, first of all, we had an awesome time at Trace's wedding--we saw Chris Lee, Paul, Rodrigo, Mary and Alan Moss, and even Keisuke. Awesome. Sadly, I forgot the camera, so we're waiting for pictures from everyone else; as soon as I get them, I'll post them.

In the mean time, please enjoy these photos and videos from our visit with the Iwanski's:

Braxton on the slide, with Dave at his side

Some video of Braxton and Daddy on the swing (it's a bit smushed; sorry; this link should take you to a version with a 'resize' option):

Yancy and Braxton on the teeter-totter (with help from Dave):

Braxton looks on as Yancy edits video footage of (of course) Braxton

Magen holding Braxton after his swim--he loved it; in fact, as soon as we'd take him out, he'd run back to the pool and try to gently lower himself in again . . . damn cute