The Suburbs: What I’ll Miss

There are many things I will love about living in Chicago again. But as I am preparing to leave Bolingbrook, I’m focusing on saying goodbye to the things I’ve loved about this place. What will I miss? Plenty of things. Wide open spaces – cornfields, soccer fields, parking lots, no buildings over 3 stories, vistas across […]

Fall in the Neighborhood

Fall photos, taken mostly while walking the dog around our neighborhood. The farm where our vegetables come from – Green Earth Institute, and the head farmer, Steve Tiwald, who greets us every other Tuesday when we come by for our pick-up. Arugula, having been inspired by its neighbor, mint, taking over a garden plot (this stuff has amazing […]

Elegant Little Things

Every home has a miscellany of elegant, useful objects that make life better. I don’t mean big stuff, like a hot water heater, refrigerator, or sectional sofa. I’m talking about little things – often inexpensive – that enhance our everyday lives because of their simple but elegant practicality or beauty. St. Benedict says, “regard all utensils and goods of the monastery as […]

Other People’s Homes in Mexico

In October, Adam and I spent a week in Cancun with his mom and brother, Luke. We stayed in a resort and had a lot of fun. One of the interesting things about visiting other places, at least for people who geek out about domestic and civic landscapes like me, is seeing where and how […]

Funerals at Home

Episcopal Cafe’ ran this piece I wrote as “The Daily Episcopalian” last Friday. Funerals at Home Recently, I presided at a tiny home funeral. Twenty people gathered in the living room of a mother and son, approximately aged 90 and 60, who had died on the same day. I’ll call them Leona and Joe. They had […]

The Disappeared Houses

On a walk last month, Adam and I noticed a memorial plaque under a tree… for a street address. Curious. (If you want to go find it, it’s along Lily Cache Greenway between Orchard and Plainview.) When we got home I searched for “109 Arcadia Court” on Google Maps and a little red tag popped […]

Tiny Houses and Hermits

When I’m stressed, I like to read books about hermits: Thomas Merton, W. Paul Jones, Karen Karper, Sara Maitland… I’m becoming my mother, a notorious introvert, who likes nothing better than holing herself up at home and speaking to no one all day long. I used to think she was a bit silly and even […]

Take 12, December

Our tree, daytime. House ornament! I got this “Advent box” (?) from Target a few years ago, and each door has a slip or two of paper with verses that match the Jesse Tree ornaments I’ve been collecting… Jesse tree — a bare branch with ornaments that represent Old Testament stories — creation, the ram […]

Our house, November evening


This are two foreclosed homes on our block, down from three. Will County has had one of the highest rates of foreclosures in the state, and Bolingbrook has been one of the epicenters. Some foreclosed homes are kept up well, but this one was pretty neglected. The front door looked like something out of a […]