Art, a Birthday, and Family

Although we technically no longer live in the city, it is really nice to still be fairly close. I do get to drive into Chicago for work, and Lara and I go to church in the city, but it’s nice to be able to return to the quiet suburbs afterward. We love our little home in Highland Park.

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Our favorite part of living close to Chicago, however is being just a car-ride away from family. Caleb and Haley have a cute little apartment in Chicago’s Logan Square neighborhood, and Claire lives on campus at Moody. This last week has been full of family, and all the better for it!

Last Sunday, Claire stayed over at our house, where we spent the majority of the evening painting with watercolors. Art has always been one our favorite things to do together — it’s much more motivating to have someone by your side! I am working on a series of botanical paintings for our kitchen, and Claire jumped right in. (The two left are mine, and the pine branch on the right is Claire’s.)

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The next Monday was Martin Luther King Jr. Day, which meant we both had the morning off from classes! Before work, we drove downtown to visit the Art Institute and wander around the city.

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I also got to spend some special time with Caleb as well. We don’t always get extended time together because of our busy schedules, but it worked out to grab coffee together last week. I so appreciate Caleb as a brother. We are both very different from one another, but his perspective is often so enriching and challenging. It was so good to laugh, discuss coffee, get caught up on each other’s lives, and to encourage one another.

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And finally, we were all able to celebrate Caleb’s 22nd birthday this weekend. His wife Haley was an amazing host to us family and friends — we ate a great dinner, had dessert, gave gifts, encouraged Caleb with words, and even sang some songs. I was telling Caleb and Haley that we always feel so refreshed upon leaving their home, because of the laughter and rich conversation we have just been a part of.

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We’re soaking up the time we get to have with family these days — especially the concentrated amount over the last week. We know it probably won’t be like this forever, but for now we are so thankful!

*Thanks to Claire for the majority of these photos!!

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