The spring holidays of Passover and Easter were atypical this year, weren't they? Families were unable to gather for Seder dinners, or attend services in their Easter finery, and may instead have participated in "virtual" holiday celebrations. The Easter Bunny still found most families with young children, but the baskets were possibly not quite as overflowing, and egg hunts were in your own backyard. Seder dinner tables were set – sometimes for only one or two people. And maybe instead of an Easter ham, you dined on pizza... And instead of the Seder quote of "Next Year in Jerusalem," one of my daughters said "Next Year In Person." But you know what? It’s all perfect. We are doing what we need to be doing right now. And we are fortunate to have that option. It’s easy to get caught up in everything that couldn’t happen, but today I want us to recognize gratitude for what IS happening all around us.
Do you know the symbolism behind the design of Chicago's City Flag? The two sky blue stripes represent Lake Michigan/North Branch of the Chicago River, and the South Branch of the Chicago River/and the "Great Canal." The four red stars represent events from Chicago's rich history, namely The Great Chicago Fire of 1871, The World's Columbian Exposition of 1893, The Century of Progress Exhibition of 1933, and Fort Dearborn. Even the white bands are significant; they represent the North, West and South sides of the city. (There's really no East Side - that would be Lake Michigan.)
Chicago is my birthplace and my hometown. I lived there until I was 14, when my family moved to the San Diego area. At 22 I moved back, and lived in Chicago for the next 30 years before moving back to San Diego.
I still love Chicago, for so many reason - especially for family members and dear friends still living there. For those of you who've never been, I highly encourage planning a visit. Time after time visitors to Chicago are shocked (in a very good way!) by the beauty of the city, the friendliness of the residents, the world-class activities and of course, the food. In fact Chicago has become such a foodie-town that the NYC-based James Beard Foundation holds its annual awards gala and ceremony in Chicago!
If you were to visit, here are a few things I would highly recommend:
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.