It's sunny in Chicago today. If you stand still, you can feel the warmth of the sunlight.
When we woke up, our teensy loft smelled of the Korean short ribs we slow-cooked overnight. We still have to make a slaw; Colin suggested something cool and crunchy to complement the fork-tender, sweet and spicy meat. Our friend Drew is having an Oscar viewing party. We don't have a TV, so our presence at Drew's is pretty much implied anytime there's a major televised event. Parties at Drew's also always seem to include some sort of competitive cooking; sometimes, like tonight, the competition is pre-planned. Other times, it's just Drew and I trying to outdo one another. He's an amazing cook, too, and we seem to come out even. Drew's barbacoa chili was the highlight of his Super Bowl party, the clear winner, so Colin and I are determined to win the title for the best slow-cooked dish tonight. The short ribs were Colin's idea, and we wrote the recipe together, which was really exciting for me, like how Colin would probably feel if I picked up a bass guitar and asked him if he wanted to jam.
We went to brunch in Greektown with a visiting friend, then crawled into bed with a paper edition of the Sunday New York Times, a small luxury for me since Colin gave me an iPad subscription for my birthday last year. I love reading a physical paper, though, especially in bed where I can spread out all the sections.
Colin had to go to work for a little while, but he left me with my computer and the newspaper and told me to write or read, to do something for myself. Sometimes I just have to pinch myself, you know?
After spending a year without weekends in a job that made me crazy, I can't help overbooking our weekends. I've been living each Saturday and Sunday as though it's my last free weekend, and I'm very guilty of sandwiching activities, just stacking one on top of another until it's Sunday night and oh my gosh we should have been in bed an hour ago. We've been living really hard, going to parties and bars and brunches and concerts, but there are also all the chores that have piled up during the week, and the several-hour stretch of solitude I have while Colin is at band practice fills up quickly with laundry and dishes and organizing projects and all the other tiny little tasks we seem to be able to ignore Monday through Friday.
I don't mind some of those tasks; laundry doesn't bother me, ironing can be soothing, and organizing projects are so cathartic. But I'd like – no, I need – to find some balance, to set aside some time to do a project or cook an involved recipe, but also to run or do yoga, and especially to write.
What are your weekend rituals? How do you balance work and play? Do you designate a weeknight for getting housework done, or for cooking?
Enjoy the rest of your weekend!
(photo by Aya Brackett)
(photo by Aya Brackett)