I’m in Illinois for my Mother’s Memorial Weekend

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Up top is a picture of me, my sister (Ann) and my brother (Dave) taken Saturday evening in Deerfield, IL at my brother’s house. We’re here to have a memorial weekend for my mother. She passed away at the age of 100 years, 5 months and 28 days in Dec. 2019. We first put off a funeral/memorial because it was mid-winter and then because of COVID. Now, despite the fact that COVID is still going around, we figured we had to do this now. Most everyone my mother knew has passed away, but we expect about 30 family members to be here later today.

My mother graduated high school in 1937. Here’s a list of the activities she participated in while in high school:

Honors Group, Student Council Representative, Girl’s Club Friendly Committee, President of the Glee Club, Choir, Lead Soprano – New Trier Opera – The Mikado (which was so good the Chicago Tribune came to review it), Oclef (I don’t know what this is),  Jr. and Sr. year Senior Music Club, Madrigal Club, German Club – Vice President, She earned a full ride scholarship to De Pauw University in Indiana for music and drama – which her mother didn’t let her take. She went to work for the telephone company, becoming a manager and took music and voice classes at Northwestern Univ. She was an excellent piano player – we had a baby grand piano growing up. Mother switched over to keyboard when they came in during her senior years.

We’ll have a church service, then a luncheon at a local restaurant in Wilmette IL, then either travel to the gravesite where my mother, father, grandparents, Aunt Josie and a few others are buried. We might also go Sunday (or late today) to the Chicago Botanic Garden, a place my mother liked very much.

We had a good family dinner Friday evening at my brother’s house, mostly reliving the past. We also spent some time dividing up (who want’s this) the last few items my mother had. We each kept a few things, a few things will go to Goodwill and a few things we will see if the local historical society has any interest in accepting.

Pic. I took on the top deck of the Lake Express Ferry on 10/22/21

Gayle and I came across Lake Michigan on the Lake Express Ferry. Waves were averaging 3 feet, so it was a smoother ride than Thursday, when waves reached 11.5 feet at the mid-Lake Michigan buoy. Both the Lake Express Ferry and the Badger up in Ludington are quite sea-worthy and able to handle what Lake Michigan can deal out. We came across on the Badger once when we had Gale Warnings in effect and waves hit 10 feet at the Ludington buoy. The ship rocked a little, but it was a very uneventful trip.

We saw a few gulls way out at mid-lake. We hit one sprinkle. You could see the smokestack and the steam coming out of it at Port Sheldon from 30 miles away. Masks were required in the large indoor part of the ship, but still several people still recognized me. As always, I was happy to find someone to talk weather with.

There is a Gale Watch in effect for Sunday evening to Monday AM. The wind will be NNE – so this is one of those situations were waves might be only 1-3 feet at the Michigan shore, but build to 6-10 feet as you get 5 or 10 miles west of the shore. Winds could gust to 35-40 mph at the shoreline.

We meandered from Milwaukee down the lakeshore to Highland Park IL, then traveled west to Deerfield. We stopped at a couple parks and a McDonald’s for a bite to eat. The grass is very green here and the color change is underway at a faster pace with the cooler pattern.

Friday’s high/low of 52/37 in G.R. was the coolest day/night of the fall so far. It felt chilly, but was only 4 degrees cooler than average. Low temps. Fri. AM reached 32 at Alma, 27 at Pellston, 26 at Iron Mt. and 24 at Atlanta MI. The average wind speed in G.R. on Friday was just 1.8 mph and we had 45% sunshine. Grand Rapids has had at least a trace of rain on 15 of the 22 days of October with a monthly total of 4.27″.

Happy weekend – thanks for reading my blog.

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