Easter with friends & “Bucket List” talk…

Illinois (Photo credit: Pete Zarria)

It was the first really nice, warm spring day we’ve had so far, and our two-hour drive out to spend the afternoon with good friends at their rural lake house in western Illinois was very enjoyable. Having spent time with both of our kids’ families this past week, we would be alone for Easter Sunday. Instead, we were invited to join Barb and Bill and their son and his wife and two boys for dinner and an enjoyable day of doing nothing!


Following the early Easter church service and delicious breakfast, we came home, changed clothes, and set off for a leisurely drive through the rich northern Illinois farm land. And after the long, hard winter months, everything about the fields and yards we passed seemed to cry out in relief, as if to say: “Finally, we’re ready. Let’s start the growing cycle all over again.”


As we rolled along the old highway, my window partially down to let the good fresh air in, we saw how green things were actually becoming, a sure sign that new life and growth was definitely taking place. No polar vortex was going to interfere with any of that! It was a good feeling to realize that very thing.


Shortly after we arrived at Bill and Barb’s, we sat down to a tasty Easter dinner. Thick pork chops

A charcoal barbecue, with six pork chops. Dord...
A charcoal barbecue, with six pork chops. Dordogne, France. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

off the grill—cooked perfectly!—Michigan asparagus we’d brought along, sweet potatoes, various salads and chilled  jello with fruit made for a sumptuous and delectable meal. Carolyn’s traditional Easter angel food cake, decorated with jelly beans and those yellow Peeps, was the perfect ending.


The remainder of the afternoon, we spent outside on their deck in comfortable chairs, enjoying the wonderful sunshine and terrific refreshing breezes. Our conversation turned to dreams and wishes we still might wish to have actually come true—sort of a “bucket list” type of discussion, even though I don’t care much for that term!


I hadn’t really given any of that much thought lately, but it didn’t take me too long to answer. For as long as I can remember, I’ve wanted to drive the entire length of the famed Mother Road, Route 66. I always said that upon retirement that would be one of the first things we would do. Of course, I’ve been retired since 2007 and have yet to take that journey, but yesterday’s brief chat session kind of rekindled—got the juices flowing once again—the idea and desire to set off from downtown Chicago and hit the road that is

An abandoned early Route 66 alignment in south...
An abandoned early Route 66 alignment in southern Illinois in 2006. (Photo courtesy of Shawn Mariani of shawnmariani.com) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

such an iconic piece of American legend and lore.


I’ve traveled much of the Illinois portion of the Mother Road, but I long to cross the big river and explore ever westward. I think Carolyn and I will have to seriously consider working that in to our plans before too many more years fly off the calendar! At any rate, it made for a pleasant and whimsical conversation on a beautiful, sunny, warm Easter afternoon with a couple of very good friends….CortlandWriter


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14 thoughts on “Easter with friends & “Bucket List” talk…

  1. Sounds like it was a wonderful day. So glad the weather is finally cooperating. We had to cancel our Easter plans. Poor hubby got the stomach flu and was horribly sick. Fingers crossed it ends with him…

    1. Hi, Carrie: It was a simple and very relaxed day, framed by the delightful weather. Sorry to hear about your Easter plans jumping the tracks. Hope your husband is feeling better soon. My wife and daughter, who was visiting from Michigan, had it last Tuesday, and it wasn’t a pretty thing! I managed to avoid it, and I’m hoping you do so as well. Take care. 🙂

    1. Thanks, Jill. I agree that we all deserve a stretch of nice weather. Lots of things I need to get taken care of outside: yard work, water sealing the deck, and drinking my morning coffee out there! Hope your climate is treating you well. My son will be heading down that way for the big Charlotte race weekend soon, so please hold off on the rain that weekend. 🙂

      1. After heavy rains on Saturday, we enjoyed a beautiful Easter Sunday.
        Ah, coffee outside in the morning, one of my favorite things.
        Well, I’ll do my best to control the weather during race week. It gets crazy down here. I’ve never been, but I’ve heard you need earplugs. 🙂

      2. Yep, earplugs or headphones for a scanner are a must when attending NASCAR races. I’ve not done the Charlotte weekend but go to Michigan International Speedway two times a summer. Lots of fun tailgating and being silly! 🙂

  2. Now see, you had to go and ruin the post with talk of food!! As you may or may not know….Inion has went Vegan & I myself have went Vegetarian. Nope!!! Not because of love or respect for animals. Because in truth…we are about ready to take a bite out of the ass end of a Rhino!!! lmao~ Port, Asparagus, Jello & fruit…please C.W….can’t take it, mouth watering, stomach growling, eyes bulging. Okay…I’m done! lol Now as for the Bucket list, I have to tell you that Inion N. Mathair’s Poppa had that very dream! Something about Route 66 calls to people. Lovely post and great Easter C.W. 😉

    1. Sorry I’m so late in replying to your wonderful comments, but better late than never, as they say. Reading your comment has made me hungry all over again! I think it would be cool to organize a “bucket list” group to make the trip in the near future. Have a good week. 🙂

  3. Me too, me too. I’ve always wanted to drive Route 66. What an adventure that would be. Watched a documentary on it not long ago and it increased my desire ten fold. I’m glad you had such a nice Easter. Hope your weekend is the same. 🙂

    1. Thanks, Elizabeth! The weekend just completed was busy and not too bad weather wise, but now we’re faced with a rainy day and week ahead. So it goes. It will allow me time to catch up on my blog posts, replies, and reading . I hope your weekend was good and the week ahead equally so. 🙂

  4. Pingback: A spur-of-the-moment adventure up the Mother Road… | Down Many Roads...

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