After the storm

tornado central illinois, storm damage, springfield illinois

Have you missed me?

I’m going to assume the answer is yes just as I do each time I write a rhetorical question on a blog post. After all, it is my blog and I’m typically the only one in the room to answer any questions that might arise. Unless you count Finn and if we are inquiring whether a puppy misses you when you’re gone, all you have to do is close the door and re-open it. Chances are he will have the same reaction as if you left him with his dad for 6 days.

greater swiss mountain dog puppy

Whether you missed me or forgot I existed at all, please know that I’m back and in more ways than one. First and foremost I am back in Chicago after a week or so visiting the west coast, specifically the good (and surely high all the time) folks of San Francisco.

Disclaimer: I am by no means assuming that everyone who lives in San Francisco smokes marijuana. I am only assuming everyone who works in downtown San Francisco has a contact high from those that do smoke marijuana on the daily.  

san francisco, bay bridge, sunrise, sunset

I was traveling for our annual work conference, but I made sure to take lots of photos of the bay bridge and various stages of the sun while I was there.

penn and teller, ty pennington, NAR annual conference, san francisco

I also made sure to secure a photo op with our various booth celebrities. Hey, what else are you to do when your stuck inside a convention center all weekend long?

I love San Francisco and wish I would have tacked on a few extra days to stay and visit Napa but instead, I returned to a cold and snowy Chicago was finally forced to deal with the plague I’ve been fighting on and off since the marathon over a month ago. Apparently sinus infections don’t just go away on their own. Who knew?

So I know it’s not the best of excuses, but therein lies the reason I’ve been away for a few weeks now.

The good news is the snow melted, the weather warmed up and I got some antibiotics just in time for a visit home this weekend.

fall colors, springfield illinois, simply social blog, greater swiss mountain dog

I originally wanted to share some photos I took of my nephews this weekend. Nice photos taken in between the shirtless performance of I’m sexy and I know it on my parent’s fireplace “stage.” Performances by them, not me. But after seeing all the destruction and devastation in Washington, Illinois, I didn’t feel up to it. 

tornado central illinois, storm damage, springfield illinois

Fortunately for my family, the worst damage we saw was a few old trees knocked down by strong winds. The sun came out and we all went on with our lives. It wasn’t until this morning when I realized how much damage other communities were experiencing. 

Times like this make me thankful that Facebook still exists. Don’t get me wrong I still curse it rather frequently when I come across stuff like this but it is nice to see a social community coming together for a cause.

Within a few hours of the storm I saw messages from friends that lived in the area saying they were safe and sound. Groups formed to collect donations for those affected and friends offered assistance to help support complete strangers. I saw similar posts for typhoon relief a week earlier. Both of which reassure my faith in the power of social media for good. For more than selfies and snapchats.

If you’re interested in learning how you can help those affected by the storm this weekend please consider donating to the Peoria Area Association of REALTORS® Relief Foundation.

Thank you and have a great week!

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