A Labor Day Weekend Adendum

31 08 2014


Something that must be added to the Labor Day weekend post…The J.Parker. I met a girlfriend for drinks there last night and was greeted by this view of the sunset. It was breathtaking and felt like the absolute best place to enjoy such a stunning evening. Our conversation was punctuated with “Can you believe this sky?!”, “What a gorgeous evening!” and “The moon! Look at the moon!”. Summer nights like last night are like unicorns- you can hardly believe it’s real and all you want is to figure out how to capture it, replicate it.

Hope you’re having a fantastic weekend and are squeezing out every last drop of summer.


29 08 2014

(Image via)


Always a good reminder. Get after it but be kind to yourself too…even Oprah wasn’t built in a day.

Labor Day Weekend in Chicago

28 08 2014

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I struggle with Labor Day weekend. I want to soak in every last drop of summer but if we’re being honest, I am also ready for college football, chili and leather boots. In the spirit of not denying ourselves our respective college season openers and making the most of summer specific activities, here’s a list of both to help make planning for the long weekend less of a challenge.

Chicago Jazz Fest: Pack a picnic and head to Millennium Park for jazz with a side of skyline. Here are four bands you have to see.

Headquarters River North: This Lakeview favorite brings their huge craft beer selection and arcade games to River North. Opens today and in case beer and pinball isn’t enough for you, this location is going to have food.

Magnificent Mile Women’s Half Marathon & 5k: Ladies, if you’ve been hitting the pavement all summer, do a victory lap by running the first ever race to hit the Mag Mile. Registration for both the half and 5k looks like it’s still open.

Critical Mass Ride: A few weeks ago, we were test riding bikes and I fell off mine at a stop sign and yelled “I DON’T WANT TO RIDE BIKES!” as I got up so this is a suggestion for you, not me. But if you are a biker of the pedal-y sort, head to Daley Plaza on Friday at 5:30 for this free ride through the city’s streets with a few thousand of your biker friends.

Fireworks Cruise: Water. Skyline. Fireworks. Enough said.

College Football Bars: We live in a city with a bar for every.single.college there is. Here’s a complete list of where to see your team on college game days. (And here’s the Spartan Fight Song for good measure.)

Elle on the River: one last shot at tacos and punch al fresco. This has been one of my favorite spots this summer and the only thing better than their fish taco on chickpea flatbread is the views of the river.

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Miles and Tea

27 08 2014


I arrived home from a work trip to find this note and tea in my mailbox. While I wish my best friend lived next door, sweet deliveries like this make the miles between us feel a lot less.

Oh and let me tell you: this tea is delicious. Like I want to roll and/or bathe in it delicious- I am 2 cups in and can’t wait to wake up tomorrow morning to have it again.

Wrigley Weekend

26 08 2014


The difference of a day at Wrigley Field.

The top photo was Saturday’s storm that had us evacuated from behind the scoreboard (tall metal object? I get it), the bottom photo was Sunday’s gorgeous 80 degree day. 2 days, 2
Cubs wins, 1 with Baltimore friends who came in to root on their Orioles, the other with Chicago friends who, like me, were shocked to see the Cubs sweep all 3 games. It also settled the disagreement over what shirt my sweet husband should have worn to the game(s). It’s safe to say his Baltimore shirts will not be leaving the closet any time soon. Thank god.

It felt like we lived at Wrigley last weekend but I must say…it’s really one of my favorite places to be. 3 hour torrential downpour or not.



21 08 2014

“Nearly 800 years ago, the Persian mystic poet Rumi wrote, “You must ask for what you really want.” He saw asking as a sacred duty, and I think he was right—not because your wishes will be granted automatically (they won’t), but because the mere act of saying aloud “This is who I am and what I’ve come for” seems to awaken a powerful force within. By articulating your wish, you’re making an announcement that you’re serious about bringing forth the next great thing in your life.” -Elizabeth Gilbert

Click here to read the rest of her post on “How to Be Happier”. By far the best thing I have read this week- growing up, my parents were huge proponents of how imperative it is to be assertive and I find it’s a constant practice. Gilbert’s post hits the nail on the head.

Wedding Week: Little Touches

20 08 2014


You know those dinner parties you go to or when you’re a house guest and your hosts just make you feel so at home and thought of? That’s how I wanted our wedding to feel like, with little touches that were a nod to our city, our relationship and our guests…without going overboard (Like the day I came home and told Ryan I was going to make — on our back porch, mind you — champagne buckets out of ice for our wedding.). Here are some things I did that I think fit the bill and were super easy.

Signage: I am in love with everything Lindsay Letters and her lettering is such a nice touch to wedding decor. It felt tailored to our day but without the finding an artist/deciding what to say hassle/being super expensive aspect. The above print is sold out but I love the “love never fails” print and of course, the vows print would be perfect too. We put the “Toast!” print on the bar and will absolutely be bringing it out for when we host parties at our house!

Place cards: Chicago was obviously a huge part of our wedding aesthetic (the view from the reception was absolutely the star of the show!) and we wanted it to pop up in subtle ways. Etsy can be a rabbit hole of wedding everything but I found place cards with the skyline on them that I loved and were just a little nod to our hometown. They have tons of other city options too- the cable cars would be the cutest for a San Francisco wedding!

Cake: We were going to have cake anyways so we thought incorporating the skyline would be a good way to continue our Chicago-style wedding vibe. Elysia, of Elysia Root Cakes, is a sugar genius and the second I mentioned maybe, could we, would it be possible…she was saying yes and adding the skyline to her sketch of our cake.

Candles: Since we didn’t use a wedding planner, anything we were adding to the reception space needed to be done by us the day-of and I got a little overwhelmed whenever I would look at wedding blogs with so.many.things. decorating a reception. One word for you: candles. There is nothing more romantic or mood setting or easier than candles. Mix and match glass containers, we stuck to clear glass because we were anti-color for our wedding, but just get as many votives, tapers, and pillar candles as you can and light them. Boom. Done.

Flip Flops: For as much thought and money goes into wedding favors, when was the last time you went to a wedding and 1) remembered to take the favor home with you, 2) ever used it? Right. I have, however, been to a million weddings where I have refused to bring a change of shoes because I am determined to dance the night away in my stilettos and then am in massive foot pain by 9pm. So instead of favors, I picked up flip flops for our guests and put them in a basket to be passed out as soon as the dancing began. Old Navy always has online sales so they ended up being super cheap- way less than I would have spent on an ornament or wine stopper with our faces on it.

Mints: Okay, this one is a bit ridiculous but a majority of our guests have mentioned loving them so I have to…Mr & Mrs mints. It was my sole cheesy Amazon wedding purchase but they were oddly good and we set them on the bar and the bowl was empty by the end of the night. Best 8 bucks I have ever spent. Update: FedEx came while I was writing this and my husband ordered more of these mints. We are going to be eating Mr & Mrs mints forever…






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