Monday, September 15, 2014

Summer 2014

Everyone in Chicago feels like that we didn't get a real summer because it wasn't very hot. I LOVED it! It was just up my alley with mild temps. Even though the calendar says it's not officially fall yet, it definitely feels like it so I'm ready to recap my summer!

* We moved into an apartment we LOVE! YAY! Finally.

* We celebrated 2 weddings this summer! First we attended Matt & Leah's wedding which was a blast! Later in the summer we had Nessa & Tobi's Chicago wedding celebration which was just perfect. So happy to celebrate these amazing couples!

* We went to Montreal at the beginning of June which was a blast and super relaxing. We went to Hunky Dory for the annual family trip in July and loved every second. We also had a few day trips up to Michigan to enjoy our favorite beach in St. Joe's and visit our usual haunts like Redamak's and try some new ones like Silver Beach Pizza. Even checked out potential lakehouses!

* I went to a lot of fests like any good Chicagoan will do in the summer. I started out at my favorite one, Maifest with my bud Ry. I also went to Ribfest with Tara, Taste of Greek Town with Caitlin, Pitchfork with Rob & Friends, the Hideout Block Party with Rob, Riot Fest with Rob, German American Fest with Rob, Ryann & Bo, Retro on Roscoe with Tara & Friends, and super briefly visited East Lakeview Arts Festival.

* I played Veggie Bingo with Darc and Rob AND won!

* I hit up one Cubs game with Rob and we just ate and ate and the Cubbies actually won!

* I spent time with the fam for numerous bbqs and pizza nights. Lots of talk of playing bags and bocce and then never doing it.

* Rob and I did a ghost tour and it was hilarious.

* I turned THIRTY! and celebrated with all of my most favorite people at Bang Bang Pie Shop. I also got to party with my folks and see Gillian Welch with Rob.

* I had a lot of fun with my DePaul bffs - on an electric boat ride, bowling for Tara's bday, picnicking for Nicole's bday, went to a cool story-telling event, saw a great play at Steppenwolf with Tara, enjoyed a day off on Nicole's amazing rooftop, saw Lydia perform in the Fly Honey Show, yoga-ed on Cait's rooftop, volunteered with Shalva at Sunlight of the Spirit Food Pantry and with Tara at Breakthrough Urban Ministries and hosted several of them at our new apartment for dinners. * I saw 3 movies in the park this year! I did Moonrise Kingdom with Shalva, Gravity with Shalva and Tara and The Goonies with Rob. So fun!

* I volunteered a lot! I had a ton of fun with my Best Buddy, Connie! We had a picnic together, we visited a nature center and a couple preserves, we enjoyed a DePaul alumni party at her house and we ate lots of ice cream. I volunteered at Bingo ofcourse, at the Sunlight of the Spirit and St. Mary's and the Greater Chicago Food Depository with DePaul alumni, with Tara at Breakthrough and a few times with Rob and helped at Disney Magnet School's Library with Chicago Cares.

It was a great summer but I'm pumped for Fall!

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Connie-isms

My Best Buddy Connie is truly hilarious. Even when she isn't trying, she makes me smile and laugh. She fills my heart with happiness and I'm so, so grateful to have her in my life. She has had many memorable one-liners since I started spending time with her about a year and a half ago. Some of my favorites are below.

* When she sang "Rob is the most handsome man I know"

* When she sang "Go shorty, it's your birthday"

* When she said "Now that's what I call nature" when we were walking in a park

* When I asked if she was sad that summer was ending and she said, "I'm not worried about it."

* When she shouted at Rob "Don't fall in" on his way to the bathroom in Bakers Square

* When she said "I'm wearing my spanx, that's why I feel so stuffed."

* When she burped after a big lunch and said "I feel 100% better."

* When Rob asked her what she has learned after 50 years and she said "Not to sass others"

* And my personal favorite, when she stated that "Without Rob, you'd be nothing."

I love her so much. Not only is she funny and goofy, she's creative and artistic, she's a little sneaky, has a hearty appetite and she does whatever she wants. I'm so lucky to have a Best Buddy like Connie!

Friday, August 1, 2014

Things I love right now

* Quotes on Pinterest. I'm officially obsessed. They make me happy when I'm sad or stressed and I've been posting a new one as my gchat status to set a tone for the week. I also have been making quote books and framed quotes for gifts lately. Loving it!

* Coloring. Yes, that's right; I'm 30 years old and like to color. Atleast they make coloring books for grownups!

* Coffee. Still can't believe how quickly I became addicted. I'm loving Cafe Au Laits and Cappuccinos in particular.

* My Summer Pass at PSF. I am so glad I bought a summer pass at my fitness studio. I've been going a ton and loving it. It's been great to really push myself and to be this strong!

* This weather. It hasn't been that hot lately and I feel so grateful for it! I know most people are griping that it has been too cool but I am one happy camper!

* My Best Buddies Fleece. Not much to say about this, just really love it.

* Our front porch. What a wonderful treat it is to have a covered porch. I'm loving sharing meals and beers with friends and Rob out there!

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Montreal Memories

At the end of May Rob and I visited Montreal for a short getaway. Our friend, Dan visits frequently and he gave us tons of tips on places to visit and where to eat which was so helpful. The day we arrived we checked into our B&B which has the strangest owners I have ever encountered and then we walked to get poutine and grilled cheese for lunch at Patati Patata and it was so good! Then we walked to Mount Royal Park to walk along some of the paths and then we laid in the sun. We went back to the b&b to relax before going to Schwartz's Hebrew Deli for smoked meat, frites and cole slaw. Rob accidentally dropped his black cherry soda, the traditional drink there, because his hands were so greasy from the meat! The servers were all big jokesters and super fun. Then we got homemade ice cream across the street before calling it a night. The next day we suffered through an awkward breakfast with the terrible owners before walking to the old section of the city. We went to the DHC which is a free art gallery and we saw the craziest art exhibit I've ever seen. There were mannequins dressed in KKK outfits and lots of offbeat McDonald's references like Ronald on the cross. It was free and help Rob's attention which was good. Then we walked to the waterfront and laid in the grass for hours before hunting down a lunch spot. Lots of places were closed since it was Sunday and we ended up eating a brunch spot that was very good. After that we visited the Notre Dame Basilica that was very pretty. On our walk back we found musical swings that played music while you swung. It was part of a city wide art exhibit. We rested before dinner at Au Pied Cochon a foodie spot our friend recommended. Basically meat upon meat upon meat. We ordered way too much and shared a huge plate of ham. I felt pretty awful afterwards but it was good. We loved walking on that little street too. The next day we took the metro to the botanic garden which is by the Olympic Park. Rob did a great job navigating us around and making sure we were going the right way. We went to the insectarium which was really unique and fun. They had this crazy ant farm and lots of displays of colorful beetles. We rested by the water garden with different fountains before going to the Japanese Garden that had a really nice bonsai garden and zen garden with a small pond and waterfall. Then we found another pond to walk around and an area to sit with really pretty flowers nearby. We walked through a garden with gardens in styles from around the world before coming across the Chinese garden that we thought was really impressive with a pretty building and waterfall. We also walked through the greenhouse that is similar to our conservatory in Chicago. We took the train back to the city and got lunch at SoupeSoupe - grilled cheese and tomato and bean soup for me and a disappointing hot dog and lentil and tomato soup for Rob. Then we walked to La Fontaine Park to relax by the pond. We got ice cream in St. Louis Square and relaxed at the b&b until dinner at L Bistro Express. We shared a green salad and I had chicken in the most delicious mustard sauce and Rob had pork and veal ravioli with mushrooms and we shared an apple and blueberry crumble. Rob also loved the tiny pickles and spicy mustard they had on every table. On Tuesday we walked to a little cafe called the Little Spoon where we each got really good coffees. We hung out there for a while and then we went to the Modern Art Museum. They had a cool abstract exhibit and some weird video/audio exhibit that we walked out after about 5 minutes. Then we walked really far to Patati Patata for poutine again. After that we went back to the B&B to rest. Shortly after we got back it started pouring so we rested for awhile then took the bus to mile end where Rob realized he had forgotten his wallet and he had all of our money in it. We went to Fairmont Bagels to try their famous bagels that were fine but not amazing. Then I went to Cafe Olimpico while Rob went back to the B&B to get his wallet. We Meet Hogan's friend for a beer at a nearby brewery before we got dinner at a woodfire pizza place that was good but bad service. On our last day we walked to get coffee at the tiny Le Distributrice and then walked to a nearby park to drink it. Then we went back to La Petite Cuilere for lunch and it was so good. Rob had a butternut squash soup and grilled cheese and I had grilled cheese and a cucumber salad. The sandwiches were so good. I'm so glad we got to have lunch there. We spent the last few hours in our favorite square before it was time to go. It was a great trip! Very leisurely, very relaxing and lots of quality time with my man. I'm so glad we got to go!