I’m gearing up for a return.
Category Archives: City Lovin’
Book It Across the Pond
I love the warmer weather because it means I can sit outside and do a little reading. Though the problem I’ve found: when you venture outside of the park, there isn’t much in the way of bench seating. Yes, you can sit on the concrete steps of Diversey Harbor (like Harry Potter and I did this weekend), but I can never get comfortable. There’s something about sitting on a bench and reading and having the backdrop of a Lake behind you.
It seems London and the National Literacy Trust have cured my current dilemma by teaming up with with a cartoonist and How to Train a Dragon creator. The Books about Town campaign brings to life classic book illustration interpretations on 50 park benches. Yes, there are book benches strewn about London begging for you to sit and read and they depict some of your favorite books. As we know, I love a seek and find when it comes to the arts.
Heavy sigh. Via BBC News Entertainment & Arts
We’re Becoming Labbies
During last year’s Chicago Innovation Awards, I learned of the Makers Lab– a space in the Chicago Public Library (Harold Washington branch) featuring new technology and workshops. The best part? It’s all free. I’ve been trying to get in to classes since November.
And I finally did.
Two weeks ago, Amanda and I (and her baby bump) headed to the lab to create 3D cuff bracelets. After placing together shapes in TinkerCAD software, we picked our plastic color and watched a printer create crazy designs. I had no idea how insanely cool and efficient 3D printing is. Seeing other objects the team put together, I was completely mesmerized by this animal figurine with moveable legs, and the fact it was all built on the same plane. No assembly required.
Last week, a few of us from work went over to try the Laser Cutter printer during the Name Plate workshop. Using a program similar to Illustrator, we created our words and phrases. I went with “Write On” as a not-so subtle reminder/encouragement for the desk.
Below are photos from the first visit making bracelets. My bracelet printed in a boxed printer, so you couldn’t really see what was going on. Thankfully, Amanda printed in the open space!
Driving Away the Worries
It was above 60ºF. It was a Monday. The motto was: just make contact.
The roommate and I took advantage of a twilight session at the driving range last night. Despite living within one block from this place, I had yet to head over there. We could find no excuse not to go after a hard day at the office and beautiful evening weather.
The last time I picked up clubs was a few years ago when Mom, Grandpa and I were together. Despite the fact Grammy and Grandpa gave me golf lessons (either for my 13th or 16th birthday), I still have much to improve in the way of my game.
Needless to say a tradition is set. Though today it’s 30ºF, so we may have to wait a bit for our next venture.
For her birthday party this year, gal pal Amanda took full advantage of Olympic fever and hosted a shindig complete with Olympic activities and a firm dress code. #STPSochi2014 took place this past weekend at Fat Pour and with three events (Cross Country Pong, Figure Pinning and Chubby Bunny Biathlon), there were many opportunities to land on the podium.
I went back and forth on my costume. Do I wear all denim and go as a Canadian Tuxedo? Do I curl my hair, wear crazy pants and go as a curler? Finally, I took a cue and inspiration from the opening ceremonies.
Remember as a country enters the arena, they have a flag holder? And next to that flag holder is a gal announcing the country names? They looked straight out of Hunger Games. And were exactly what I would mimic.
Using a white dress, silver pipe cleaners, a headband, a hula hoop and some paper, I created my outfit for the day. Needless to say, didn’t really think through the whole commuting to the bar, but thankfully Melissa threw me in the backseat of her car. The party was total fun and I took home a silver in the Cross Country Pong event. We all were still riding that thrilling Hockey game in the morning, so nothing was dampening our spirits.
When we left, we decided to hit up Smoke Daddy’s for dinner. I cut myself free of my hula hoop and realized with the white dress and silver medal, I looked like one Nancy Kerrigan á la Lillehammer Olympics.
Should the Summer Games ever hit right with my birthday, I clearly know the winning theme.
Hair You Go
Upon moving to Chicago, I started doing something I hadn’t done since I was about 10. I didn’t mean to do it, it just started happening. My hair just started growing and I started rocking longer locks (except that one time in San Francisco when like a hippie child, I cut my hair at a music festival because it seemed like the right thing to do).
Though after the winter static, the battle of sitting up properly in a chair without catching it and running out of bun options, I’m going to chop it all off.
With a date sent (the end of March, so I can have one more family wedding with Southern Belle curls), an organization picked (Children With Hair Loss) and the mentality I’m ready for the shorter look, I’m way too excited. Here I come bob!
Dig and Scratch
Bus shelters are not exactly the most inviting spaces on the block. Which is why I absolutely adore brands and venues that turn them into something enticing. Stouffer’s did it a few years ago when they transformed a shelter with the warm feeling you get from eating their product. Or the taste of the Maharaja royal courts complete with seating.
The latest from a museum in town perfectly captures the “typical” look of a bus shelter, but with a bit more fun (those rotating ads aren’t fooling anyone, if anything, they scare you while flipping). I love the way the “revealed” ad offers admission discounts aside from the exhibition information.
I think there’s one shelter a bit up the street from my usual stop, so I may just have to wander over with a penny in my pocket and go scratch off some frustrations from the day while helping unveil an ad. Well done MCA Chicago.
Meet and Greets
Between the holidays, the never ending Polar Vortex and a busy work schedule, life as gotten the best of me. As I sit here hyped up on some Alka-Seltzer on yet another Work From Home day (thanks to those tundra temperatures), I figured I should take some time to update.
Within the past two months, I met two people I’ve been waiting to meet since 2004. And three weeks ago, I got to meet a tiny little lass I’ve been waiting to see and hold since August.
First up, the Bernings. Fate dealt us one sweet card when Matthias and his parents ventured down to Chicago the same weekend Mom was in town. We’ve heard a lot about Matthias’s parents over the years, but we’ve never met, as they don’t come to the States all that often. This meeting/reunion of sorts was my absolute favorite part of the holiday season. We all easily fit into conversations with each other, though Matthias had to jump in every now and then and wow us with his seamless German-English-German speech. The weather wasn’t the best, though I spent the whole day in fits of giggles and smiles. A Christmas miracle? Nah, just much overdue.
After some time Facetiming with Lisa and Baby Beckett, I ended up having a work trip out to Colorado. Lucky for me, the presentation was on a Friday, which meant I could take the weekend with the Watsons down in Colorado Springs and finally meet Baby B. I was pretty excited and anxious as well as a little more than nervous. I cannot tell you the last time I held a baby. After a drive (and gossip sesh) from Denver to the Springs with just Lisa, I arrived to Watson Manor ready to meet Baby B. We both played coy. And during the Kansas game the next day we moved into the “hold me” phase. Thankfully, there’s one thing Baby B and I cannot get enough of…books.
Even with the mood swings of Old Man Winter, it’s hard to complain too much. Especially since Restaurant Week is going on and Sundance U.S.A. is this Thursday. Needless to say, there’s not much meandering around the city though enjoying the quiet, downtime of “too-cold-for-tourists” season.
Silent Lip Sync
Between work chaos, prepping for the Film Fest, weddings, showers, traveling and attempting to enjoy every last sun shining day, I’ve disappeared. Thankfully, Jimmy Fallon has been delivering some much needed laughs with the crazy/fantastic things he does with his guests. And this week’s Lip Sync Karaoke continues to play daily here.
Bookin’ Around Town
I was a huge fan of food trucks when they first hit the streets a few years ago. Cupcakes on the go?! Lunch that meets you on the corner?! And all you had to do was tweet and follow businesses. And then I got food truck fatigue and do not remember the last time I ventured to one (plus most have retail spaces now).
Then I saw this geniusness from Penguin Group: Penguin Book Pushcart. It’s a mobile bookstore, but unlike the bookmobile from yesteryears, it comes complete with café style seating and a pushcart to wander the streets. Apparently this vehicle was just in Chicago for the American Library Association conference and I missed it. You can track the vehicles’ movements and stops through their website (it’s already been bookmarked).