Chicago farmer’s market Saturday mornings are what summer dreams are made of, y’all.
A few weekends ago, Eric and I set off to check out two farmer’s markets we missed from the end of last summer – the Green City Market in Lincoln Park and the Division Street Farmer’s Market. These markets run from May through the end of October, but prime time are these summer months when the sun is shining and everyone is out for some fresh goods.
We don’t go prepared to do all our grocery shopping (although we have aspirations to be that adult one day), but we love to chat with vendors, consume as many samples as possible, and get some fresh baked croissants or grilled cheeses we can munch on while walking around.
That time we picked up a chocolate croissant and coffee. There was also a crepe stand set up that I’ll be making a beeline to next time. I was pretending we were in Paris again, since pain au chocolat and banana-nutella crepes were basically our diet for the whole week we were there.
We realized that come 12:00 pm, a lot of the vendors were definitely low on their stuff. If you’re set on having your range of choices, or getting some of those drool worthy mozzarella sticks that have people lining up in Lincoln Park, I’d aim to get there at least closer to 10:00 am!
Um, also, if you’re a dog lover like me – huge perk to attending a market is that there are literally so many dogs of all breeds and ages. It kills me. All the owners Eric and I went up to were so nice, we had to get our petting quota in.
We’re long overdue for our next farmer’s market trip – hopefully this weekend!
It’s always the worst when blogging has to take a back seat, but these last few weeks have just been one busy pow wow and I’ve wanted to be 100% present in all of it. From work picking up with new opportunities, to best friends visiting, to planning wedding festivities – right up to birthday celebrations around town for my favorite human – it’s been crazy and wonderful.
That being said, I want to get back in the swing of things, and figured what better day than today – when I get to celebrate this handsome future husband of mine being born. Happy Birthday, love! This photo is one Feather & Twine took during our engagement session and it nearly kills me. Those looks and that smile – I’m a lucky lady!
We declared this weekend one of birthday shenanigans and romped around Chi for new adventures, starting with brunch of course. Saturday morning Eric and I ventured to Pomp & Circumstance. I’d been wanting to check this place out forever and had heard their Bloody Mary was on point.
This trendy Old Town spot did not disappoint. Eric and I shared the chilaquiles and Pomp croissant breakfast sandwich. Oh, and the drinks were indeed delicious! We left perfectly happy and ventured into the streets right outside to check out the Old Town Art Fair.
Post-brunch and fair, we dropped by Macy’s to get Eric a much needed new pair of everyday shoes and then made our way to the Chicago Blues Fest. Fun fact – it’s the largest free blues festival in the world! It takes place in Grant park, so the city gets to serve as the most perfect backdrop.
Only challenge to navigate? It was somehow 93 degrees so we were making bee lines for a spot in the shade. That didn’t hold us back though, this fest was a ton of fun.
Sunday brought another cool opportunity. Friends were going sailing on Lake Michigan to watch The America’s Cup, which was being held on fresh water for the first time right here in ChiTown! This weekend long event consisted of different sailing races among countries to determine qualifiers for the final event in Bermuda one year from now.
It was so awesome to see the city from a whole new perspective – the beautiful blue waters we’re usually looking out to! The cup was really cool. I’m still not sure of all the technology behind it, but those big racing sailboats for each country get enough wind underneath that it actually looks like they are flying just above the water.
Needless to say, we had a great weekend checking new things off our list and celebrating Eric! He is truly the best, kindest, most loving, brilliant, funny, and wonderful human, and deserves every bit of it and more.
E, I love you a whole bunch! I have loved celebrating the last four birthdays with you, and I hope this next year is the best yet. Cheers to you, love.
Well, friends, hope it’s a fantastic week! Tonight we’re off to eat tapas and sangria with our Chicago pals to spoil this guy some more, and in a few days I make my way back to the Lonestar State. Wahoo!
I recently discovered two restaurants in Chicago that I think have instantly become two of my favorites! These new Windy City eats involve pizza and waffles. What’s not to love?? I wanted to share these delicious hot spots so that if you’re in for a visit, or live here haven’t had them yet, you can get ’em on your agenda.
Eric and I had a date night at Homeslice. This place had been on our radar for awhile because it instantly made us think of the Home Slice back in Austin that we loved. The classic, cool neighborhood vibes are obvious from the moment you step foot inside this restaurant.
The space is adorned with unique interior design features – from polished, wooden tables to rose-gold colored light fixtures to a log bar. Then, when you didn’t think it could get better, you find the outdoor patio with more cool furniture, strings of patio lights, and wooden beams holding up windows that encase the whole area. This sign was my favorite, perhaps I’ve found a new life motto.
We shared the bread sticks and goat cheese for an appetizer, and basically died because they were so good. You must try them. We had to keep telling each other to stop eating them so we’d have room for pizza. Basically, it was out of control.
For our pizza, we split the Bennett’s Beauty – a wheel of deliciousness complete with pepperoni, Italian sausage, mushrooms, mozzarella, provolone, and marinara. The crust is delicious! We left with happy and full bellies that were on the verge of exploding. I wanted to just roll into an uber, but thankfully Eric made us take the train home and I got to walk it off some.
The second place I fell in love with that weekend was Beatrix in River North for Sunday brunch. This is another place that’s just beautiful on the inside. High ceilings, wooden beams and light fixtures, and a variety of chairs and tables that give the whole place a unique feel. I felt like I walked onto the set of an HGTV show. It was totally poppin’ – very glad we had a reservation since we still waited for a bit.
Beatrix has the prettiest breakfast cocktails! Becca and Kelly tried the blueberry and strawberry mimosas, while Eric and I clung to our coffee.
The whole menu looked incredible, so of course it took me a long time to decide. The girls ended up choosing the Eggs Your Way and the Spicy Chicken Tinga. Eric went with a special migas buffet and I landed on the house-made Belgian style waffle. It ended up being four adorable mini waffles, topped off with fresh strawberries and sweet cream – best presentation ever. I also ordered a side of the brown sugar bacon.
It was all SO GOOD. Such a great meal with good conversation and company. I love brunch for that reason – eating yummy breakfast food with people you love is the best.
I hope you get to try these Windy City eats soon. If you’ve got another Chicago must-try, I want to know!
I think this is going to be a pretty exciting month…it actually already has proven to be. This morning, Eric found out he passed the first of two tests he needs to get his professional engineering license! Beyond proud. His hard work and big dreams constantly inspire me.
Tomorrow – I repeat tomorrow – we finally go back to Texas! I cannot wait, you guys. It’s only been a couple months since I’ve been home, but for some reason this stretch of time has seemed longer. I guess it’s because a lot has happen here and there since the last time, and that makes the weeks in between feel as thought they’ve doubled.
Anyways, this weekend we go to knock off several things on the wedding planning list: linens, florals, the color of bridesmaids’ dresses, cake flavors, engagement photos, and cake tasting. Whew. The constant indecisiveness inside me just screamed a little bit. Also, the Austin weather suddenly says rain for Saturday when we are taking pictures – prayers and good vibes the weather cooperates for a couple morning hours are greatly appreciated!
Trying to just stay positive, focused, and so thankful for all that we are even getting to do this weekend though – and not worry, I know that can help nothing (Matthew 6:25-27, 34). In the end it will work out as it should, and be wonderful no matter what.
Instead, I’m thinking of all the food I get to eat this weekend – um, hello Tex-Mex, Whataburger, breakfast tacos, Shady Grove, and post-downtown pizza. This was one of two times Whataburger has used this photo, very flattered…go mom! Spoiler alert though, I was in fact home from Chicago and not in college haha.
The rest of this month will hopefully mean progress in some other planning areas…like the honeymoon. The travel bugs in Eric and I love discussing all these possibilities. Also to come, a week long visit from Eric’s brother, birthdays, and hopefully more sunny days in The Windy City!
Before I sign off from all these thoughts that have come with greeting the new month, sharing a few links I’m loving right now – enjoy!
Now I didn’t want to make a post all about our Valentine’s Day, but Eric and I did some of our favorite things at two awesome Chicago spots, so I had to share and encourage you all to go check them out!
These things we love are eating tacos and watching live comedy, but before I get to that, I first have to address what an absolutely B E A U T I F U L day it was. Snow fell steadily the whole time. While it was definitely cold, it was also totally magical, because it was the first real morning to night snowy day we’ve experienced. I’m sure that’s just the non-native Chicagoan in me speaking, and if it’d been like that all winter, we would’ve been over it haha.
We brunched, of course – I don’t think I know how to do anything else on weekend mornings – and as we sat looking out the windows of The Monkey’s Paw, we couldn’t help but talk about how much it kept coming down! While we originally were aiming to catch a bus home, the long walk back actually gave us time to squeeze in some photos. *Winter tip we’ve finally figured out – you must snap these photos fast or the cold will kill your phone, and you will be stranded if you don’t know where you are…*
Ok, now back to the tacos. Well to preface, Eric rocks at Valentine’s Day. He loves it, and I love that about him. Its always such a fun day for us, because we don’t make any overly fancy plans or have to get all dressed up, we just be our normal, ridiculous selves and run around town trying out new things.
He made reservations at a nearby restaurant called Barcocina – this beautifully decorated place with specialty tacos and awesome margs we’d been dying to try. We indulged in the queso fundido, Korean Short Rib, and Pineapple Pork tacos. YUM, y’all.
Um, funny story though – we initially arrived at the restaurant and were given a $60 dollar set Valentine’s menu that was apparently the only available option for the night. Eric and I looked up at each other, and begin to laugh with wide eyes once the nice waitress walked away.
It all sounded delicious, but four courses was so not our vibe, and as much of foodies as we are, we couldn’t validate spending $120 on food for one meal really ever. We also were so looking forward to finally trying out the tacos we kept hearing about!
We were going to get drinks anyway, but the restaurant was so nice in letting us order off their normal menu in the end. We felt super reassured in our reaction to the set menu, as we ended up seeing every group/couple around us do the same – turns out the people just want to share their love and their tacos, cheers to that.
Barcocina’s food and service rocked – I definitely recommend. I’ll totally be going back for margs with the girls, or a big group to mix and match some tacos.
Post-dinner we made our way to one of our absolute favorite places in the city – The Second City theater. Eric surprised me with tickets to their 104th Revue – Fool Me Twice, Déjà Vu. This was definitely a full on couple hours of funnies. We loved how the whole deja vu aspect was so cleverly woven throughout the whole thing.
If you are in town visiting The Windy City, you must go – and if you live here, you likely already know what a must Second City is. I haven’t seen a bad show at this famous comedy spot yet. Did you know Amy Poehler and Steve Carell are Second City alumni??
Before I wrap up for today, I’ve got to share my favorite Valentine’s Day tradition…for each one we spend together, Eric has added another rose to the bundle of fresh flowers I get – pretty crazy this year we were already at four.
Happy Wednesday, loves!
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