we went on our first trip to europe as a married couple just over two months ago and it was all kinds of amazing. we planned it super last minute. basically i saw one of our friends post about cheap flights to europe which sparked myRead More
well i'm back from a long break! the past week has been a whirlwind of emotions, we have had so many changes in our family (for better and worse) that i needed to focus on other things. i am excited to be back though and have lots of fun posts planned for this week.
today is my birthday!! i'm 24 now, which i am actually happy about. for some reason telling people i was 23 made me feel like such a baby who thought they had it all together. 24 is going to be a good year for me! this weekend jarman started off the festivities with a bang. he got us a hotel in la jolla for the night, and took me shopping and to dinner. it was hilarious seeing him try to make it through fashion valley mall with a very excitable me. but he survived to tell the tale.
the next morning we headed over to pacific beach (where jarman thinks we should move during law school). it was actually really pretty! i felt like i always hear about the bad reputation of pb- it's the party/drunk scene for younger people (which i am not anymore- as of today!). i loved it though- of course i would be totally happy to live in any beach city.
after pb, we went to the la jolla tide pools. i have such fond memories of visiting tide pools as a kid, and it was really just as fun as an adult. la jolla has always been my dream city. we had such a fun time staying there.
here's to a great birthday and my best year yet!
on our second day in san francisco we finished off all of the touristy spots. jarman hadn't been to san francisco since he was really little, and didn't remember anything. i feel like we had to cross all of those off the list, and next time we will do irregular things (or just shop, all i wanted to do was shop but that doesn't always go over well with boys). we visited the golden gate park, which was enveloped in fog and completely breath-taking. i had never been before, and i'm so glad we went. we went to the de young museum and saw an exhibit on david hockney (don't worry, i'm going to do a whole post on it because it was amazing). there was tons more to see at the museum, but we wanted to get to other things. we visited the japanese tea garden that was authentic according to jarman. after that we went underneath the golden gate bridge where there was an old military fort. then we got treats in ghiradelli square and walked over to lombard street (and up the street, rough one). we watched the pretty sunset near ghiradelli square and then headed to uc hastings for a law school orientation. (by the way we would love to live in sf for law school. it is one of our top four schools.) that evening we went to tacolicious for dinner and had braised pork tacos and butternut squash tacos. so good. oh, and i included a couple of pictures from our drive home. we stopped by half moon bay and walked out to where the huge mavericks waves break. there were these awesome colorful plants i couldn't get enough of.
my friend mary kate has been everywhere. i met her on my london study abroad, she lived in florence and russia for a time, and has the coolest stories. she also did an internship in chicago- which is currently (especially after this post) on the top of my list of cities to visit. i can't believe i haven't been yet. check out her recommendations!
A few years ago I was lucky enough to find a job in Chicago with a VC firm. I moved to the city into a tiny one room apartment with beautiful view. Though I spent the majority of my time in the office, I took every spare second to enjoy/explore the city. Here are the top 10 most interesting parts of the city:
1. The Art Institute
This museum is very nearly my favorite in the US. The collections are incredible. My favorite thing in the museum is a collection of tiny busts done by Honoré-Victorin Daumier. There is nothing better than a snarky political Frenchman expressing himself through sculpture. I couldn’t choose a favorite painting but I guarantee you will love them all! (I remember being able to get some sort of discount if you go late in the afternoon/evening but can’t see it on the website so maybe ask about it when you are there. If that is not available admission is free Thursday from 5-8pm.)
2. Take an architectural boat tour
The architecture in Chicago is incredible. It is rare to be able to sit on a boat and look at/ learn about some of the most fabulous architecture out there. Chicago is unusual because it has a river running through the center of the city. The rides are a fun way to get a feel for the city.
Chicago is a city for food. The extreme temperatures are great at driving people into restaurants. My favorite is called Banderas and is conveniently located right on Michigan Ave but is a bit tricky to find. Look for a big sign on the second story above a Citibank, enter through the door to the left of the bank that is for a fur shop or something Russian like that, take the escalator up and it is on your left. The food is to die for! You can’t go wrong ordering but I would make sure to order both desserts even if you are alone. House-made Oreo Ice Cream Sandwiches and Banana Cream Pie with Carmel and Chocolate.
4. Michigan Ave
Michigan Ave is the main shopping street in Chicago it is nicknamed “The Magnificent Mile.” It is an easy street to stroll down while looking at blocks and blocks of shops. My favorite places to drop in on include the appropriately punk British brand All-Saints, the America classic NIKE, and the random Fourth Presbyterian Church with an incredible courtyard tucked away between the hundreds of stores and towering buildings.
5. Rush Street
If you were looking for somewhere a little less crowded I would recommend Rush St. Rush runs parallel to Michigan and in my opinion has better shopping; more little boutiques, the better major department stores/designers, and it is where many of the showrooms for my favorite sports cars reside.
The Bean is a must for anyone visiting Chi Town. It is so odd/incredible you just can’t miss it. It is located at the entrance to Millennial Park which is also pretty sweet. If you look online beforehand, you can almost always find something free going on, a concert, an extreme yo-yoing competition, a yoga class, etc. Awesome.
7. Navy Pier
May be the most touristy thing to do in Chicago but it is also kind of fun. There are rides, games, carnies and much more. As an added bonus there is a firework show twice a week during the summer.
8. Armatige Ave
The last of the shopping streets mentioned in this top 10 is Armatige Ave. This street is a little more off the beaten path but is fun because it gives you a chance to see some of the charming Chicago neighborhoods. Again this is a street where you will find more funky shops and delicious gelato.
9. Willis Tower
Previously known as Sear Tower, was the tallest building in the world until 1973. Now it is the 8th tallest. I never actually went to the Tower, for whatever reason I wasn’t into it. But, I did have many friends who were into it and they loved it. Whether you choose Willis(Sears) or not you definitely need to find somewhere to get a view of the city from on high.
10. The Donut Vault
Of course we have to end with something sweet so I will tell you about the secret treat the locals die for…The Donut Vault. It is basically this tiny closet of a bakery with a line that wraps around the block but boy are those donuts good. If you get there around 8am you are usually good. They open at 8:30 and stay open until they sell out which is fast. Glazed Chestnut is my fave but since you are already there and awake you should probably get an assorted box just so you can try them all. 400 N Franklin St, Chicago 60654
That’s it for the top 10. Here are two bonus stops that didn’t make the list because they can be a bit sketchy but if you are looking for more to do and are feeling brave, give them a go. The old meatpacking neighborhood (where I used to office) is the up and coming hot spot in Chicago. It has some awesome restaurants (Wishbone), and shops. Greek town also has great food, but don’t forget yo mace!
i wrote this whole post, and somehow it got deleted. so this is going to be short and quick, because i really don't feel like writing all over again. last week we tagged along with my father in law on his business trip to the bay area. on our first day in the city, we caught the ferry in, hung around pier 39, and the went out to alcratraz. before we left for sf, i decided i wanted bright white pictures. i tend to like over-exposed pictures, but i wanted them to be even more dramatic than i usually do. i love the way they turned out- sf's foggy skies and picturesque scenes weren't hard to get right!