breakfast of champions

i really, really like breakfast. actually, i should re-word and say i really like breakfast food. despite my best efforts i'm not really a morning person nor do i have much of an appetite at 8:30 when i head off to the office. i usually eat some almonds and a banana or yogurt and granola around 9:30 or whenever i finally wake up. some mornings i don't eat at all.
that said, on weekends, i love love schlepping around the house in my pjs for an hour or two and then indulging in really yum breakfast foods. pancakes are my favorite. in fact, i also really like breakfast for dinner. it's a favorite at my house.

chicago may be known for its pizza and hot dogs, but my favorite meals in the city were most definitely breakfast. on monday, after getting ready at the hotel, and then an hour or so of navigating the el and finding fun things during the walk to breafast, mom and i were absolutely starving. yolk in grant park was supposed to be our first stop of the day, but we got distracted numerous times on the way. i knew about this place from lacey's trip during college and was eager to work it in to our plans. they have fresh squeezed juice (which really beats tropicana), and an extremely extensive menu including banana nut french toast and crepes with orange coulis. they also have their own private label coffee and a really happy yellow dining room. (see above and below.)

our delicious spread. crepes, eggs, fruit. since we left the hotel early, but never really found time to eat, it was nearly brunch by the time we arrived. we both avoided the crazy rich dishes (as great as they sounded) to save room for a late lunch and it was still fantastic.

looking a little windblown already. please note the overall yellow sunshiney-ness of this place. it made me really happy. it reminded me of a really bright ikea with better food.

on tuesday morning, mom and i took a little trip to the wicker park/damen area. it was early and we weren't that hungry yet. all we really wanted was a starbucks to get coffee and a muffin, but instead we happened upon the milk and honey cafe. my guidebook (yes, i had a guidebook like a big dork, but how else were we supposed to get around? besides, mine said "not for tourists" right on the front.) said that milk and honey was "heaven for breakfast" and they weren't kidding.
quite different from yolk the morning before, but equally inviting, their dining room was dark and cozy and autumnal with a fireplace and gourds and pumpkins everywhere.

fruit, muffins and giant lattes. this may have even beaten yolk by a little bit. and starbucks by a lot.

when i returned home, i decided it was time i started taking a little more time to enjoy breakfast. most mornings, i grab things in a rush while trying to get dressed, but sometimes i try to make time. (note: these are usually the mornings i have off.) the other day, this yum (fresh!) croissant really made my morning and made me a little reminiscent of eating fresh ones for breakfast in paris.

so, take some time for breakfast this coming weekend. it is, after all, the most important meal of the day!


renegade handmade

last weekend, i headed up to chicago for a conference for work. following the final session on sunday, my mom flew up to meet me in the windy city for a few days. neither of us had visited chicago before, but it's safe to say we're both in l-o-v-e. what a fabulous place!
one of my favorite parts of the city was the wicker park area. mom and i saw it while on the el and decided it might be worth a stop. so on the morning of our last day, we took a quick ride over for breakfast. right next door to the most fabulous breakfast place ever (more on that later) was this cute cute little handmade shop, renegade handmade. it was packed full of jewelry, books calendars, paper goods, etc. all handmade by local vendors. what a happy place!

ahhh...handmade gloriousness.

paper goodies. one of my favorites were the cute custom-made notebook dividers (on the far right with the cute frame).

in the far back of the store there was a little gallery. i started snooping and found this extremely inspiring craft room. what i wouldn't give for all this wonderful space to be creative!

naturally, handmade places inspire good ideas and a "hey, i could do that" attitude. i loved this creative eco-friendly grocery bag. it was a simple canvas tote (available practically anywhere for cheap) with a cute pig stitched on and the text stamped in permanent ink at the bottom. a far cry from the wal-mart totes i currently use. i plan on making some similar ones.

also, i can't say that i'm usually into cross stitch at all (although i did make some awesome christmas ornaments when i was in the seventh grade); but there were a number of cute little mini ones around the store. the wooden rings were spray painted in cool colors and each was stitched with sweet little woodland creatures - deer, birds, rabbits, and my personal favorite, owls. what a fun way to make something really outdated and ugly cool again!

such fun! and here's the best part - a lot of things are available for purchase on their website! it's like it's own little etsy. enjoy and more delicious chicago pics soon!


sunday edition #3

i know, i've been a terrible blogger lately. it's been a busy couple of weeks with work, business trips to chicago (!!) and then this past week, where i just couldn't seem to get caught up on sleep no matter how much i tried. i assure you, this week will be better. especially since fall is so fabulous and inspiring and since i finally have gorgeous new drapes on my windows which i can't wait to share with you.
on another note, i'm sure by this time most of you have heard of the avett brothers. i try to avoid talking about pop culture (aka: movies, television, music) on my blog since we get enough of that from basically every media outlet out there, but since the crazy talented brothers seth and scott are from concord, i figure i can give them a little blog love. their sister bonnie used to be my dance teacher and i've waited on both boys several times at the little wine bar where i used to work. clearly, we're practically best friends. so i'm sure you can imagine my excitement when i walked into starbucks the other day and their faces were staring at me on starbucks/itunes pick of the week free download card! their new single (i and love and you) is really great, too, so i would advise you to run (don't walk) to the nearest starbucks and pick up your free download today!
see you tomorrow!


i love louis

this is my new louis vuitton briefcase and it's seriously gorgeous. and here's the best part: not only is it authentic and practically brand new, but i got it second-hand for $34. (and no, i didn't leave out a number.) i found this steal at this great little antique place in town called southern comforts and apparently it used to belong to one of the owners and she was just cleaning out and trying to get rid of some stuff. i kind of wanted to be like "um, hello, do you know how much this is worth!?" but i took the deal and ran (don't tell anyone else!). it was on sale, so it did cost a little bit more at one point (but not really that much). the ladies at the shop always have fun events like "margarita mondays" and "christmas in july" where you can shop and sip (free!) cocktails (this particular purchase was made on "sangria saturday") and i love it. what's more, they know me by name in there now and it makes me feel like a VIP. and quite honestly, i don't see how i'm not with my new louis. i don't need a briefcase every day for work, but when i do i plan to use this one. this is one of my favorite purchases ever and i get really excited every time i look at it. just wanted to share the joy! (you're welcome.)


i'm on a train - a post by lacey

tomorrow morning at 5am (5am!!) i will be boarding an amtrak headed towards union station in dc, and i am THIS excited. rebecca, one of my best friends from back in the day, moved from north carolina to maryland during our high school years and has since completed her undergrad degree at university of maryland at college park where she is now a grad student. we've only seen each other a few times since she's moved so we're making up for lost time this weekend. we've made big plans to attend the crafty bastards arts and crafts fair in the adams morgan neighborhood of dc. arts! crafts! i'm loving it already! i've cashed my checks from working at swank so i'll have plenty of moola to shell out for jewelry, pillows, art prints, random felted things, fried goodies and cups of coffee. don't worry. i'm taking my camera and lots of batteries to document everything. you can pretend you went with me.

this is rebecca. doesn't she just look fun?

until next week, lacey

image via flickr