Chicago! The city so nice they named it… Chicago!

First of all, thanks to my husband for the title. It’s a joke he made repeatedly while we were in said city for a week. It got better every time.

0322_6
Cloud Gate, with a nice layer of frosting.

 

We were in Chicago last week! It was pretty great. Both my husband and I have been before, but it’s been years. We were excited because we got at least a few days of real winter. It’s been an incredibly mild one down here in Mississippi. We went from highs in the 70s to the most snow I’ve ever seen in my life.

0322_7

We spent a lot of time in art museums. Including the entire duration of the Tuesday business hours of The Art Institute.

0322_1
Turns out, this is where they keep all the art.

And we also ate.

0322_12
The best Reuben sammich.

And we explored Chinatown…

0322_5

And we ate.

0322_8
Tonkatsu ramen!

And we visited the Museum of Contemporary Art…

0322_2
My favorite is the middle one — ‘Birth of a Star’ by Mariko Mori.

And we ate…

0322_4
Not Pictured: My new best friend, Italian Beef

And we had dessert!

0322_3
We only had one small cake. :/
0322_10
The warmest day, with a high of probably 35. 

We did some shopping and some gawking. We saw a show at Second City, which was great. We explored a couple neighborhoods and found a cool board game shop. We saw lots of street art and murals and neat old buildings.

And we ate!

0322_13
Fish tacos. From a place picked at random. They were great.

We didn’t do any St. Patrick’s Day partying (because we’re old and lame and it was our fifth day there and we were so tired), but we did see the city lit up green.

0322_9

We didn’t get to see a fraction of what we could have. We were so worn down by day five that we barely had the energy to leave the hotel. But, I think we’ll be back one day. (But not before Boston and New York, which are next on the list.)

Advertisements

Chattanooga, Tennessee

This past weekend, the husband person and I took a little trip up to Chattanooga to visit his brother for a couple days. It’s about a six hour drive from where we live, so it’s not too bad for a short vacation. And when you leave a coastal area for the mountains, it really feels like you’ve gone a lot farther than you really have.

Chattanooga’s a pretty hip town, too. It’s walkable (or bikable if that’s your style), there’s history and art and so much food. It’s like Nashville Junior, if you consider Nashville the Austin of Tennessee. (Austin being the Portland of Texas.)

1011_10

Here’s what we did!

1011_9

First up: Nature! This is the husband person (right) and brother-in-law person (left) marching toward Signal Point on Signal Mountain. It’s called that because of the Civil War Signalin’ that went on there. (Click the link for someone that knows what they’re talking about.)

Continue reading

Check-In: April 14

Let’s get right to it!

What I’m working on: Stella’s getting her groove back, y’all. I’m feeling better and I’m getting stuff done.

Another listing up on the shop…

0414_2

I’ve done a whole slew of these basic color combos, but I think I’ve gotten a couple of techniques improved. I’m just trying to keep my shop’s momentum going while I work on other things.

I’m doing some of the exercises in my new book to jump start the creativity engine. I’m working on one as we speak.

0414

I’m really, really fighting the urge to be a perfectionist about this. I’ve got to give myself permission to just do something as practice and maybe just throw it away in the end. Not everything has to be the start of something that gets finished. It’s okay to make ugly things. It’s the stopping that’s the problem. *deep breath*

Other things I’m working on: New blog features, shop listing categories and a couple personal projects.

How I’m feeling: Better. I’m trying to keep up with my exercise habit. And thank goodness. If not, my back would be a wreck right now. I haven’t been so good at the posture when I’m at work.

I’m also giving meditation another shot. I downloaded the Headspace app and I’m doing the free ten day trial. I have to say, a ten minute meditation session in my car on my lunch break really helps with the afternoon brain fog I get. We’ll see if I think it’s helpful enough to pay the subscription fee after these ten days…

What I’m reading: The Bees! It’s surprisingly intense for a story told from a bee’s point of view.

What I’m playing: So much Minecraft. I’m building a tower.

0414_3