Sidewalk Shopping

TreeKeith and I have lived in our condo for three years this month. We purchased it together after dating for eight months. In hindsight, it was one of the riskiest decisions of my life, and I certainly think it stressed my parents out. I remember thinking that it was crazy to buy real estate with a boyfriend of less than a year, but I was so calm about my decision. For me, the old adage was true. When you know, you know.

It’s a little embarrassing how long it’s taken us to get “settled” into our condo. We’ve made several changes over the last year and while I think most homes are always evolving, I feel content. We plan to be here for several more years, but in the mean time, we love looking at condos and homes around the city. This past weekend we took a long walk around the Gold Coast. I left my phone at home, so every time I saw a house or building I liked, I had Keith pull it up on Redfin so I could see photos of the inside. It slowed us down, but it was so fun!

GC House fronts GC Building This building is absolutely gorgeous (and quite expensive).

Flowers Beautiful manicured gardens.

SkylineI can’t wait to see where we end up next!


Brunch at Fat Rice

ShelfFat Rice opened in late 2012 and quickly became one of our favorite restaurants. The restaurant serves Macanese food, described as Chinese and Portuguese fusion. We had never heard of the cuisine, but it is delicious. Every time we go, we struggle with our order because everything is so. good. The potstickers are a must, and I love the fat noodle. We recently went with another couple and tried the fat rice for the first time. Amazing.  The pineapple upside down cake is my second favorite dessert in Chicago. I could go on… Plus, the staff could not be nicer or more enthusiastic about the food. Unfortunately, the big drawback to Fat Rice is the no reservation policy. Coupled with instant popularity and a somewhat remote location, we have endured some long waits.

The restaurant started brunch service last month, so on Saturday, we decided to ride our bikes over to see if we could get a table. We were shocked to find the restaurant almost empty. We happily took a seat and were quickly reminded why we love this place so much.

Egg custard Egg tarts. These were a sweet starter that reminded me of dim sum style egg custard tarts. My little brother is a picky eater and growing up, he would eat a dozen egg tarts when we went to dim sum with my grandparents.

Tofu Tofu. This was Keith’s pick and it was one of my favorite dishes. The tofu is served in a maple syrup sauce (but not too sweet). Kind of like asian french toast I suppose.

Dumplings Shrimp dumplings. Delicious.

Pork SandwichBone-in pork chop sandwich. This came highly recommended by our server and it did not disappoint.  The meat was incredibly tender. Keith absolutely loved this dish.

It’s so fun to “rediscover” a favorite restaurant. I am inspired to brave the dinner crowd again soon.

Our Weekend

EK Selfie Emma bikingWe had another beautiful weekend in Chicago. A lot of our friends were out of town or busy, so Keith and I were on our own. We attended a gardening workshop at Green city market, went to brunch at Fat Rice (still one of my favorite restaurants in the city), drank coffee at Ipsento, and took a long walk around the Gold Coast. We also rode our bikes on Saturday! It was quite cold when we left the house in the morning (~40 degrees). My hands were frozen! But it got better after an hour or so, and I was so happy to be using my body and seeing the city from a different perspective. There’s very little we enjoy more than biking around Chicago.

I ended this lovely weekend hanging out with my girlfriends at book club, and I feel refreshed and ready for a new week. Have a wonderful one!

Andrea’s Visit

Everyone beanWe had such a good time visiting Andrea in Columbus last fall and getting to know her roommates, so we were thrilled when they decided to come to Chicago. It was so fun showing them around some of our favorite neighborhoods.

Chips EA Big Star EK Big StarSaturday was beautiful, so we decided to brave the crowds and go to Big Star. We were lucky enough to get seated right away! We sat on the patio, drank margaritas, and enjoyed the weather.

Bloomingdale Trail Trail exitOne of my favorite parts of the weekend was walking along the Bloomingdale trail in Bucktown. Keith and I had never been up there before, and the girls were up for exploring. This is a three mile stretch of old train tracks that is being converted into a park, kind of like the High Line in New York. Construction started last fall, and while I’m excited for the park, I’m a little bummed we didn’t see it before they started tearing things up. Right now, it is quite dusty up there.

Friday dinnerGirls bridgeThe weekend flew by way too quickly. We had such a great time with these girls and hope to see them again soon!

April in Chicago

GranolaWhen Andrea and I came back from breakfast on Sunday, Keith was in the kitchen making granola. His combination of oats, nuts, seeds, and my favorites, dried cherries and coconut, is absolutely delicious. Such a great snack. Thank you Keith!

LettuceExactly seven days after planting, I awoke to see lettuce sprouts on our balcony. I can see that I went a little overboard with the number of seeds planted, but I am beyond excited to see some growth. Here’s to hoping more appear this week.

Elaine'sI drink coffee now! That’s right, after 27 years (and realizing how much sugar is in my beloved chai lattes) I am drinking coffee 3-4 times a week. Keith is thrilled about this because he loves trying new coffee shops. A few weeks ago we went to Elaine’s in Hotel Lincoln. Delicious lattes. We are hoping to try some of these this summer.

However, we have yet to take our first bike ride of the year. This past weekend would have been perfect, but we were busy with our visitors. I am monitoring the weather for this weekend. Perhaps we’ll take an Easter bike ride?