The Power of the Poppy

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Is it just us, or does merely looking at spring-like images bring hope that these dark, grey days are short lived?

They are shorter-lived than they may seem, by the way — 36 days until spring!

Until then, here are a few poppy options (poptions? anyone?) that are simultaneously cheering us up and making our credit cards sad.

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American Apparel Peach Skin Lola Dress

poppy-coach-iphone-case

Coach iPhone Case via Macy’s

Poppy-BCBGMaxAzria-Slim-Pant

BCBG Maria Slim Pant in Poppy

poppy-madewell-flats

Madewell Sidewalk Skimmer in Flame

Poppy-Pour-La-Victoire-Tote

Pour la Victoire  Poppy & Patent Tote

poppy-topshop-snood

Topshop Poppy-Print Snood

poppy-tory-burch-cuff

Tory Burch Logo Snap Cuff

poppy-trina-turk-tunic

Trina Turk Solid Crepe Finch Top 

poppy-yvesstlaurent-bathing-suit

Yves St. Laurent Poppy-Print Triangle Bikini

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NATO weekend in Chicago

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For those of us who spent this beautiful weekend Chicago, it was a fine line between avoiding protestors and avoiding a sunburn.  Well, it was really a line about 20 blocks thick, but the pink shoulders were pretty prevalent whether you were hiding out on the northside with me, or confronting cops in riot gear on the south.  The security team from my office building sent out the above photo to show all of us “Friday work from homers” what we were missing in the plaza next to our office.  The pictures below are a better view of how my extended weekend was spent.  I think I made the right choice…

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A lazy Sunday afternoon with a book and a blanket in the shade of Lincoln Park.

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A Thursday evening Cubs game in the bleachers with a group of friends, a few too many Coronas and one near catch of an errant baseball.

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Roofdeck bliss on a gorgeously sunny Friday afternoon.

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Lunch in the dappled shade of Millenium Park.

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Sunset dinner on a warm Friday evening at NoMi in the Park Hyatt.

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Al fresco cocktails and fun centerpieces.  The perfect way to end the weekend.

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Summer in the USA

Usually I don’t think about vacations during the summer months – after all, Chicago is such a beautiful, fun city when it’s not snowing (read: 9 months out of the year).  Lately I’ve been thinking about the sheer variety of vacation spots this gorgeous country has to offer and it got me curious.  Here are a few on my ‘must see’ list…hey, a girl can dream!

US Coast Guard Station

Montauk, NY

The Hamptons

The Hamptons

Traverse City

Traverse City, MI

Charleston

Charleston, SC

Santa Barbara

Santa Barbara, CA

CUmberland Island

Cumberland Island, GA

Oregon

Oregon

Maine

Coastal Maine

Port Ludlow, Washington

Port Ludlow, WA

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Goodnight, Chicago

 

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This evening on another awesome urban hike, I snapped this beautiful photo of the Chicago skyline…right before I came across my SECOND favorite Chicago sight: city bunny and city duck!

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I’ve always thought that city bunnies must be good luck Smile 

We hope you had a great evening, tell us what fun and unexpected sightings happen around your city!

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Bicycle, bicycle, bicycle

You say coke I say caine
You say John I say Wayne
Hot dog I say cool it man
I don’t wanna be the President of America
You say smile I say cheese
Cartier I say please….’cause all I want to do is ride my bicycle, bicycle, bicycle.  Queen

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A woman without a man is like a fish without a bicycle.
Gloria Steinem

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Get a bicycle.  You will not regret it if you live.  Mark Twain

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Life is like riding a bicycle: you don’t fall off unless you stop pedaling.
Claude Pepper

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The bicycle, the bicycle surely, should always be the vehicle of novelists and poets.  Christopher Morley

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Consider a man riding a bicycle.  Whoever he is, we can say three things about him.  We know he got on the bicycle and started to move.  We know that at some point he will stop and get off.  Most important of all, we know that if at any point between the beginning and the end of his journey he stops moving and does not get off the bicycle he will fall off it.  That is a metaphor for the journey through life of any living thing, and I think of any society of living things.  William Golding

photos via:  acertaincinema.com

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Summer Cocktail Heaven

Though the weather here in Chicago has settle back to it’s normal, “seasonable” unpredictability, I’m still looking forward to the summer months quickly heading our way.  Sadly enough for a Monday, I’m also thinking about the cocktails that may be coming my way this evening as well.  Who needs summer anyway?

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Blood Orange Margarita

  • 3 oz fresh Blood Orange Juice
  • 2 oz Tequila
  • 1 oz Triple Sec
  • splash of agave nectar (syrup)

Rub the rim of an old fashioned glass (or whatever similar vessel you prefer)with an edge of a blood orange slice. Swirl the rim through a small pile of kosher or sea salt to salt the rim.  Combine all ingredients into a cocktail shaker, add ice and shake for 15 seconds.  Put a few cubes of ice in your glass. Strain the cocktail into the glass and enjoy.

-whiteonricecouple.com

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Honey Citrus Cocktail

  • 4 ounces Skyy Infused Dragon Fruit vodka
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 4 ounces fresh squeezed grapefruit juice
  • 2 ounces fresh squeezed orange juice
  • Sugar rim

Add the honey, vodka, grapefruit juice and lemon juice into a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake for 10 seconds and set aside. Wet the rim of the goblet with an orange or grapefruit wedge. Dip the glass, upside down, in a plate of sugar to coat the entire rim evenly. Pour the cocktail into the goblet and add ice. Garnish with a fresh flower and enjoy!

-sugarandcharmblog.com

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The Sarasota:

  • 1 large bottle of moscato wine
  • 1 can of raspberry lemonade concentrate
  • a splash of sprite
  • crushed raspberries

Simply mix the ingredients together and serve over ice.  Garnish with fresh raspberries, lemon pinwheels or a sprig of basil.  Suggestion:  while I love the moscato suggestion from this recipe, I use a totally different varietal – try it with a crisp vinho verde for a less sweet cocktail.  If you’re being a good girl, use Sprite Zero and a raspberry lemonade Crystal Light.

-dessertedplanet.com

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Coconut Mango Mojito

This recipe from HowSweetEats, I saved for last – it’s so fun and different that it clearly deserved special billing.

  • 6-8 fresh mint leaves
  • 2 1/2 ounces of mint simple syrup
  • 1 ounce of coconut rum
  • 1 1/2 ounces of club soda
  • 1-2 ounces of mango puree
  • the juice of one lime

To make the mango puree, combine 1 peeled + chopped, ripe mango in a food processor (or high speed blender) with the juice of 1 lime, and process until smooth (or at least almost smooth).

In the bottom of a glass, add 1 ounce of simple syrupand the mint leaves. Muddle with a muddler or use the clean bottom of something blunt, like a screwdriver! Add ice to the glass, and pour rum, syrup, mango puree, lime juice and club soda over top. Mix with a long spoon or knife and serve with an additional sprig of mint.

-howsweeteats.com