Friday, November 11,2016

The wild,wild week!

Last Wednesday I took a 10:30 am flight from LAX to Chicago’s O’Hare Airport to spend what I hoped would be a few precious and spontaneous days with friends and family. It started out with a bang as I arrived to my mother’s home to find my two older brothers also visiting. We caught up quickly as we enjoyed Lou Malnotti’s  deep dish pizza (a true Chicago favorite) and watched the Cubs make history! That night the Northside of Wrigleyville shook all over as the Cubs (who were playing an away game in Cleveland) took home the championship! I would have to say that it was worth it enough just to be there in the city, in the presence of all of the excitement and heart pounding adrenaline rushing fervor. The city that I had abandoned (well sometimes I feel guilty about leaving it for the the easy breezy California climate) was giving me a gift of treasured memories to hold dear for years to come. And to make sure of it I stood in two extremely long lines at two different Dick’s Sporting Goods stores just to find the exact Cub’s gear I wanted to bring back with me. Totally worth it!!

Above, showing off my Cub’s pride at my mom’s house and my mom who is still here at 85 yrs young! The picturesque view from Lake Barrington and one of two lines I was able to withstand.

The next few days would also be special as I met up with a few friends I hadn’t seen in awhile and spent my stay with my sister, Marsha who had opened her lovely home to me for my time there. My sister’s suburban home is quietly tucked away in the far Northern suburban forest plains of Chicago which is a wonderful contrast from a long day in the city. It’s tranquility gives one a settling of sorts, when in the evening you are craving  a winddown and a peaceful atmosphere in which to accomplish it. However, during the day I bustled about downtown Chicago. I accompanied my sister to a hair stylist appointment in the River North area (coincidentally in the building adjacent to Trump Tower) where I found not only a quick bite of lunch at an in-house restaurant situated inside the luxury condominium building, Bongiorno’s  pizza hit the spot after along stroll along the River Walk and wouldn’t you know it, they had a wide array of gelato! I tried the pistachio, yum! Later in the week I would sample a tasty Sunday brunch complete with endless mimosas (full disclosure, they do a $25 brunch every Sunday, but I found a Gilt City certificate (using the app) that offered the endless sippies) at a trendy spot called the Highline Bar and Lounge whose food is to die for! The entire lay out is surely impressive with a full bar and a menu to make your eyes and mouth do tail spins! As a part of the Four Corners Tavern Group this is their first River North location that caters to a lunch crowd as well as dinner and a regular happy hour. While in the Chi it’s a must!

Above and below, scenes from the River North area and downtown Chicago. Trump Tower stands along the Chicago River, a delicious pizza I tried from Bongiorno’s along the River Walk, and landscapes and perspectives of architecture and angles I caught on film. (Dress by Zara, shoes Alberta Ferretti and jeans Zara) Highline Bar and their waffle station, a mini- waffle on a plate before it’s demise. Highline Bar Photo credits/ Empty bar scene, outside frame and sliders taken from internet,all others my own.



And no trip to any metro area is complete without some retail therapy am I right, or am I right, or am I right? So to get things started becacuse of course I forgot my body wash I had to head to Sephora at Woodfield Mall in Schaumburg. I was reluctant to find exactly what I was looking for (which was a typical foaming body wash) but actually found something new, at the suggestion of a very helpful Sephora representative I left with a L’Occitane Almond Delights Shower Oil which I love! It just barely lathers enough and has the most intoxicating almond aroma; you’ll want to lick yourself,yeah it’s like that. And as an added benefit leaves your skin pretty smooth as opposed to feeling stripped and dry. Next stop was the MAC store because hey it’s my alma mater and I had to go and see if my peeps were still there. Well I didn’t see any familiar faces but what I did see were new Holiday sets and boy was I tempted! I had to restrain myself…I’m trying to keep my focus on PAT McGRATH:METALMORPHOSIS 005 November 15,2016 is literally days away! So I just came in for the basics, Spiked Brow Definer  and  Pro Longwear Paint Pot in Layin’ Low .

Above: Some scenes from my Woodfield and Oakbrook trip… me with Rose at Oakbrook Nordstrom where she is Counter Manager for Chanel. MAC Holiday Nutcracker Sweet Photo credit MAC website. All other photos my own.

Several days into my trip I decided I needed that Charlotte Tilbury Dolce Vita Palette , it was my birthday week afterall! So I headed off to Nordstrom in Oakbrook Center Mall where that most incredible thing happened…yes the Charlotte Tilbury palette happened too…but I was re-connected with someone so special that I hadn’t seen in along time. Just as I was admiring the lovely palette I heard a voice, asking me if I needed any assistance, I knew this voice and just as I swung around to lock eyes with the face I was greeted with my old manager from my Bloomingdale’s Estee Lauder days! Can you say, double -take! Let me start by saying, Rose was more than just a manager, she was more like a friend and a mentor, a guide and a teacher, so upon seeing her it wasn’t just a “hi”, I reached out and we both embraced at length! It was clear we both had missed each other so much! We made plans to get together before I left no matter what! In between this time my friend Kelly, who coincidentally moved to L.A. several years ago and then moved back to Chicago, was meeting me for dinner at an upscale Italian establishment Di Pescara in Northbrook. Now this place really sets the tone for “classy”, and while you don’t have to don a suit and tie or heels to make the cut; the fare, atmosphere and service make you feel like you’re the center of a five star dining experience.* Tip:get a bar seat, you’ll be closer to the bartender and they’ll have no choice but to service you faster.  Two days later (Election Day by the way) we had breakfast on the morning I was to depart back to Los Angeles and did some really great catching up! She suggested an eatery I hadn’t heard of in Woodfield, (somehow I keep ending up here, is it a sign?) called Wildberry Cafe , now I’m not knocking IHop…there will always be a place in my heart for you but this place is kind of a game changer! Everything from the decor to the menu has been carefully well thought out. I had a really hard time deciding what I wanted and I was actually pretty hungry, you would think I would’ve eaten anything. Eventually, I opted for a platter of Fresh Glazed Bluberry Belgium Waffles and their signature Napa Valley Fig omelette, yes! Okay, so my eyes were bigger than my stomach, I ended up taking most of it home, or rather to my mom’s as I had to see her one last time before I left.

Above, Kelly and I and a delicious shrimp Caesar salad from DiPescara, breakfast from Wildberry Cafe in Schaumburg, my new Charlotte Tilbury palette, a birthday treat from Sephora and Marc Jacobs, MAC goodies and film from dinner (and abstract structures I always capture) at the Saddle Room in Hoffman Estates.

It was a good visit…I’ll be back again in July for a wedding and once more in September for yet another, (must be something in the water). Until then, I’ll keep my memories close and my future expectations on the horizon.


Wishing you all Love and Luxury,


*Due to circumstances beyond my control some links may point to items or services that are no longer in stock or available at the time you are ready to purchase. I apologize in advance for the inconvenience. The items depicted on my page are in no way shape or form gratis or compensation for advertisement but simply items of interest to me personally that I have chosen to share on my site. All photo credits (except where noted) are the property of the retail sites from which the products are derived.

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