A Sweet Start to Summer 2017

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

I am sooo glad summer break is finally here!!! I'd be lying if I said I wasn't counting the days, hours and maybe minutes until the last day of school.... But at last, I am sitting at my kitchen counter with the windows open, playing music, feeling insurmountably happy and relieved.

Wrapping up the school year was bittersweet; finals flew by, and with the help of some Starbucks from my coworker I put in grades at the fastest pace I've ever used. A few students were so cute and helped me clean out my room, and then we spent the last few days watching movies in my room or enjoying some sun outside. I almost cried when students came by to give me a hug and thanked me for being a great teacher. I sent that love and gratitude right back, because I will be eternally grateful to them for letting me reach their hearts and minds.

OK, tearjerker part over. Let's get to the fun stuff that I've been sharing on social media, but haven't had a chance to talk about in-depth!

Earlier this month I got to meet Robyn Lynne Norris, the creator of the hilariously brilliant comedy #DateMe: An OKCupid Experiment showing now at Up Comedy Club. It's a live stage show that depicts the totally CRAZY shit that Robyn experienced when she created 38 fake profiles on OKCupid five years ago and let nature take its course... with online dating, mind you.

I took the roomie Zoila to the show, since it was coincidentally her birthday weekend, and we absolutely loved it. I could not stop laughing!! Robyn's writing was purely honest, sweet, and comical, and it felt like she was reading out loud from her diary. #DateMe showed the crazy, funny, creepy, and surprisingly endearing side of online dating; if you're like me and have never tried online dating, this was definitely a refreshing insight on what to expect when you're looking for love on the Internet. Robyn will have you laughing for sure, but what made it an overall humbling experience were the real bits and pieces of her life that she wasn't afraid to show to complete strangers--which, to me, made the show that much easier to connect with on a human level.

Ultimately, the FUNNIEST part of #DateMe was when the hilarious cast sought out two audience members. Robyn's crew had me and Zoila honestly crying from laughter as they used the feedback from the volunteers to create material right then and there for the show.

After the show, Robyn was down to chat/take pictures with me and fellow bloggers from Windy City Bloggers. Then it was time for drinks!

Be sure to check out #DateMe if you need plans for a date night, girls/guys night, or if you just want a feel-good laugh. Huge thanks to the beautifully talented Robyn for the tickets and the experience; her future in comedy writing will surely be taking her places, and I can't wait for the day I see her as a creator/writer for a new comedy television show, or on SNL as the next Tina Fey!

Speaking of good shows, Zoila was kind enough to take me with her to see Phoenix at the Aragon Ballroom. Holy mack, those guys know how to perform. I thought I loved Thomas' voice just on my speakers but there is nothing like seeing Phoenix live. I just about lost it when they played my forever-favorite song from their "United" album.

Besides hitting up fun shows, I've also been trying to expand my knowledge of brunch places because, let's face it, you're not properly "adulting" in Chicago if you're in your 20s and not out enjoying a good brunch every now and then.

I checked out Quiote in Logan Square not too long ago for their mezcal drinks in the bar below the restaurant and I loved the scene/music that the DJ was playing. It was low-key enough so that it didn't feel like a club, but at the same time it's a dope little spot to be at with friends or a date--especially when the limited number of tacos came down from the kitchen to be sold for cash only around midnight (I snagged some, of course!).

So last weekend, I went on a whim for their brunch menu and again I was not disappointed. The servers were sweet, I fell for the minimalist decor, and the food was on point that I almost ordered half of the menu.

The oven where the baked goods were toasted to taste fresh!

When the food is cooking right in front of you...

Iced latte.

(The only thing not pictured was my flaky, warm, chocolate croissant, but believe me when I say that was scrumptious too!)

Are there any brunch spots you have to rave about too? Let me know please!

This month we also celebrated Jose's birthday early with some karaoke--or shall I say, with our amateur bachata performance to Ben E. King's "Stand By Me." On his special day we went out for some steak and piƱa coladas at this delicious Argentinian restaurant, El Nandu. Then we walked around the corner to play some pool and arcade games at Emporium and yes, I did beat him at every single game we played........ kidding! He kicked my butt at ALMOST everything, since I did have a pretty cool comeback while playing foosball.

June's been proving to be fabulous already, and I am genuinely excited to see what more adventures I can partake in with my favorite people. Also, I intend on writing some more thoughtful pieces on relationships, love, or just life in general, so I hope you are open to reading that as well. Talk soon!


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