Chicagoland’s ‘All Seasons Orchard’ (& the tastiest apples ever)

AppleOrchard2

You can keep your pumpkin spice lattes; the real autumn draw in the Midwest is a superb orchard. And guess what? After years of [diligently] trying them all out, and [selflessly] downing cider and donuts, we have a new fave. All Seasons Orchard… …in Woodstock, IL, is worth its weight in Honeycrisp apples. (Which, by the way, are enjoying their peak season rightthisverysecond.) One of the largest orchards in northern Illinois, they have over 15,000 apple and pear trees, an {Read More}

Fall’s roundup of must-haves & a giveaway!

FallRoundup

It’s Fall! Time for photogenic foliage, gourd-flavored beverages, and my new favorite things in the whole of the world! (Make sure to scroll all the way down for the giveaway!) Although I’m compensated, all thoughts, opinions, and divinely happy households are entirely my own. Here Eating local, eating healthy, eating tasty…it can be the trifecta of tricky, amiright? Well, on a quest to make it a little easier is Chicago-based food company Here, who makes veggie and bean dips worth their {Read More}

A summer faves roundup- and a giveaway!

SummerRoundup

Disclosure: These companies and products are better than the last hour of the last day of school. Although I’ve been compensated, all thoughts, opinions, and dreams of endless summer are entirely my own.  Okay- the days are blissfully warm, bedtimes are nonexistent, and the kids are finally out of school. Happy summer! Ready to hear about my new favorite goodies? (I knew you would be.) Plywerk I’ve gotten into the really, really good habit lately of printing, framing, and displaying {Read More}

Eataly loves kids- and it’s mutual

Jasper Chicago Eataly

Disclosure: I’m thrilled to be working today with Eataly and sharing my new Italian food obsessions! Although I’ve been compensated, all thoughts, opinions, and clean plates are entirely my own. *** Eataly, you guys. Coming to you today as a Chicago foodie, parent to three kid-sized eaters, and a reluctant member of the gluten-free community, lemme tell you a little bit about Eataly. The largest Italian marketplace in the world, it was founded in Torino, Italy, in 2007. While locations {Read More}

Got teens who love films? Give them this experience, Chicago.

Fresh Films

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post on behalf of Fresh Films, a company whose programs I really, really admire. Although I’m compensated, all thoughts, opinions, and incredibly envious reactions are entirely my own. *** Popping in for some Friday fun because of a quickly approaching deadline for a company– and program!– you need to know about, Chicagoland. Not-for-profit Fresh Films is creating TV pilots for their annual summer program, and bringing on crews of local teens to learn lighting, camera {Read More}

Spring’s must-haves (and giveaways)!

SpringMustHaves

Disclosure: These hand-picked, wonderfully curated products are sponsored posts that I’m fairly certain you guys are going to adore. Although I’m compensated, all thoughts, opinions, and Spring fevers are entirely my own. *** Know what’s better than warm weather and sunshiny days? Great stuff to help you enjoy the heck out of that warm weather and those sunshiny days. Read on, friends. Ollies Blocks We like to think of ourselves as blocks connoisseur ‘round here. We have lots of them, all {Read More}

Looking to branch out? NYC’s ‘apple seeds’ founders want to meet you.

Apple seeds team

Sometimes, the right people just come your way. Case in point: my cousin Kristan really thought I’d hit it off with her college roomie Alison. Alison, as it turns out, is one half of the A(l)lisons; two high-powered gals who own and operate NYC’s apple seeds. (The popular play space has three New York locations!) I spoke with Alison (Qualter Berna) and Allison (Schlanger) about fateful meetings, apple seeds’ wildly successful songs for seeds music classes- and what, exactly, they’re {Read More}

Swimming at Goldfish: A Chicago success story (times 3)

Nora Suzy Goldfish Swim Chicago

Disclosure: I love working with local businesses and brands, bringing the best of Chicago’s best right to your eyeballs. Although I’m compensated, all thoughts, opinions, and lightning-fast children are entirely my own. *** Before we signed on for a session apiece for these kiddos, these kiddos did not know how to swim. Oh, sure, they were exceptional splashers, but their attempts at staying afloat- and in the water- were somewhat not-so-great. (Just like bursts of temper and expensive tastes, they {Read More}