Wednesday, June 30, 2010

adventure in the city: olive park.

having lived in chicago for 8 years, you would think i would have been everywhere in the city. i thought that i had.

ryan: i'm taking you somewhere today you've never been before.
me
: really?

ryan
: yeah, it's a surprise.

me
: i've probably been
there. if not recently, probably back during college-days.
ryan: i don't think so.

we hopped onto our bikes, and he proved me wrong. i was in total awe - and giddy-excited to discover a new place. he found it the other day when i was having an art night with the ladies, and he had gone on a solo bike adventure and discovered this place.


and a shout out to fellow chicagoans - have you been to olive park? i seriously have never stumbled across here. i don't think many people know about it. it was so quiet, serene - hardly anyone around. and such an amazing view of the city. this park is somewhat tucked away between navy pier and lakeshore drive.











[oops, didn't see that until after we were on the rocks...hehe]





pretty happy with himself with finding the new discovery.
i was pretty impressed, too!



we LOVE our adventures in the city.


Tuesday, June 29, 2010

i've been tagged!!!

so, i was tagged by sandy of sandy a la mode, who has become a sweet blog-friend and of course, has one of the most adorable, eye-candy filled blogs out there! so be sure to include her blog in your list of daily reads 'cause this woman is talented!

The Tag game goes as follows:
Go to the 8th folder in which you store your photos
Select the 8th photo
Post it to your blog and tell the story behind it.
After following the above instructions, you are ‘supposed’ to tag 8 other bloggers.




oh, my brother-in-law is going to LOVE me for this. this photo was randomly taken while ryan (yes, my sister's husband's name is also named ryan) was working his UPS job here in chicago. on this particular day, i just got my new camera in the mail and was taking mad pictures of everything. my sister and i visited ryan that day at work, and he of course had a lovely pose to offer my new canon. since we chicagoans pretty much walk every where, whenever any of us ran past the UPS store, we'd often just stop in and visit. and people in small towns think city people don't have time for each other! we do! you just have to make time for it.

and can i say that every time i see this picture it makes me smile? it also makes me miss my sister and ryan.

Now it’s your turn… (please don’t feel pressure to do this if you don’t want to, it’s just for fun!)
1. Whitney from Elm Street Life
2. Ashley from City Lights
3. Kirra from Kirra Sue
4. Kim from Yellow Songbird
5. Cole from Letters from Coco
6. Kristine from Kristine and Ryan
7. Anna from In Honor of Design
8. Kayla from Ramblings of a Small Town Girl


Have fun, friends!
excited to see what you all come up with.

Monday, June 28, 2010

not bad for a monday.

so monday are rough. i think that is a norm across the boards. i always feel like i need one more day to recover from the weekend. its hard to stay motivated and focused at work. (just being honest here, folks! i'm sure people even in HR will admit that fact about mondays.)

however, i have to say that
monday afternoon and evening helped me to relax and unwind and (i think) ready for another work day.

first, there was one more MORE
monday left in the month of june. so right after work (i mean like at 3:31pm), ryan picked me up from work and we then headed straight for the delightful piece of heaven. i thought that i would try something new and daring, especially since this was the last 'freebie' day but i couldn't resist what i had last week. oh, baby. it was one of those just kill me now moments. i had my red velvet with the cheesecake creme frosting. ryan had a chocolate hazelnut one with caramel in the middle. we were both very happy with our choices.



but before indulging in our cupcakes, ryan surprised me with a home cooked meal. i love his cooking. he is such a good cook (he is part italian afterall) i don't even like porkchops but i love his - they have so much flavor and he makes sure to gives me the pieces of meat with no/little fat as possible. so i apologize to those of you that don't eat meat out there - the following image might scare you...however, they make my little mouth water. mmmm, delish. ryan also cooked up a side of boiled broccoli, with a hint of garlic and covered with parmesan cheese, cheesy garlic bread, and sauteed mushrooms and green peppers.



later in the evening, i joined my roommate and annika for a night of etsy creations. we popped in a chick flick and enjoyed the relaxing evening by creating new products for our individual shops. (annika is brand-new to etsy world so her lil' shop should be up and running super soon. but i think you all might already be familiar with my roommate's which i've mentioned before, ohlavallee. if you haven't, it's def. worth a peek!)





speaking of etsy, i need to also showcase some of my lovely trades from the ohhellofriend summer trade guide that i was privileged to be a part of! i will try to get some lovely snap shots of those goodies because i am very excited about them.

another thing i want to do this week are showcase two lists in my mind inspired by hulaseventy. so you'll have to stop in later this week to see what i come up with.

alrighty, goodnight monday.
hello, tuesday.
sleep tight one and all. this old lady needs to get some shut-eye.



Sunday, June 27, 2010

just because art.



i was looking through photos from the past couple of years. made me realize that i haven't done any 'fun art' since i started etsy. and not that etsy isn't fun - goodness, i wouldn't be doing it if i wasn't in love with. but i realized i haven't made as many cards for friends or for ryan. i haven't even painted - that's been forever. i haven't drawn in my moleskin in awhile either. oh and i recently bought a calligraphy set to experiment with. i've experimented with it once - need more practice than that, i learned.

{i miss it}

might need to pencil that in.
um, no pun intended.










Saturday, June 26, 2010

chicago blossoms and lovely saturday.


people say cities are made up of concrete and aluminum.
when it comes to chicago, i beg to differ.
one of my favorite things about the city is how particular they are with the flowers that blossom all over downtown chicago. i especially love it in the springtime when rows and rows of tulips take over all of michigan avenue or apartment flower beds. its so breathtaking.

as usual, there are always things to see in the city...things that catch one's eyes,
at least my curious eyes.



every morning on the way to work, i see this sign.
it makes me smile 'cause it reminds me of me of me and ryan.
we always say i like you or i'm falling in like with you.
though we've dated for three years, we've never said the phrase 'i love you' to each other. we want to save those special words on the day that we get engaged. some people may think it's odd, but i love how special those words are the day that i say it to whomever i spend the rest of my life with.
plus this phrase is just so darn cute.




and oh, toy story 3. i've been waiting to see you since you were released,
but this weekend was way too busy. the bf and i look forward to seeing you next weekend.
you better not be going anywhere.
i plan to laugh super hard and will also bring kleenex 'cause i hear you are a tear-jerker.

i'm so glad it didn't storm today. it supposedly was. though i fought allergies for most of the day, this saturday was a good one.there is nothing like a productive day of cleaning and etsy, then chipotle with the bf, and then more etsy while watching some valentine's day and transformers (the first one is hilarious and so good - we are both big kids like that).

i'm so thankful for today.
glad to know there is one more day of the weekend left.
nighty-night.

shop update: new summer designs!

some new summer designs are showcased in the shop today!

i've been so busy with wholesale orders (praise God!) that i haven't had time to create some new summer designs. these color combos have been on my mind for a while now, so i'm excited to be able to get them out on an actual headband.

and now i'm off to clean my apartment. i have plenty of things on my to-do list today. clean apartment. finish up more headbands. dinner (maybe movie?) with the bf. enjoy some time outoodoors (it looks gorgoeous out). oh and hoping these allergies will finally go away for the day.

everyone, enjoy your saturday.
hope it's a good one.
see ya later, friends!



[spanish beauty poppy garland.]




[surfing into the california sun poppy garland.]


Friday, June 25, 2010

the secret button.

it all started out when neal told titus about
the secret button that would make his car fly.



neal and ryan decided to tell him to find the secret button.



hmmm...where could it be?



titus: it's right there, ryan!
ryan: right here? the one with the double-red triangles?
titus: yes, that one! push it! i want to blast off.



unfortunatly, the buttons did not work.
titus: we need to get gas.
neal: only jet-gas will work, but we have to get to the picnic.
titus: you guys are joking!
neal and ryan: if you want to fly, you have to press the secret button! find it!



titus: naw, you guys are joking!



i'll just say it was a very enjoyable car ride to the department picnic
since i got to sit beside this little cutie.
neal and ryan were being meanies but it definitely added to the fun.

as for that secret button, i wish we could have found it.
we could have gotten thru the wretched traffic a lot faster than we did.

'night, world!


you gotta let go sometimes.



it's friday.
go do something crazy.
goofy. silly.
like these two crazy girls.
i have no clue who they are, but they crack me up.

okay, okay. i know who they are.
the girl on the right is my crazy-fun roommate, sarah.
and the other girl, well...can't seem to put a finger on her.
doesn't matter.

hope this pic inspires someone out there to
let go,
laugh a lot, and
just enjoy life!

{happy friday, folks!}

Thursday, June 24, 2010

i have jet-black hair. but sometimes, i think i'm a blonde.

it happened yesterday.
at home depot.
when ryan and i went to pick up my new AC-window unit.

me: "so is the zenith-brand any good?"
ryan: "yeah, i think it's better than my old goldstar one."
me: "oh yeah...the one in your old studio?"
ryan: "yup, that one. i had to jerry-rig it to get it to do what i wanted it to do."
me: [pause] "ryan, who is jerry?"

good thing, ryan finds it amusing.
[kristine, don't even laugh. you know you are even worse.]

(one day only) giveaway: marta writes!!!



in the beginning of my early blogging days, i stumbled across this inspiring blog.
not just inspiring photo-wise, but even more so inspiring writing-wise.
marta is so talented as a writer, which i appreciate so much...as writing is my first-love!
[i was a communication major in college, and i dream of writing a book one day.]

so be sure to stop by 'Marta Writes' to enter in the ONE-DAY only giveaway for a muchlove-illy headband and accessory of your choice.

let marta know what are your weekend plans by posting a comment,
giving you a chance to win something from my shop.
good luck!

happy thursday, friends!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

yes, i had pizza twice in one day.

every day has its highs and lows.

today was one of those days with distinct contrasts. you knew what were the highs and you knew what were the lows. i definitely know what the lows were - which did include a raging thunderstorm with super high winds and those eerie tornado warnings sounding all over the city. and its not that i do not want to share the lows...i'm just in the middle of processing those lows.

its life. i'll make it thru. we all have those days.

but instead of mulling in my puddle of self-pity and processing (especially as i'm eyeing the clock, its ever so close to my bed-time...yes, i have one cuz i'm 'grown-up' and go to work at seven-freakin' a.m.), i had some highlights to this day.

why? because God is still good.
and i really have way too much to be thankful for to focus on the lows.

1. a delish, refreshing lunch with my friend, jen. we enjoyed some italian delights at go-roma. their sun-dried tomato and goat cheese pizza with a side of chopped salad is to die for! oh and the date was just so lovely 'cause i love jen. she's always an encouragement to me. we always have something to talk about whether its life-related, blogs, or fashion. love her!



2. the bf and i enjoyed an evening at whole-foods, the one that is ginormous and has all these sweet restaurants to eat at. yes, that one. on wednesdays, we love going to the italian station 'cause they have such a great deal - one whole pizza for $9.99. can't beat that. [yeah, it wasn't until we sat down and started eating that i realized that i was eating pizza for a second meal in the day. hey, it was two different kinds - a girl can eat pizza twice if she wants to! at least, once in awhile...]









and then i'm thankful for the new AC window unit that we picked up from home depot for my room. as much as i convinced myself that i was trying to prep myself for the mission field by dressing in tank tops and shorts and sweating off the heat, i decided to cave and get a window unit. i haven't been sleeping too well. the heat def. can contribute to restlessnes...and that's not very good for the job in the day or for etsy-ing it up at night.

and a few more things...i'm thankful for the rain beacuse its' cooled off the crazy, mugginess of the day. we are not able to install the window unit tonight 'cause we have to call our maintenance crew to do it for us...but i'm glad the temps are cooler tonight. maybe i'll sleep better.

i'm thankful that tomorrow is thursday, a day closer to the weekend. i'm thankful for the sweet opportunity one of my fave blogs that will be highlighted tomorrow (i'll keep you posted!). i'm thankful for my mom calling me every night to say goodnight and see how my day was. i'm thankful my girlfriends and i were able to buy our eclipse tickets ahead of time (woohoo - opening night!). and last but not least, i'm thankful that i was able to finish this blog entry just shy of my bedtime.

goodnight, world.
see you in the morning.



french connection contrast.



i love this window display at the french connection in the water tower place.
it makes me smile every time i walk past it, so i finally stopped one day to take a pic of it.
the contrast is genius.
lovelovelove it.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

i want more of MORE.

who doesn't love cupcakes?
especially MORE's cupcakes?
especially when they are free during all Mondays in June?









if you live anywhere near downtown Chicago, be sure to head to MORE.
there is only one Monday left in June, so don't forget to stop in next week.

[p.s. aren't cupcakes amazing eye-candy? plus they make my sweet tooth and tummy so happy.]


Monday, June 21, 2010

dear chicago...

i am really enjoying you this time of the year. summertime is the reason why people even live in this city. it's the reason why we put up with the freezing bitter-cold winters. we are so happy when the snow finally melts for good and the sun comes out to play every day. sure, it's a little muggy - but that is utter bliss in comparison to the depression of negative, depressing temperatures.

and with this being the last summer i live here, i plan to enjoy, savor and drink in every bit of you. ryan and i started a bucket list of things to do before we leave. we will also take pictures of every square inch of this place because you will always be a magical, memorable city for us.




we will never forget you, chicago. love you, dear friend.

your biggest fan,
ilene