This time of COVID isolation hasn’t been the easiest for most of us. In addition to losing access to physical affection, face to face interaction, stability, perhaps our job, and various in-person experiences, it’s brought to the forefront a lot of introspection.
While, like many others, I am feeling the squeeze of loneliness and the discombobulation of missing routines, I also feel a certain sense of peace about some things.
I certainly don’t miss waking up to a phone filled with missed robocalls, and an overflowing inbox. I don’t miss being overwhelmed with a ton of daily calls, messages, emails, and texts. I don’t miss being so harried and running from place to place and feeling like I always have to be ON!
But, there are plenty of things I yearn for and perhaps that speaks volumes about what’s really important to me. I miss cooking with my friends, I miss the coffee baristas at my favorite cafes who’ve memorized my order- small coffee in a medium cup coming right up. I miss hearing people laughing, the different expressions others make when telling their stories. I miss my coworkers from various agencies and their stories and mannerisms. I miss hearing live music performances and seeing the interested faces of the musicians as they’re totally in their own elements, feeling the rhythm deep within and bopping along with the beat. I miss hearing live comedy shows and seeing people act out their stories, and the crowd laughing- or sometimes booing along! I miss my writing class and my art class. I miss intently listening to their various life experiences. I miss running into random strangers and hearing their stories and laughing along with them, or sometimes sharing in their sadness. I miss so much, but I do appreciate the moments of downtime and learning about what’s truly important to me.
I will be using this time to continue doing introspective work and taking stock of what’s really important to me. Here’s to sipping my coffee, and slowing down for a change. How have you been spending your quarantine? What have you learned about
yourself during all this?
I took this shelter in place order as an opportunity to cook up all the things! I love making food, but unfortunately all too often find myself with a fridge filled with things that have spoiled because I haven’t gotten around to using it all, or being persuaded to eat out instead with my friends.
I grabbed some groceries and got started on my food journey. I started off slicing up an entire pineapple into bite-sized chunks for smoothies and snacking.
Later, I tried my hand at making caramelized onions, since I don’t care for raw ones. They turned out really well and perfectly sweet.
One day, I had a hankering for an upgraded chicken sandwich, so I gathered a yellow onion, mushrooms, coconut lime seasoning, sliced swiss cheese, a bolillo roll, and chicken breast. I caramelized my onions in the slow cooker with some sunflower oil early on in the day. Then, I pan-fried the mushrooms with garlic and salt and mixed them with the oily deliciousness of perfectly sweet onions.
Then, I sliced up some chicken, seasoned it with coconut lime powder and cooked it to perfection. I sliced a bolillo roll, added swiss cheese and then melted the cheese with the chicken and veggie mix.
It was amazing! Mmm! Here’s to cooking more delights until the shelter in place order wraps up. Stay safe, everone!
Checking out the fixed price lunch at Kendall College.
I had been meaning to check out the Kendall College Dining Room’s fixed price lunch for a few years now and finally did so, last week. Their three-course meal is $18 or $22 with a glass of house wine. My friend, Mark joined me on this particular culinary excursion.
The dining room had quite the display of historic dishware, bakeware and other food preparation related things. We were seated right next to the kitchen so we had a direct, clear view of our food being prepared. There was a great window view as well.
We started off with bread and honey butter, which made me so unbelievably happy! I have a certain soft spot for honey butter! It reminded me of the butter from Honey Butter Fried Chicken.
I enjoyed delicious Metropolis coffee with the bread and butter, because, how could you not combine these things? Haha!
I started my meal off with the pea and mushroom risotto, which was simple and packed with flavor. I really like combos that include a few well-balanced ingredients so I can really taste everything clearly.
Mark got the radish salad as his starter. I ordered the pork chops as my entree and Mark ordered the salmon over lentils.
We both finished up our meal with the vanilla creme Brulee, which was really good and not too sweet.
Continue reading “Enjoying Delightful Delicacies on a Budget at Kendall College”
Volunteering with Tiesta Tea.
I love tea and volunteering for awesome causes. Combining these two things is just awesome. A little while back I was intrigued when I saw a Facebook boosted post about a Tiesta Tea event focusing on passing out goods, including tea of course to those less fortunate. I was all about that!
We all gathered up and awaited our assignments. Everyone was divided into groups with 1 driver for each team. Tiesta succeeded in receiving several coat donations and warmth kits which included snacks, toiletries and more.
We visited a number of shelters and helped distribute snacks, hot tea and kindness.
Oh did I mention, we had a few celebrity appearances? Dee Brown volunteered right along with us.
Afterwards we all went back to the Tiesta Teas office to relax with food, beverages and of course, tea! I’m really more of a whiskey girl, so I paired my whiskey with tea. Mmmm deliciousness.
Great job guys in rounding up a good group and helping out those less fortunate. Till next year ❤
This is one of my favorite cafes on the North side. Jim Dababnah, who also owns Thai Aroma, took over the location in 2014. The calming atmosphere sticks out the most here! Chicago Grind pulls together the things I love most in life- good tea, delicious coffee, tasty sweets and food and books! Coming here has always helped me relax and lifted my spirits on bad days!
The decor is a little industrial, but very welcoming, with dark wood tables, leather couches and a marble countertop.
This table and delightful clock are my favorite.
The lovely couches!
They serve Bow Truss coffee and Benjamin teas. The daily specials written on a chalkboard outside give it a great touch! They also have $1 refills on their branded travel mug!
It’s just the right amount of noise, chill music and good decor. The books, communal table, specials and wonderful customer service really pull together the community feel.