Memorial Day Weekend

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After a couple of eventful and exhausting weekends, Justin and I were pretty thrilled to have a long weekend to relax at home. I worked from home on Friday, and was done working by 3, so I decided to take the pup on a run over to Wicker Park.

I shamelessly stopped at Six Corners to take a "selfie" with my dog in front of strangers.

There's something really energizing about running with my dog. That huge happy grin she's got in the picture above? It is pretty much glued to her face any time she is taken on a walk or run. For some reason, it makes me really happy to see her so happy. Plus, she's a fast one, so it makes me push myself a bit harder.

"Mom! Can't I get in?!"

Once we got to the fountain in Wicker Park, she wanted to drink and get in. Let's just say I only let her do one of those things.

Rapunzel, Rapunzel, cut your damn hair.

When we arrived back home from our run, Justin was already home from work, so I hopped in the shower and got ready as fast as I could. This included half-blow drying my hair.

We went back to Grange Hall, because they are known for their huge burger selection and my fiance loves burgers, so I wanted to take him there. It's about a 15 minute walk, so we headed over and got seats at the "bar." I ordered the summer salad and had a side order of baked navy beans. Both were delicious.

You're tasty and I love you.

My fiance got a really good burger on rye (he informed me that this is actually called a "Patty Melt?" I had no idea). The burger, I hear, was very good... but the comical part of it is that it doesn't come with fries. $13 for a burger with no fries. So, we paid the extra charge and bought a side of fries and guess how big it was? Get ready...

Why are you so small?

Yeah. I was a good wife-to-be and managed to not steal his fries as I usually do. BUT, this move on my part meant that we were still a smidge hungry. We decided to turn it into an excuse for a long walk, so we headed from West Loop over to Michigan Avenue, where we walked around for a while before popping into the Forever Yogurt on Chicago Ave.

Where have you been all my life?

They had a new flavor - salted caramel popcorn - and it is not a joke. I seriously cannot stop thinking about it. Hint hint, Justin. #TakeMeBack

Let the Pain Begin

The next morning, we slowly ramped up to the day, and then I went over to take a class at The Mercury Method in Wicker Park. Since it was a pilates class, I decided to just run over there and get some cardio in. As it turned out, I got an awesome 15-20 minute run in going there... but then on the way back, I was so freaking tired (the class is almost 100 degrees, so it's draining) that I just walked crawled home.

I speed showered and then got ready for book club, which was just around the corner at Lindsay's house.

As usual, the spread of food was delicious. Generally, there is some very healthy stuff, and some naughty (but still fairly natural) stuff. This time, as it turned out, everyone kept it pretty light and low calorie. Which meant it worked out perfectly that I brought CHOCOLATE CHILI TRUFFLES! Recipe coming this week. They are #yumstown.

One thing that beats good food? Good company.

After book club deteriorated into a few of us playing Fruit Ninja on Kinect (I'll spare you the action shots, but I have them for future reference blackmail), I went home to retrieve my fiance, and we walked to dinner.

You know how sometimes, it's just impossible to find a place to eat? That's what happened. I suggested Lush, Jaipur, Mana, Habana Libre, and Shaman, before my fiance finally agreed to FatPour... which, as it turned out, had an hour long wait once we got there. Unwilling to wait for that long, we called Old Oak Tap and they said they could get us in immediately. Good decision, for sure.

I went with Shrimp 'n Grits for my meal and it was absolutely delicious. I cannot recommend it enough. The shrimp was perfectly tender and had its tail removed (I hate doing this myself because, quite frankly, I just find it to be too slimy and gross and I don't like touching my food).

I also went with our server's suggestion and had the Champfleur to drink. It's champagne with elderflower liqueur. It was like a slightly sweeter and more floral champagne. #chwinning.

Watching the chefs prepare your meal = My Jam

On Sunday morning, we headed over to Jam in Logan Square to meet my fiance's cousin for brunch. There are so many brunch spots in Logan Square that we want to try, so it was hard to choose just one, but we made it happen.

I had the server's suggestion (apparently this is a habit of mine) and ordered smoked salmon with poached eggs and potato latkes. The eggs were poached perfectly and the salmon was wonderfully smoked.

There was a farmer's market right outside the restaurant, so we walked around for a bit after brunch. I almost bought asparagus and heirloom tomatoes, but we only had a few dollar bills and didn't want to deal with credit card machines at a farmer's market, so we ended up coming home with one thing: dill cheese curds. Priorities...

Once home, I changed and went to the gym for a Ballet Burn class. It was awful and boring and made me really crabby, so, once I got home, I decided to go on a run  (and make my puppy happy).

Best friends should run together, that's how it ought to be

Apparently, she now associates my running shoes with happiness, so as soon as I picked my shoes up, she got excited and started grinning and walking around in circles. So happy.

After my run, I realized that my parents were going to be downtown very shortly, so I hopped in the shower while Justin did a CostCo run. Send that man to CostCo and what does he come back with? Flowers. I am so blessed.

Once my parents arrived, we walked over to Randolph Street Market. It's like the pop-up-shop Disneyworld of vintage and DIY furniture and decor.

How many Carlys does it take to send a text?

I didn't make any big purchases, but there are a few items I'm interested in. They are there every month, so I figure there's no rush. My mother did buy some fresh potted herbs and a topiary, though.

After dropping my mom's purchases off at the apartment, we hopped in a cab and headed over to Southport. We put our name in at Tango Sur and then had a drink at Deleece.  

The drinks were wonderful, and dinner was filling. For the most part, everything was delicious, apart from some issues my dad had with his steak (first it was red and screaming on the inside, then they tried again and brought him a super fatty piece).

By the time we left, we were tired (red wine = zzzzzz) and ready for bed. I slept a solid eight hours before waking up to head to the gym for a Spin class and Bodypump class. After eating a Quest bar at an alarming speed, I made us a nice, healthy spread to chomp on as we marathon'ed a few of the new Arrested Development episodes.

Sabra Hummus, Wasa Crackers, Veggie Straws,
and tons of strawberries.

After more cooking (meals for the week) and TV watching, we finally watched the Blackhawks vs Red Wings game. I was really not into it, so I got ready for bed early. Zzzzzzzzzzzzz

Happy pup. Sleepy pup. How are you so flexible?

What did YOU do over Memorial Day weekend?

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