Thursday, August 29, 2013

Some Chicago Food Truck Love

Food trucks are the new craze in delicious dining in lots of cities throughout the U.S. Chicago is no exception, with the caveat that there are some strict rules in place which have made it difficult for some folks to conduct business. I've been a huge fan of this movement an have seen some delicious food trucks come and go as some found it was easier to close up shop than to deal with the regulations. There are certain food trucks that I've been following for a few years now, deliciously devoted. I never really thought that so many NEW food trucks would be popping up along the way, so I didn't really frequently check out new arrivals. The other day I came across an article talking about some of the food truck laws and it cited some new truck names that intrigued me. Thankfully with Twitter, lots of these trucks are super easy to follow.

Here is a list of some of my favorite Chicago food trucks. 

Cupcakes for Courage
As cupcakes are all the rage throughout the country, there are a variety of cupcake trucks on the streets (no surprise here). This has been one of my favorite trucks and their pink velvet cupcake is seriously the best cupcake I've ever had. I have dreams about it, literally. I've talked about my love for them before on here and my thoughts haven't changed. If you aren't in Chicago regularly to try some of their delicious treats, you can check out their storefront in Elmhurst (soon to be open on Sundays).

Beavers Donuts
It is no secret that since getting pregnant I have developed a love for donuts. This place makes them piping hot while you wait. They have more simplistic flavors if you're looking for a classic (cinnamon sugar, powdered). But they also have some delicious specialties (nutella and strawberry, turtle). This one now has a kiosk at the French Market too where you can pick yourself up a donut milkshake. Yes, you read that correctly. Best $5 I've ever spent. 

Cheesie's Pub Truck
This has been my newest discovery. I only JUST found out that the NBC tower has a swarm of food trucks on a regular basis. It is quite a bit of a walk from my office, but definitely worth it for how delicious the options are. Cheesie's specializes in grilled cheese sandwiches. If you are a fan of grilled cheese like yours truly, this place just might be heaven on earth. They also have two store-front restaurants if you happen to live close to either one (I do not). I have a feeling this will be one of my new favorites!

The Southern Mac and Cheese Truck
To be honest, I haven't visited this truck in recent months as they haven't been by my office building in quite some time. When I was marathon training, I would get their mac and cheese every single Friday afternoon. You know, carb loading before my Saturday morning runs. It was delicious and got me through some long miles! However, now that I discovered some of the local food truck-specific places, I'm hoping to track them down to get some of that deliciousness again!

Have you eaten from a food truck before? What are some of your favorite Chicago food trucks? Have any of your favorites that are worth trying? 

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Baby Wilson: 36 Weeks

How far along? 36 weeks
Baby’s size/development this week: weighs almost 6 pounds and measures over 18 1/2 inches long; about the size of a head of romaine lettuce
Maternity clothes: wearing them? Yes. The summer warmth has finally returned to Chicago so I’m getting some use out of my maternity tank tops.
Miss anything? Being comfortable.
Food cravings? None
Anything making you queasy or sick? Nothing in particular. I've been able to stomach a little homemade iced coffee here and there which has been nice when I need the caffeine.
Sleep: Apparently I've started snoring. I don’t notice it at all, but apparently the hubs woke up to some powerful snores inches from his face this past week. Haha, oops! Sleeping through the night has not occurred in weeks, but I’m getting by just fine on little to no sleep.
Best moment of the week: My doctor’s appointment when I got to hear Baby’s heartbeat again! Love that sound, it seriously never gets old!
Nursery: Most of the items are put together in the room. We've finally decided on a layout and the hubs is going to finish what he needs to do this weekend. Things are almost done!
Wedding rings on or off? on
Movement? Big kicks and rolls, but the baby seems to be staying in the “head down” position which is comforting!
Weird pregnancy thing of the week: Nothing really newly strange this week. I still have the night sweats, I’m still overly emotional, and I’m excited for this baby to come out!
Daddy is feeling: He said the other day that he’s ready for me to not be pregnant. Um, I’m also ready for ME to not be pregnant. Lol.
Mommy is feeling: Excited and scared at the same time.
Workouts this week: Lots of walking—the same as pretty much any other week.
Looking forward to: My weekly doctor’s appointment! Now I get updates on effacement and dilation! How exciting!! :)

Friday, August 23, 2013

Baby Wilson: Showered with Love

In case you haven't heard, the hubs and I are expecting a wee babe. Because of the sizes of our family, we split up the baby showers. His family threw us one and my mom threw us one. We really are so lucky to have such wonderful family and friends that helped make both days extra special. Words cannot begin to express all the love we feel! Everyone was so generous with what they gave us. I don't know what we would do without our family! I just thought I would share some of the photos from both days. :)

Husband's Family Baby Shower
Host: MIL and SILs
Location: In-Laws house
Date: August 3, 2013
Me with my two Sister-in-laws

Party favors, booties and bottles full of candy

Room decorations

Diaper cake that my SILs made

The adorable clothes line set up above the appetizer table

Wonderfully delicious cake from Sharon's Custom Cakes

My Family Baby Shower
Host: My mom
Location: Cooper's Hawk
Date: August 18, 2013
Me with my mom (left) and MIL (right)... the two Grandmas-to-be!

Me with my MIL, SILs, and Great-grandma-to-be

Opening up a great gift from my cousin

This baby is already so loved and it hasn't even arrived yet! I'm so excited that he/she will be arriving very soon. :) We can't wait! Next up, I hope to be posting photos of our finished nursery...

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Baby Wilson: 35 Weeks

How far along? 35 weeks
Baby’s size/development this week: weighs about 5 1/4 pounds and measures over 18 inches long; about the size of a honeydew melon
Maternity clothes: wearing them? Yes. Some of the clothes are starting to get snug and are not fitting me so well anymore. Thankfully I’m getting closer to the end every day! :)
Miss anything? Yuengling Lager (was super jealous eyeing the hubs on his trip with his friends as they were having some cans)
Food cravings? None
Anything making you queasy or sick? I nearly gagged on my way to work yesterday getting a whiff of someone’s cologne/aftershave. The smell was piercing my nostrils and I had to stop walking because I thought for a minute that I might be sick. I think the nose is back into “super scent” mode as other scents have been kind of overpowering lately.
Sleep: As mentioned before, sleeping through the night is now a thing of the past. Sometimes I wake up multiple times; sometimes I only wake up once. The night sweats are still happening so that is always fun. Last night I barely slept after I woke up because I couldn't feel the baby moving. (He/she usually always moves when I lay back down after getting up in the night.) However, Baby has been moving around this morning just fine, so I know that I was just being crazy/neurotic.
Best moment of the week: Our second baby shower! We got so many generous gifts and I just feel so overwhelmed with love for this baby!
Nursery: Not much progress this week. We still have a lot to do to get the nursery ready. Hopefully this baby doesn't come early!
Wedding rings on or off? on
Movement? Lots of big kicks that physically move my stomach. It kind of creeps the hubs out. I tell him to try and imagine what it is like for me! Lol
Weird pregnancy thing of the week: I've been feeling a little overly emotional this past week. When I went to make my husband a sandwich for his lunch and realized the bread I had JUST bought the day before was expired and already moldy, I started crying. Then, last night, it was like a sudden realization that we’re having a baby. Like a real, tiny human. I got this overwhelming feeling of change and emotion and started crying again. Blame it on the hormones.
Daddy is feeling: Excited for the baby to come.
Mommy is feeling: happy and almost ready
Workouts this week: Lots of walking—the same as pretty much any other week.
Looking forward to: Birthing class is this weekend on Saturday and Sunday. Should be interesting!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Throwback Thursday: High School Yearbook Edition

I know I haven't really been blogging all that much lately. To be honest, I have lots of run envy out there but I'm happily brewing Baby Wilson instead. This week the husband is on his "Dad Trip" which is a vacation that his friends wanted to take as his last big "hoorah" before becoming a dad. (He is one of the first of his close friends to become a Dad, but I have a feeling the others won't be too far behind.) Anyways, I've been occupying my time getting the nursery set up and playing with the pup. The other night I was putting something away in the closet and thought it would be funny to bring out the old yearbooks and see if there were any fun Track and Field photos. Oh and let me tell you. It did not disappoint. All of these photos are from my junior year of high school when I was about 17 years old.

As I may have mentioned before, I was on the "sprinting" squad. You know, because I'm obviously built for speed. Here is a sweet action shot of me setting up the starting blocks for a teammate as we set up for a relay. It was probably the 4x200m (I wasn't in the right clique to be on the 4x400m relay). I wish this photo wasn't in black and white so you could see how OBNOXIOUS my track spikes were. Seriously, they were super bright and loud, and I loved them. I actually bought them at Dick Pond Lisle, way back in the day. Oh yeah, and my hair was short and blonde back then. Hard to believe, am I right?
I'm the one on the left

Junior year I decided that I wanted to try some different field events. Hurdles and high jump didn't work out so well for me. They required a bit too much coordination that I just didn't have. Why not give long jump a try?

This picture CRACKS. ME. UP. Is it embarrassing if I still own (and wear) those running tights? I didn't think so. Yet again with those obnoxious spikes. What is up with my form? Or lack there of. I still had my no-muscle Olive Oyl arms. I actually wasn't a horrible long jumper for only doing it for a single season with no previous experience. I think those long legs worked to my advantage. I came in 6th place in our conference meet and I think that was the only time I actually earned my team some points at a conference event.

And then, the obligatory group shot.
I remember taking this photo like it was yesterday. I was due for some new sports bras so I was actually wearing 2 old and dingey white ones with my awesome uniform when this photo was taken. Thankfully with the black and white, you can't really tell. In case you don't know where I am, I've added a sweet arrow to help you find me.

Well, this has been an extremely fun trip down memory lane and has got me even more excited to watch the World Championships in Moscow this week and anxiously await my return to running in Winter 2013.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Baby Wilson: 34 weeks

The hubs is out of town this week.
Don't mind the bathroom selfie.

How far along? 34 weeks
Baby’s size/development this week: weighs about 4 3/4 pounds and measures almost 18 inches long; about the size of a cantaloupe
Maternity clothes: wearing them? Yes. I probably won't buy anything else this pregnancy. I've been set for a little while now. Time to coast through to the end!
Miss anything? Sleeping through the night
Food cravings? None
Anything making you queasy or sick? Cigarettes are the worst culprit, still.
Sleep: This has been kind of random. I'm still getting the night sweats but not every night. I now wake up at random times for random reasons. Whether it is just my brain going into overdrive, worried I’ll miss my alarm, or I have to go to the bathroom. Sometimes I only wake up once in the night. Other times I wake up multiple times.
Best moment of the week: The hubs finished painting the nursery! Time to get things rolling!
Nursery: The walls are painted and so is the closet. I put together a bookshelf over the weekend. We have some furniture that is in the middle of being painted right now, so once that is done we can do more arranging. We are more than halfway there!
Wedding rings on or off? on
Movement? Lots of nice big rolls and kicks. I never used to feel the baby move when I was walking until now. Also, the rib kicks have started. Those are really fun, let me tell you!
Weird pregnancy thing of the week: The small strip between my chest and the bump is pretty much numb. There are some sharp stings that I feel at different times throughout the day. I've asked my doctor about this and it is totally normal. The baby is just on some nerves. Doesn't make it feel any less weird…
Daddy is feeling: carefree. (He’s on his dad-cation with his friends right now.)
Mommy is feeling: a little more ready each day.
Workouts this week: Lots of walking. I did go for a boat ride with my cousin and her husband last week. As water skiing while pregnant is not recommended, I was just the spotter. We swam around at the sandbar for a little while which was fun. It was a beautiful day and I enjoyed the relaxing time!
Looking forward to: Our second baby shower this weekend! I can’t believe the baby will be here so soon! It really is exciting stuff! :)

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Baby Wilson: 33 Weeks

How far along? 33 weeks
Baby’s size/development this week: weighs just over 4 pounds and measures more than 17 inches long; about the size of a pineapple
Maternity clothes: wearing them? Yes. Next on my list is to buy a dress for my 2nd baby shower.
Miss anything? Walking without waddling
Food cravings? Nothing really this week other than ice cream, but it is summer and that isn’t really all that different than any other summer.
Anything making you queasy or sick? Nothing new here.
Sleep: Well, I haven’t slept through the night in over a week. I have to get up at least once to go to the bathroom or for no reason at all.
Best moment of the week: Our baby shower! We got such wonderful things! I feel so loved by everyone that has been so generous to us and our little bundle on the way. Things are starting to get a little overwhelming at this point. (Another reason why I’ve been having trouble falling asleep.)
Nursery: The hubs had to work again this weekend, so the room is not yet done. He’s working on it this week though, so hopefully it will be finished up before shower #2! Currently, we have lots and lots of things in our living room. Pepper is very confused as to what all this stuff is and where it came from. She keeps hiding her tennis ball in the different baskets, wanting a reason to find it later.
Wedding rings on or off? on
Movement? Similar to last week, Baby is moving quite often. I love feeling the movements even if they make me uncomfortable or surprised. It really is quite amazing.
Weird pregnancy thing of the week: The latest super fun pregnancy thing has been the night sweats. Sorry if this is TMI for some of you, but for the past week, every night I’ve been woken up in the middle of the night in a pool of sweat. My head and chest are fine, but from the belly down to my toes, I’m drenched. It has given me some panic attacks, worried that my water broke, but that is not the case.
Daddy is feeling: excited for his dad-cation trip with his friends
Mommy is feeling: very loved and overwhelmed
Workouts this week: Lots of walking and that is about it. This answer probably won’t change until after Baby is born!
Looking forward to: The hubs finishing up the nursery this week! The plastic is down and the window-wells are taped! Things are finally progressing.

Friday, August 2, 2013

A Night Out With the CRB: A Surprise Party for Kim

Last week I got an email from Steven (of fame who is also Kim's husband) inviting me to a surprise birthday and ACE test passing celebration for Kim. It was in Greyslake, IL (aka about 1.5 hours from my house) on a Wednesday night. Regardless of the logistics, I knew when I got the email that I was going to go. Kim is just one of those great people that always does great things for others. It was time to return the favor. :)

I drove to work that day and met up with Maggie afterwards (now that we are work neighbors) who was keeping me company on the drive up. We arrived early and made ourselves comfortable while waiting for Kim to arrive. When she came in, you could tell by the expression on her face that she was totally surprised!
Kim's chair complete with orange balloons

The Chicago Running Bloggers wanted to get a group shot so we could post it to our blogs (duh). It was nice and surprising to see so many of my running friends, not in running clothes.
L to R: Emily, Erin, Kelsey, Anne, Kim, Maggie, Me, Kelly

Although the party was still in full swing, I had to leave early to make the trek home as it was a work night and Baby Wilson needed some sleep. Although, not before Kim and I got some photos together!

"Baby Wilson is telling me the secrets of the universe..."

Kim didn't get to feel a kick yet, but that just means we have to hang out again for lunch before Baby Wilson comes. I think I see a NFC lunch in our future. :) Of course, I couldn't come to the party empty handed so I picked up a sweet cat shirt (unfortunately, not Loop Looks approved), some cat socks, and a necklace set. I couldn't find socks with grey cats on them, so I picked grey socks with green cats instead.
Data is not impressed (If you don't know who Data is, click here)

All in all, it was a really fun night. I'm glad we all got the chance to surprise Kim! She is such a great friend and great person, it was nice to see her celebrated appropriately. :) Now that she has her official personal training certificate, I just might need to go to one of her strength classes after Baby Wilson arrives!