Archive for the ‘Retail Therapy’ Category

Mel at Trump Towers (left), Toney at tae-kwon-do practice (right)


Family Shot at Botanical Gardens (top), Danny and Mel at F.L. Wright's Robie House (bottom)


After spending a night with my cousin Kamala and her family in Dayton, Ohio (thanks guys!) we booked it up to Chicago to visit Danny, Joseph and the boys.  As always, we had a great time visiting them.  Some of the highlights include:

A day trip to the Chicago Botanic Garden where we walked and walked and saw a cool green roof display, lots of blooming tulips, and my personal favorite, espalier trained fruit trees.

A personal tour of Trump Tower, thanks to Joseph who is Chef Concierge at the hotel.  We were witness to $50 bottles of “Bling” water, amazing views of the Chicago skyline, and rooms that cost more than my annual income.

A drive to Batavia, IL to check out the Fermilab National Accelerator Laboratory.  Despite the tour and interactive museum, I still don’t know what the universe is made of, how it works, or where it came from.

More plant stocking at the Gethsemane Garden Center which was filled with a great selection of succulents and cacti.

The most amazing sushi dinner ever at Agami which is rated as the second highest sushi restaurant in Chicago.  Plus with 1/2 priced happy hour rolls it couldn’t have been a better deal. Just writing about it is giving me cravings.

Furniture envy at Post 27 which sells a combination of mid-century designs alongside modern pieces.  If only that chair fit in the car!

A tour of Frank Lloyd Wright’s early prairie style design, the Robie House which was completed in 1910.

And of course, hanging out with our adorable nephews, Andy and Toney!


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Dining Area (top), Yummy Food (center), Knik Knacks (bottom)

We made a special lunch stop on our way from Fallingwater to Ohio at Zenith in Pitttsburgh.  I had read about this antique store/cafe in our guide-book and was compelled to check it out.  If you remember back to our visit at Terrain, I am a sucker for mixed use programs! Not only is it Zenith an interesting idea conceptually, the owners, in my opinion, were successful in pulling it off.   

Basically half of the space serves as the retail side selling antiques and vintage clothing.  The other half functions as the cafe serving vegetarian fare that rotates on a regular basis based on availability of seasonal ingredients.  A fun plus is that if you take a liking to any of your table settings you can buy them since everything from the silverware to the tablecloths is for sale.   

For starters we enjoyed stuffed grape leave along with a pot cherry blossom tea (their tea list is quite extensive).  Wayne ordered the greek seitan wrap with a black bean tomato soup while I enjoyed lentil and rice stuffed cabbage with a cinnamon tomato sauce and green side salad.  We finished the meal off with a nice big slice of chocolate cake to go and a little something we found in the store! 

On a side note, I enjoyed the colorful and tightly packed houses on the hilly terrain around Pittsburgh (not what I was expecting!) and would love to someday go back and do some more exploring!

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Buffalo Exchange Around the Country

As part of our road-tripping agenda, I have decided that, given that Buffalo Exchange is my favorite stores of all time, I will make it a priority to hit all possible locations on our  journey north.  The stores we will most likely hit include: Philly, Chicago (I’ve been here once but I can go again),  Albuquerque, and Denver (again, this will be my second time).  I am interested to compare the different vibe of each store and hope to score something sweet at each one!

My love affair with this place first began in the birthplace of BE, Tucson, AZ,  where I attended college at the U of A.  and I can proudly say that the majority of my outfits from day-to-day incorporate at least one second-hand item, usually from here.  I guess I love it because you never know what you are going to get; they always have new funky things at great prices and you never feel like an automaton buying one of fifty matching shirts off a rack.  Plus, since the clothing is second-hand I can feel good about my shopping addiction being eco-friendly!

When we first moved to Cambridge I had major BE withdrawals but the longing was mutual because it wasn’t long before a new location opened up right down the street from me (seriously!).  Who knows…maybe I’ll get lucky again and BE will follow me to Alaska.  In the meantime, I will enjoy my tour de Buffalo on the road and keep you posted on any findings!

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