‘Movies’ Category

29 August 2010

Weekend recap: Pig roast, picnics and movies in the park

By: Jessica B.

Happy Sunday everyone! It’s SO hard to believe it’s Labor Day next weekend, yikes where did summer go?

Well, rather than dwell on that, let’s dive into the weekend because I’m holding on to the bliss the weekend brings for a few more hours :)

Movies in the Park

One of my favorite things Chicago does in summer is Movies in the Park, a free event where old and semi-new movies are shown in parks around the city. It’s BYO…everything, from food to drink to chairs.

And when WG2 saw that Julie & Julia was playing, well with one text message, I had a tote bag packed and was on my way to meet her at the park! Sure, our park was near the freeway and didn’t have a bus that was running after the movie, but it was a gorgeous night and a ton of fun.

Here is my tote bag of goodies, yes, that is champagne, white wine, hummus and fresh veggies, which complimented her Pastoral cheese plate deliciously.

But you can see some people take it very seriously, like the group of men behind us. Nice set up.

Watching a movie outside and under the stars is a ton of fun. I cannot believe it took me so long to do this!

Pig Roast

Until this weekend, I have never been to a pig roast. Apparently, we stay true to brats in Wisconsin.

And when my boss told me she was having one at her home and that I was invited, the first thing I said was, “I’ve never been to one, so I’m going to take pictures, but don’t worry, I’m not casing your house.”

Full disclosure.

And we got there just in time to watch that piggy being cut up for the masses.

Yeah, I know, little gross.

But put that baby with some mac and cheese and cornbread (with real corn inside!) and it was a very delicious meal. Fortunately, I had some self control and did not go back for seconds. And I avoided this being an ugly eat too (mostly because co-workers were there).

Yeah the mac and cheese was orgasmic

Other random weekend highlights

I slept until 10 a.m. (NEW RECORD), read Mockingjay and started One Day, laid in bed late each day and did not clean my apartment. But that can always wait for next weekend. Also, if someone else has finished Mockingjay, please email me! I want to talk about it!

How was your weekend? Does your city have Movies in the Park?

Edited 8/30: So in a multitasking FAIL, I forgot to mention I got to FINALLY meet Alexa from Cleveland’s a Plum this weekend. Yeah, angels sang when we met, it was magical. I’ve been hugged by the Plum. We also got to see Wrigleyville’s finest out on a Saturday night, thank goodness it wasn’t game weekend!

18 July 2010

Weekend recap: Friend dates, movies, music and food

By: Jessica B.

Happy Sunday everyone! It’s still hot and humid here. I hate it. Moving on.

I had a busy weekend but the best kind, filled with friend dates, aka “freights.” Friend dates are the best because you get to go out, do date-like things, such as dinner or drinks, but it’s with your friends. No pressure, just fun. I love them.

I also paid off my Napa trip so I was ready for a glass of wine and friend dates so I can get back out there and be social.

Here’s a summary of my fun friend dates:

Friday – movie/dinner:

After a long week, I was ready for a movie/dinner date with my friend Robin. We went to see Inception (see full review here) on Friday at a pimped out theater downtown. Seriously, this theater had a bar, VIP seating, where you can bring food and liquor into the theater, extended concession stand with tart yogurt and sandwiches. And the best part? You can reserve your seats before you arrive so you can arrive just before showtime and know you have seats.

And the food you can get there is very good too. We got a prosciutto panini, martini with champagne (which made me buzzed after one drink) and BACON POPCORN. Yes, you heard me right. Check it out.

Hmm, bacon

The mix of bacon, popcorn and butter was delish. I’m a fan.

After the movie, we super sized our friend date by going to Chinatown for dinner. Robin took me to an authentic Chinatown restaurant that makes awesome bubble tea and dishes. Our waiter gave me weird looks when I ordered salted fish and pork in a hot bowl but it was tasty, even if it doesn’t look appetizing. I hope he gave me that look because I didn’t just order fried rice. Maybe.

I know, it looks gross, but mixed up, it’s very good

All in all, I saw a great movie, caught up with a good friend and tried new things. Win, win, win.

Saturday – Brunch/shopping and sushi:

That’s right, despite the downtown Transformers craziness, TC and I hit up Xoco for brunch and indulged in our mutual love of Rick Bayless’ churros and even sampled the new Mexican soft serve. Yeah, I was so hungry, I didn’t take pictures, even of the suckling pig torta. But here is a past picture of the Churros, which I could eat an entire plate of. I have no idea why they’re so good, but I want them all.the.time.

Then, with my shopping list in tact, we hit the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale. I behaved, but TC learned how bad my enabling ways can be. My bad.

After burning calories shopping, Mega and I met up for a sushi dinner in Bucktown where I had the best soft shell crab roll ever. I also meant to only have one drink and somehow had a total of five by the end of the night. Oops. Does that happen to anyone else?

Sunday – Sweating it out at Pitchfork:

Yes, I hate the current heat wave here, but that didn’t stop me from going to the Pitchfork Music Festival with Nic. I got to girl talk, craft shop, listen to some great music and drink 24 ounces of water, promptly sweating it all out. I was disappointed that my only ice cream option was dairy-free, but the pulled pork tacos were tasty.

How was everyone else’s weekend? Do you go on friend dates?

03 June 2010

More random pre-weekend thoughts

By: Jessica B.

Thanks to Memorial Day, it’s a short work week but holy sh*t it doesn’t feel like it! Tomorrow is Friday and I will bust out of work to start the weekend like I did in elementary school when summer started. I get very excited about starting my weekends :)

Anyhow, the short week has me all thrown off and out of sorts so I’m to give in to the random thoughts bouncing around in my head.

Prepare to enter the vortex of my odd mind:

  • Is it embarrassing that I love teen fiction? Last weekend I read the Hunger Games series by Suzanne Collins and I am totally obsessed. I wish I could teleport to August when the final book comes out so I can see how it ends
  • Conan O’Brien’s tour was in New York this week and not only did his dance off with Colbert and Stewart make me cry laughing, but also my true love, John Krasinski stopped by. He’s really hot in this picture.
  • It felt weird that LOST wasn’t on this week. I feel like that will be a big void in my DVR, but my tear ducts will be happy to have some mercy
  • Tonight I’m buying tickets to a midnight showing of Eclipse for Amy and me in Napa! I can’t wait!!!!!
  • I need to start researching wineries for my trip to Napa in a few weeks…and I have not even started. Please, if you have any recommendations, send them my way!
  • A coworker shared this clip of a horribly romantic wedding proposal and I did tear up watching it. See, I’m not so dead inside! I love sappy, romantic stuff like that because I’m jealous
  • I hate coming home to an empty DVR because of summer hiatus. But, I’m sure I can fill my DVR with plenty of good/trashy TV soon, like Top Chef, Bethenny Getting Married, Rescue Me and of course, RHONJ. Cannot live without that
  • I was sad to hear Rue McClanahan died today. She was sassy on Golden Girls…I like sass
  • I got to taste Rotel and Velveeta dip (clients) for the first time today and it was AH-MAZING. I must make this again soon
  • There are Twilight pre-paid credit cards available by MasterCard. No joke, I want one but think it would look weird to have an 18 year old Jacob in my wallet :)

Phew, lots in my head this week. What’s on your mind? Any big weekend plans?

02 May 2010

Weekend recap: Pre-travel productivity

By: Jessica B.

Happy Sunday everyone, woo!

First off, holy crap, I leave for NOLA on WEDNESDAY, like in three days! *insert mild freak out*

Moving on, I tend to get very stressed before traveling. The inner “planner” in me comes out and I run myself into a tizzy making sure things are ready, packed, clean and organized for when I get back so I can easily get myself re-acclimated.

I know, I’m probably making a big deal out of it but what can I say, I’m high strung :)

So to prep to travel to NOLA this week, I went a little insane this weekend getting stuff done around the house. Here’s what I accomplished:

  • Cook for the few days in town so meals are easy
  • Grocery shop for bare necessities
  • Pick a recipe for next week
  • Write out my grocery shopping list for next weekend
  • Laundry
  • Laying out clothes to pack
  • Bringing out the suitcase
  • Clean bathroom and kitchen (I half-a**ed the kitchen), dust living room
  • Balance checkbook
  • Pay bills
  • Research restaurants and tourist activities in NOLA
  • Pick out a Mother’s Day card to mail before I leave

Yeah, I was productive (to say the least). And oh my gosh my house is so pretty when it’s clean!

But before I surrendered to pre-travel prep, Friday, I went with co-workers to Hai Yen, a Vietnamese restaurant, in Uptown and had Vietnamese food for the first time ever.

And it was amazing. And I took no pictures. FAIL.

I can’t even recall everything we had but I know there was make-your-own spring rolls, amazing pork and pho and everything was absolutely delicious and so light that I didn’t feel heavy or weighed down after (which I do sometimes from fried food).

I would 100 percent go back, it was that amazing.

I also sorted out last week’s Amazon order drama and was able to finally enjoy this movie, which I did twice:

I wrote a review about it here because absolutely love it. Sometimes, a good Victorian movie makes me very happy :)

What about everyone? How was your weekend? Was anyone else bitten by the cleaning bug?

29 April 2010

Random pre-weekend thoughts

By: Jessica B.

Was it just me or did today (Thursday) feel like Friday? Lately that seems to be happening a lot. Which means Friday will feel like Saturday and work is the last thing on my mind on Saturdays.

So while I’m preparing for a full weekend of cheap fun and vacation planning (countdown!) I wanted to share some random stuff I’ve been reading and thinking about.

Prepare to enter the vortex of my random head:

  • I read that Katie Holmes will play Jackie Kennedy in a History Channel miniseries in 2011. As a huge Jackie Kennedy fan, I’m really p*ssed off by this. Joey as Jackie? Dawson would not approve and neither do I
  • You can buy a faux or real engagement ring inspired by Bella’s in Twilight. Yes, I love Twilight and Jacob’s rock-hard arms and abs but I do not want to wear Twilight-inspired jewelry, unless it’s from Tiffany
  • The Hills started again this week…and it gave me a good self esteem boost and reminder why I don’t watch that show anymore. The cattiness is unbelievable
  • I got a working library card! And now I’m a book-reserving fiend. But I have to remember to read the reserved books when I get them
  • I’ve rediscovered my love of dark chocolate covered dried cherries. Smack my a** and call me Sally they’re good. Can I count them as healthy?
  • The interview with Oprah and Rielle Hunter really irritated me. Maybe I’m too sensitive to cheating and like Elizabeth Edwards too much but hearing Rielle say she isn’t a homewrecker, kind of pissed me off
  • Got my People magazine in the mail today too and saw Sandra Bullock’s new baby. Seeing that kind of joy on her face made me happy
  • Two co-workers are totally obsessed with Patron tequila. They rave about it but I’ve never tried it, is it really that good?
  • Found out my gym is in financial trouble because it hasn’t paid its mortgage since September. Did they learn nothing from the housing crisis?
  • I heard a rumor that there might be a nacho cart at work tomorrow. Sweet baby Jesus I hope that’s true. Cheese sauce made in the crock pot is amazing

Well kids, that’s what’s stewing in my brain right now. What’s on your mind? Any big weekend plans?