Category Archives: Good times

Someday is today

Dear Chicago,

You’re not technically my hometown. I was born in New Haven, and I consider myself a true, blue New Englander. I’m a little too suspicious and not quite friendly enough to be an authentic Midwesterner, but fourteen years later, I’m working on it.

I moved to the city in the fall of 2002, fresh off of three years in rural Michigan, a place I never quite fit in (but where I met the most important piece of my life story, and so it was worth it). I stumbled a little in the big city, and found friends who helped me understand I shouldn’t forget to lock my doors and that you had to keep your head up in a town of three million people. I slid into place after a few months and remember thinking, this is it. 

This is home.

Four years later after graduating, I had a friend who couldn’t believe I wasn’t “going home.”

I smiled to myself, because I knew that I was home.

I cheered for the Cubs starting my freshman year of college, at first because a boy I liked loved the Cubs, and then because I loved the Cubs. I named a plant in my dorm room Kenny Lofton (I’m weird, I know) and went down to Wrigley when I was nineteen, the night of Bartman, when we were thisclose to finally getting to the World Series. I ran out of there late in the game after some angry fans hauled a giant fake Marlin up above their heads and started chanting “Fuck the Fish.”

We’re passionate, as Cubs fans.

I’ve been to Wrigley a gazillion times, with my best friends and my classmates. With my husband and my parents. Most importantly, with my baby Theo at his first game this year.

Chicago is where I went to college. It’s where I met my best friends, and where I got my first job and my first apartment. It’s where my long distance boyfriend turned into my roommate, and my fiance, and my husband, and now the father of my babies.

And always, always the guy watching the game with me.

Baseball has always been a thread running through my life in Chicago, and like everything else, its had its ups and downs, its highs and lows.

We’ll stick with you, through it all, because we’re Cubs fans, and because this is our city, and because we have a deep love for both the team and our home, even when it’s bitter.

But man, it is surreal when it feels so sweet.

So thanks Chicago, for teaching me everything I know. Thanks for showing me that if you work hard and hang in and keep the faith, it.will.happen.

That someday will become today.





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Filed under Chicago, Good times, Reflections

starting halfway through

Morning, chickens!

This long weekend was just as fun and full as I thought it would be, and so it took me a little bit longer to get back into a routine.

Which I do not apologize for.

Here’s a picture of my baby and my godson hanging out at the museum:


When I met the S family, oh, 11 years ago, I was in college and looking for a way to make some extra cash. In the end, I gained a whole extra family, including T, self-proclaimed “brudder” of both Theo and his yet-to-be-born sister.

In fact, I believe my godson’s words were “And when she’s born, I’ll be the brudder of her too.”

Yes, yes you will, little man.

Man, we get lucky sometimes.

Other things I love right now:

This article, because it pretty much sums up my exact feelings for Thomas the Tank Engine and his whole annoying show.

Amnesty at the Chicago Public Library through Thursday, because of course I need it.

It’s going to be 55 degrees on Friday. Thank you thank you thank you. Also thank you from my toddler who has had enough of the cold and could use a break to play outside.

And with that, I’m off to get this one started- we’re already halfway through the week, chickadees!


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Filed under Chicago, Good times

team celebration.

Morning, chickadees!

Can you believe we made it all the way to Thursday already?

Me neither.

Anyway, today’s a pretty good day in my family because it’s the fourth anniversary of when this happened:


Our wedding was so, so fun (and a little wet, maybe) and it was definitely the best party I’ve ever been to.

Which is what happens when you get to have all your favorite people in one place.

Four years later, I’m lucky to have JW by my side as my husband, Theo’s Dad, and the tallest member of Team Palluzzi/Wagenschutz.

Also probably the most patient and nicest member of our family too.

Sorry Boo, but we’re cut from the same cloth.

In addition to being married for four years though, we’re hitting a bunch of other milestones, because JW and I have been in each other’s lives since we were fifteen (also known as the Beginning of Time):

Jon’s been my friend for sixteen years, my boyfriend for nine, my roommate for eight, my fiance for five, and my parent-partner-in-crime for almost two.

So we’ve done some pretty cool things since we were tromping around high school being embarrassing, including buying a home and keeping the cutest blond baby alive together.

Thanks for being front and center in of all my most fun and most embarrassing years, JW. I look forward to dozens more- I love you the most, team MVP!


Filed under Good times

stringing thoughts into one.

You guys, it’s tough to keep it all together this summer but it’s only because it’s full of so many activities, all of which are a Pretty Good Time.

Currently, my main objective is keeping Boo from being one huge bruise (spoiler alert: I’m failing, he just tripped over a truck into a table) and wondering what it says about my parenting skills if I send him to daycare with coffee stains on his shirt (he likes a sip of black coffee: it’s adorable, and also, it can’t be worse than soda or kool-aid).

Aside from that, JW and I are finishing up The Good Wife, Frankie & Grace, and I’ve accumulated a small library on my nightstand.

After reading approximately 1000 books on various wars, I’ve decided to take a quick break so that I stop crying on the train in the morning.

It’s not a good look, chickadees.

Up this weekend: farm marketing it, especially after JW has cleared up the matter of whether or not he likes rainbow chard, and hitting up All the Festivals, because that’s the time of the year it is.

And with that, I’m off to explain to my toddler why it’s important to wash your face and also why he doesn’t need to assist me in completing my morning blog entry.

Enjoy the sunshine if you’ve got it, chickens!

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Filed under Chicago, Good times

when your cup overflows

Morning, chickadees!

We had a weekend, which included a trip to Cincy for an amazing wedding (also: being in the middle of a giant conference full of Pure Romance seller, yikes; visiting a liquor store at 10:30 am in Kentucky because why not and also, bourbon; and eating Waffle House for the first time. Yes, this visit was influenced by an article in Bon Appetit, and yes, the hash browns were amazing.), a black tie gala after a night on the dance floor and a five hour drive, and a visit to the new brewery by my parents’ house (where the food is also amazing: Boo is especially into the fries).

I’m tired just thinking about the past 72 hours, but the good news is, they were super fun and in comparison, a Monday at the office is gonna be a cinch.

I’ll regret saying that.

Over the weekend also: between the driving and the random time that wasn’t filled with madness, I managed to polish off two of my library books, and I’m feeling like I’m on a roll.

In the Heart of the Sea was about the 1800s and Nantucket and the whaling industry and Adventure and Tragedy, and also was non-fiction, so I loved it. Also though, it was a shipwreck book, so I admit there was some murder and cannibalism that’s still leaving me unsettled, but overall, this one was solid.

Five Quarters of the Orange was about the German occupation in France and how it affects one village and town. I liked this book for three main reasons. 1. The German occupation in France never ceases to be interesting to me. 2. The mother character in the book was really into food, so cooking was woven into the rest of the crazy story. I wasn’t sure if i liked it or not until the end, and I’ve now decided I did. 3. The main character in this book is a feisty old lady who’s telling the story when she was an even feistier little girl, and man, that’s my favorite kind of protagonist.

And with that Boo and I are off to get this week’s party started. Enjoy the sunshine if you’ve got it!

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road trip to the aisle

Morning, chickadees!

I’m not headed into work today, which in and of itself is a beautiful thing, but it’s made even better by the fact that we’re about to pack up and road trip to Cincy for our friends’ wedding.

I love road trips, weddings, and my friends, so this is a bit of a trifecta of amazing as far as I am concerned.

Michaela has been in my circle of favorite people since we met in Roma (aside from traveling the world, seeing very cool things, having once-in-a-lifetime-experiences and eating gelato, I also met some of the most important people in my life there- and I’m happy to say that one whole decade later, they’re still my people).

It’s good to have people, you guys.

Michaela is a wealth of knowledge on many subjects, has great judgment, and is always the first person to start the dance party in the kitchen.

Someone has to do it, you guys.

I always take my cues for what’s fair and right from my friend M. Both times that I’ve embarked on a half marathon training, Michaela’s always been the best person to train with, because she never gives up and she sets the pace.

Michaela’s the steady one.

With the best dance moves.

I’ve known her-soon-to-be-husband almost as long as I’ve known her, and while I don’t have anything to say about his running pace, I do know that he’s fun, a great friend, and loves our pal like crazy.

Like we’d let her walk down the aisle to meet anyone who wasn’t.

So today we’re excited for big celebrations and giant dance parties- may you two have a constant stream of both in the decades to come!


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starting another loop.

Morning, chickens!

It’s gray out there this morning, and Boo slept in, which means he’s slightly cranky and a little confused.

I can relate.

This has translated to him crying by the door for ten minutes after JW left this morning, followed by him hiding my phone among his toys.

“Buh, bye!” he kept shouting.

I can decide if learning more words will make this better or worse.

Stay tuned.

This was a lovely weekend that started off with zero plans and ended up full to the brim with various errands, library trips (I had no book for five days, and it was damn near a tragedy. I visited my old library, which has less selection, but I came up with this, this, and this, all of which felt like a small miracle), celebratory brunches, chili cook-offs, and several trips to the park.

Also, wine and tacos, because it is most certainly the season in which I request tacos as often as possible. Last summer we ate so many tacos that at some point I declared it a shame that we didn’t have any other animal eating options, as I was becoming bored of the standard fish, steak, and chicken rotation.

Yes, I know that’s bizarre, and yes, it’s still how I feel.

Up today: sloshing through the rain with Boo, picking up Ravinia tickets because everyone should have a shot at seeing Lady Gaga and Tony Bennett, and making it through Monday in one whole piece.

That’s plenty, if you ask me.

Enjoy the sunshine if you’ve got it, chicks!

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Filed under Chicago, Good times

admitting to it and getting on the road

Morning, chickadees!

I’m spending the morning holed up in a Starbucks, finishing up some work before heading to Michigan with the boys. I attempted to work from home this morning, but an internet issue + Boo really not understanding why he wasn’t allowed to press all of the buttons on my laptop made it a little trying in the productivity department.

I admire the kid’s desire to get work done, I guess.

Yesterday, due to my over indulgence in the wine department Wednesday night, was the kind of day where I sat quietly in my cube, listened to quiet music, and ate french fries on three separate occasions (oh, how I wish that I was joking, but no, I am deadly serious about it). JW and I went out to dinner with our pal D and his lovely bride-to-be A, and ate approximately one million delicious items from the Bristol, a restaurant that was awesome, except that maybe the mood lighting was so dim that I couldn’t read my menu.

I am old and blind, and unfortunately have fit those descriptors since I was about eight years old.

The fact that they bestowed my third order of fries upon me totally made up for the light situation.

It doesn’t take much these days.

So after a long night of sleep, a hectic early morning, and a productive mid-one, we’re looking forward to packing up and getting out to quieter scenery for the weekend. I hope everyone’s got the same thing planned for themselves–enjoy the sunshine if you’ve got it, chickens!


Filed under Did I really do that?, Good times

another place, another time

Morning, chickadees!

I’m a little slow moving this morning, which would seem to be 100% the fault of the beautiful, warm weather that came through Chicago yesterday afternoon.

CJ and I decided to take advantage of the sun and hang out on the patio of Quartino after work, eating bread and cheese and drinking wine until all of a sudden it was very late and we had laughed through several bottles of wine and realized that it was, actually, only a Wednesday evening, and so maybe it was time for cabs.

This happens to us a lot, and we never seem to learn from our previous errors in judgment.

Which is one of the reasons CJ is one of my very best pals.

The two of us are on a bit of a farewell tour this month, and the only way to really wish someone well is to do it with drinks and funny stories.

Luckily, we have eight years of good times to reflect on and no short supply on watering holes, so we’re poised for a successful three weeks before she packs up and ships off to her next adventure.

This will not be the last you hear of the farewell tour, chickens.

Also lucky: Theo (because he is at one with his mama’s needs) has decided this is a let’s-listen-to-music-and-snuggle morning instead of a please-chase-me-around-for-a-half-hour morning.

And with that, I’m off to slog through a few meetings and a couple tasks before packing up and heading out to Michigan for a weekend of relaxation and visiting.

Enjoy the sunshine if you’ve got it!

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take it easy, big easy

Morning, chickadees! I’m taking a quick minute to write this morning from my perch forty stories about New Orleans, which is a very nice perch indeed, should you find yourself holed up away from home on a Tuesday morning.


Last night, after a flurry of flights and meetings, we walked up and down Bourbon Street, had some drinks in the quietest bar in New Orleans, and then proceeded to take our drinks to go.

I wish I could take a drink to go more places, you guys. Walking in New Orleans, sipping a cocktail, and people watching is perhaps one of the most entertaining, horrifying things you could do with your Monday night, but it is certainly a way to keep yourself amused.

Who knew how much people loved partying on a Monday night? I do now.

Up today: work, work, work, strolling around for another walk, and then flying back to a less warm city.

I’ll take the colder weather as long as this face is waiting for me.



And with that, I’m off to see how focused I can stay in the face of sunshine and 70 degree weather before 9am.

I think we both know the answer to that, chickens.

Enjoy the sunshine if you’ve got it (and that would include me this morning).

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