Friday, August 1, 2008

Out and About on Michigan Avenue

I'm back from my short stay in Chicago, and it's great to be able to finally be home for more than a day at a time! This trip was really fun because, while my mom had to do work for her business during the day, my younger sister and I were free to roam around and explore the area. Oh, and did I mention that we were staying right on Michigan Avenue? Talk about a perfect location!

The view from our hotel room was absolutely breathtaking- we were able to look out and see the Water Tower, which is beautiful during the daytime, but is even more fascinating lit up at night.

While walking around, my sister and I noticed these really cool statues made by students from various colleges in Chicago. They were all so unique and I loved admiring the diversity of the designs.

No trip to Michigan Avenue would be complete without a stop at Water Tower Place. While I'm not much of a shopper, I did manage to find one store that really caught my eye:

As my sister dragged me into LUSH, I doubted that I would buy anything since most cosmetic stores contain products full of non-vegan ingredients. However, after reading a few signs I practically jumped up and fell on top of my sister when I realized that many of the products were labeled as vegan and that this was the LUSH that I had heard of! I had such a heard time deciding what to buy but ended up purchasing a Nutts Massage Bar which smells like warm, nutty chocolate and melts right into your skin. Knowing my reaction to discovering how many vegan products this store carries, you can imagine my excitement when my sister told me that there is a LUSH store in our local mall!

As I sat in the John Hancock Observatory sipping my Jamba Juice, I realized how truly massive this building is!

(I apologize for the poor lighting in these pictures. The hotel had really odd lighting that would produce areas of extreme brightness while the rest of the room was too dark for pictures)

I was very excited to learn while planning this trip that Karyn's Cooked is only a few blocks from where we were staying, so I decided to drag my sister over there to pick up lunch to bring back to our hotel (their takeout orders are much quicker than the service at the restaurant). I chose the Jerk Tofu Sandwich this time and a slice of the Chocolate Silk Pie for dessert. The sandwich was great and perfectly seasoned- I LOVE spicy food so this was right up my alley, but it still wasn't too spicy and my mouth was cooled down after a few bites of coleslaw. I'm glad the sandwich was so filling because I was able to save half for dinner later that night after going out with my mom and sister to a restaurant of their choice where I enjoyed a plate of steamed asparagus and sauteed spinach. The pie was the perfect way to end the evening and my sister (Miss "I hate vegan food") snuck a bite and was begging me the entire time I ate it for me to save some for her because she loved it so much! That was probably a good thing because the whipped cream topping on the pie is sooooo good, but sooooo rich and I would have hurt myself if I ate the entire slice!

That night, I walked with my family to Borders so my sister could buy a magazine and as I was just browsing, I found an issue of VegNews! I haven't been able to find this in any bookstores or newsstands near me (I don't know why...maybe I wasn't looking hard enough?), so I grabbed it immediately and read it the next morning over breakfast:

Since I had to wait for my sister to wake up before going anywhere the next morning, my mom surprised me by ordering a fruit plate from room service and leaving it for me to enjoy when I woke up. All of the fruit was amazingly fresh and sweet and this plate was the perfect, refreshing breakfast after a heavy meal the night before!

Alright- now that my summer traveling is done for now, I'll be able to get back into the kitchen and post some home cooked meals on this blog since it seems to be lacking as of lately!


VeggieGirl said...

Haha, wow, we're definitely going to be staying in the same area of Chicago!! How funny!!

You're lucky about the jerk tofu sandwich - when I had it, I had to throw out the rest of the tofu and just eat the vegetables in the wrap since it was INSANELY spicy (and that's really saying something, considering the fact that I LOOOOVE spicy food). I drank two 32-ounce water bottles after ingesting just 2 bites of the tofu - no joke. I remember that event well :0)

That fruit plate is gorgeous.

Oswald said...
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Anonymous said...

I love Chicago and I'm glad to hear you had such a wonderful trip. We don't have a Lush here so I'm sorry to hear that I missed out on my opportunity to pick up some products while we were in Chicago. Looks like I need to go back!

The British Vegan said...

Sounds like you had a good time on your trip! That pie and breakfast looks absolutely delicious =)

(I saw your blog from a comment left on the CCV's blog, btw ! ^_^ )

Vegan_Noodle said...

What a fun trip!! I have been meaning to check out Lush's products. Oh and your food from Karyn's Cooked looks delicious. I am equally guilty of not posting homemade food in awhile...

Erin said...

Lush stores are so cool! I came across one in vegas but didn't buy anything, a bit too expensive for me.

The sandwich and pie look so good!

newcitygirl said...

You guys did have the perfect location! And I saw those statues along Michigan Ave too...they were so cool!