You’re the Meaning in My Life…

…You’re the Inspiration … dadada da da da…

I’m off to Chicago today for a book signing and a ridiculous night of debauchery with a bunch of MILFy woman I’m online-acquainted with (oh, now i’ve said too much). I hope you can make it to the Sulzer Library to grab a copy of Prudent Advice with a dorky autograph by nerdy me.  While I’m there I’ll be taking in the sights (it’s only my second visit to the windy city), drinking some champagne, hanging with my amazing sister-in-law who is flying up from Nashville, finally hooking up with the fabulous and amazing Nicole of Making it Lovely, and of course hoping to bump into Oprah, while she’s sitting in a cafe reading a copy of my book, contemplating including it in her favorite things show (ha, a girl can dream, right?). Here’s the deets on the book signing (it was even mentioned in DailyCandy Kids Chicago this week!):

I’d love to get some tips on what to check out while I’m in town from any Prudent Mamas native to the city.  When you shared your San Francisco tips I ended up having a blast so i really, seriously, from the bottom-of-my-heart, mean it when I say that I need your comments and suggestions.  So lay it on me ladies, what’s the deal with fabulous, fun, and crafty Chicago for a mom-about-town and her friends?

And keep in mind, your useful travel tip could win you that half yard of luscious Nicey Jane oilcloth!

P.S. you know that song is stuck in your head right now.. YOU BRING FEELING TO MY LIFE…
Image of Navy Pier Lighthouse above from the awesome Chicago Photo Blog.




(oops… I didn't mean to delete the first comment I made. sigh. I'm a little computer illiterate.)

Every time I visit Chicago, my girlfriends and I HAVE to go to Cafe Ba Ba Reeba for Tapas and a big ol' pitcher of Sangria. (YUM!) One of my favorite places: it's super yummy and… it's fun to say! Ba Ba Reeba! Ba ba…


Oh! Have SO much fun! I'll be there in a few months(I realize you won't be, which kinda stinks)! I just found out the other day that there's a Renegade shop in Chicago- perhaps you could visit?


Um thanks for getting that song stuck in my head! Ha.

We just got back from Chicago. I wish our trips could've corresponded. I also hope your flights are better than ours were. We didn't get home until 4:45 am- which is pretty much torture with an almost 18 month old who doesn't like traveling.


You have to go to the Willis Tower (formerly the Sears Tower) and go to the top. You can walk out on the new sky platforms. It's pretty freaky looking down to the street from so high. I'm sure you'll be fine though. My husband's union worked on them. I'm sure the welds are strong enough. πŸ˜‰


Oh, your book signing is in one of my favorite parts of the city! Make sure to walk down Lincoln Avenue (turn right out of the Library and head towards Lincoln Square…about 2 blocks from the library) and enjoy all the cute little shops and stop in Cafe Selmarie for a great lunch or tasty cupcakes! And if you have time you should enjoy Chicago pizza – LouMalnati's, Giordano's or Gino's are the real stuff! So delicious!


So this isn't something you can plan, but you can pray to the gods of lovable-cheesiness that you get to experience Ray St. Ray, the singing cab driver. My friends and I felt like we had won the lottery when we happened to get in his cab. He will immediately introduce himself and ask if you'd like to hear one of his original songs. There is a menu of topics you can choose from, (stuff like dreams, love, and cowboys) and each of those has a sub-menu. When you make your selection, his performance includes a little dancing, creepy facial expressions, and even a light show. It is AMAZING in the weirdest way possible. Definitely my favorite memory of Chicago.

Seaweed and Raine

Chicago… isn't it a little "brrr" at this time of year? (Not sure – I'm from Sydney!) Just wondering if you are going to whip yourself up a jacket or something for the trip with your sewing prowess? πŸ™‚


I get so much wonderful sewing advice from your tutorials, etc., that I have to suggest this shop– The Needle Shop. It is a sewing school and one of the few places in the city where you can buy Heather Ross, Amy Butler, Patricia Bravo, etc. fabrics. Plus everyone there is just plain old awesome. AND should you want to check out a quilting shop, see Quiltology in Lincoln Park. Hope you have a wonderful trip!


Alright, Jamie, here is your list πŸ™‚ As a mama who has been relocated to the east coast (thanks, USN πŸ™‚ ) from Chicago…I'm going to be living through you this weekend! Sulzer library is such an amazing library, I grew up right down the street from there! You must..
-Walk down Lincoln Ave and stop in the shops and grab a bite at Cafe Selmarie or the German Pantry!
-Check out Lincoln Park Zoo! Aferwards eat fondue at Geja's! Then walk off all of those calories down Armitage and check out all of the cool shops! There is an awesome bead store called EnBeadia and the owner, Millie, is such a hoot! You'll love her!
-Walk around Wicker Park (Milwaukee and Damen area, just off of the Damen Blue line Stop) and eat at the Earwax cafe! They have amazing food-the black bean messy burger is the best!
-Also in Wicker Park is this amazing bar called The Map Room and they have about a zillion kinds of beer..a zillion!
-Get a chicago style hot dog!
-Get homemade tamales from a man with a street cart!(the best "cart guy" is at California & Milwaukee!)
-Stuff yourself silly with deep dish pizza! My favie is Edwaurdo's spinach pizza. My second favie is Gino's East's meaty legend because, well, its full of delicious meat!
-Get an italian beef from Al's! And get Mario's italian ice and some lupini beans (its right across the street!)!
-Of course there are all of the museums downtown…
I know this is a long list (and most of it is food…hmmm) but its my hometown and there is no place like it in the world! Have a fantastic weekend! Wish i could be there!


Have fun in Chicago! I say go after that Oprah dream and drop off a copy of your book for her at her studio! You never know what could happen.


I love your blog but the fact that you used the phrase MILFy, makes me not like it so much any more. I HATE that phrase. It is really offensive, especially on a blog that touts prudence: defined as wise, careful in one's conduct.


I second the comment about visiting The Needle Shop, it's a great little store and in a fun area to walk around. I know it's a major tourist spot, but Millenium Park should not be missed. While you're there, I would recommend walking over to the Art Institute and visiting the new modern wing. You should also make time to walk along the lakefront, if you can brave the wind and the chill! As an Oak Parker, I also recommend heading over to the Frank Lloyd Wright home and studio and having a bite to eat at the Buzz Cafe or The Depot…yum!

Lil Mama Stuart

OMG so excited for you! I've been here all my life and love it! I did see you in Daily Candy!

*Definitely agree with what someone else said about Cafe BaBaReeba in Lincoln Park.
*The Lake Front is always wonderful, as is the museum campus. Best view of the skyline from the Planetarium. Love the drive (north to south) down Lake Shore.
*Topo Gigio in OldTown would be cozy (charming neighborhood too).
*Carnivale is delish and fun atmosphere.
*Roof would also be great for drinks and girls night out.
*Definitely get a chicago style hot dog or italian beef from Portillo's and stuffed pizza from Giordano's.

It's in the 60s during the day now and 40s at night. You'll love it here!


Definitely go see Cloud Gate (or as we Chicago natives call it "The Bean". It is iconic and will make for beautiful photos. BTW, you cal call me MILFy anytime. I don't find it offensive in the least!!


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