I normally don’t post on weekends, but the Nordstrom Winter Sale is too good to not share. Even though it’s a winter sale, there are a lot of great items for spring at up to 40% off! I’ve rounded up my favorites here. As with all Nordstrom sales, sizes sell out quickly so don’t wait.
For the past few years Brett and I have taken a trip to Jamaica over President’s Day weekend. (You can see recaps of our trips here, here and here.) This year, for a few different reasons, we decided not to go to Jamaica. When we made that decision I didn’t really think I would miss it that much, but now all I can think about is how much I wish we were jetting off on a beach vacation. It doesn’t help that I am loving all the Spring styles that are coming out, and though it’s definitely been a mild winter here in Chicago, it’s not like we’re running around coat-free in dresses and sandals.
cutout one piece / striped cover up / boho blouse (60% off!) / stripe and eyelet dress / scallop high neck one piece (designer look-a-like for a fraction of the price!) / lace romper / lace trim shift dress / gingham bikini top / gingham bikini bottom
Even though I’m not going on any tropical vacations any time soon, I have a running list of resorts I’d like to visit next time we decide to take a trip. I’ve listed a few here, but I’ve loved to know if you have any favorites not included on my list.
Azulik Eco Resort & Maya Spa – Tulum, Mexico
Azulik is an eco-friendly resort with no AC, limited WIFI and no electric lights. Despite the modern amenities its lacking, it makes up for in their views of the beaches and jungle and tranquil setting. I don’t think I could do a week-long stay, but would love to stay here for a day or two.
The Caves – Negril, Jamaica
I read about The Caves last year right before we left for our vacation in Montego Bay. I remember thinking, if we go back to Jamaica next year, this is where I want to stay! The Caves is a small resort, with only 12 cliffside cottages. Private dinners are served in natural caves and alcoves and there is also a saltwater pool. The views from the rooms are stunning.
Sugar Beach – St. Lucia
We considered St. Lucia for our honeymoon, but we wanted a shorter flight so we wen to the Bahamas instead (and loved it!). If we ever do plan another week-long trip to the Caribbean, I’d like to go to St. Lucia. I’ve heard amazing things about Sugar Beach, every room has it’s own pool and butler.
Brett and I have never been celebrated Valentine’s Day in a “big” way. We typically make a nice dinner at home and occasionally we’ll exchange small gifts, but not every year. This year I’m making surf and turf, garlic kale baked potatoes and veggies.I might change out of my yoga pants into something fancier, but I’m not guaranteeing anything. 🙂 If we did have fancy date night plans, I’d be wearing this dress. It was love at first sight and new I needed it, even if I didn’t have a an immediate event to wear it too. It’s the kind of timeless dress that won’t go out of style, a little bit sexy, but still classy.When Brett and I do go out for a date night, we have a few Chicago date spots that are our go-to’s. Some are fancy, some are more casual, but each restaurant has special meaning to us.Butcher & the Burger
When we first started dating, we had a tradition of walking from Brett’s apartment to Butcher & the Burger for dinner, and then getting dessert at Sweet Mandy B’s. You can read more about this here! We’ve taken both our families here, as well as out of town friends.Sapori Trattoria
Our first apartment together was just down the street from Sapori Trattoria. It actually took us about a year of living there before we tried it, but once we did we were hooked! It’s amazing home-cooked Italian food and we’ve never had a bad meal here. We’ve celebrated Brett’s birthday here, as well as our first wedding anniversary. Fun fact: the chef spends about 20 hours a week writing handwritten post cards to patrons of the restaurant. We love getting the notes (and the coupons!) in the mail from Chef Anthony.Chicago Cut Steakhouse
Chicago Cut is a little bit fancier than Butcher and Sapori, so we save this for extra special occasions. We celebrated NYE here one year, and took his mom here for her birthday last year. They have a great patio/view of the river so one year I made reservations for brunch after I learned Brett had never seen the St. Patrick’s Day river dyeing. I was very specific about requesting a table with a view of the river, (which we got), but turns out they don’t actually dye that part of the river. We still had a great meal and then walked up the river after brunch to see it in its green glory.
photos by JoAnne Fuener
I was reminded this weekend just how important it is to make one on one time for your friends. This isn’t to say that I don’t ever spend time with my friends, but sometimes we all get so busy that the only time we end up getting together is for birthday dinners, group brunches etc. This weekend though, I had two separate friend dates and I left both feeling so inspired by and incredibly lucky to have these women in my life. Friday night Monica and I had our annual Chicago Restaurant Week date night. We couldn’t get reservations at Mastro’s, but we ate in the lounge and honestly liked it better than eating in the main dining room. It’s a little more lively, there is great people watching and a live band. The food was of course delicious, but my favorite was the warm butter cake. It kind of reminds me of gooey butter cake! Saturday morning, I went out to Oak Park for brunch with Joanne. Even though Oak Park is really close to the city, I don’t make it out often enough, so I was really happy I made the effort to meet Joanne on her turf. After a brunch of my childhood favorite, “hobo eggs” and fruit, we walked around Oak Park. I always forget just how charming Oak Park is. The houses are serious #goals!
After this weekend I am feeling inspired to schedule more friend dates with the important ladies in my life. Joanne and I already have plans to spend an afternoon making pies in a few weeks! What are some of the ways you make time for your friends?
photos by Joanne Fuener