5 Books to Hibernate With

Whenever I get a weekend to myself during the winter (which lately has been rare), I love to curl up with a good book. Over my holiday break, I peeled through the second half of Night Film by Marisha Pessl and got a head start to Chocolat by Joanne Harris. Because the nights are long in winter, you want to stay in but it seems impractical to go to sleep before a certain time. I know that if I’m in bed before 9pm (unless I’m sick), I’ll be up in the middle of the night ready to start the day at 3am and that’s never a good routine to get on. These are the nights I’m in my bed by 8pm, sometimes earlier, and grabbing a book. Inspired by my own reading kick lately, I’ve put together a list of five book recommendations to keep you busy the rest of winter…

6 Cozy, Hygge-Inspired Winter Destinations

Invented by the Danish, “hygge” means coziness and it seems to have taken over winter. Unless you’re looking to avoid the cold weather and head somewhere warm, people are gravitating towards vacations and decor in their own homes that resemble a cozy, comfy…hygge...vibe. It makes sense too! Who doesn’t love a hot cup of cocoa by a roaring fireplace while wearing yoga pants and chunky sweaters? I could forget every other season if everyday could be cozy and comfortable and well...the perfect hygge experience. While recreating the lifestyle is easy at home, nothing beats going away and experiencing it somewhere else where you don’t have to clean up the cocoa dishes or sweep the fireplace at the end of the night…

Southwestern Beefy Vegetable Soup | National Soup Month

Creating these recipes for National Soup Month, the number one word on my brain was comfort. I wanted each of these recipes to feed the body and the soul while warming you up in the process. Well, we got hit with some pretty rough winter weather in this last week. Nothing outrageous or that we Chicagoans can’t handle but COLD. The kind of weather where you have to eat something piping hot for dinner or you might turn into an icicle before bed. Lucky for all of you (and me, of course), this recipe was written on one of those bitter cold days…

5 Things to Know About San Antonio

Visiting San Antonio for the first time was a trip of opportunity. My Noni (grandmother) and I had a wedding to attend and we decided to make a vacation out of it. I did a little bit of research, not as much as I normally do, but enough to fill our time there. I didn’t have any expectations for San Antonio because it never crossed my mind before this opportunity came up. We landed very late and saw nothing on the drive to our hotel but when we woke up in the morning, the views outside our window were a welcome sight. If you’re heading to San Antonio for the first time or maybe, like me, never considered traveling there...these 5 things might convince you it should be at the top of your travel list…

4 Winter Must-Haves If You Work From Home

Working from home in the wintertime has its perks. While everyone is digging through snow to get to their cars and their offices Monday morning, I don’t have to step foot out the door. However, it’s the season of chills up the spine and all the cozy things so why not embrace it? My “working” wardrobe might not consist of sweater dresses and dress slacks but it certainly reflects the season. There are a few tweaks I make to the kitchen and home office this time of year as well. I call them my “Winter Office Must-Haves.” They are the necessities to get me through the colder months which can stretch through April and even May sometimes in Chicago…

Boudro's on the River | San Antonio Dining

One sunny Friday afternoon in San Antonio when the weather was warm but not too hot, two ladies went to lunch. They grabbed a table for two right next to the water shaded with an over-sized umbrella and began to browse the menu. Those two ladies were my Noni and I and it didn’t take very long to decide what we’d be eating for lunch that day. Boudro’s on the River is a Texas bistro that feels more like a French bistro. Like most restaurants along the riverwalk, there’s indoor and outdoor seating to cater to all weather and it has an almost upscale feeling to it. The cafe tables are elegant, like the nice cafes on the streets of Paris, and the waiters wear classic outfits and treat you as if you’re eating at the best fine dining establishment…

7 Dream Winter Travel Destinations

The colder months are my favorite time of year. From fall through winter, we break out all the cozy sweaters, light up the fireplace and indulge in the best comfort foods. The nights are longer, which most people hate, but I happen to love because it motivates me to finish my day earlier. I get caught up in whatever book is on my nightstand, maybe watch a show or two, or simply spend time with friends or family. Believe it or not, I enjoy going out and meeting people for drinks or dinner more in the colder months than in the summertime. It sounds a little backwards but there’s something about crisp winter air and meeting people in warm, cozy restaurants when it’s already black outside by 6PM…

Creamy Potato Soup | National Soup Month

Next up on our National Soup Month celebration, Creamy Potato Soup. Confession: I love creamy soups. There’s something so comforting about them that warms the soul. You could say that’s the case for all soup, which it is, but extra for indulgent creamy soups. I haven’t yet figured out out to get the same effect without using dairy. So for today, even though I’m significantly limiting dairy in my diet these days, we’ll indulge ourselves a smidge. What’s life without a little indulgence once in a while? This recipe is as easy as it is tasty…