Ice Skating, Records, and Braving the Cold Cold North

I’ve been to several states in the US and Chicago is definitely a fun and interesting place to visit. The last time we were here, around 5 years ago, we checked out a lot of their famous tourist attractions. But we decided to do things differently this time. We spent the weekend just enjoying the local shops, the people, and the food most of all! We had to make this trip since I needed to renew my passport and the Philippine embassy requires that we do it in person. Crazy right!? We were fortunate enough to find an awesome place to stay downtown just a block off Millenium Park. It was actually an apartment that we found through Airbnb and it was affordable, cozy, had the best location, and we had an awesome host/roommate – Josh. Yes, roommate! It was our first time to do something like this and actually it didn’t bother us and in fact we loved that we got to meet new people.

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You know how much we love vinyl! So on the way to the apartment, we made a stop at Reckless Records. We bought about a dozen 45s ♥ Oh yeah! And we did fill our tummies with some Cuban food afterwards at a place called Cafecito. Their food was delicious! There was a “Lechon” on the menu, I couldn’t resist so I got it. Not like the Filipino one that I am used to but still pretty good!

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Despite it being really cold and kinda windy, I was up for some ice skating lessons from Scott. He skated like a pro while I pretended I was like one. Hey, I actually thought I did pretty good since I never fell on my bum! Two weeks ago I made a random comment that I wanted to dye my hair violet and go ice skating and I actually did both. My hair is kinda violet {didn’t bleach it} and I was freezing cold and didn’t know how to ice skate but I did it anyway!

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We went around the city by train a lot. I actually am used to commuting and weird enough I do miss it. We went to Wicker Park and enjoyed their local coffee at The Wormhole Coffee. The baristas were nice and the coffee and hot cocoa were delightful. We actually sneaked in our own gourmet donuts, ssshhh. We bought them at Glazed and Infused just around the corner and they were so delicious! I got a crème brûlée with vanilla bean filling and Scott got an apple fritter. Then we had a late lunch at Big Star. Josh recommended it and he surely was right when he said the place was pretty good. It was packed with people so we had to wait by the bar and enjoyed their margarita which was made pretty strong but good. It was well worth when they served us our nachos with fresh homemade guacamole and then we got yummy tacos – braised pork belly, roasted chicken, and spit roasted pork tacos! Yum yum yum. I swear these were the best tacos I’ve ever had in the States.

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And yes I scouted the city for Filipino food. We found one restaurant that was highly recommended – Isla Pilipina. There was a wait again. And again the food was delicious and pretty authentic. Actually most of the people in the restaurant were Americans or Asians. Maybe only 2 tables with Filipino diners. I actually decided to take my dessert {halo-halo} to go coz I felt so bad with all the people patiently waiting for a table to open up for their turn to eat.

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We also dropped by a tattoo parlor for my consultation. Yes, I am venturing out to Chicago just to get this new tattoo of mine done. I talked to Justin, the artist, about designs, colors, placement, and all and I am pretty psyched! I told him what I envisioned and he was also excited and looking forward to doing it. He will be sending me some sketches soon, I can’t wait! We also stopped by a wig store a few hours before our flight back. It was like wig heaven, seriously! And I couldn’t resist on trying one, though it’s too purple for my taste. What do you think? Below is the view from our apartment window. It was cold and snowy the whole time we were there but I loved it. Until next time Chicago!

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