Camp Wandawega is Magical

Camp Wandawega

Okay you guys. One more post on Camp Wandawega and I promise, I WILL stop. For realzies this time. But I’ve been dying to tell you all about our yummy weekend getaway! I got home yesterday, immediately unpacked and got to work processing the hundreds of photos. Magical, just magical. I just can’t stop gushing about it. It was quiet, cozy, quaint, and everything we wanted it to be; absolutely spectacular!

Camp Wandawega

Camp Wandawega

We left Thursday morning and stopped in Richmond for a quick bite to eat. If you aren’t familiar with Richmond, IL, it’s this little town right on the border of Wisconsin with few antique shops (there were more years ago but they seem to be dwindling these days) and an Irish pub by the name of Doyles. And boy oh boy do I recommend the Mama’s Pot Roast at Doyle’s. Mashed potatoes with gravy and carrots. Yes please! Such a surprise, since normally I’m not an Irish pub kinda gal, but this place wasn’t too shabby. Don’t expect the world and you won’t be disappointed here. The boy recommends the reuben.

After lunch, I gave Bill and Joe, the property managers at camp, a quick text that we’d be arriving in 30 minutes and we were off. That is minus a small snafoo with the trunk of the SUV, and we were off. Note to self, always make sure you latch it before taking off. Whoopsies!

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pack a perfect carry-on

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a month ago i was enjoying some r&r in hawaii and oh how i miss it so! because we left for 2 weeks and half of our vacation was spent with my husband’s co-workers, i had to pack smart…and that included my carry-on bag. it got my thinking, what makes the perfect carry-on? this flight in particular was about 10 hours…because i’m not a good flyer (all i can think about is twisted metal and plunging into the ocean…i’m petrified), i have to stay completely entertained (and partially tranquilized). we upgraded to first class lay flats, so that helped tremendously…but what was in my bag? well, here is a glimpse.

what is in the perfect carry-on bagperfect-carryon-bag-2

what is in the perfect carry-on bag?

i think the most important thing to me is the bag itself. it has to be roomy, lightweight and pretty to look at doesn’t hurt either…my bag of choice is this one by mara hoffman. i bought mine last year during shopbop’s black friday online holiday sale. the leather straps are really heavyduty, so i don’t have to worry about ripping my bag from the weight. i like to carry a couple magazines (but not too many or it weighs you down). here i chose instyle and yoga journal. what my magazines do not cover, i know my gold covered iPad will have me covered. books, movies and music are all i need to pass 8 hours worry free. my bose noise canceling headphones are amazing…even if you are not listening to audio, they keep the chatter out and your flight quiet. my brookstone backup battery keeps my technology charged for the duration of the flight and i d’not need to fret about battery life preservation.

my skin tends to get really dried out while flying, so hand cream, cuticle oil, and facial moisturizer are a given. the pressurized air increases your skin’s oil production, so i combat that with a little help from a tiny bottle of priori moisturizer…it’s so hydrating, plus it’s spf 30, so when you are standing outside waiting for that rental car, you face is already prepared for the sun! fresh sugar lip treatment has been a lifesaver for chapped lips (i even use it on my kids). it smells amazing and makes your lips sooooo soft! i received it as a sample from sephora and immediately bought more when my tiny tube ran out…i know it is pricy for lip balm but it lasts forever. if i want to add a little color, i use urban decay’s lip love honey infused lip gloss. the smell is divine. sometimes after a couple alcoholic beverages, my mouth feels like a cat pooped in it…this disposable toothbrush is just the ticket to keeping my mouth from feeling like a litterbox. in fact, i carry them daily in my purse. my final dryness protection is butter’s handbag holiday cuticle oil. it smells fabu…like vacation and a pina colada and i think someday i’d like to swim in a vat of it. for my hair, a few hair clips from ban.do keep my topknot in place…and always have a sweet pair of aviators…i like sunnies better then an eye mask because i can wear them yet still look around the cabin of the plane.

i know you can get a blanket on the flight, but being a slight (ok, freakish) germaphobe, i choose to bring a cozy cardigan and colorful scarf. it keeps me warm and my mind doesn’t go into a neurotic tizzy thinking about the last person who use my blanket. an easy, quick release watch is great for getting thru security without fumbling around with bands and holes. this one by michele is a nice easy on, easy off option and keeps you clear of the metal detector. we usually travel to a warm weather destination, and my travel footwear is not always conducive to beach weather, so i like to carry a change of sandals…i like these from joie because the black and tan leather slides go with anything.

on my first plane trip ever, the airline lost my bags…i didn’t get them back for 3 days, so learned at an early age to be prepared for the worst. i’d have such a frowny face if i arrived in hawaii with no bikini…i usually pack an extra in my carry-on as a just in case. even if i have to live in the same clothes for 3 days, at least i can sit my the pool and drown my sorrows in a fancy fruity cocktail with an umbrella on the side. this swimsuit by j.crew has more of a high-waisted retro look and coverage on the backside area…which i’m partial to.

my wallet and clutch keep all my tiny bottles and such rounded up in an easy to find compartment…everything stays organized and the clutch comes in handy after your arrival for dining out. so there ya have it…did i miss anything? do you have any essentials that i missed?

T.H.T.K. found

longman & eagle room 55

for our new year’s celebration sans kidlets, the boy and i decided to staycation in logan square. we rented a small room above longman & eagle…which i have to say, this might have been the most hipster hotel i’ve rested my pretty little head at. we stayed in room 55 which happens to be the largest of the 6 rooms available for rent above the one-star michelin restaurant and bar. let me tell you, this place was oozing cool…even the soap was cool! but i guess with a slogan like eat, sleep, whiskey, you kinda have to be too school for school.

interesting details at every glance, i soon found what i thought to be one of their best offerings (besides the chilled split of champagne in the frig) to be a mixtape created by jason lazarus. available for a mere $20, i had to take it home with me. but who was this man who made the mix of christopher cross, rod stewart, carole king and little river band that made my heart sing? taking me back to the days of orthodontia and elementary school.

mixtape created by jason lazarus

after a bit of google stalking (that we shall call research to make myself feel better), i found out he was a chicago-based artist, curator, writer, and educator. he has many interesting projects, but one in particular really stood out to me. stalking more, i also stumbled upon this video showcasing one of his installations.

Jason Lazarus: Too Hard to Keep (Syracuse) from Light Work on Vimeo.

in a nutshell, he initiated a growing archive of photos deemed “too hard to keep.” the project is a place for photographs and objects to exist when they are too difficult to hold on to, yet too meaningful to destroy. upon submission, participants may dictate whether the photographs may be displayed face up or face down to preserve privacy.

after watching the trailer, i couldn’t help but think of all the photos in boxes that i also could submitted to this project; not to mention the many photos i have thrown in the trash because they too were too hard to keep or a memory i chose to no longer want to revisit.

THTK2

neither the blog or the video say just how many photos mr lazarus has received, but i can only imagine it to be enough to fill an airstream trailer. i find each image fascinating while my imagination runs wild with the many possibilities as to why these certain photos were deemed “hard”. my fingers and toes are crossed with the hopes that i might view this curated installation in person one day.

time traveling

every once in a while i have a day where i enjoy retracing my steps…time traveling a bit. lately, i’ve been thinking back to our honeymoon. since my husband’s family was unable to fly to the states for the wedding, we chose to travel to them for the honeymoon. the majority of our time was spent in a quiet farm town in germany with oma and opa, but we  fit in a couple roadtrips to visit aunts, uncles and cousins in trier and koln. we even managed to get away on our own to visit the czech republic. ah prague, it stole my heart…a fascinating city although i do suggest taking public transportation. however, the 20 year old german map from oma’s house might have been the reason for my deciphering difficulties; mainly because i don’t speak a lick of german or czech.

public transportation prague

finally, after what seemed to be forever (and accidentally driving through a tram station where an old man shook his umbrella angrily at us), we arrived at our hotel, located just yards away from the foot of the stunning charles bridge. each afternoon, painters and street performers fight for space with throngs of tourists. our last morning, we woke up before the dawn to catch these shots.

charles bridge - prague

after our boat trip along the river we booked reservations at kampa park. we chose a a candlelit table on the cobblestoned terrace, draped in fairy lights right beside the river. the lights of charles bridge glittering on the water. being a foodie, i have dined at quite a few upscale restaurants. i’m unsure if it was the amazing wine or the insane view, but this has gone down as the best meal of my life thus far. after dark it became a bit chilly, so i cozied up with the cashmere blanket on the back of my chair and topped the evening off with a delicious cappuccino.

boat trip along the vltavalennon wall in prague

after dinner, the blue light jazz club and an old english pub (the name i don’t recall) became our haunts of choice. after many a staropramen, we’d slowly make our way back to our bed and breakfast, only to start another adventure the following day.

farmers market in prague

little did i realize this would be one of the last chances the boy and i would have to slip away together before children. and although this european getaway was not the typical balmy exotic island, lined with palm trees and coconuts honeymoon, i wouldn’t trade it for the world. it was an amazing adventure that i will revisit in my mind again and again. til we meet again prague.