Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Tea with Jan Schakowsky

When we fight, we win! -- Jan Schakowsky

 

Enjoyed witnessing the exchange between neighbors who are honing their community activist skills and Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky--one who has been working it as least as long as we've had expiration dates on our food--at neighbor Janice Page's home.


Discussion included running for local office, Morton Grove's pending welcoming community ordinance, minimum wage opt-out ordinance(s), politics in among our representatives and senators in Congress and likelihood of impeachment. 

video

Participants included Kim Moldofsky, Janice Kantro Page, Laura Frisch, Elizabeth Jones, Tammy Astor, Shabnam Syed, Margaret Grau, Jill Alali, Anjum Ali, Sharon Maitino, Ruth Goldman Helgemo, Janice Cha, Mari Blechman Plotnik and others.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Making conversation with family and strangers



Killian Kring, my oldest nephew,
graduated from UIC this month.




Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.

~ Ferris Bueller


A new friend of mine just said “May is crazier than Christmas”. I’m feeling that too: Graduations, weddings, bridal showers, baby showers, Mother’s Day, birthdays, oy.

If you have trouble making conversation at family events, here’s some conversation starters. Consider putting them in a handy place on your mobile device to consult with when you get stuck. These are meant to be light questions, but can get heavy in a hurry, so if you’re not in the mood to get to deep, choose wisely.


Who would you invite to your ultimate dinner party, living or not?

What do you do for fun?

What was the happiest moment of your life?

What are some of the best lessons you’re ever learned?

What kind of a student were you?

Who was your favorite teacher?
Favorite topics?

Who has been the kindest to you?

What is your earliest memory?

Do you believe in love at first sight?

What are you proudest of?

Who are your best friends?

Who are your favorite relatives?

Have you ever experienced a miracles?

How would you like to be remembered?

If you weren't doing what you're doing now for a living, what else might you be doing?

When you meet God, what do you want to say to Him/Her?

The above questions are inspired by StoryCorps’ Great Questions.

The following are all mine. Two of my go-to “cocktail party” questions are these: 1) Have you ever been arrest? 2) Imagine that you’ve just spent the night with someone special, exchanged all kinds of bodily fluids, would you use their toothbrush in the morning?

Got any of your own questions you like asking? I'd love to hear them.


Tuesday, May 9, 2017

BizPics: Headshots for Business, Sunday, May 21

If you need a new headshot for social media, a website, media relations or other purposes, I'd love to make it for you. My next BizPics shoot is at Creative Coworking in Evanston Sunday, May 21, 2017.

If you find the prospect of getting your portrait made daunting, but you know you need one, this is the shoot for you. These shoots are fun, a cross between a fashion shoot and a party. If you come, you'll get some smart pictures made of yourself while having a good time. In fact, consider bringing a friend or loved one.

Skokie's Dr. Susan Becker Doroshow
 

This in from Skokie dentist, Dr. Susan Becker Doroshow, about BizPics: The business portrait that Karen made was literally the springboard for a revitalized practice image, new marketing materials, and a clear brand that truly resonates with my patients and staff. I never knew that a photograph could accomplish so much. Karen is an artist and creative genius!

From non-profit executive Thomas Applegate: I finally took advantage of the opportunity with...BizPics to get new photos for use online at Linkedin, Facebook and all of the rest. A great current photo is essential for my professional and social image online.

Karen and her crew are great to work with at the shoot. Even though I wasn't nervous about having my picture taken, I was pleasantly surprised at how much fun it was. Karen...made it fun and easy. I met other professionals while we waited for our turn and that casual conversation helped my photos look relaxed and natural. The process from sign up to selection of my favorite shots was quick and easy.

My only regret is that I waited so long to sign up for a shoot.

Registration and details for the May 21 shoot are up at https://bizpicsmay21.eventbrite.com.

Friday, April 21, 2017

Pray for our leaders, neighbors and for those you disagree with, with others, May 8

St. Luke’s Community Church’s pastor Elizabeth Jones invites people of all stripes to gather for prayer the second Monday of the month.

This month’s interfaith prayer gathering is on…

Monday, May 8, 2017
7:30-8:30 p.m.
at
St. Luke’s Church
9233 Sherman (at Harlem)
Morton Grove

This monthly gathering, focused on building bridges and mutual support, includes ecumenical prayer for our leaders, communities, neighbors and for those we disagree with.

I plan to be there. (I mention this despite not knowing if that encourages you to come or encourages you not to come. Ha!)

More gatherings are scheduled for June 12, July 10, August 14, September 11 and October 9.

RSVPs are not necessary, but if you’re new to this group, giving Rev. Elizabeth a heads up that you are coming will please her. Also, if you missed participating the month before, contacting her to confirm where the gathering will happen is a good idea. July might include a picnic not at the church. Elizabeth can be reached at elizajon(at)aol.com or 847-476-0612.




Monday, April 10, 2017

Easter Eats 2017

You're not up for cooking yourself, so...decisions, decisions. Want to stay close to home? Check out these offerings.

Bar Louie at Holiday Inn Skokie, 5300 Touhy, Skokie, 847-763-3068. The Easter brunch buffet is spread out and includes cold and hot food tables; carving, pasta, waffle, omelet and dessert stations and a bakery corner. The $26.95 tab for adults includes a choice of champagne or mimosa; children aged 5 to 12 are charged $14.95. Service goes from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Libertad, 7931 Lincoln Avenue, Skokie, 847-674-8100, serves brunch most Sundays from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Call to confirm they'll be serving on Easter.

Alexander's, 5025 Oakton St. Skokie, 224-251-7492, serves bunch most Sundays from 8 a.m.-3 p.m. Call to confirm they'll be serving on Easter.
 

There is Annie's on Oakton in Skokie, Le Peep on Church in Evanston, but don't you go there on other weekends during the year anyway? Maybe Easter is the time to do something less usual. Consider these spots.

Found, 1631 Chicago Ave., Evanston, 847-868-8945; FoundKitchen.com. Celebrate Easter Sunday with spring-centric, family-style menu, available from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Chef Nicole Pederson offers kale and swiss chard salad with cranberries, candied nuts and seeds, as well as pan-roasted salmon with crispy polenta, arugula and Meyer lemon. The family-style brunch menu is $38 for adults and $18 for kids. The standard a la carte dinner menu also will be offered from 5 to 8:30 p.m. with certain specials available.

Pete Miller's, 1557 Sherman Ave., Evanston, 847-328-0399; www.petemillers.com. Listen to live jazz music by Nicole Kestler (10 a.m.-1:30 p.m.) and Jeannine Tanner (11 a.m.-3 p.m.) while you enjoy a buffet featuring carving and omelet stations, a seafood and raw bar and a sweets table. Admission is $46.99, $23.50 for kids ages 6-10 and free for kids younger than six and entitles you to a two-hour reservation.

Hearth Restaurant, 1625 Hinman Ave., Evanston, 847-570-8400; www.hearthrestaurant.net. Start your meal with complimentary freshly baked breakfast breads, then order a la carte. Dishes including cinnamon roll pancakes, skirt steak benedict and avocado toast. Mimosas, bloody marys, bellinis, fresh squeezed orange juice and coffee and tea are also available. Brunch is served from 9:30 a.m.-2 p.m.

The Stained Glass, 1735 Benson Ave., Evanston, 847-864-8600; www.thestainedglass.com. Enjoy made-to-order omelets and eggs benedict, carved leg of lamb with mint pesto and ham with pineapple chutney, and other fare including doughnut French toast, tomato mozzarella salad, and scones. Brunch is $32, half-price for kids ages 4-12 and free for kids under age 3. Adults get a complementary mimosa or bloody mary. The buffet is available from 11 a.m.-2:30 p.m.

The Barn, rear of 1016 Church St., Evanston, 847-868-8041, www.thebarnevanston.com. The Barn is offering a special three-course brunch with options such as Soup de Poisson ($9.95); Little Gem Salad and Creamy Dijon Salad ($11.95); The Grand Central Caviar Sandwich ($18.95); a choice of Prime Heritage Angus steaks, Za'Atar Roasted Half Chicken ($22.95); and more.

The weather forecast expects no rain for Sunday and to get as warm as 61 F with some clouds, some sunshine. If you’re in the mood for a drive, consider these places.

Convito Cafe and Market, 1515 Sheridan Road, Wilmette, 847-251-2654, ConvitoCafeandMarket.com. Easter brunch specials like grilled rack of lamb, honey lavender roasted ham and convito hash will be offered with the regular menu from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Restaurant Michael, 64 Green Bay Road, Winnetka, 847-441-3100; www.restaurantmichael.com. A three-course menu offers a choice of starters such as a duo of chilled jumbo lump crab and crab cake with sweet pea sauce. Entrees include rack of lamb and grilled garlic lamb sausage and a dessert such as strawberry soufflé with candied kumquat. Brunch is $54, $26 for kids younger than age 10 and reservations are available every half hour from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Maya del Sol, 144 S. Oak Park Ave., Oak Park, 708-358-9800, www.mayadelsol.com. Bring some Latin fare to your celebration, with a brunch buffet featuring tilapia ceviche, chipotle-marinated skirt steak, vegetable enchiladas and sweet corn tamales with poblano cream sauce. Brunch runs from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. and costs $29 or $14 for kids ages 4-12. Kids younger than age 4 eat free.

Rob Roy Golf Course, 505 E. Camp McDonald Rd, Prospect Hts., IL 60070. 847-296-4653. This River Trails Park District golf course club house offers Easter champagne brunch buffet on Sunday. First seating: 9:30 a.m – 11:30 a.m. Second seating: 12:00 – 2:00 p.m.. Bill will be $24.95 Adults, $14.95, Children 4-12, Free, Kids 3 and younger. Let them know you're bringing kids so the Easter bunny can deliver a special gift. Reservations required: 847-296-4653 x6.

Magnolia Café & Bakery at Lambs Farm
, 14245 W. Rockland Road, Libertyville, 847-362-4636; www.lambsfarm.org. A buffet offers carved meats, classic breakfast fare, fresh fruit and vegetables and bakery treats. Reservations are available at 10 a.m., noon and 2 p.m. and the meal costs $24.95 or $10.95 for kids ages 2-12. Kids younger than age 2 eat free.

Chicago Botanic Garden, Nichols Hall, Regenstein Center, 1000 Lake-Cook Road, Glencoe, 847-835-5440. Easter brunch menu includes breakfast pastries, turkey and glazed ham from a carving station, a spring vegetable quiche and vanilla french toast bread pudding among other dishes. Bloody Marys, Mimosas and champagne cocktails are available for purchase. Tickets are $32 for adults and $24 for children 3 to 12 years old; members get a discount. After brunch, stop in the Rose Garden for an Easter egg hunt.

Allgauer's on the Riverfront at Hilton Chicago/Northbrook, 2855 N. Milwaukee Ave., Northbrook, 847-664-7999, www.northbrookallgauers.com. Choose from more than 100 items offered at this champagne brunch including oysters on the half shell, dozens of fresh salads, peel & eat shrimp, snow crab, hand-carved beef, made-to-order omelets, kids items and desserts. The Easter bunny will also make an appearance. Brunch is served from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. and costs $42 or $18 for kids ages 4-12.

Monastero's, 3935 E. Devon Ave., Chicago, 773-588-2515, www.monasteros.com. Champagne brunch will take place between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m. Entrees begin at $22, with a children's menu starting at $16. Cost includes choice of entree; soup, fruit or salad; dessert trip, coffee, tea and choice of a glass of champagne, orange juice or mimosa.

Cafe Touche, 6731 N. Northwest Highway, Chicago, 773-775-0909, CafeTouche.com. Full brunch offerings available between 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

The Lucky Monk, 105 Hollywood Blvd., South Barrington, 847-898-0500, www.theluckymonk.com. Easter brunch entrees will include corned beef hash, short rib benedict, stuffed French toast and chicken and waffles. Kids eat for $8.95, which includes an ice cream sundae station. Brunch begins at 10 a.m.
Good idea for big families…

White Eagle, 6839 N. Milwaukee Ave., Niles, 847-647-0660, www.whiteeaglebanquets.com. Seatings for a family-style menu including bread, soup, roasted chicken with gravy, mashed potatoes, beef brisket with gravy, Polish sausage and sauerkraut, pierogi, Honey-baked ham and dessert, will take place from noon to 6 p.m. with a cost of $27.50 per person. A buffet-style menu will be available from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. for a cost of $29.50 per person and feature a breakfast station, fish station, carving station, Italian station, Polish station and a dessert station.

White Pines Golf Club & Banquets, 500 W Jefferson St., Bensenville, 630-766-0304. The Easter brunch, a family event, has a lineup that will include traditional favorites as well as some culinary surprises from Executive Chef Rich Mancini. The tariff for adults is $35.95 and for children 5 to 10, $15.95. Seatings run from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Bloody Mary and champagne bars are available at an additional cost.

Hyatt Regency O'Hare
, 9300 Bryn Mawr Ave., Rosemont, 847-696-1234 Ext. 4602. This popular brunch is designed to offer something to appeal to a broad spectrum of diners as they stop at buffet stations highlighting seafood, breakfast fare, waffles, Italian specialties, sushi, carved delicacies and desserts – including many gluten-free choices. Prices are $48 per adult and $26.50 for children aged 5 to 12. Seatings will run from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Sources: Restaurant websites, Skokie Review, Skokie Patch’s bulletin board, Northbrook Star