27 December 2013

Christmas Is Over

This pretty much sums up my last week.  Between taking the GRE, driving across the state of Michigan, learning that *gasp* I might actually like dark beer, and returning to a quiet and crisp Chicago, I feel like I've done and seen a lot. But also, oddly enough, my batteries are completely recharged, I'm ready for 2014 and all the good it will bring with it.

Here's a little peek into some of the things Andrew and I did on our Christmas vacation. Not pictured are all of the wonderful family and friends we saw and hosts we stayed with. You all are so warm and gracious for hosting us! If you are reading this, please come and stay with either of us on your next visit to the Windy City!!

On Sunday, Andrew and I visited East Lansing to so he could show me where he went to school, all of the places he "rioted", which buildings he slept in, and where he bought his records. A particular plus to the visit was that a massive ice storm had swept through that part of Michigan the night before, so the entire campus was covered in a sheen of glistening gorgeous ice. It was magical. Here's a photo of me being an ice queen.

While on campus, we also stopped by the beautiful new Eli and EdythE Broad Art Museum. My mouth watered at the newness of it. The sharp angles made for a precarious and confusing layout that left room for surprise and amazement as we walked through the space. Also, props for including a gallery for New Media and a gallery devoted to film. This is a big win! And even cooler/nerdier, is the store room that you can actually see into, making it possible to view art in the environment that it is stored  in while not on display. I basically loved this museum, and am super excited for the opportunities it offers East Lansing and MSU. High fives to everyone involved. 

As mentioned above, Andrew and I went to six breweries over the course of the weekend. We visited Three Floyds in Munster, IN where I had a Dusseldorf style beer called "Dorsia" that was delicious - it was sweet, a pretty amber color, and only available for a short period of time, so I tried not to get too attached. 

We went to Jolly Pumpkin and Arbor Brewing Company in Ann Arbor, MI - neither of which really left an imprint on me at all (sry, not sry). I remember liking what I had at Arbor but not much beyond that. 

Dark Horse Brewing Co. in Marshall, MI (pictured above) was the real winner for us. He had a blueberry stout and I had 4 Elves which was dark but god damn delicious! We both finished our drinks in the warmth of the heavily mug-clad room, and I was hoping we could stay for one more! I also learned what a mug club is, and I want to find a mug club in Chicago. Mug clubs are like book clubs, only they involve beer, and have nothing to do with book clubs.

Here's a photo of us trying to take a photo at Dark Horse. Clearly I'm lovin' it.

We then drove to Arcadia Ales in Battlecreek, MI which had a not so cool vibe. We stayed for a pint, didn't love it, and then drove to our final destination, Bells Brewery in Kalamazoo, MI. Bells ruled! We shared a pint, by this point, I was not paying attention (obvs, beer, duh) - but they recently expanded and added a performance space to their complex where they were screening Christmas movies! We order pork tacos and spinach dip, guzzled beer, ate popcorn, and watched the tail end of A Christmas Story before heading home. It was dreamy.

Christmas eve was delightful. We stayed with Andrew's family in Muskegon, MI and had heartwarming lasagna, followed by apple crisp and hot toddies. We exchanged gifts, and I finally saw It's A Wonderful Life. That movie IS good. I'm shocked it took me this long to see it! Basically, Christmas eve was lovely, warm, and wonderful! With good company gathered around a fire, what else could I have asked for?

Christmas was super lowkey and mainly involved driving from Michigan back to Chicago. We headed straight into Chinatown for some light shopping and dinner at Ming Hin. Andrew and I picked up plenty of weird kitsch, and I enjoyed the heck out of my garlic eggplant - though I was disappointed in the overall meal. I'm just gonna go out on a limb and say that Ming Hin is way better for dim sum than dinner, lesson learned. Following Chinese food, in true Jewish Christmas fashion, we headed to the Landmark Century to see a screening of "Her". No comment, just go see it. :)

And here we are, back in Chicago. I'm at work for the rest of this week - but everyone is out on holiday still, so the office-life is pretty pleasant and quiet. Chicago is also quiet, the trains aren't crowded, there's practically no one out and about in the morning... I sort of like it! 

How was your holiday? Did you get what you wanted for Christmas? What are some of your traditions? Andrew and I have yet to exchange gifts, but I already feel like I got exactly what I wanted! Good company, and a drinking buddy who lets me read Sarah Silverman's memoir to him out loud.


  1. GIRL, next time you're in Ann Arbor check out Lena. As an Ann Arbor native who doesn't live there anymore I am SO SAD that this place popped up after I moved away.

    1. First off, congrats on your engagement! When my blogger friends tie the knot, I get so excited from afar! Second of all, I am exclusively buying Caribou coffee at the store, because you. Duh. Third of all, I was across the street from Lena and I even said "that place looks cool." Next time I am there, I will go an let you know what I think. I love the seafoam green exterior!!!