Reason to Love My City: 826CHI

Last night, I went to a volunteer orientation for a FANTASTIC organization, 826CHI. If you love to write, if you want to make a difference, if making kids happy and strengthening their writing skills are your thing, get to know this place better for immediate inspiration. I heard about 826 many moons ago, through my favorite author, Dave Eggers, who started the creative writing and tutoring center back in the early 2000s. Listening to the kind, encouraging and funny staff talk about the mission and how volunteers can help left me feeling jazzed and ready to help!

826CHI // Who Wants Love? from 826CHI on Vimeo.


Salut, Septembre.

Oh hey. It’s September. The last month before winter coat season rears it’s ugly head, the last month of sinfully gorgeous Chicago weather. There’s much to look forward to! I love finding out about fun new events (and checking up on excellent event aggregates like Chicagoist & Gapers Block)…if you are up to anything cool + unusual, let me know in the comments!

Renegade Craft Fair

September 6 & 7Renegade Craft Fair is a crazy creative thoroughfare taking place in the heart of Wicker Park. I always manage to find a new artisan to love or a kooky addition to my jewelry collection. Great food is available too. Renegade brings out the best and brightest and is one of the last great street fests of the summer.

CHIRP Radio Fall Campaign Drive

Starting September 15th – I am shilling, but I am shilling for a cause I more than believe in. CHIRP stands for Chicago Independent Radio Project. They’re running their annual fall drive starting on September 15th. The station is entirely listener-supported – so anything that is donated goes a long way to help this organization on every level. If you donate, be sure to let them know I’m the one who sent you :)

Dose Market

September 21 – I keep saying I’ll go…and I’m going! Similar to Renegade, Dose features artisans and their wares. They always manage to pick unique venues. I’m excited to check it out.

Wicker Park Farmer’s Market

Outdoors every Sunday until October 26th – Speaking of CHIRP, I’m set to do a little street teaming for them at the Wicker Park Farmer’s Market at some point before the close of their outdoor days. Come visit!

Of course, there are so many, many more events…let me know what you’re looking forward to!

Happy weekend!

Songs Guaranteed to Burst a Bad Mood Bubble

Oh hello alliteration! I’ve been wading into a major funk these past few days, so what better way to perk up my mood other than compiling a list of my favorite happy, never-fail, good-mood-only songs? I hate to whine, especially on the internet, I’m just…not myself lately. Being let go from a job will do that, I guess. I said it! It’s such a roller coaster. I’ve been job searching like mad, networking like it’s my jorb and I’ve been meeting awesome new people. At the end of the day though, I just want a desk to call my own. Positivity must reign supreme, so here are my happy songs. I hope they cheer you up, make your great day even better, put a smile on your face…all of those good things. I also love new tuneage for less-than-stellar times like these – if you’ve got ‘em, send them my way (via comment box, email, whatever). 

Bombay Bicycle Club – “Shuffle” and “Luna

I’m incredibly endeared to this London band. In particular, I love the video for Shuffle – four goofy dudes galavanting through Europe on tour. The Luna video is a delectable visual treat as well. Mellow pop at it’s finest. 

Arcade Fire – “Sprawl II

Basically, I want my life to consist of “mountains beyond mountains”. The sprawl I could do without. This song never, ever fails to perk me up. 

Two Door Cinema Club – “This is the Life

Or as my brother calls them, Harry, Ron and Neville (a fairly accurate description). I am partial to these youngish Brits and their brand of soaring poppy goodness. 

Plastic Bertrand – “Ca Plane Pour Moi

This classic French pop tune (featured in an Olsen twins movie or two) is dizzy, crazy, fun. It’s like “The End of the World as We Know It” for the French. I dig.

The list goes on and on…I’ll continue to sift through my favorites.

Sassy Single: Yelle, “Complètement Fou”

Yelle, Parisienne songstress/rapper extraordinaire, just released this bright and bouncy single off her upcoming LP of the same name. It’s a fun track with dance floor appeal. Like the title suggests, it’s completely crazy, in a poppy and appealing way. The Complètement Fou LP is slated for release on September 30th.

Complètement Fou


What do you think? Be sure to let me know in the comments.


Monday Music: Fun Frenchie Mix + More

It’s no secret…I absolutely love French pop music. I’m always looking for a good mix of French music that extends beyond the rudimentary stuff; one can only listen to “Oh Champs Elysees” so many times. I’m a touch particular when it comes to my favorite sort of French music…I can’t stand the junk on the radio (I feel really old saying that). This Café Français mix (via the contention-fraught Spotify…say what you will, I love it — let’s follow each other, if you’re on there!) hits all of the right notes, a mon avis. It’s charmingly cliched, yet is full of quirky, indie pop tunes.

Café Français Playlist



“Brunch” by S

I wanted to share a moody, sweeping pop song Turntable Kitchen recently posted. Take a listen to “S” by Brunch. Produced by former Death Cab for Cutie member Chris Walla, if you like DCFC, you’ll definitely enjoy this.

What are you listening to? Be sure to let me know in the comments.