So for all of the time I've been living in Milwaukee, there are still so many areas I have yet to explore. One of these is Bayview. A couple friends and I had brunch over that way last weekend at Cafe Centraal. The food was pretty good, bloody mary was satisfying, but the best part was probably the environment itself. The cafe is on a corner with a huge bar - tons and tons of beers - and a really sweet three season room and beer garden in the back. Definitely worth checking out if you need a new breakfast/lunch place to try or somewhere to grab a bloody and a beer for a Saturday Badger game! The only thing I regret is not getting the breakfast tacos -- they looked delicious. Next time!
To most people, November 23, 2014 was just an ordinary Sunday. For me, it was the day I found out I was going to be an Auntie! As if my brother and sister don’t already have a picture-perfect life, now they get to add a new little peanut to the mix as well. What’s more? They are having a baby boy! A little blue bundle to carry on the family name – my pops is thrilled!
What’s not so thrilled? My bank account! I have since developed a strange addiction to purchasing anything and everything baby. Go to Target for some deodorant….walk out with $140 worth of infant clothes and accessories. See a sale on buybuybaby.com? 20% off never made shit look more necessary than it does when you’re buying for your nephew. Cue Instagram follow of The Honest Company (Jessica Alba you friggin boss).
This family’s excitement for the baby’s arrival was akin to that of Christmas morning. Their due date was June 3rd, but the little man decided he wasn’t quite ready to make his entrance. Finally, after a week of waiting and a planned induction, baby Jackson Stanton May decided he was ready to meet the world. He kicked out of his water bed on his own Tuesday morning, and was born today - June 10th 2015. At 9lbs, he gave his mama a run for her money, but she is one strong and capable lady. Add this to the list of things I admire her for.
Maybe it’s because I don’t have a family of my own, but it’s so crazy that you can feel so much joy, excitement, and pride for someone else. At this point, I’ve pretty much become a master of living vicariously through others. I keep looking at baby Jackson’s pictures, soaking in his preciousness. I can’t wait until I can fly to California and kiss those chunky monkey baby cheeks in person! *Sigh*
One of the best things about living in Milwaukee is that it is such a walk-able city. You get the benefits of a big city feel without a lot of the pitfalls. Last week my baby sis Hunter came up for a visit. It was a beautiful sunny day, so I figured the best way to show her the city up close and personal was to explore it on two wheels. A few blocks from my apartment is a Bublr Bike stand, Milwaukee’s Bike Share Company, where you can rent a bicycle for $6 an hour and ride it wherever your little heart desires.
Those who are familiar with the city will appreciate this; Hunter and I spent 3.5 hours riding around Milwaukee’s Eastside, Downtown, and Third Ward. We biked from the corner of Prospect Ave and Brady Street down to Juneau Park, then down to the Art Museum and along the entire lakefront path up to North Avenue. From there it was across the river to eat lunch at Bel Air Cantina (Taco Thursday, duh). Then we proceeded to troll through some of the Eastside/Brady Street neighborhoods looking for new potential rentals for yours truly. After that we continued downtown and zigzagged from Red Arrow Park to Rock Bottom Brewery, and finally ending our trip by dipping down Water Street for a quick loop of the Third Ward. By the end of it, both of us had prettyyyy sore bottoms (Bublr should really consider slapping some gel seats on those babies), but I was able to show Hunter some of the best parts of this beautiful city in just a few short hours.
So, with all that bliss – what then was the blunder? Well, allow me to lay it on ya. Apparently if you don’t use it, you lose when it comes to biking skills. As we were entering Juneau Park, Hunter failed to line up her tire with the tapered sidewalk, and curb checked herself. Hard. She managed to stay on the bike, but scraped her shin and knuckles and busted a pedal in the process. Luckily not enough damage was done to prevent her from pedaling the rest of the day, but we did have to make a pit stop at my apartment for some Band-Aids. As we were finishing up our day and biking back along Lincoln Memorial Drive, my legs were really feeling the fatigue. Starting up a hill, I thought: I need to stand up and pedal or I’m not going to make it. It took about 15 seconds for my flimsy flip-flop sandal to slide off of my even flimsier pedal, and my ass was stumbling. I ended up tipped over on my side (in front of any number of lakefront onlookers) with some good ol’ fashioned road rash up my leg. Hunter, pedaling behind me, found this hilarious considering my previous harassment of her little mishap (which was nothing in comparison to mine). Let’s just say I picked that sucker up, got back on the horse, and pedaled my butt back to the bike stand as fast as possible. We stayed off Brady Street of course, no need to give every restaurant patio patron the laugh of the day. I’ll post a few pictures below so y’all can get a real sense of the ridiculousness.
A great sisterly bonding day, beautiful weather, exploration of a vibrant dynamic city, and great food & drinks…..and all it cost us was a sore ass and our dignity. Not a bad trade off.
With the summer fast approaching, the time for patios, beer gardens, and rooftop dining is upon us. Now if only we could get more than one nice day in a row? C’mon Wisconsin! So, I’ve had Screaming Tuna on my foodie bucket list for a while now. Located in the heart of Milwaukee’s Third Ward and right along the glorious Milwaukee River (glorious? Ha, just kidding – but it still provides a vibe, does it not?), Screaming Tuna is one classy place to get your sushi ON. The menu can be a bit pricey, but there are deals just begging to be taken advantage of, if you hit it on the right night. If the phrases SIN Monday [half-off sushi], Sake Tuesday, and Wine Wednesday aren’t enough to do it….you’re a weirdo and I want nothing to do with you. I’m also a little biased by the fact that the décor is orange and they allow dogs on the patio. Shout-out to Emily and Ryan for introducing me to the type of cultured little establishment willing to provide me with my own personal pot of tea. Screaming Tuna Sushi & Asian Bistro – Check!
I decided to try a free two week trial at the WAC hoping to use their pool to swim my little buns into shape before Mexico. The swimming happened…the buns-shaping, not so much. Anyway, here I am swimming laps the other day, and I get to lap say, 14 or so? I am literally on the brink of death at this point. I’m breathing hard, my limbs are getting tired, my face was probably red – it’s a wonder I didn't drown. So, I get to the far end of my lane and emerge from the water (cause let’s face it, this girl can’t do that underwater-flip-over-turn-shit) just in time to see the sexiesttttt resident MD at Froedtert walking into the pool. Immediately I froze - my mind racing. Whaaaaaat the heck is he doing here? I legit haven’t seen this particular doctor in several months, but one does not simply forget his face. He’s adorable. Probably married, but a girl can look, right? And of course, he looks even better out of scrubs then he does in them. Instant goose bumps.
Now, this particular pool is small. There are only 4 lanes, and allow me to break them down for ya. Lane 1 is a girl who rolled into the pool with a Speedo suit and swim cap, over there doing laps like a high school state qualifier. Lane 2 is me – on the brink of sinking whilst trying to freestyle swim the way adults do – with yo’ damn head in the water (note to self: buy goggles). Lane 3 is a twenty-something chick with a damn kick-board splashing around like crazy. Lane 4 is a middle aged woman receiving a freaking swimming lesson from an 8th months pregnant instructor who is pacing the pool’s edge like she’s coaching the next Olympic bronze medalist.
Cue: Panic. All I could think was oh my god, oh my god please do not get into my lane. It’s fine to share a lane with someone, but not when you are completely gassed out and they have to swim around you; nor is it fine for an insanely hot half naked man to jump into a lane with you without a certified lifeguard on duty. By the grace of god, he gets in with kick-board chick to my right. I’m sure it’s because she’s never once put her head under the water in the past 30 minutes, so the chances of her running into him were probably pretty slim.
Next thing you know he’s over there Michael Phelps-ing the shit out of that lane. Like straight up back muscles for days. I was literally so flustered; I could not even concentrate on swimming. I had to resort to side stroke for Pete’s sake. After 1 or 2 more laps I just could not focus. When one is in the water soaking wet, I don’t know that it’s possible to get more so…but I wasn't willing to test the theory in a public pool. Instead, I chose to gracefully remove myself from the situation, waiting until he was under water before jumping out and quickly wrapping my thunder thighs in a towel (why, oh why, does the WAC have to provide the world’s smallest towels?) As much as I would have loved to stay and enjoy the view, I had a feeling there was a good chance I looked like a drowned raccoon – so I booked it. On the plus side, as far as workouts go, that one was guaranteed to raise my heart rate. *Fans face with hand*.
Last weekend was filled with both something old and something new! I tried a new place to eat in the Third Ward, and got a chance to catch up with one of my oldest and closest friends. Melissa and I met freshman year at UW-La Crosse and ended up living together for the next 3.5 years. That’s right – we lived together for over 78% of college and we’re still friends. Not sure how we ever managed to put up with each other but we did, and despite only seeing one another a handful of times in the last several years, it feels as though no time has passed at all. Some friendships are just that easy. Incidentally, we ended up running into two other friends from college at Red Rock after dinner. It couldn't have been more random, nor could it have been a more perfect end to our night.
We had dinner at Water Buffalo on Water Street in the Third Ward with Melissa’s sister Danielle and her roommate Brooke, both seniors at UWM and getting dangerously close to entering the “real world.” Thankfully Melissa and I were able to provide them with gobs of wisdom for navigating life post-college. Just kidding, we have exactly 0% of our shit together. So the highlight was by far the food and drinks.
I had scallops with butternut squash risotto – delicious of course. The service left something to be desired, and our waiter was sweating like a water glass on a Georgia porch, but the environment at this place was cool, it’s on the water, and it was nice to have a good meal and a glass of wine (over the steamfresh veggies and La Croix that normally comprise my meals).
Sooo, on a whim, my cousin Megan and I decided to book ourselves a little trip to Cancun, Mexico! On the plus side - Wisconsin & Illinois just got hit with a Welcome-to-February bitch-slap in the form of a foot of snow. I'll be glad to take on these 6 more weeks of Winter if my ass gets to spend one of them south of the border. Besides -- seeing that groundhog bite the mayor's ear? Priceless.
However, this isn't exactly the best news for my bikini bod. The aforementioned cousin of mine? She's the 40 oz to my Keg -- literally. So I need to step up my game if I'm going to be caught dead in anything other than a mumu at Riu Paradise Peninsula.
As I've said before, one of the best ways I know how to tone up is with The Tracy Anderson Method. She makes me feel like i'm getting some sort of result without bulking up. Here's a video snippet of what she's all about.
Disclaimer: Clearly I don't own any rights to this video, nor am I any sort of spokesperson for Tracy Anderson. It is simply a reference link.