Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Christmas and New Years Eve 2013

I am really slacking here lately :)  I recently got some incredible news on the job front and I guess in the excitement forgot to pick up my camera.  I found out that I am the newest Consultant at my company and am stoked to take the next step in my career!   College Recruiting has been a wild ride, but 3+ years of that was plenty.  It has been an incredible experience and one I was glad to have, but I have been feeling for the last several months that it was time for me to move on.  I felt I got as much out of it as I could ever want, and am leaving with no regrets.

I thought my next step might be dipping my toe back into the HR field but I hated the thought of leaving my company and the only HR positions are in California.  Luckily for me, I got my dream gig as a Consultant and I couldn't be happier!  It will combine at lot of the skills I picked up both in HR and in recruiting and I will have the opportunity to learn so much!  There will be a lot of training coming up that I'm sure will stress me out, but long term, this is good!  I can't wait to learn how build and configure our systems and then help other companies make good business decisions.   Plus I'll still get to do a bit of traveling...

Tom and I are both entering 2014 much happier people, ha.   He was sweet and wanted to take me out to celebrate!  First with a yummy dinner at Sepia.  It's located in printer's row and looks so "Chicago" in the best possible way (think converted loft style space that is jazzed up with fancy decor), but is seriously one of the best meals I've had in a while. There isn't one bad thing on the menu and they have a pretty awesome cocktail program if you just want to pop in for drinks.  A food critique I am not:   I didn't photograph our meals but suffice it to say it was great!

( photo credit)

Then we followed it up with some cocktails at RM Champagne Salon .  Both were great!  The champagne salon looked like it would be even better in the Summer because they have an amazing outdoor space.

(Time Out Chicago photo credit)


The inside isn't too shabby though :)

Christmas was lovely and low-key. My parents drove in and stayed with us Sunday through Thursday. The weather was certainly frightful so we kept it simple (plans to check out the new Eately and lights downtown were nixed due to frigid temps).  We saw movies (American Hustle was amazing...even Christian Bale's huge gut did nothing to squash my childhood crush, hehe), watched a ton of Friday Night Lights, and tried a bunch of new restaurants.   My mom and I got to do some baking together (with Christmas Tunes and wine!) which is always a treat (one of my my favorite childhood recipes: double chocolate oatmeal cookies) and decided we will plan a girls trip in 2014. I miss hanging out with her one-on-one. It doesn't really happen these days so we have to make it happen!  Not sure were we will go but we'll figure it out (I'm thinking somewhere fun with a Spa...and wine: Scottsdale, Palm Springs, Santa Barbara?).

We finally tried the "diner" Au Cheval  (I use the word "diner" because that's what they call it, but trust me when I say this isn't your run of the mill diner) and it truly does have one of the best burgers around.  We hit Francesca's Bryn Mawr for Christmas Eve dinner (so yummy it might become a "thing"), and also tried Spacca Napoli for some pizza (so excited they had gluten free dough).  Wow, looking back, I guess it's obvious why my pants are feeling a bit tight...

New Years Eve was great although I guess it wouldn't be NYE in Chicago if the weather wasn't terrible! Nothing like getting dressed up in pretty dresses to then put on a big puffer jacket and snow boots to cover everything up.

To kick it off, we invited everyone over to our place for some pre-party festivities.  We served Old Fashioneds and French 75s.  Props to Tom for doing a great job of mixing them up!  We then  exchanged some gifts and headed to Racine Plumbing for some dancing (same place we celebrated Halloween).  One of the highlights of the night believe it or not was our cab ride over.   All six of us piled in and our cab driver all of a sudden pretended it was Cash Cab!  He flickered the lights and quizzed us. It was seriously the best cab ride ever!  At the party, we danced until the clock struck midnight, but I'm old so we called it a night shortly after.  It was such a fun evening.

Hope everyone else had a great New Years.  I'm thinking 2014 is gonna be pretty great.

Here's the requisite photo dump (thanks to Tom for remembering to snap pics!).  And yep. Died my hair back to brunette!  Feel better with darker hair for whatever reason.

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