Woke up in Chicago this morning at my favorite little doggie friendly hotel near Michigan avenue, The Monaco. After taking Willie out for a walk this morning (well… more of a carry, he is not a fan of Chicago) I got a workout in at the gorgeous fitness center where I made sure to grab a few bottles of complimentary water for the road. Before heading out of town, we stopped at Green City Market, the largest sustainable farmer's market in Chicago.
During the winter months the Green City Market is held inside the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum, it was buzzing with families who attend the museum and the market on the same day. They can even “check” their market finds at the Veggie Valet before they take the kiddies through the museum.
It makes me smile to see children holding large bags of organic groceries. We were starving when we arrived to the market and stumbled upon an organic cheese farmer that was making grilled cheese with organic whole grain bread. Perfect.
After the farmer's market we played around with Willie at the park so he can get his exercise in before our next long drive. Chicago is so beautiful right now. It was about 40 degrees, crisp, and sunny.
We wanted to spend more time here but needed to get a head start on Cleveland since the innkeeper at the Bed and Breakfast was eager to get our estimated time of arrival. We popped into a place called, The Protein Bar, before we hit the road. A couple of smoothies, white bean and kale soup, and quinoa veggie chili held us over perfectly until dinner. The Protein Bar is a definite win, here is their mission:
5 hours later, we arrived in Cleveland, Ohio. It's a quaint little old house built in 1868 and full of charm. The crabby innkeeper, Jim, was here to meet us with a half-smile. I love historic places, but sometimes old houses give off an erie vibe. Abra ran across the street and grabbed a few groceries to whip up a quick dinner for us since we were staying in the little attached apartment that had a full kitchen. We love eating out, but we love homemade food even more. 20 minutes later, I had al dente organic angel hair pasta with fresh garlic, sautéed kale, shrimp, and artichokes in a white wine lemon sauce. 5 minutes later, it was gone!
Now anyone who knows me is aware of my love of leftovers. We ate dinner 2 hours ago and I'm already thinking of what time I will eat this in the car tomorrow. Abra is the opposite. She has already moved on, so it will take a bit of convincing to get her to eat cold pasta while driving 85 mph on the Ohio turnpike. Eating the pasta for lunch tomorrow will do wonders for our eating budget which is currently still in the red (exactly how much in the red TBD, I let Abra handle the calculations.) Tomorrow morning will be breakfast with cranky Jim the inn-keeper, then off to our hometown of Scranton where we will have a home cooked meal from our families waiting. Let me rephrase…Abra will have a home cooked meal, I will no doubt have a surprise pizza delivered by my favorite local spot, but both will be prepared (or purchased) from the heart.
Heading to sleep where I will try not to think of the movie Psycho and the hour of sleep I will be losing due to daylight savings.
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