The Siberian American

Friday, June 24, 2016

Friday Favorites: First Week Home Highlights

Happy Friday, friends! I’ve had such a nice week relaxing at my parents’ house before the second part of our move. Here are some highlights from this week:

Christopher made it home late last night! Thank you for all of your prayers and positive thoughts. They barely made it ahead of all the severe weather on Wednesday, and I’m so glad they did because there were 11 tornadoes south of Chicago that night.

No matter where we travel or live, there is nothing like my mama’s home cooking. It’s been a fun week being spoiled with mama’s cooking!

It’s also been great to have a pool in the backyard. It helps both with the Texas heat and my pain! We had a pool in Chicago, but it was always busy, so it’s nice to have a pool to myself!

I’m so excited to meet up with friends now that we’re back in town. Chris and I are having lunch with my former coworkers today, which will be super fun.

I got Mom hooked on Food Network, and it’s been fun showing her some of my favorite shows. She loved cracking up at all the sabotages on Cutthroat Kitchen.

Linking up with AmandaKarli, and the High Five for Friday girls.

Hope y'all have a wonderful weekend! 

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Hello from Texas

Hey, everyone. I just wanted to write a quick note that I made it to Texas! We actually managed to make the whole drive in one day in a little over 13 hours. It was a long, hard day, but at least it meant we were done, and I could recover the next day. Christopher and his parents are leaving Chicago in the moving truck today (there is severe weather in the forecast for Chicago, so we would love your prayers and positive thoughts that they can leave before it starts).

Being back at my parents’ house after not stepping foot in Texas for over a year feels weird. In some ways, it feels like I never left. (Wasn't it just yesterday that I wrote a quick hello from Chicago?) On the other hand, it feels like I’ve been gone forever. It’s also going to take a while to get used to the heat again. It’s crazy how quickly my body adjusted to the beautiful Chicago summers!

We don’t move in to our new place until Tuesday, so it will be nice to have a few days to relax (even though Christopher does have to go to orientation) before part two of our moving madness. Thank you so much for all of your support as we make the transition back from Chicago to Dallas. I can’t wait to share more about our life here!

Friday, June 17, 2016

Five Things I Will Miss About Chicago

In November, I wrote a post about five (silly) things I missed about Texas. Now that my time in Chicago is coming to a close, I thought I would share five things I’ll miss about the city.

Lake Michigan
If you’ve been following along on my year in Chicago, you’re not surprised I have Lake Michigan as the top thing I’ll miss about Chicago. When we first moved here, I was amazed at how beautiful the lake was, and since we live in close walking distance, it became my place to go when I was stressed out.

It makes me laugh that I was worried about how I was going to survive a year without Tex-Mex. It’s still obviously one of my favorite types of food, and I can’t wait to eat it once we get back to Texas, but the food in Chicago is nothing short of amazing. One of the future posts I’m most excited to write is my guide to restaurants in Chicago. I’ve tried so much delicious and unique food while we were here. On Wednesday, we tried Peruvian food for the first time at Tanta, and I wish we could go there all the time.

Walking everywhere
I won’t miss this as much now that I’m not feeling well, but I loved being able to walk everywhere in Chicago. We lived in a great area super close to the lake, museums, and fun restaurants. We were also on the same block as Target, so it was easy to grab any essentials! We are moving to one of the more walkable areas in Dallas, so hopefully we can ease back into having to drive all the time.

Our view
Like I said, I love where our building is located, and I’ve really enjoyed the view out of our balcony. The sunsets have also been truly amazing.

Exploring the Midwest
Our year in Chicago was also the first time we have spent a significant amount of time in the Midwest (except Missouri), and I really loved our day trips and the week we spent exploring Michigan and Wisconsin. I had a few more trips planned that we had to cancel because of my health, but it just means we have to come back and visit to do them!

It goes without saying I will miss all the wonderful people we met this year! The worst part of moving is having to say goodbye to great friends, but I am super excited to be close to family and old friends again! See you later, Chicago. Love you always.

Linking up with AmandaKarli, and the High Five for Friday girls.

Hope y'all have a wonderful weekend! 

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Five Summer Beauty Must Haves

Now that summer is in full swing, I’m all about low-stress beauty products, so I can get ready as quickly as possible. Today, I thought I’d share the five products I have been using constantly so far this summer.

Note: This post contains affiliate links. If you click on a link, I receive a teeny tiny commission.

A neutral eye palette
I love a neutral eye look all year long, but it’s a must for me in the summer. My favorite is the NUDE 'Tude® palette from theBalm. The pigment is amazing, and I love rotating between “sexy” and “sleek.” Plus, it's a great price!
I’ve been on search for a good bronzer, and I really love the Amazonian clay waterproof bronzer from Tarte! It has a nice, natural look and lasts forever.
Dry shampoo
Dry shampoo is another necessity in the summer. I use Batiste cherry dry shampoo and amika perk up dry shampoo. Both are great and cost under $10.
Bright lipstick
I got the Stowaway Crème Lipstick Trio in my December 2015 PopSugar box, and I’ve recently started using it because the colors are fun for summer. The raspberry color is my favorite, and I love that it goes on smooth and lasts a long time.

Nail polishing tool

I received this product for free in exchange for a review, but all opinions are my own.

I never knew I needed the Emjoi Micro-Nail in my life until I tried it out. I loved how the buffer added a gorgeous shine to my nails. It was also insanely quick—the roller spins 360 degrees at 30 times per second! My nails looked so good I could have left off the nail polish, but I was surprised when I painted my nails, how much easier it was to paint them! The Emjoi Micro-Nail is the perfect product for achieving great summer nails.

Monday, June 13, 2016

Life Update: One Year in Chicago

On our one-year anniversary in Chicago, I wrote a letter to the city, but I haven’t shared what we did in May. Here's a recap of some of our fun dates last month:

In May, the weather in Chicago finally started to show hints of spring and summer, so we tried to get out as much as we could. I really missed my mama’s cooking, so we headed to Russian Tea Time for some great Russian food. We had varenyky, pelmeni, and blini. Chris also tried (and really liked) the duck.

After the delicious dinner, we headed to the Chicago River for a relaxing walk by the water.

On Mother’s Day, Christopher and I had a blast watching a baseball game at Wrigley Field. It was fun to see such a historic ballpark and to eat some tasty food!

Because we didn’t have enough Russian food the first time, we met up friends at Shokolad in the Ukrainian Village for some amazing Russian and Ukrainian food.

Speaking of food, I had a Groupon to Geja’s Café that we were finally able to use in May. I had made five different reservations before we were able to make it to the restaurant, and we ended up having to eat dinner at 9 p.m., so we wouldn’t have to lose the Groupon. We had an amazing time, and I am planning a full blog post on it, but I thought it was a fun example of how crazy and unpredictable intern year could be.

You all know by now that Lake Michigan is my happy place, so we took advantage of a beautiful day on one of Christopher’s days off to spend time by the lake. I have a hard time getting to the lake nowadays, but it’s worth it every time we go.

On Memorial Day weekend, the Gelato World Tour was in town, so we went to Millennium Park to sample all the delicious gelato. I’m going to be real with y’all for a second. If you’ve been wondering how I still manage to walk all over the city when I’m sick, I will say that most of the time, it isn’t pretty, and I end up embarrassing both Christopher and myself. This was one of those times. There’s no reason to go into details, but I couldn’t handle the walk or the long lines when we got to the gelato tastings. Thankfully, Christopher was super sweet and waited in all the lines while I found a bench. I will say that I never regret going out in the end because no matter how hard it is, it is worth it to go out and live.

With only a week left in Chicago, I am so thankful for the memories we have made this year in this beautiful city.