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Next time I ride the South Shore from my Hegewisch neighborhood to downtown Chicago, I will take a closer look at the Van Buren Street station.
Life starts to move outdoors this time of year and many local nature-themed events this weekend can help keep you busy.
It’s always exciting to open a real letter. It’s even better when you recognize the handwriting on the envelope and feel instantly happy, like I did a few weeks ago when I found a letter in my mailbox from my old friend Ray Scahill.
It’s the first day of May and it finally feels like summer, that great time of year when our minds drift to warm weather and daydreams about all the fun in store in the next few months.
“We are now traveling at a speed of 100 miles per hour,” the conductor announced as our Amtrak train sailed toward Springfield, Ill.
Frank Sinatra sang in the background as chatter, laughter and good vibes filled the room at LARC's annual appreciation dinner Friday night.
Indiana and Illinois seem to have an ongoing feud over which state can claim Abraham Lincoln.
I have already started crafting my summer bucket list and it includes some day trips to local Chicago hot spots like Brookfield Zoo and the Museum of Science and Industry.
There’s a secret to getting a great photo of your kid with the Easter Bunny, Santa Claus and Mickey Mouse. I just haven’t figured it out yet.
Our household had its first confirmed case of the flu last week and I was the sufferer, or the culprit depending on how you look at it.
Parents, students and staff at Marian Catholic came together last weekend to stun guests at their Evening of Excellence Senior Showcase.
By now I’m sure you have read or heard that Sears in River Oaks Center is scheduled to close in June. Last week I wrote a column that mentioned Siam Marina restaurant pulling out of its River Oaks location to move to Tinley Park.
My family just returned home from beautiful Florida, and I am proud to say that I can now add taking a 1-year-old on a plane to my mommy experiences.
As a devoted fan of Valentine’s Day, I’ve faced my share of Valentine haters. I can’t imagine not loving a day devoted to hearts and the color pink and candy. That’s like not loving puppies or rainbows, but to each his own.
Watching segments of the Screen Actors Guild award show got me to thinking about local drama and how lucky we are to have so much of it.
When my son was a newborn, it didn’t take much to make me cry. One day it was a commercial for baby laundry detergent that said, “You have a child forever, but a baby for just one year.” Until that moment, I hadn’t realize the term “baby” had an expiration date.
Baby books are painful to read out loud when you’re a writer. The stories lack cohesion, the wording is awkward and don’t even get me started on the lack of punctuation.
Welcome to 2013. Here are my grand plans for the year.
It’s always uplifting to learn that one of your favorite businesses also invests its energy into its community.
Christmas is the season of love, and I have loved sharing it with my 11-month-old son. He’s at the age where he’s dazzled by Christmas lights, screams at the sight of Santa, and uses his teeth to rip open his Christmas presents before I can even finish wrapping them.
A few weeks ago my co-worker called me in a panic. “Jen! How do we turn off the Christmas music?” Our regularly programmed radio station had begun its nonstop Christmas-a-thon and my co-workers just weren’t ready. I explained how to turn off the station, but secretly I couldn’t wait until ne…
If you’re on the lookout for Santa Claus, I have the inside scoop on some of the places he might pop up this weekend.
When we went to high school dances, the DJs would always play “That’s what friends are for” toward the end of the night.
I love a good coupon, but I’m not sure I can handle much more of the sale ads and fliers flooding my mailbox, newspaper and email box. It’s nerve-wracking to think I might miss something good. I’m thankful Black Friday only comes once a year and that it will be over in a few days.
In Hegewisch in 1959, 16 rolls of toilet paper cost $1 at Aniol’s Hardware and Paints on Baltimore Avenue. Leaders of the Hegewisch Little League worried that the program would have to fold due to lack of umpires, and the Hegewisch Chamber of Commerce met to form a plan to stop the extension…
For as long as I can remember, the street in front of our house had a giant divot in it. Any time a car would drive over it, you’d hear a bounce and if a truck went by, the house would shake. At some point this summer, a neighbor reported the issue to the city of Chicago.* I thought it would…
If you haven’t made plans for Saturday yet, check out some of the fun events going on in my neighborhood and beyond.
The latest newsletter from LARC showed up in our mailbox this week so I thought I would share some of the organization’s latest news. With the holidays coming up quickly now, it’s good to make room on the calendar for some time to give back.
A year ago today, I wrote a letter to my then unborn child. We had recently learned he was a boy, but he still had no name so I called him “Little Baby.”
As we head into October, it seems like a good time to talk about ghost stories. The first ones I remember were told by our elementary school librarian.
One of my college friends recently announced she and her husband are expecting their first child. He’s due in January, the same month my son was born. They will be almost exactly one year apart, which makes passing down clothes easier. They’ll always be in the right size at the right season.…
When I first started driving to Hegewisch, one thing I noticed was the trains. It seemed like railroad tracks dotted across every road leading into this Chicago neighborhood, and many times, those tracks had trains that seemed to sit still for hours.
My heart always aches as I pass exit 178 heading south on Interstate 65. Taking the ramp means going back in time to my days as a college student at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Ind. This weekend, I did just that as I took my son to see his future alma mater and to meet one of my old…
The Chicago skyline. Lake Michigan. The Shedd Aquarium. Fireworks. You can’t ask for much more than that, but in case you’re extra hard to please, they tossed in a few live jazz bands.
My friend found out about mitochondrial disease the hard way, when her son was diagnosed with it at just 4 years old.
It seems that many of us, myself included, mostly think about needy kids at Christmastime. We drop off presents for Toys for Tots and donate to Salvation Army’s Angel Tree. I started to research ways to help kids all year and found some great ideas that coincide with the start of a new school year.
Most high school graduating classes would be satisfied with a successful 10-year reunion, but ours was so good, it left us wanting more.
A few weeks ago, my block came together for a block party. Prior to moving to Chicago, I had never even heard of a block party. It’s not something common in the Northwest Indiana suburbs.
When it’s this hot outside, the best place to hang out is in the house or in some water. Lucky for us we have many splashing options in the south suburbs and Indiana.
Saving money makes sense and a great deal can give you a rush. I’m quickly learning, however, that when it comes to babies, saving money can come both easy and hard.
In fourth grade, my entire class at Elliot Elementary School in Munster studied the history of Indiana. As a reward for all that hard work, we went on the biggest field trip of our lives and visited spots near and in the state capitol of Indianapolis.
It was hard to wrap my head around the fact that this year’s Mother’s Day would be a little bit about me. I’ve traditionally spent the day honoring the other special women in my life.
The audience bopped along to the sounds of the 1950s last week during performances of "Grease" at South Suburban College.
I've read about it and written about it, but for the first time I actually visited it. Last week my father-in-law took me to the Southeast Chicago Historical Society museum at Calumet Park.
Our son met the Easter Bunny for the first time last week and kept his tears to a minimum. He didn't mind being held near the bunny, but showed his outrage when Mr. Cottontail held him and didn't offer him any milk.
"You only have one FIRST St. Patrick's Day." That's what I told myself to justify the green St. Patty's Day onesie I picked up for our baby, who's not Irish by the way.
You never know who you will meet and how they will affect your life.
Hegewisch has a lot of great things going for it. Think Wolf Lake, a cute downtown and having that Chicago Zip code with a suburban lifestyle. But the Chicago neighborhood also has some downsides like a landfill, industry and a massive and noisy construction project we'll be dealing with for…
In my five-plus years of writing this column, one has never appeared in print on my birthday, until today.
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