WIAW – What I Ate Wednesday

Man I love food.   Wednesday has become one of my favorite afternoons because I get to look at everybody’s delicious eats from the week :).

So without further adieu, here are my favorite eats from the week for WIAW.   As always thanks to Jenn from peasandcrayons.


DSCN1421 DSCN1418

I know it doesn’t LOOK very breakfasty (more brunch), but my meal at Birtchwood Kitchen was a highlight for the week, not just breakfast.  The turkey was NOT your average deli meat turkey, the bacon perfectly done, and the spreads on the bread?  Forget about it 🙂


DSCN1388 DSCN1396

I’m going to say that my brunch was ALSO my favorite lunch…so I’ll just leave it to snacks for this portion :).  While traveling this weekend Zach and I got to take advantage of his frequent flier status and hang out in the AA lounge…man that makes traveling easier :).  I LOVED the fresh fruit and veggies, snacks and espresso they had!


DSC_0461 DSC_0460

Oh man last nights salmon and salad dinner was a SERIOUS winner!  Healthy and completely satisfying after a cool dark run.



I have been LIVING off these gluten free Pumpkin cookies lately.  Which is probably not a GREAT thing because they are HUGE, but so delicious.

Man I had some good eats this week 🙂

Question of the Afternoon:  What is your ultimate favorite TREAT? Cookies? Cake? 


Follow Chocolate medals  on  twitter , facebook & pinterest

Chicago LOVE Recap: Brunch Spots

Zach and I love weekend brunches.  Especially in Chicago, it was one of our favorite times of the week.  We’d sleep in, normally get a quick work out in, then head out to a great, slow and leisurely brunch.

Chicago has so many great brunch stops, and when we were thinking about our must-do’s for the weekend, stopping by some of our old neighborhood favorites for brunch was top on the list.

DSCN1421 DSCN1419 DSCN1418 DSCN1415


Birchwood Cafe

Birchwood cafe is a little spot on North Avenue near Oakley/Bell that just screams home.  If you’re going to brunch, there is likely going to be a bit of a wait, but trust me it’s totally worth it.

When you walk in Birchwood, one of the staff (they were the same as when we lived there, tells ya it’s a good place) hands you a menu and lets you know what to expect for wait.

When your table is ready, you actually head up to the counter to place your order, let them know what table number you are, and then they bring you the food.  Super easy, and actually super efficient.


Zach and I have gone for breakfast, brunch, lunch and dinner and are NEVER disapointed.   I remember the first time I went there with my parents, the owner was chatting with us and once he found out I was new to the neighborhood, FORCED me to take home a piece of their chocolate banana cake.  That’s my kind of place :).

For my brunch this visit, I went with the club and fresh fruit.



The sandwich was not the huge double decker I’m used to seeing for a club.  It was a well portioned, turkey club with homemade mayo, bacon, bread and veggies.  Seriously, Birchwood uses local ingredients and you can TELL in the quality of their food.



I couldn’t go to Birchwood without getting a treat, so I picked up a lemon bar to go — best.decision.ever.



Since the weather was crappy they didn’t have their seating out on their back patio, but we were able to hang out there while we waited.  There have been many date nights spent out on that patio.

Did I mention Birchwood was BYOB also?  Oh yeah…that deck, good food, and a cheap bottle of wine.  My kinda date night.

Please, if your in Chicago, I cannot recommend Birchwood more!


On Sunday  morning, Zach and I met some friends at a spot that has MANY memories for us, Jane’s.

Zach and I were introduced to Jane’s via Groupon, and went back MANY times after.  Unfortunately, since we were with friends this time I didn’t take many pictures, but PLEASE check out their website.

Their food is also locally sourced, HIGH quality, beautiful and perfectly prepared.  Every time we went to Jane’s we felt like we were spoiling ourselves, but without the HUGE price point.

Jane’s also has great specials and deals, including a BYOB night AND half price wine night.

Jane’s is in a refurbished old house, and when you visit them you feel like you are in someone’s home.  It truly is a great experience, and one that we will be sure to make a priority every time we visit Chicago.

Some special nights we’ve spent at Jane’s:

  • multiple birthdays
  • engagement celebrations
  • anniversaries
  • special date nights

My friends, Chicago really does have SUCH an amazing food scene and these are just a few of our favorites.   If you go and check either of them out, please let me know 🙂

Question of the Afternoon:  What’s your favorite brunch spot/meal?

I’ve Missed You All!

I’ve missed you all so much!

I apologize that I went MIA, and that I had to be all quiet and secretive.

The big secret was that Zach and I went back to Chicago (for the first time since we moved last year) for a friends surprise 30th birthday party.  I didn’t want to even POSSIBLY risk ruining the surprise, so I took a bit of a planned blogging hiatus for the weekend.

While I have REALLY missed you all, this has been SUCH an amazing weekend and I am still living high on seeing my old stomping grounds, stopping by my favorite local joints, and spending time with some of my absolutely favorite people in the world.

DSCN1405 DSCN1406


I will be back with detailed recaps through out the week (I’ve got so much to chat about)…but for the time being I’ll leave you all with some highlights



I’ve had a few really great, speedy (for me) runs.  Thank you altitude training.

DSCN1421 DSCN1419


Had some AMAZING meals



Visited our old, first home together.

DSCN1401 DSCN1403


Got back into the habit of public transpo



Saw some live music and quite frankly just had a TON of fun.

Happy Birthday Rochelle, and thank you for having us again Chicago. We’ll be back soon.