An Edgewater birthday with locally sourced gifts

In addition to so much horrible news last week the norovirus spent the week traveling through the gastrointestinal systems of my family. By the weekend my husband and I still weren't fully recovered, so my birthday celebrations were rather subdued. As someone who prefers her birthday celebrations subdued that was perfectly fine with me.

All my birthday celebrations stayed close to home in Edgewater and Andersonville. On Saturday my husband and I went to dinner at the newly opened Mas alla del Sol. It was delicious, and we ate way too much. Then we met up with a few friends at the Norse Bar.

On Sunday we browsed the nostalgia and kitsch of Vintage Garage Chicago then went to brunch at Hamburger Mary's. (Sure, there are fancier places for brunch in Andersonville, but no wait makes Hamburger Mary's the best option with two young kids along. Also, $2 mimosas.)

I was thrilled that my presents were not only things I liked but were mostly purchased from local people and places I love.

Erin Rose Design Amethyst NecklaceMy parents commissioned a necklace from Erin Rose Design, which happens to be run by my college roommate who was also my maid-of-honor who also designed and made my wedding dress. My in-laws bought me a massage package from my friend Sara Jean McCarthy who is in the process of starting her own business, and I look forward to scheduling that as soon as possible. It's so cool to receive presents that also help my friends.

My husband got me twisty wire mesh earrings and a transit tee from the recently opened Galleria in Evanston, which is a place I love to support as well as its original site, the Andersonville Galleria.

I must admit, however, that the gift that I've been able to appreciate the most so far was not purchased locally. My husband's aunt (my aunt-in-law?) sent me three pounds of really nice coffee. If I knew how to insert scent into a blog post I would do it here.

It's been a lovely couple of days. Now the normalcy resumes with our usual Sunday traditions of laundry and Game of Thrones. (We usually don't watch Mad Men until Monday, so no spoilers please.)

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