Posts tagged "Blogapalooza"

Piano lessons: Although I quit them 32 years ago, I wish I still played

Piano lessons: Although I quit them 32 years ago, I wish I still played
When I was 5 or 6 years old, my parents made me take piano lessons. The key phrase there is “made me.” Music lessons were not optional in my house. Properly raised children played the piano. Period. My mom had grown up taking piano lessons from my step-grandfather’s first wife (before she passed away) and my... Read more »

Washington DC: I'll always call it home

While in D.C. over Spring Break in 1993, I attended a constituent breakfast with Senators Paul Simon and Carol Moseley Braun. This was one of the highlights of my life.
In the Spring of 1993, when most of my friends were headed to sandy beaches during Spring Break of our senior year of college, I hopped on a plane and jetted off to Washington DC where I hoped to land a job. I knew no one, had no connections or “ins,” and this was before... Read more »

Blogapalooz-Hour: Top 11 Tips for Success

Blogapalooz-Hour: Top 11 Tips for Success
Blogapalooz-Hour: One hour each month when the bloggers of ChicagoNow blog about the same topic sent out at exactly 9:00 p.m. CT by Community Managers, Jimmy Greenfield or Shavon Banket. (Ed. note: That’s the wrong Jimmy Greenfield. ChicagoNow‘s Jimmy is not related to that James Greenfield. Find the right one here.) Bloggers hit publish at 10:00 p.m.... Read more »
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Love letter to my tears

Love letter to my tears
June is almost over. And thank goodness for that. Between the five weeks my mom was in the hospital and one week in a rehab facility, my 43rd birthday, and the sudden and unexpected death of my favorite uncle, it’s been a month I’m eager to see come to a close. That, of course, is... Read more »

We never met, but my grandfather, Jesse Paulk, shaped my life

We never met, but my grandfather, Jesse Paulk, shaped my life
If I could meet anyone in the world, I’d choose to go back to before September 12, 1961 and meet my maternal grandfather, Jesse Paulk. September 12, 1961 was my mom’s 13th birthday and also the day my grandfather died. I was given my name, Jessica, in his memory. My mom’s brother also named his... Read more »

Watervale - My Slice of Heaven

Watervale - My Slice of Heaven
Every summer for as long as I can remember, my family has vacationed at a resort in Northern Iowa Michigan called Watervale. Watervale is a third-generation family owned resort that began as a logging town in the 1800s. The Kraft family purchased the abandoned town in 1917. My family ties don’t go back quite that... Read more »
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Bring Me Some Texas Tea, My Guilty Pleasure is Dallas

Bring Me Some Texas Tea, My Guilty Pleasure is Dallas
Once a month, the bloggers of ChicagoNow come together for Blogapalooza. It’s a one-hour event. At exactly 9:00 p.m., our fearless leader, Jimmy Greenfield, emails us a topic. We write and post whatever we have at 10:00 p.m. This month’s Blogapalooza topic was just released. Welcome to ChicagoNow’s Blogapalooz-Hour! Your challenge, if you choose to... Read more »

Fear Didn't Stop Me In My 20s and Won't Stop Me In My 40s

Fear Didn't Stop Me In My 20s and Won't Stop Me In My 40s
Tonight’s monthly ChicagoNow Blogapalooza topic just came out and my initial thought was, “Huh? I’m pretty sure I’ve covered this before and don’t know that I’ve got anything else to say on it.” My second thought was “And THAT’s why I need to accept the challenge.” What’s the topic? “Write about fear, or lack thereof,... Read more »

Jake Ryan was My First Serious Boyfriend

Jake Ryan was My First Serious Boyfriend
I met my first serious boyfriend the summer before my freshman year of high school. He was tall with dark hair and hazel eyes. He was an athlete and a year older than me. He was super preppy. And he and Jake Ryan could have been twins. Yes, from Sixteen Candles. That Jake Ryan. We... Read more »
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Jawbone UP24 Knows Me Better Than I Know Myself

Exactly one week ago, I purchased a Jawbone UP24. For the uninitiated, the Jawbone UP24 is a bracelet that tracks your every movement and your sleep habits. It will also track what I eat and drink, my weight, and my mood, if I choose to let it and I input that information. It syncs with... Read more »
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    Jessica Gardner

    A native of Chicago's Northwest Suburbs and resident of the North Shore, Little Merry Sunshine comes by her name honestly. The story goes that as a child, she was always so happy that she even slept with a smile on her face. Her mom nicknamed her Little Merry Sunshine. It stuck, along with her insatiable desire to focus on the good in the world and to leave it a little better than she found it. She does this by sharing her passions and dreams, what inspires her, and maybe you too, and furthering the discussion about how we can listen to our better angels. You can reach her at LittleMerrySunshineCN[at]WowWay[dot]com.

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