Category: Arts and Culture

David Černý sculptures in Prague: Czech artist’s public artwork infuses the city with personality

My husband and I recently returned from a stay in Prague. After extending our layover in Munich, we arrived in our final destination as the sun went down. By the time we first ventured out into Prague, evening had fallen upon the bohemian city. Have you ever arrived in a city after dark? If so,... Read more »

Japanese culture of kawaii: Even the signs are “cute” in Tokyo

This sidewalk sign helps show where the water supply is for use by emergency crews during the event of a fire - in a fun, light-hearted way.
Before my family ventured to Tokyo this past spring, I read up on kawaii – a word used to describe the quality of “cuteness” in almost all aspects of Japanese culture. As noted in a Associated Press story, Nobuyani Kurita, a sociology professor at Musashi Unversity in Tokyo, has said that the word “cute” is a “magic term” that encompasses everything that’s... Read more »

Street art from around the world: Paris, New York City, Berlin, Tokyo, London, Prague, Amsterdam, Copenhagen and Chicago

Here it is. The image that kick started my street art obsession. It's a work done by Fred le Chevalier. It greeted me every day as my family returned to our apartment in the Marais. It captivated me - and caused me to seek out more street art in Paris.
Like so many great love stories, I fell in love with street art – in Paris. My love affair with the increasingly popular and hip art form began in the Parisian neighborhood of the Marais to be exact. Just over two years ago. Walking through many of the 20 arrondisements that make up the snail-shaped... Read more »
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Baladino: Sharing ancient sounds of Ladino music with people in Chicago and the Midwest

This weekend, my older son accomplished a major feat – he finished his homework for Tuesday a whole day early. What brought on this desire to complete it ahead of schedule? The opportunity to see Baladino, a Mediterranean folk band, last night right here in our hometown of Chicago. And, I was beyond thrilled for... Read more »

It’s a small music world after all: Similar songs take top spots on Spotify's country-specific "top lists"

I’ve become one of those people whose music, books and movies all reside on my smartphone and tablet. I can’t help it. I enjoy having all of my cultural, artistic and creative outlets with me at all times – at home or on the road. For music, I tend to “swipe” on over to the Spotify app... Read more »

Four reasons families should see Redmoon Theater's Winter Pageant this weekend

In a season when holiday shows abound, it can be challenging to pick out the top must-see performances for your family to squeeze into your busy schedules. To help make it easier for you, I’m going to put it out there and recommend the Redmoon Theater’s 2013 Winter Pageant. And, encourage you to go see it... Read more »
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Photos: Chicago-Inspired Art at Renegade Craft Fair

I've always been enamored with these Cartografika prints. They make any map look like a work of art!
My husband and I love going to Chicago’s Renegade Craft Fair at the end of each summer. Coming at the start of September (this year on September 7 and 8), the annual DIY artisan festival helps us mentally bridge the gap between summer and fall. And, it entices us with blocks and blocks of unique, whimsical and... Read more »

Why I love the Spice Girls - and I'm not ashamed to admit it

I love the Spice Girls, the British pop girl group made up of five women: Victoria Beckham (Posh), Melanie Brown (Scary), Emma Bunton (Baby), Melanie Chisholm (Sporty), and Geri Halliwell (Ginger). And, I’m proud to say that was the case well before their 2007-2008 reunion tour. I have all of their albums – and most... Read more »

Top 10 Things to Do with Your Family in Chicago this Summer

It felt like it took forever to summer to finally come to Chicago. And, now that it has, I feel like it’s already starting to slip away. Hot, summer days are a rarity in the Windy City, so I’m focused on making the most of our evenings, weekends and free moments to be sure we... Read more »
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An Afternoon Exploring Chicago's Greektown with Your Family

With the warmer temperatures finally holding steady in Chicago, this is an ideal time for my family to explore even more of the amazing neighborhoods that dot the city’s vibrant landscape. By choosing one new neighborhood at a time, we can set our sights on experiencing new cultures, foods, sights and more – in just... Read more »