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Showing posts from October, 2015

Midwest Girls Getaway Continues in Naperville

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My friend Lynn and I had a wonderful time in Southwest Michigan , but it was coming to an end. We packed up our things at the Inn at Harbor Shores, said goodbye to the beach, and hit the road. Before we left St. Joseph , we stopped at CafĂ© Tosi. The breakfast was so good and fresh the day before that we wanted one more for the road.  We had started our Midwest adventure in Chicagoland and we were heading back to check out some more. This time or stop was in Naperville. It was mostly a scenic ride around Lake Michigan to get back to the Chicago area. Naperville is outside of the city and a town I had not yet visited. I was invited by the Hotel Arista , a four-diamond boutique hotel with one of my favorite things – a full service spa. We were immediately impressed with the contemporary design of the hotel, which was the first to be LEED certified in Illinois. The managers at the hotel had gone out of their way to make us feel welcome. Lynn and I each had o

Girls Fun in St. Joseph, Michigan

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When I first saw the schedule the St. Joseph Tourism Board had laid out for my friend Lynn and me,  I have to admit I was a bit overwhelmed. It was a very full day. But, it turned out to be an extremely fun one. After a good night’s sleep at the Inn at Harbor Shores, we headed to downtown St. Joseph. We started off fueled, thanks to Caffe Tosi . Lynn had a plate full of fruit and granola and I went for plain yogurt with a luscious almond horn on the side. The second place on the agenda was actually the home of another bakery, but not one for us. FuzzyButz is actually a pet bakery, where owner Mary Schaut creates treats for her four-legged friends. We were incredibly impressed with Mary’s creativity as we walked around, looking at items such as Sweet Potato Pie flavored treats; ones made to look like burgers, fries, and cannoli; peanut butter squares (peanut butter is actually a base for most of her items); and even squares that taste like lamb stew.

Roadtrip Along Lake Michigan

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After a fun day in the suburbs of Chicago and a good night’s sleep at the Le Meridien in Oakbrook, my friend Lynn and I were off to see more of the Midwest. One of the reasons I chose Southwest Michigan as our next stop was for the chance to be along Lake Michigan and our route would take us right along the Great Lake. We were making good time so we decided to take a slight detour to Indiana Dunes. Even after seven years in the Midwest I am still in awe when I look at Lake Michigan and the Dunes were another example of the beauty of it. Lynn and I walked along the beach for a bit and then headed back in the car for the scenic drive to Baroda , Michigan. Along the way we remarked about how we’d love to have one of those houses overlooking the lake and the beach. Our first stop was at a place I can’t compare to another in the world, despite all the wineries, distilleries and breweries I’ve been to. We met Millicent Huminsky, Executive Director of Southwest

Midwest Adventure Starts in Chicagoland

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I wanted a trip that would give me lots of stories for my Midwest Travel section on About.com. I managed to piece together and amazing adventure that spanned over six days, with my friend Lynn along for the ride the first four. I picked Lynn up at O’Hare Airport and we headed to our first stop, the Kohler Water Spa in Burr Ridge , Illinois. I had wanted to check out this spa ever since my trip to the Kohler Spa at the American Club in Wisconsin . I didn’t get a chance to spend as much time as I’d like at that spa, but I scheduled the whole afternoon here for us to enjoy. Lynn went in for the Bamboo Bliss, which used a warm bamboo to give the ultimate Swedish massage. It was said to improve circulation and help with muscle aches. Lynn fully agreed she felt great and the description of “bliss” was accurate. In the meantime, I went in for a Neat Feet Pedicure, a signature treatment at the Kohler Spa . My feet needed attention after all the travel and walking and this