chicago botanic garden‘s orchid show

Sun’s out so I headed north to the Chicago Botanic Garden’s Orchid Show. And show it was. Petaly, perfumy magic.

Admission when you factor in parking is kind of spendy ($34 for nonmembers), but it would be hard, not to mention exceptionally expensive, to recreate the experience, so I gladly paid up.

snow (paw) patrol

If you live in a place where it doesn’t snow (lucky you), you might be surprised that there are different types of snow. Different types of flakes. Big, fluffy snow that feels feathery soft, but cold.

When mixed with bits of ice, snow feels like tiny, freezing darts to the skin (not terribly pleasant).

The other night the snow was soft, and a neighbor’s dog left these prints for me and Penny to find. Snow (paw) patrol.

lula-ing at lula cafe

In the heart of Chicago’s Logan Square is the prettiest of places. Lula Café. I call it Lula for short.

Lula opened its doors more than 20 years ago. I remember it when I lived in Logan in 2000. (Wow, I’m old.) My boyfriend at the time was friends with one of the owners, Amalea. Lula was a comfy spot for eats and still is, all these years later.

I darted in this afternoon to get a bite, just as it started snowing outside. I was secretly thrilled to be back.

Snowy afternoons are made for places like Lula. And coffee.

the san jose museum of quilts and textiles

Situated on a sunny street in downtown San Jose is the Museum of Quilts and Textiles. Quirky awesome was my instinct. The museum’s collections deliver on both counts.

A costumed Marie Antoinette in unconventional fabric.

A kimono fashioned from fused glass photo decals and copper wire. The photos are of the artist’s family members.

Larger than life-size textile sculptures.

There are also chromogenic prints from Robin Lesser and Adrienne Pao.

Well worth the visit and admission price, which is $8.

the coastal redwoods of san jose

I’m in San Jose, CA, for a work conference and used my lunch break to check out the city’s municipal rose garden. I was hopeful for blooming roses, but they’re pruned for the winter. Sniff.

In their place, however, and kind of showy in their own right are these coastal redwoods.

Their height is really something to admire. Coastal redwoods can soar 350 feet tall and span 16 to 18 feet across. Seriously grand.