Monthly Archives: December 2019

While no move is easy, moving our elderly parents or loved ones can be especially difficult. Whether it’s sorting through years of memories or relinquishing some independence, these moves can be physically and emotionally demanding. Here are some tips to ensure it goes as smoothly as possible.

  1. Sort Through and Donate
    There is a pretty good chance that a lot of the items will be excess and ready to be disposed of, especially if they’re downsizing. Local charities like Goodwill or a Habitat for Humanity ReStore will take in gently-used items of your hands and even have pick-up services for added convenience.
  2. Junk it
    If there are items that need to be thrown away, call 1-800-GOT-JUNK to schedule an at-home pick-up. This junk removal service will take almost anything and dispose of it for you.
  3. Rent a Storage Unit
    If your loved ones aren’t ready to part with certain items or are planning to keep but don’t have the space at the new location, rent a storage unit. There hundreds of locations around the Chicago area and beyond so your bound to find one within your neighborhood and price point.
  4. Ask Family Members to Help
    Moving a elderly parent of loved one is a major undertaking. Ask family members for help with the sorting and packing. Be sure to reach out in advance and give enough time to figure out when it should all take place.
  5. Find a New Doctor
    Healthcare is probably a high priority. If your loved one is moving across the city or even to a new city or state, you’ll need to find a new doctor. Do the research and even schedule an appointment with the new doctor so the transition is as smooth as possible. Also be sure to let your loved one’s current doctor know about the move. Prescription refills should be updated and moved to a pharmacy near their new home as well.
  6. Hire Professional Movers
    We definitely recommend hiring professional movers to ease the burden of relocating. With so many elements to keep track of, movers will allow you to balance everything going on. Some professional movers also provide in-home estimates, packing, and unpacking services, so be sure to get a wide variety of quotes for what your specific needs are.
  7. Prep the new home
    Whether your loved ones are moving into your home and downsizing to a separate location, you’ll need to prep the new home to best accommodate your parent’s needs. Some examples include installing an electric stair lift, installing safety rails, or placing a ramp outside the front door.
    While it won’t be easy, it’s a necessary step. So take your time, be organized, and ask for help when you need it.

With fall just around the corner, make sure to get out and enjoy the last few weeks of summer. Before you know it, Chicago will be covered in snow and we’ll have to survive the cold well into spring. So make the most of what a Chicago summer has to offer by checking out some of these unique events below.

Women & Children First Block Party: 40 Years Strong

Saturday, August 24, 2019 – 11:00am to 5:00pm

5233 N Clark St, Chicago, IL 60640

This is probably one of the most famous and fearlessly independent, open minded, and feminist bookstores in Chicago and they are celebrating 40 years of business this weekend. There will be food and entertainment so be sure to check them out and support all that they do.

Hermosa Tamal Fest

Saturday, August 24, 2019 – 11:00am to 5:00pm

Hermosa, Keeler Ave between Armitage Ave and Cortland

Featuring handmade art vendors, aztec dance performances, and of course tamales, be sure to support the Hermosa neighborhood this weekend!

Bucktown Arts Fest

Saturday August 24 & Sunday August 25 11am – 7pm

2200 N Oakley, Chicago, IL, 60647

If you’re looking to buy the perfect piece of art or just want to hang out in the Bucktown area, the Art’s Fest is the place to be. In addition, there will be two music stages, dancers, performers, and food trucks to round out this amazing event.

Taste of Greektown

Friday August 24 through Sunday, August 26

Between 400 S Halsted St and 100 S Halsted Street

Greek food in all its variety and glory will be on full display at this year’s Taste of Greektown. Come for the food and stick around for the Greek musicians and dancing groups.


Saturday August 24 & Sunday August 25th

Little Village, Chicago IL, 60608

Situated within one of the Midwest’s largest Mexican communities, this free all-ages music event seeks to provide a safe space for arts, community, and culture. Consider supporting the Little Village community by coming out and celebrating with neighborhood this weekend.

It’s no secret that Andresonville has Swedish roots. It’s pride is visible, 365 days a year, which makes this neighborhood a unique place to visit and live in. It’s a beautiful neighborhood, filled with families, wonderful shops, and a small town charm that’s hard to find anywhere else. Many Swedes made their way to Chicago back in the 1800s and 1900s. Originally settling in the downtown area, they soon moved north due primarily to the Chicago Fire. There they created businesses and cultural centers that bolstered their Swedish roots. Today, some of these places include the Swedish American Museum, that contains gallery spaces, a genealogy center, and Children’s museum. In addition, one of the most famous emblems of Andersonville would have to be the iconic water tank decorated with the Swedish flag, the original replaced by a fiberglass replica. Andersonvile also became a thriving LGBTQ neighborhood in the 1990s, right after Boystown. While it was often referred to as ‘Girlstown’ due to the large influx of lesbian couples, it has since opened up to a larger LGBTQ community. It’s one of my favorite neighborhoods as it showcases the beauty of migration and movement, about how a place can benefit and even thrive when it opens its doors instead of closing them.

Check out some of these beautiful places!

5255 N Clark St Chicago, IL 60640
If you’re in the mood for persian, head over to Reza’s Restaurant, an Andersonville staple with a legendary buffet option. So good!

5236 N Clark St, Chicago, IL 60640
If you’re headed to Andersonville to check out the Swedish atmosphere and food, make sure to visit Svea. This tiny and cute place offers breakfast food and some lunch items.

Lost Larson
5318 N Clark St, Chicago, IL 60640
One of the newest and most exciting additions to Andersonville is Lost Larson. The chef and owner has an impressive culinary background, and it clearly translates to the freshness of the baked goods from pastries to bread loaves. It’s also just a really beautiful space to be in.

Brown Elephant
5404 N Clark St, Chicago, IL 60640
Not only does this resale shop do good in the healthcare community, it also has amazing things, from mid-century modern furniture to wacky home decor and everything in between. It’s a super fun place to browse.

Women and Children First Bookstore
5233 N Clark St, Chicago, IL 60640
This is probably one of the most famous and fearlessly independent, open minded, and feminist bookstores in Chicago. With amazing events and an incredible selection, it’s one of my favorite stops in Andersonville.

Martha Mae: Art Supplies & Beautiful Things
5407 N Clark St, Chicago, IL 60640
Wonderfully curated, this shop is filled with art supplies, journals, and stationary. Whatever you’re background, you’re bound to walk away inspired. Also who doesn’t love a shop named after a beloved dog, especially the owner Jean Cate’s cute king charles spaniel.

When I think of Little Italy, the first thing that comes to mind is getting Italian Ice in the summer. It took me years and countless amazing PBS neighborhood programs to really grapple with the importance of Little Italy beyond my childhood memories. Predominantly made up of Irish, French, and Italian immigrants, Little Italy began to take shape in the late 1800s as Chicago expanded and needed more labor. Jane Addams made these cross cultural transitions easier with the Hull House, a settlement and organization that helped immigrants gather to learn, socialize, and acquire skills as a means to integrate into their new environment. While the neighborhood was forced to change due to urban renewal projects such as the construction of the UIC campus in the 1960s, it adapted nonetheless. Chicago still has a large Italian population, with Little Italy as a convergence for food, culture, and history. It’s a neighborhood that deserves a lot of love, as do so many of the immigrant neighborhoods and their tireless efforts to create space in Chicago.

Here are some places to visit and support!

Jane Addams Hull-House Museum

800 S Halsted St, Chicago, IL 60607

This is probably one of my favorite places in the city. As mentioned above, this was once a settlement that consisted of 13 buildings started by founders Jane Addams and Ellen Gates Starr. They built it to help Chicago’s large immigrant communities and provided English and Citizenship programs, day care for working parents, and art and theater classes. While most of the buildings were torn down to make way for the UIC campus, 2 buildings still stand which have become the museum. It’s not only a beautiful space dedicated to the rich history of Chicago’s immigrant past but the museum also hosts countless events throughout the year.

Arrigo Park

801 S Loomis St, Chicago, IL 60607

If you’re looking to escape, consider this little park. It’s near the UIC campus with a great view of the city skyline from the south.

Mario’s Italian Ice

1068 W Taylor St, Chicago, IL 60607

Mario’s Italian Ice is one of those iconic places you have to check out. It’s uniquely situated on a residential block, close to the homes around it and making it integral to the neighborhood. They have amazing flavors and while there is bound to be a line in the summer, it’s absolutely worth it.

Conte Di Savoia

1438 W Taylor St, Chicago, IL 60607

This neighborhood favorite is both a gourmet Italian grocery shop as well as deli offering sandwiches, subs, and salads. If you’re looking for a quick bite to eat or want to discover more Italian ingredients, be sure to stop by.

Tufano’s Vernon Park Tap

1073 W Vernon Park Pl, Chicago, IL 60607

If you’re looking for a more traditional sit down Italian meal, then Tufano’s Vernon Park Tap is the place. Having been owned by the same family since it started in the 1930s, this restaurant is a staple of the Little Italy community. It’s both a laid back spot with amazing food.

Chicago is an amazing city for neighborhood festivals, with a wide variety of people and communities making themselves present and heard. If the Air and Water isn’t your jam, there are countless other festivals happening around the city that might spark your interest. Not to mention, the summer is winding down. Make the most of these last few August weekends before September rolls in and it starts feeling like fall once more.

Monarchs & Me Festival Celebration
South Shore Cultural Center
7059 South South Shore Drive, Chicago, IL 60649
If you’ve spent time outside this summer, you’ve probably noticed all the beautiful butterflies passing through. If you’re interested in learning more about their migration, check this event out.

Midway Plaisance Park
1130 Midway Plaisance Park, Chicago, IL 60637
It seems like Hyde Park always has amazing events happening all the time. Stop by this weekend to check out the food, music, and culture of the Caribbean.

Thai Food Festival Chicago 2019
Thorek’s Parking Lot
851 W Irving Park Rd, Chicago, IL 60613
*Free w/ donation appreciated
This is the 2nd Annual Thai Food Festival with 14 different food vendors. If your a lover of Thai food as much as I am, do check it out.

Sangria Festival Chicago
1400 N Humboldt Dr, Chicago, IL 60622
Humboldt Park will transform into an outdoor tapas bar where Sangria will be served alongside food from local restaurants. There will be a painting station as well as flamenco dancers. Sounds like the perfect way to spend a day at the park.

Pilsen Fest 2019
1800 S. Blue Island Ave, Chicago, IL 60608
Explore Pilsen at this years Pilsen Fest. It will be a weekend filled with food, artists, musicians, authors there to celebrate Pilsen and the talent it encourages.

Rising out of the discrimination and racism (much of which still exists today) of the early 20th century, Bronzeville became a cultural and political hub. Fueled by the Great Migration and the home of institutions like the Chicago Defender, a black newspaper, it rivaled other meccas like Harlem. Filled with theaters and thriving black businesses, it uplifted and provided a haven for Chicago’s black communities. Local creatives like Louis Armstrong, Richard Wright, and Gwendolyn Brooks, flocked to this neighborhood and in the process enriched Chicago and the country as a whole. Strengthened by this legacy, it continues to be a vibrant neighborhood with impressive monuments, restaurants, and community centers. This neighborhood embodies what it means to be a Chicagoan, to seek refuge, establish roots, and create communities that thrive regardless of the external pressures we may live under.

Consider further supporting this community by visiting some of these spaces!

Monument to the Great Northern Migration

345 E Eastgate Pl, Chicago, IL 60616
Alison Saar’s 1994 work, “Monument to the Great Northern Migration,” honors the approximately six million African-Americans who moved from the South to Chicago from 1910 to 1970. The sculpture depicts a man positioned and pointing northward, with a suitcase in hand, and his entire outfit made of the worn soles of his shoes. It’s placed at the entrance to Bronzeville.

Gallery Guichard
436 E 47th St, Chicago, IL 60653
This a wonderful and bright space dedicated to showcasing multicultural artists who represent the African Diaspora.

Harold Washington Cultural Center
4701 S Martin Luther King Dr, Chicago 60653
The Harold Washington Cultural Center is a performance arts center that features everything from stage plays to dance performances.

Peach’s Restaurant
4652 S King Dr, Chicago, IL 60653
For breakfast, make sure to check out this bright and always busy location.

Yassa African Restaurant
3511 S King Dr, Chicago, IL 60653
This senegalese restaurant is a neighborhood favorite!

Abundance Bakery
105 E 47th St, Chicago, IL 60615
If you’re craving something sweet, make sure to check out this bakery, which has been apart of the neighborhood for close to 30 years.

You did it! You survived your move. Unfortunately, you have another important and cumbersome task to get through. The unpacking. While its the last thing you want to do, you should get it out of the way as soon as you can. Then you can go on to enjoying and settling into your new space. Here are some tips to help you through this part.

Unpack With a System

Before jumping in, use what you already have available. It’s a good idea to use the inventory list you provided your movers, so you can keep track of the items your unpacking. Also, if you labeled your boxes, start by sorting them into their designated areas. It will seem less overwhelming this way.

Focus on the Essentials

We recommend unpacking the box filled will all of your essentials next. These are the items that you need to keep your home running for the next few days. This might include items like coffee, food, cleaning supplies, bedding, pajamas, toothpaste, shampoo, anything you’ll need right away.

Start with the Kitchen

For a lot of people the kitchen is another living space for gathering so it should be one of the first to get unpacked. Eating is also very important. If you have time, we recommend lining the kitchen cupboards and cabinets first. Unpack what you need most and be sure to hook up any appliances. You can come back to this space if you need to.

Do the Bedrooms Next

After such a long process, having somewhere to sleep and rest will be much needed. So the bedrooms should be another priority. Put the beds together and unpack the linens. At this point you can decide where furniture will go and install shelves so everything is ready to go.

Move to the Bathrooms

While everything should be in place, do unpack towels, toiletries, and other bathroom items such as curtains, medications, soap. This will make the subsequent days flow much easier, especially if you have work or other errands to get to.

Assemble and Arrange the Furniture

Once boxes and other items are in their general areas, you can now begin to assemble and arrange the furniture.

Start Settling In

From here you can now go through each room and take your time unboxing. You can arrange and rearrange to your liking, and begin to settle into your new home.

Also, be sure to celebrate after your done! You’ve certainly earned and it will mark a new chapter in your new home.

Our pets are precious, even when they’re silently judging you. Moving can be just as stressful to our companions as it is for us. From the packing up, moving, and adjusting to a new environment, it’s important to consider their needs. While each pet is unique, here are some tips to help them in this transition.

Prepare an Overnight Kit
Prepare an easily-accessible ‘overnight kit’ with dog food, kitty litter, toys, and any grooming supplies to tide you over the first few days as you unpack and get settled.

Contacting Your Vet
If you’re moving outside of your neighborhood, chances are your regular vet might not be the most convenient. Consider having them recommend another vet closer to your new location and have any records and prescriptions transferred over.

Keep Pets Away from the Move
If you can’t leave your pets with a friend or family member, set them up in an enclosed area away from the action. It limits their exposure to the chaos, which usually makes pets jittery and uncomfortable. This could be an empty bedroom, or a garage. Let’s be honest, this can also provide peace of mind for us humans if we know where they are and they can’t escape through an open door. Make sure to check on them regularly and keep to their normal routine as best as possible.

Take Pets in Your Own Vehicle
This might go without saying but let’s just make it clear. Do take your pets to the new home in your own vehicle. Cats and small dogs can be put in a carrier and larger dogs can be moved in a crates in the back of the car. If your pets aren’t totally comfortable in crates or carriers, gradually introduce them a few weeks leading up to move.

Moving In
Similar to the moving out process, it’s important to get a designated space set up for them before you move them in. With so much movement and the opening of doors taking place, be sure to confine them to a room at the new location so they don’t get out or lost. Moves can also be overwhelming to pets so be sure to introduce them to their new home one room at a time until they get settled. If you have curious pets who are always getting into trouble, you can use this time to pet-proof the new location.

Updating Tracking Info
After you move, make sure you update their tags or microchip information to the new address and phone number.

Moving Fish
If your moving with fish, you can transport them short distances in bags filled with their old tank water. Do make sure to check in with either your vet or pet store to get the best supplies for your fishy friend’s needs.

Moving Birds
If your moving with birds, be sure to secure them in their cage regardless of size and type. If they get jittery and anxious with all the change happening around them, you can cover their cage with a blanket.

Lollapalooza may be the biggest event of the summer, it’s far from the only one. If you didn’t score tickets this time around, there are countless other events happening around the city. Use this weekend to expand your horizons, visit a new neighborhood, and experience something new.

Edge Fest
August 3rd-4th
N Broadway St & W Thorndale Ave Chicago, IL 60660
Explore Edgewater at the 6th annual Edge Fest. Full of food and entertainment, Edge Fest showcases local musicians, vendors, and artists.

Side by Side with the Chicago Philharmonic
August 3rd
3-5 PM Rehearsal & 6 PM Concert
Hamilton Park, 513 W 72nd St Chicago, IL 60621
Presented through the “Night Out in the Parks” initiative, this event brings side-by-side symphonic concerts to Chicago parks in local communities. Students and members are invited to bring their instruments and rehearse with Chicago Philharmonic musicians which is then followed by a free performance by the musicians.

Old Irving Park Beer & BBQ Challenge
August 3rd
St. Viator Elementary School and Parish campus lot
3644 N Kedvale Ave, Chicago, IL 60641
Be a part of this years Old Irving Park Beer & BBQ Challenge, where 22 teams compete for your vote and you get to try some of the best BBQ Chicago has to offer.

Destination Asia Festival
August 2nd – 4th
Morton Arboretum
4100 Illinois Route 53, Lisle 60532
If you’re looking to explore countless Asian cultures through music, dance, and food, then this is the place to be this weekend. They will have food trucks as well as music and dance performances.

Festa Italiana
August 2nd-4th
Naper Settlement
523 S Webster St Naperville, IL 60540
If you’re a lover of Italian food, make sure to check out the Festa Italiana in Naperville. They’ll also have music, artists, and dancers.