Eating My Way Through Chicago – HLS Day 2

Saturday started out bright and EARLY!  Breakfast started at 8, so we made our way downstairs to see everyone and meet all the new faces.

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I helped with check in for a bit so that Kath and friends could take a breakfast break, and then I found a seat and got my own big plate of food – oatmeal, fruit, almond butter – yummmm.  SO many bloggers all in one room!

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There were internet issues in the conference room, so that’s why this post is going up super late.  But I chose the first track of the info sessions for the day – Fueling For Fitness.  I actually thought it was really informative and helpful, and it got my psyched for Sunday’s long run.

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I had started out in the other session, but made my way downstairs after a few minutes.  Rather than being disruptive, I just parked my butt on the floor in the back of the room.

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Afterwards I met back up with friends for the first break.  Have you met my absolutely fabulous roommate, Nienke?  I am obsessed with her – total love at first sight.  We were supposed to be rooming with Ashley too, but her poor husband had a sick kidney and she couldn’t make it – so sad.  :(  But Nienke and I made the best of our twosome, and hit it off from minute one.

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This weekend has also been fabulous because I’ve been able to reconnect with my best blogging buddy, Kath!  I miss her so much now that she’s moved.  I felt spoiled by getting to spend a whole weekend with her!

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The second panel I went to was on Stepping Up Your Blog Photography – another topic I’m sure we can all agree I could benefit from.  I was totally psyched because Nicole, the presenter had the same awesome camera that I have – love it.

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After lecture #2 it was time for a much needed lunch break, where I filled up a plate to the point that it weighed about ten pounds.  Tofu makes my heart sing!

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The rest of the sessions were very interesting, and overall it seemed like things went really well!  After the sessions were over, I grabbed Kath for some one on one friend time, and we headed to the lake for a fabulous five mile walk!  No pictures due to no camera – just lots of talking, catching up, and wonderful friend love.

After quick showers, we headed across town to a swanky vegan lounge type place, called Karyn’s on Green.

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We had the entire upstairs reserved for our group – very cool!  Many thanks to Angela for organizing the party.

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The motto – “Making Vegan Sexy” – love it.

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I am so used to going to bars and just ordering my typical club soda with lime, so imagine the excitement when I saw they had an entire section of their menu devoted to mocktails!  Just because they were there, and I was excited to have an option, I ordered one.

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The “Clip On” – absolutely delicious.  It was based with coconut water too, so I decided it was necessary hydration for my big run in the morning.  :)

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The menu looked so good that Kath and I decided to share some plates.  We started with the vegan maki roll – essentially sushi!

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Sushi was my number ONE favorite food before I gave up fish, and I haven’t even had any vegetarian sushi since (not sure why).  I was sooooo excited to be eating sushi again!  Must make sure to find good veggie sushi when we get to DC.

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We also tried some delicious raw crackers – very tomato heavy.  Good stuff.

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My dinner entree was disturbingly titled “chicken legs” – and was supposed to be a play on chicken drumsticks, I guess?

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The “chicken” was actually a mixture of tofu and seitan, which are two things I love.  I’m not really into the whole “fake meat” scene though, so the presentation and menu description sort of gave me a weird feeling.

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It came with a spicy mash of collard greens and sweet potatoes – delicious.  Perhaps I am becoming a southern girl after all?

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So fun to get to spend a weekend with so many fun bloggers!  I feel like my blog life and personal life have now officially collided.

True love knows no distance.  :)

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Going to try to convince Casey to run the Toronto Marathon so that we can visit Nienke!

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After food, fun, and friends, we headed home so that I could rest up for my morning long run.  Day 2 = total success!