The Rundown v. 35

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It’s officially fall, and I think that I packed as much as possible into September. Yesterday I was up bright and early to judge a grilling competition at Engine 78 hosted by Weber Grills for the WGN morning news. The firefighters created 8 different burgers in two rounds of competitions. So yes, I taste tested 8 burgers (on live tv) yesterday and called it breakfast. It was so much fun and most of the burgers were really great – the secret ingredient round involving chocolate, marshmallows, peanut butter, bananas, spam, cheetos, pineapple, and chilis did get a bit interesting though.

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The night before the Windy City Blogger Collective hosted the opening of &blowdry in the South Loop and they braided my hair and thankfully it stayed in place overnight – and it helped me to get TV ready in record time for the grilling competition. The cool thing about &blowdry is that they do nails and makeup in addition to blowouts and hairstyles. It’s a one stop shop.

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My friend Jordan joined me for an epic dinner at Gibson’s earlier this week. We loved the Chicago-Cut steak, the blue cheese scalloped potatoes, the wedge salad, and the strawberry shortcake. If you want a classic Chicago steakhouse experience, you can’t beat Gibson’s. Don’t worry – I’ll be sharing more details from this meal.

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Last weekend was spent at Chicago Gourmet. I was with Lauren and Kelly on Saturday, and we kicked off our day with an event hosted by Country Financial and then headed into the festival to eat.

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On Sunday I was with my friend Daniel. We ate a lot, and made our way over to the NFL Homegating tent where we got to customize sliders.

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I also spend that day running the PRE Brands instagram account – a task which involved trying beef prepared six different delicious ways. Those of you really paying attention might have noticed that in a single week I tried 8 burgers, steak 6 ways, and dined at a steakhouse…

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I had a fantastic lunch at Nomi at the Park Hyatt hosted by Cathay Pacific Airways. The airline was celebrating its new partnership with Park Hyatt to create new in-flight menus for First and Business Class passengers. Offerings include lobster appetizers and braised beef cheek entrees (pictured above). I have only flown with Cathay Pacific once, but it is definitely the nicest airline I have experienced.

I attended Shape Magazine’s Meet & Tweet with a bunch of my blogger friends and I had so much fun that I didn’t take a single photo!

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My friend Jenny and I spent at day at Cantigny Golf learning about honey bees! We had the most perfect end of summer weather that day, and it was a fun way to enjoy what might have been the last hot day of the year.

Then the following week Jenny and I joined dozens of bloggers from around the country at Jewel’s O Organic’s event! I am excited to tell you more about this soon.

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Ashlee (WCBC’s employee #1!) and I got tacos at Bar Takito before heading to see Lululemon’s latest collection. I recommend the Brunkow Cheese Taco, and Lululemon’s scuba hoodie which I am living in.

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Charles and I celebrated National Cheeseburger Day with one of my favorite burgers in the city at Trenchermen.

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My friend Maya and I went to the Glen Hansard concert at the Vic. He was amazing, as always. If you haven’t seen the movie Once, go ahead and add that to your weekend plans.

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This month I made it a personal goal to go spinning every day. I live near Flywheel and I found that taking a midday break to go workout helped me to be more productive. There are several spin studios in my neighborhood, but I like Flywheel because of the technology on the bikes that give you a powerscore that determines the number of calories burned per class. It gave me extra motivation.

If you don’t have plans on Monday – I would love for you to cheer me on as I compete in a super spicy chicken wing eating contest for charity. $50 for each wing I eat will be donated to the Alzheimer’s Association. The contest is at Jake Melnick’s at 6:30.

After a full month at home, I am heading to Austin on Wednesday! I would love your recommendations – leave them in the comments!

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