75% dark chocolate? Um, yes please! A week after being in Costa Rica on a Spring Break vacation, we bought Costa Rican chocolate from the owner of Tuanis Chocolate in Chicago. The owners are a husband/wife team, and she's Costa Rican. They have a home on the Caribbean side, in the south.

"There is absolutely no substitute for the best. Good food cannot be made of inferior ingredients masked with high flavor. It is true thrift to use the best ingredients available and to waste nothing." - James Beard

We did not eat or buy any Sacred Serve ice cream, but chatted with the owner and got a list of where to buy it in our neighborhood. (Overflow and Go Grocer in the South Loop!)

Sacred Serve offer a range of gluten-free, dairy-free, and soy-free vegan ice cream & frozen treats handmade in small batches at The Plant in Chicago.

Pleasant House Pub was an instant favorite of mine since the first time I went. It's the closest I've come to Australian meat pies I grew up eating. SOOO GOOOD. They are based in The Plant, and have a beautiful restaurant space at 2119 South Halsted Street. They make and serve pizza for the Tap Room in The Plant, and offer pizza's after noon during the Farmers Market.

From the owners of Pleasant House Bakery, Pleasant House Pub welcomes you to join us at our new public house. Our menu features specialty beer and cocktails, savory meat and veg Royal Pies, delicious British-inspired food, locally roasted coffee, and homemade pastries. We’re also known for dabblin...

My husband drinks coffee. I don't. He has become a self proclaimed "coffee snob". We bought some beans, and hot coffee, and chatted with the guy from Four Letter Coffee while admiring his organized loft space.

coffee roaster

I love, love, love Bike a Bee! In the summer of 2012 Jana Kinsman placed ten beehives at eight different community gardens and urban farms all over the city. With the help of apprentices and friends, she tended to the beehives by bicycle all summer long. Bike a Bee also visited schools and summer camps, teaching kids about the importance of pollinators. She was not at the farmers market when we were there, but her honey is for sale (and we bought some) in The Plant gift shop.

I only wear leggings to work out, but have plenty of friends who "do yoga" by sitting on their couch, drinking wine, in legging. 😂

It's *so* spot on—we're still not over it 😂

This fake "Saturday Night Live" commercial gets that leggings help you achieve fitness *and* hygge goals. Watch Kate McKinnon and Aidy Bryant tell you about Nike Pro-Chiller leggings in the most relatable way possible.

One of the companies we talked to was Sitka Salmon Shares. It's like a CSA, but you're investing in Alaskan fisherpeople. They catch your fish, one at a time, with lots of love and care. The fish is then landed swiftly in Sitka or Juneau. There, it’s individually portioned, vacuum-sealed and blast-frozen to lock in that just-caught taste, and shipped to your door.

We bring fish loving-Midwesterners high-quality, responsibly-sourced seafood direct from small boat family fishermen in Southeast Alaska through our Community Supported Fishery.

I'll go into more detail about the companies we chatted with, but here is an overview of the Farmers Market (first Saturday of each month).

Locally grown, locally sold.

Fun outing this weekend! We went to The Plant in Back of the Yards. They have a Famers Market the first Saturday of the month. I'm going to post more information about out experience and the companies we chatted with on future posts. Stay tuned!

Plant Chicago is a non-profit organization established in 2014 by Bubbly Dynamics, LLC. Bubbly is also owner and operator of our home, The Plant, a groundbreaking food production space designed to be a net-zero, closed loop system in Chicago’s Back of the Yards

I keep forgetting about turmeric. Until I remember, and then I put it on everything! Ha. Hopefully this can help you keep turmeric front of mind.

Have you heard about the remarkable power of Turmeric?

In this FREE eBook, I share my favorite Turmeric recipes, and other unique ways to incorporate Turmeric into your daily life.

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Imperfect Produce is coming to Indy! It's simple: sign up, select what fruits or veggies you'd like in your delivery, and save these perfectly fine - but weird looking - produce from being wasted. A delicious win/win.

The already ship to the west coast and Chicago. Check out their site to see if they deliver to you!

Imperfect delivers ugly produce for 30% less than grocery store prices. We deliver to the Bay Area, Los Angeles, Portland, Seattle, and Chicago. Coming soon to more cities across the country!

A friend of mine ran the Shamrock Shuffle last weekend and asked me to meet her at the finish line for a beer. She's not a runner, and I asked what made her decide to do the 8K. The run was part of her #disrupt50, as she's turning 50 next month. She said she watched her friends turn 50, and many of them didn't celebrate the birthday, and didn't want to discuss or acknowledge they were turning 50. Her approach was to think "what do I want to get out of the next decade, and how do I get there?" She realized she wanted to be fit, so she joined Orange Theory, started lifting weights, and trained for this run. I'm proud for her, and love her hashtag!

She had several other activities on her #disruput50 list, which I love, but I wanted to share this health focused one.

I'm reading Barbara Kingsolver's book Animal, Vegetable, Miracle right now. She talks about how folks don't really know where their food comes from. For example, kids who eat chicken nuggets don't realize the chicken it came from a once cute living animal. I thought this video fits in appropriately with my reading. Ha!!

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I work out before work 2-3 times a week. My personal additions to this list are for #1,2 and 3, I announce to my family that I'm going to bed so I can get up early in the morning. Then no one comes to me with drama at 10 pm.

I would add to #5 "put your workout clothes in the bathroom the night before". Also, put out your water bottle, keys and gym shoes the night before. If you're tight no time for breakfast after your workout, prepare your breakfast the night before. (Overnight oats, scramble some eggs, or make your smoothie).

I can assure you, you'll feel like you've accomplished so much by the time you roll into work.

Thirty minutes in the morning can change your whole day!

How does your workout stack up to the Notorious RBG?

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg invited Stephen to Washington, D.C., to settle the case of "Do you even lift?" Subscribe To "The Late Show" Channel...

After having a nationally televised panic attack, Dan Harris *knew* he had to make some changes. A lifelong nonbeliever, he found himself on a bizarre adventure involving a disgraced pastor, a mysterious self-help guru, and a gaggle of brain scientists. Eventually, he realized that the source of his problems was the very thing he always thought was his greatest asset: the incessant, insatiable voice in his head, which had propelled him through the ranks of a hyper-competitive business, but had also led him to make the profoundly stupid decisions that provoked his on-air freak-out. Dan wrote 10% Happier because, when he was getting started as a meditator, he couldn't find many introductory books that were geared towards skeptics -or people raised in the age of irony.

A 7 day introduction to meditation for fidgety skeptics, featuring best-selling author and ABC News anchor, Dan Harris, alongside one of the greatest American meditation teachers, Joseph Goldstein.

I heard Danica Patrick interviewed on Dan Harris' podcast, 10% Happier. I was intregued by what she had to say about meditation and mindfulness, so I borrowed the book from the library. My informal review is the mindfulness chapters are great for beginners. The workouts seem super intense and personally, I don't think everyone ought to be doing intense workouts. The food plan seems, I don't know, too rigid? My attitude about eating well is remove the junk and eat whole foods. It doesn't need to be a rigid plan. I encourage you to be curious, check it out, see if it seems like a good plan for you. Then, get moving and eat well!

P.S. I learned through reading the book that Danica lives part time in downtown Chicago. I am totally going to freak out if I ever run into her! But I have a feeling I can't afford to hang out where she hangs out.

Thank you for visiting the Pretty Intense website! Since you have taken the first step to see what this program is all about, you are already half way there… you want to get healthier, leaner, stronger, and more confident. I know, I jumped ahead and put words in your head that might not of been th...