Better Than Your Typical Fast Food…It’s Greek Kitchen

greek kitchen logo

There is only one kind of kind of cuisine that I love as much as Asian and that is Greek.  Pungent smells and the sight of saganaki on fire always brings a smile to my face. Well I found a great place downtown and you don’t even have to go to Greektown.  GRK Kitchen has a tradition that started with the longtime restaurant HUBS. The food is fresh and it came with a great story of how the siblings gave up lucrative careers to run the restaurants. I laughed when I was told that HUBS was where a famous SNL skit came from. (Wow twice in one city.)

I never turn down great Greek food and this was no exception. The handheld sandwiches have to be one of the features of this downtown bistro. The restaurant itself reminded me of the many places that I ate at when I was attending college. It had a cafeteria feel but then again this was at the heart of the Loop and people want it fast here. But you probably can’t get fresher or healthier than here.  They stuff a ton of meat or veggies in each handheld. Along with the meat , you can get toppings for your sandwich. Vegetables and feta cheese are joined with such Greek favorites as hummus and baba ghanous . With these ingredients , you can enjoy a great sandwich. If you want something a little more filling , they also have plates with salad and my favorite the orzo salad. Made with the same love that a yaya would use on her cooking, it is a refreshing summer side with the various kabobs.The vegetables mix together very nicely with the spices to make a yummy side. The hummus is also fresh, no ready made and the chips are made from the pita bread. Finish your meal with something sweet , the homemade rice pudding hits the spot.

 Greek Kitchen has a few convenient locations , one of them is inside of Northwestern Memorial Hospital. The loop is home to three more Greek Kitchens and the one on Wells and Van Buren also has a roof top bar with original cocktail.  For great food and plenty of it , visit one soon.

you like the juice

HUBS Restaurant was where the phrase “You like a dah  juice ah?” originated for SNL. The same homestyle goodness from HUBS is still alive in all of the Greek Kitchens

greek fries  at greek kitchen

Covered with feta and spices , Greek fries are great with one of the handhelds

chicken kabob plate

Filling and so healthy, you are going to love one of Greek Kitchen’s plates. This one has chicken kabobs with that delicious orzo salad

Posted in Foodie | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Jeans for the Figure – Challenged – LOVE PREMIUM DENIM

love logo

Nobody has the perfect figure. Not even celebrities or models. But it just seems that women like us just have the flaws or imperfections in our body that can render us fashion flawed. In my case, I am all legs, guilty of having a muffin top, and possess absolutely no butt whatsoever. When I was a little girl, I had to buy jeans that were too long and always had to be hemmed. For a while I even had to buy Wrangler jeans because I had no figure and was straight up and down.

Last year, someone sent me what I have deemed the “perfect jean for an imperfect body.” and that is a pair of the LOVE Premium Denim jeans. First looking at them, I immediately fell in love with them because of the name of the style I was sent. How did they possibly know to send this “gladiator” Olivia jeans. ?   These jeans are dark colored and rich looking . Obviously I am not a candidate for the stonewashed jeans. I have a fashion slogan. If you can remember when you wore a certain style or piece of clothing from the past, then you don’t have any business wearing it again. In other words, if your hair was moussed and pouffed and you strutted around the club in a denim dress, don’t buy it again. Your time is passed.

I love these jeans with their lycra material. The give is wonderful and allows me to be able to move freely . Another feature I love is that the lycra also holds in my tummy. Let me tell you something, If I didn’t have the tummy , I would have a pretty hot figure. The jeans also make me look like I have a booty as well. LOVE Denim makes every girl look hot and these jeans look sophisticated enough they can be dressed up with a designer top or dressed down enough to be paired with that cute tee. They are the ultimate jean. Whether you are tall or petite, you will look like a star in LOVE denim.


 My “OLIVIA” jeans look smart and stylish with my original Paul Sisti top. Perfect for a night in Chicago

Posted in Chitownstarconnections Favorite Things, Fashion and Style | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Never Worry About Panty Lines Again .. Bumbrella To The Rescue


As a young girl, my mother always said that a young lady should never go out without a slip. I have to say that my mother was from another generation, actually two generations behind me. But these words of wisdom never left me. It usually wasn’t a problem unless I was worried about panty lines under the skirt or dress. More lines meant more bulk and that was the last thing that I wanted under my clothes.

Tara Gallagher had a really great idea and I am totally in love with it. She came up with the Bumbrella. It is part panty and part slip. But be prepared, it is not your mother’s slip. It is a short little piece of fabric with one little exception. The difference is that this  slip has a pair of panties in it. It is a panties and a slip, talk about awesome. One of the little benefits of the Bumbrella is that if you haven’t done laundry yet, you will always have one pair of panties that is clean. I love the color choices as well. I picked a neutral because it worked the best under summer dresses. Blue is the favorite color of brides and there is also a black Bumbrella as well. Another great feature is that the lycra . With all the talk about the damage that Spanx and other formwear  do to interior organs, Bumbrella is a welcome part to a woman’s wardrobe. The lycra also acts as a tummy controller as well. It holds in the tummy to make a smoother look.

Tara was recently featured with her invention on NBC’s The Today Show. TODAY was sponsoring a contest called “The Next Big Thing..” Viewers were given the chance to between several products that would be featured on a special on QVC.With media coverage like this, I have no doubt that Bumbrella , win or lose will be the next big thing.

It’s an answer to a fashionable woman’s prayers.

as seen on the today show

Posted in Fashion and Style | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Papaspiros – A Tasty Little Secret

serving saganaki

I was led to believe that the best foods come from certain parts of town. (Devon-Indian, Cernak-Chinese, etc.) In fact, one of my favorite cuisines is Greek. Well I am here to tell you that you don’t have to go to Greektown for great food. It isn’t even in Chicago, but in nearby Oak Park.

Oak Park reminds me of small towns where I come from. When you come to the restaurant , it reminds me of a little Taverna  in Greece. Smells abound in Papaspiros, it is full of life and the staff is so friendly. The owner is filled with pride as he brags how his restaurant put another one out of business and how his establishment has been around for eighteen years. With so many good things to eat and drink, it was so hard to decide what to try.

I started off with a yummy cocktail called a Mykonos Martini . I am not usually a fan of the gin variety, but I loved this martini. It was made with pineapple juice and Malibu I love fruity drinks and kudos for this one. You have to start off an evening of Greek with a saganaki. Here at Papaspiros , it’s like a party in a pan. The place rings with an oompa ! as the flames dance above the cheese..This saganaki is made with a special cheese imported from Greece and has a sweet taste.It is actually better than Greektown. You can’t truly enjoy authentic Greek unless you have traditional dishes. Luckily, they have a combination plate with several favorites. The spanakopita has flaky phyllo dough with lots of fresh spinach and feta in the roll that means delicious. Layers and layers of goodness sprinkled with cinnamon are mixed in the pasticho . The egg lemon sauce is a crowning touch with the flavorful dolmathes. It mixes well with the grape leaves surrounding the mixture.Gyro meat is tender and moist , not dry.  The potatoes are oven baked with a flavorful mixture. It is a smorgasboard of  yummy.

The meat and seafood are fresh and delicious. We will have to come back to try it next time. We get to enjoy some of the bountiful offerings from the sea. The Kalamari was larger than other restaurants, and so was the shrimp. We tried a pasta dish that was filled with some of the biggest shrimps I have ever seen. The garides pasta dish was flavored with mixed vegetables, shell pasta and a light creme sauce that tempted the tastebuds. I got to have some of the most flavorful and healthiest chicken with the chicken shara. The skin was cooked to golden and was covered with a pungent but delicious lemon-oregano and olive oil mixture. Once again, the meat was not dry at all. This is the way that meat should be.

Sipping my blueberry tea, I pondered the dessert tray. I finally decided to make some creme brulee and chocolate mousse cake the grand finale to this Grecian journey. The cake was as light as air and chocolatey and the creme brulee was as sweet as it could be. Bravo for the wonderful service and fantastic food.

Papaspiros isn’t that far away , only in Oak Park. For city dwellers, just hop on the Green Line going toward Harlem. It’s a small town filled with family owned restaurants and quaint little shops. It is definitely worth the trip and you will thank yourself for treating yourself. Oh and plan on bringing home food because there is plenty of it. Papaspiros is located at 728 Lake Street in Oak Park. The restaurant also has a spacious upstairs for meetings and holiday parties.

broiled chicken

combination plate


Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Fresh From the Runways-It’s Ready to Wear

skin perfection foundation ready to wear

One of the cosmetics that I can’t live without is foundation. Unfortunately I am one of these women that has rosacea and have had it my whole life. I can’t even go to the store without some sort of foundation. Working for department stores has familiarized me with many different brands. Foundation has to have two functions, hiding the every day red and presenting the best face possible when I go to an event.

Recently I was presented with Ready to Wear Foundation. I had to be honest that I had never heard of the brand before. It’s consistency reminds me a lot of Estee Lauder quality. Definitely gives the coverage, but I might have chosen a shade that wasn’t so light. It’s so light because it is part serum and part foundation. I am in love with the consistency . It spreads so easy and I also love how you can use the applicator to squeeze out amounts of the foundation. I usually take my brush to apply for even coverage.

Last week I gave it the supreme test, I used it while working on the set of the NBC series “Chicago Fire.” When working as background, it amounts to long days on the set. Usually I am not able to reapply during these long days, but when I checked myself in a mirror, I still had the coverage.

For this being a product that you can purchase from HSN, it had the same quality as the expensive lines . The best part is that the foundation is a good value because it lasts longer than regular brands.

Ready to Wear Skin Perfection Serum can be purchased through for 30.00

Posted in Beauty and the City | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

For Fun and Comfort , It’s FlopZ

Flop z shoeIt’s a hot little number and it comes from the UK. Aga Chervel was on holiday and a fashion concept was born. FlopZ combine fashion with comfort and add a little bit of attitude into the mix. The shoes create images of exotic beaches with white sands and colorful reefs. They come in a variety of colors , some come with glitter but one thing they all have in common. Each shoe has a built in massage system so your feet get a treat with each step. I have wore them for a while and they are so relaxing. I have wore them shopping and for those nightly strolls on the beaches of Lake Michigan. They are fancy enough for events too.

They come in such a variety of styles and colors that you can buy one for each outfit. They are so classy that you can pair them with jeans or that cute new sundress. el design also can keep summer with you all year long. Even when the snow covers the ground.It also comes with a smart little travel bag to make it easy to pack whether its for a trip or an afternoon at the spa. After an afternoon of pampering, you will want to show those toes off in style. No more little paper flip flops. I love the bag’s color , it reminds me of the translucent ocean. Flopz retail for fifty dollars at retailers or you can order them from

Dive in!

resort maldives

Posted in shoes | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Healthy Meals Are Child’s Play With VeeTee Rice

vee tee logoTime , its something we never have enough. We lead such busy lives and one thing that we seem to neglect is eating healthy. People stop and order take out or bring home food from the drive thru . If you are a busy mother with a busy family, this seems to be the order of the day. Another problem you might have is a picky eater in the family. No matter what is put in front of them, they won’t eat it.

Thanks to the folks from the European import , VeeTee, dinner time is no longer stressful. The dine in meals spell convenience for the consumer. They are reasonably priced, easy to fix, and come in a variety of flavors. The rice dinners are also the perfect compliment to any entree. One of our favorites is the Spicy Spanish Rice and we make them with frozen burritos. It’s a quick , inexpensive meal , and if you pair it with refried beans,it is like you are eating a meal in an authentic Mexican restaurant. Vee Tee’s Chicken flavored rice takes your chicken and makes it memorable whether it is chicken cordon bleu or dino nuggets. Need to feed your kid and you won’t be home in time? With VeeTee it’s handled. Pull off the plastic and put the rice in the microwave. In two minutes, lunch is served.

VeeTee Dine In rice is $1.99 and can be found locally at Jewel Osco stores

vee tee dine in rice

Posted in Foodie, Uncategorized | Tagged , , | Leave a comment