Musings of a Museum Fanatic


Chicago Open Archives 2016

Earlier in October Kevin and I got the chance to enjoy one of Chicago's newer cultural happenings, Chicago Open Archives hosted by Chicago Area Archivists. This newbie program enjoyed it's second year this month and both Kevin and I were happy we took advantage this year. Since it was going on Thursday thru Saturday Kevin and I didn't end up with too much of a choice as to what day we could go, Saturday! Unfortunately it limited which institutions we were able to visit as there were several I would have enjoyed that were only open during the week day. 

I decided that we would head to two of the archives that I had heard about but never had a chance to visit or connect with their archivists. So we headed to the north side of Chicago to visit the DePaul University Special Collections and Archives and Loyola University Chicago Archives & Special Collections.

I really enjoyed seeing the collections at DePaul. We got a full blown tour of the special collections, yea I know the photos above are boxes and books museum nerd here! The collections at DePaul were actually quite surprising. I never realized or would have thought how much the collection has for the Lincoln Park area. They contain a number of the papers for local Lincoln Park associations as well as a number for larger Chicago associations and institutions.

 Next we headed north to Rogers Park and the Loyola University Chicago Archives & Special Collections. I have actually been in their library once before for a job interview a number of years ago but didn't have the chance to actually look around.

At this stop they had some best of documents, photographs and other artifacts from the collections out for people to get up close and personal with. Kevin really enjoyed this stop because two of the photo books contained photographs from all moments of several building constructions on campus in the 1920s. I couldn't have planned it any better for him if I tried! Perfect mesh of my interest and his.

After making friends with the Assistant University Archivist she did let us have a quick peek at the actual storage for the archives. Again museum nerd moment. I loved all of the rare books that the Loyola collections had as well.

Kevin and I both had such a great time seeing parts of Chicago and it's history that you don't normally get to see thanks to Open Archives Chicago 2016. We can't wait until next October so we can get the behind the scenes look at more Chicago area archives!


The Darcie from JSport by Jambu

***I was given these shoes to review but all opinions are my own.***

For all of us there is always that white whale of accessories or clothes that we just have the worst time find the one that fits, looks good or feels right. Lately shoes have been my white whale. I'm not sure if my feet have changed the past number of years or what but finding good shoes that fit well and don't kill my feet by the end of the day has been as elusive as the white whale.

A couple of weeks ago I found an opportunity through Windy City Blogger Collective to try out a pair of shoes from JSport by Jambu. JSport is a part of the larger Jambu family but the comfy, sporty part of the family. The shoes should be able to take you from just running every day errands to hitting the trails. As someone who can go from writing label copy all day to hitting 15,000 steps when we're finishing up exhibits claims like this make me raise an eyebrow. Since shoes have been my white whale I went in to this a bit skeptical.

I was sent the Darcie booties. These guys are a great style; they go from looking casual to being able to work with the business casual look of my office. First thing that happened is I ended up with a size that didn't fit, I thought here we go another pair that is too tight and kills my feet every day. Nope! They were great we got the exchange taken care of right away and working with everyone behind the scenes was awesome.

So then I started wearing the shoes. As I said I was definitely skeptical but as I sit here writing this having worn them for a full week straight ... my feet are happy to say that I was totally wrong. These shoes are fantastic. My feet have never felt so good in a pair of shoes.

The Darcie is a brushed vegan leather with All-Terra traction soles. I'm not entirely sure what All-Terra part is but I know that I've come into some slippery surfaces with the crazy wet weather lately I've been sure on my feet. The interior of the shoes is comfy Memory Foam and a warm snuggly liner. Since we've been experiencing a a bit of a heat wave in October there have been a few overheated moments with the liner but I'm excited for when it really starts to get cold. I have a feeling these shoes will be great!

I was actually able to look forward to walking around all day this past weekend for Open House Chicago rather than debating with myself for a day on what shoes I should wear so I can look cute but not be limping by the end of the day because my feet hurt. These shoes have me so excited I'm already trying to figure out another style to get that would do well for work and play! Pretty sure the Waywood is calling my name.

Check out JSport by Jambu and Jambu's other lines for some amazing shoes that keep your feel singing all day!