The BMO Harris Bank Magnificent Mile Lights Festival

The Lights Festival is celebrating its 25th anniversary with fun filled two day activities. To officially kick off the holiday season, the tradition continues and starts off with a grand parade traveling Oak Street & North Michigan and South Michigan to Wacker Drive and a tree lighting ceremony on Michigan Ave Magnificent Mile hosted by Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse.

Jollibee: Filipino fast food chain opens in Skokie, Illinois

The first Filipino fast food chain made its debut on July 29 in Midwest. Located in the Touhy Marketplace shopping center (3534 Touhy Avenue), its opening day was a jampacked and we were lucky that we don’t have to wait that long when we went last weekend. The lines continue to develop and people keep coming in from different places. I know people drove hours for Jollibee. That’s how we love Jollibee.



Everyone is patiently waiting just to take home our favorite chickenjoy, burgers and halo-halo. Unfortunately, burger steak is not available until August 15. Jollibee’s menu is quite different from the Philippines because the store serves halo-halo. It won’t matter if we want an hour or more just to taste our local dishes. I’ve read online and non-Filipinos were curious why there were so many people lining outside, some recommended they should try it and we would love to hear your feedback about our food. If you were watching Anthony Bourdain’s show in CNN – Parts Unknown. There was a scene wherein he tries eating at Jollibee.

Part of our family tradition is to eat at Jollibee, rain or shine, breakfast to dinner, dine in or take out. We even celebrate our birthdays, different occasions and meetings because we love to share our moments with Jollibee.




peach mango pie


fiesta palabok


jolly spaghetti




This is also a good opportunity to come and meet together. You’ll see the excitement on their faces when they reach the cashier area. The place can’t accommodate all of us so it’s better if you order and ‘take out’ (to go). I remembered few years ago when I flew to California and Las Vegas, eating at Jollibee is on my ‘must to do’ list. Now, how lucky we are because there will be a 2nd Jollibee about to open in N Elston Ave (Chicago) later this year.

Happy Bee Day to all of us!

Hello Kitty Cafe Truck – first Chicagoland appearance @hellokittycafe #hellokittycafe

Finally, the long wait is over. Hello Kitty Cafe Truck arrived last weekend (August 13 Saturday & August 14 Sunday) to offer super cute yummy Hello Kitty treats for Midwest. The truck made its first appearance at Hello Kitty convention in Los Angeles,California in 2014. Food and Merchandises were sold out – pink bow-shaped water bottle, cookies with HK design, four-pack mini cakes, macaroons, shirts and mugs. During those time, the line were crazy everywhere so we only had bought few times because the goodies were sold out quickly.


We were there as early as 7am-ish and line started I guess around 5am? We brought camping chairs so that we can wait comfortably. It was also our first time to visit Oakbrook Center, I was surprised that the place was huge and we kept looking for the location which was located near Argo Tea and Urban Outfitters.

Hello Kitty Truck is here. Welcome to ILLINOIS!!!

A video posted by Misyel Coladilla (@daomisyel) on

HK truck1

The Hello Kitty Cafe truck arrived at past 8am and we were cheering & excited! We were 15th on the line waiting for the 10am opening and we started to take photos of the truck.



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Too bad that they were not selling donuts. They did not announce clearly that it was only available in their pop-up built Hello Kitty Cafe in Irvine, California. The line moved fast as we reach the counter and decided to purchase one of everything they offer. I was joking that if we can also purchased their uniforms because it was tooo cute! We’re done buying our goods in less than 10 minutes. When we left the venue, we saw the huge amount of people lining up and I feel sorry for those who did not make it because I’ve read they were sold out before 5pm which is frustrating to some people who were there and they weren’t informed clearly that the stocks were depleting.

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1. For event like this try to arrive early and sacrifice your time. You must arrive 3 hours before the opening.
2. Bring light snacks and water with you. Most stores were not open yet until 10am.
3. Bring umbrellas or folded seats with you so that you won’t get tired standing. Also don’t forget to wear sunscreen.
4. Ask colleagues/friends/family members to join you so that you can have bathroom breaks and save the line or ask them to buy something for you in case you arrive late.

Suggestions to Hello Kitty Cafe Truck team:

1. You should have a system in your inventory to notify people who were there that the stocks were about to sold out. Like a signage board/counter in front of your truck so that they would know earlier. Or a PA system announcing that only few merchandises were available so that they won’t be keep waiting too long.

2. Ordering Number system for those who are ordering bulk so that you can control your inventory. Like two separate lines: express and bulk – those ordering in bulk should order and paid in advance so that you can accommodate those who will buying single items.

3. Include activities for kids – This will keep them busy and enjoy their stay. Activities like coloring books, face painting or kiddie tattoos. I know this is a cafe’ truck but having those activities will make the little ones happy!

Anyways, We had a great time seeing Hello Kitty Cafe Truck in Illinois.

Hope they will come back.

Chicago Sports Museum

I read somewhere about Chicago Sports Museum but I don’t know where is this sports heaven place specifically located until we decided to go downtown and spent the sunny weekend at Water Tower Place. It’s my first time to stroll on that area to my surprise that Uniqlo (Asian clothing store) is opposite by Water Tower Place!


Our first agenda on that day is to eat our lunch since my Mom and I were starving. As we look at the mall directory, I saw Harry Caray’s 7th Inning Stretch restaurant then I realized that Chicago Sports Museum is adjacent to the restaurant.

It was too humid on that day so we ordered Banana Nutella and Salted Caramel Shakes – and it was soooo good!!!
My main course was Maple Mustard Glazed Salmon and mom had Turkey Meatloaf. Both were delicious!

After eating our brunch, we headed to the Chicago Sports Museum. The entrance is fee if you dine in ($6 for walk ins), just present the receipt to the cashier and she’ll give you the admission tickets to scan at the door.

There were sports display of different teams in Chicago – Bulls, Sox, Cubs, Bears, BlackHawks. Chicago Bulls memorabilia welcomes you with Scottie Pippen’s height chart, Michael Jordan’s shoes and jersey, Derrick Rose’s jersey and some interactive sports activity like how high you can jump and a size 21 shoes display case of Will Perdue.

There were different interactive exhibits that use a body-tracking technology wherein you can shoot freethrows, play hockey games, hit a homerun and trivia game challenge.

Kid Playing 3 point shot game

A video posted by Misyel Coladilla (@daomisyel) on

I would love to go back and visit this museum, hoping that there will be additional memorabilia like a new Stanley Cup or World Series.