Chicago Real Estate Search Chicago Real Estate Chicago Real Estate Chicago Neighborhoods Downtown Chicago Condos Weekly Email Subscription
Welcome to Chicago Homes for Sale by Dean's Team Sign in | Help

Most Complete Chicago Real Estate Blog! Daily Updates on Chicago Homes for Sale and Real Estate . . . Great Chicago Neighborhoods . . . Living in Chicagoland . . . Your Comments Welcome!



  • Real Estate Blog




Last month, Mayor Rahm Emanuel laid out his 2016 Budget Proposal to City Council, and some Aldermen are holding town hall-type meetings with their Wards to keep citizens informed about changes to come including a property tax increase, for homeowners of homes valued over $250,000, in order to pay off police and fire department pensions. One such Alderman, Ald. Ameya Pawar of the 47th Ward, has 3 town hall meetings planned. The first meeting was held this past Tuesday, 10/6, but there are 2 more opportunities for you to hear the information and provide feedback. Tonight, Thursday 10/8, enter through Door 6 on Ashland Ave. of Lake View High School (4015 N. Ashland Ave.) for the 7:00pm meeting. Or next Thursday, 10/15, at 1:00pm at North Center Senior Satellite Center (4040 N. Oakley Ave.).


The Ogden 6 Theatre (1227 E. Ogden Ave.) is celebrating the Halloween season all month long with "Friday Night Frights."  For just $5 per person, the theater will be featuring one classic horror film every Friday at 10:00pm. If this is the first time you're hearing about it, I'm sorry to say you've missed Mel Brooks' hilarious "Young Frankenstein" last Friday. However tomorrow, 10/9, continues with truly scary stuff - Ridley Scott's Director's Cut of "Alien", then Alfred Hitchcock's "Psycho" on 10/16, "Bram Stoker's Dracula" on 10/23, and finally the Director's Cut of "The Exorcist" on 10/30. Tickets can be purchased at the Theatre's box office or online at


Do you know of or have a little artist in your household, 13 years of age or younger? Here's a great contest to help them enter - the Halloween Window Painting Contest taking place Saturday, 10/17, at 11:30am! First, an adult guardian will be needed to help turn in completed applications at the Roden Public Library (6083 N. Northwest Hwy.) by Friday, 10/16, at 4:00pm. Limited storefront windows are being offered up by local businesses such as US Bank, Sapori Napoletani, and Fly Gift Fitness so register as soon as possible before all spaces are taken. Paintbrushes and water soluble paint will be provided to every registered artist and guardian who will be required to stay with the child during the painting process that will start at Roden Library at 11:30am for art supply pickup and window assignment, then painting from 12:00pm to 4:00pm. 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place prizes will be chosen and winners will be notified by phone on Monday, 10/26. The contest is also a great exercise in work ethic as each young artist will be required to keep the sidewalk clean during painting and return to remove their artwork by 11/3.


This coming Monday, 10/12, is Columbus Day and Lincoln Park Zoo has a great Day Camp available to keep your kids busy on their day off from school. Spots are still available for third and fourth graders to spend from 9:00am to 3:00pm learning about the year-long migration patterns of African animals in "The Great Migration." Activities will emphasize animal diversity and environmental conservation issues while exploring the reasons and abilities these animals have in order to survive the challenges of migrating, with younger and older animals in tow. Lincoln Park Zoo members can register for $57 per child and non-members, $67 per child. Registration also includes a healthy snack and camp t-shirt for each child.


Chicago, being the ever-changing, architecturally-progressive metropolis that it is, has kicked off the inaugural Chicago Architecture Biennial, titled The State of the Art of Architecture. Tons of public programs in various locations around the Loop are slated from 10/3/15 through 1/3/16 to showcase architectural projects and experiments of over 100 architects from around the world including Venice, Italy; Amsterdam, Netherlands; and São Paula, Brazil. The Biennial will create a network for international and inter-generational sharing of ideas to consider how design and research can impact the world in the 21st century. The scope of this project is exciting and enormous. A great way to start is by checking out the Biennial Exhibition Tours at the Chicago Cultural Center (78 E. Washington St.) open daily at 10:00am, and these programs, selected by Chicago Loop Alliance.



Everyone thinks spring is the time to plant bushes and trees. Actually the best time is right now! Trees and shrubs have plenty of time to get established for the winter and are ready to take off in the spring. All the home and garden centers have fantastic deals now. They would rather sell trees and bushes ½ off than carry them over winter. Check around for the best deal.

 Try to find straight trunks and even growth on trees and bushes. They should have a good root ball or if in a container not too pot-bound. Make sure the root flare at the bottom of the trunk is visible. This is where the trunk flares out at the bottom as it goes into the root system. Trees buried too deep at original planting will not have this. See that the roots look healthy; pink, white or tan. The root ball should be big enough to support the tree. At least 12 inches for each inch in trunk diameter (not circumference). Of course make sure there are no obvious signs of pests like chewed leaves or holes in the trunk.

Prepare the soil for planting. Dig the hole deep enough so the ball is covered but the flare is above ground. Throw in some compost and mix it in with the soil at the bottom. Slash the root ball several times with a razor knife to encourage quick root spread. The ball material will of course decompose but especially fall planting we need to encourage rapid root spreading. Fill in the rest of the hole with topsoil and lightly tamp down. Water thoroughly, making sure there are no air pockets around the ball. Add more soil if needed.

 Water every other day for the next week. Your best way here is to trickle an open hose about a foot from the trunk for a couple of hours. After a few weeks water once a week until the ground freezes. Your best bet here is a root waterer. This encourages roots to reach down to get water below the frost line to get through winter.

You must do this in the next week for there to be time for the tree or bush to harden enough to get through the winter. You will be rewarded with trees and shrubs that will have a big head start to all those planted in the spring and you are saving money!


It's early October and I've started my fall cleaning. It's an old habit I picked up from my mom and I have to admit that it really helps me with keeping clutter down. It's the old adage of everything in its place and a place for everything.

With that in mind I've been looking at a couple different sites that have to do with selling those items I no longer want and are in perfectly good condition. Take, for example, the wireless speaker that hooks up to my smart phone. I have no idea how it works and I purchased it for an event, using it once. I put it back in its box where it's been sitting on a shelf for almost a year.  At the time I thought it would have another use but I really don't use it at all.

I've decided to give WallaPop a try. Using the app is straightforward and easy. You download the app to your phone, either Apple or GooglePlay. If you are a WallaShopper, you're going to use the search or browse option. Once you've found something you like, you can speak with the seller directly via chat. You meet in person and verify the item you want to purchase. Hand over the cash and you're on your way. Once you're done, you need to rate your experience.

As a WallaSeller, you simply want to make sure that you advertise in the most fair way. After you've signed up it shouldn't take you more than about a 3-5 minutes to list your item for sale. Like anything you are selling, take a few images and list your item at a fair price with a great description. You'll be contacted by WallaShoppers who are interested in your item for sale. Once you come to an agreement, you'll meet the buyer in person and voila the items is sold. Again the important thing is to rate your experience.

It's a fairly easy site to use and search. Time to get shopping!



Fall is definitely here in Chicago, and with the cooler temps, out comes the autumn colors and many fall-related festivities celebrating another season!

New to the Fall Fest Season this year the Lincoln Park Zoo Fall Fest brings its harvest-themed event to the Lincoln Park Zoo (2200 N. Cannon Dr.) in the Lincoln Park neighborhood this Saturday and Sunday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.  Here you’ll be able to enjoy a variety of seasonal family fun activities such as a corn maze, pumpkin patch, pumpkin carvers, a hay mountain, hay rides, sing-alongs for kids, strolling entertainers and more! You’ll definitely experience country fun without having to leave the City!!

Returning for its 28th year, the Lincoln Square Apple Fest returns to Giddings Plaza (4700 N. Lincoln Ave.) in the Lincoln Square neighborhood this Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. This Fall Fest celebrates all things apple by featuring candy & caramel apples, fresh baked apple pies, bushels of apples, hot apple cider and more. The Kids’ Zone will be held at Lawrence Avenue throughout the day where kids will have a myriad of activities to keep them entertained. The 5th annual Pooch Costume Contest begins 9:00 a.m. at Giddings St. & Lawrence Avenue where dressed-up pooches will compete for most adorable, most creative, the scariest, and of course, the Grand Prize. And, if you just want to relax, Giddings Plaza will have local musicians playing throughout the day for your listening pleasure!

Fall in Chicago also brings to the outdoors scavenger hunts of which the following two take place this Saturday:

The Watson Adventures’ Munch Around Lincoln Park Scavenger Hunt meets up at noon at Oz Park (2021 N. Burling St.) in the Lincoln Park neighborhood. This scavenger hunt treats your taste buds as you explore this eclectic, and at times eccentric neighborhood, with a variety of gourmet delights such as pretzel sandwiches, hot dogs that starred on the Food Network, seductive cupcakes and cow tippin’ ice cream. While on your adventure a few highlights of this hunt also include Dorothy and friends in Oz Park, micro mansions, hidden oases, one of Chicago’s oldest houses, Dillinger’s death spot and much more! Don’t forget to bring your digital camera so you can document your adventure and some cash since the price of this scavenger hunt does not include food purchases.

The Amazing Raise – A Scavenger Hunt to End Homelessness meets up and ends at John Barleycorn (149 W. Kinzie St.) in the River North neighborhood at 3:00 p.m. Teams of up to 8 people will set out on the streets of Chicago solving riddle and puzzle clues along the way while visiting popular Chicago landmarks. Strategy, teamwork and good ole’-fashioned luck are required as your Team completes their series of challenges. And, Teams can earn extra-points during the hunt by using their smart phones to receive real-time challenges! Once back at John Barleycorn, all race participants will receive drink specials and free appetizers!!

Lastly, Journeymen Plumbers Hall (1340 W. Washington Blvd.) in the West Loop neighborhood brings you Rocktober Beerfest this Saturday (12:00 p.m.-11:00 p.m.) and Sunday (12:00 p.m.-10:00 p.m.) featuring two of Chicago’s local favorites – Goose Island Beer Co., and Publican Quality Meats serving up their award-winning beer and jalapeno cheddar brats, smoked Creole sausages, pretzels and strudel. The Beer Hall will be featuring traditional Um-Pah music by Jimmy’s Bavarians and more, while the area’s best live bands, such as 16 Candles, 7th Heaven, Hairbangers Ball and many others will be providing other live musical entertainment!

Enjoy Your Cooler Temps and Fall-Related Festivities Weekend!



Barbara Kasten is a Chicago born artist, professionally trained in painting and textiles, who's gone on to use photography, lighting, and architectural theories to create abstract artwork that has been exhibited worldwide for the past 40 years. The Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts (4 W. Burton Pl.) will be exhibiting the first major compilation of her life's work entitled Barbara Kasten: Stages as their fall exhibition starting today, 10/1/15, through 1/9/16. The Opening Reception, which will be filmed for use in a documentary by ART21, is tonight at 5:00pm to hear from Kasten herself and Institute of Contemporary Art Curator, Alex Klein. Plus Kasten's new book, Barbara Kasten: The Diazotypes, will become available for purchase at the Graham Foundation Bookshop. Each small-run publication is signed and numbered by the artist.


It's a new month and the City of Chicago Department of Business Affairs and Consumer Protection has put up their October calendar of free business education workshops. The workshops are held in Room 805 of City Hall (121 N. LaSalle St.) from 9:30am - 11:00am on Fridays and 3:00pm - 4:30pm on Wednesdays. Reservations are required since space is limited by calling 312-744-2086 or emailing This month's workshops include the topics of City Inspections, Quickbooks online accounting, payroll, marketing research, and more.


GAD Group Technology, Inc. is an award winning IT solutions company that chooses to market themselves to small/medium-sized businesses, government municipalities, and non-profit organizations with limited budgets. They have locations in downtown Chicago, Bolingbrook, and now Oak Park. Attend the ribbon cutting at the new location at 917 S. Oak Park Ave. Unit A tomorrow, 10/2, at 11:30am - 12:00pm. The event is free to meet and greet this new company to the neighborhood.


The busy commercial area where Milwaukee Ave., Cicero Ave., and Irving Park Rd. meet is known as the Six Corners special service area and will soon experience an increased tax levy that was approved by the Six Corners Special Service Area Commission this past July. A mandatory community meeting will be held at 1:00pm next Thursday, 10/8, at Filament Theater (4041 N. Milwaukee Ave.) because the levy will be more than a 5% increase from last year.  According to the report in Nadig Newspapers, the tax rate will increase by 6.8%  and will affect commercial properties and some condominium owners within a 2-block radius from the Six Corners intersection. Condo owners may anticipate paying an additional $74 in special service area property taxes and storefront owners may pay an additional $160 to $259. Come to the meeting to learn more.


Last Friday Chicago Public Schools (CPS) announced an unprecedented round of budget cuts to save $12 million. However what's at stake are the jobs of more than 70 special education teachers and aides including 7 teachers and 11 aides in Lakeview's 8 CPS elementary schools. CPS' Friday announcement only gave 2 days time to appeal the decision which roused enough Lakeview principals to band together and demand an extension of the appeal process. Their efforts were successful as CPS is now giving principals until 11/2 to appeal the cuts. If the special education budget cuts affect your family or someone you know, now is the time to explore options and discuss with your children's educators to possibly help to appeal.


There are many DIY fixes you can use to make your home energy efficient. Most can be done relatively inexpensively and don’t require much skill.

First of all, shut the door. If you really think about we don’t use all of the rooms in our house on a daily basis. Keep doors closed to rooms you don’t use every day like guest rooms. No need to heat rooms you aren’t using. Don’t close the vents completely. The rooms need a minimum of 55 degrees or else structural damage can occur.

Strange as it sounds the more pictures and other hangings on the inside of your exterior walls the better. Bookshelves are the best at insulating those outside walls. There was a reason they used to hang tapestries from castle walls.

Although somewhat out of fashion now, heavy curtains go a long way in keeping out drafts through the windows. Especially in homes without double paned glass. Even with energy efficient windows, closing curtains and blinds will help out a lot.

How you arrange your furniture can help keep you warmer. Try and keep furniture away from exterior walls. Even a buffer of 12-14 inches can help. Sleeping against an exterior wall can give you a stiff neck. Use as thick a headboard as you can find. You can DIY one in a jiffy with a wooden frame, cotton batting, fabric and a staple gun. It doesn’t even need feet, just nail it to the wall.

You can still save money and stay warm. Use a programmable thermostat or a smart system like Nest to adjust heat when you don’t need the temperature higher than 66° while under the quilt and in your footie pajamas. The same when you are gone all day. We wear long underwear and sweatshirts or sweaters. I even love using knitted shawls and big thick scarves to stay warm.

Make sure you go around the house from basement to attic to seal any gaps you can find. Use silicone caulk for gaps up to ¼ inch. Make sure to use heat resistant caulk around any heat source. With larger gaps up to three inches, use spray foam. Be careful until you get used to it. A little goes a long way. Attic insulation needs to be 12-14 inches. Go to to download a DIY guide for you ambitious guys. It’s great with diagrams and pictures. Search attic insulation. I’ve found is a valuable resource for all things energy saving.


Earlier this month Apple revealed its new and improved Apple TV. The new device has several new features that make the user experience much more exciting. The hardware has more power. You can now control you device by voice and use Siri to search not only apps but also other streaming services like Netflix, Hulu, HBO and Showtime. The most exciting option is the Apple TV App Store. This new release allows developers to create a universal app that can be run on your iPhone, iPad and Apple TV. For example if you're using an app on your phone, you can switch it to your TV since they will be linked. Another fun feature of this latest generation is there is also a remote control that includes a touch pad and motion control. There are two models available - 32GB for $149 and 64GB for $199.

Google is expected to announce on September 29 some additions to their small device, Chromecast. The rumors are that the update will bring your Google experience to your living room. Google is planning to compete mainly on the games front. Apps that are 100MB in size can be played on your big screen. Since there is no rumor about a remote control or controller, you'd be using your phone. The default setting for your apps would be to use Wi-Fi to help you conserve on data usage. All of this technology is still be supported by a device that costs under $40.

The jury is still out on both of these latest upgrades, but it's going to be an exciting year to see what happens next with the apps you have.



This weekend is bringing out a few of Chicago’s various neighborhoods for a “Festful” weekend! The West Lakeview Neighborhood is hosting Oktoberfest Chicago this Saturday (11:00 a.m.-10:00 p.m.) and Sunday (11:00 a.m.-7:00 p.m.) at Southport and Lincoln Avenues. Returning for its 15th year, in addition to authentic German food/beer, pop/German music entertainment on two stages, brats and pretzels, the popular Craft Beer Tasting takes place Saturday evening from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. with 20 tastings of over 40 samples of unique beers. And, the popular Kids’ KinderFest is now extended for two days (Saturday & Sunday, 11:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m.) where fest-goers of all ages can enjoy plenty of kids’ activities that include crafts, face painting, a jumpy house, an obstacle course, learn how to polka and much more!

The Lincoln Park Neighborhood is hosting Fiesta Familiar this Saturday (10:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.) at 2000-2800 N. Clark Street (Lincoln Park Zoo area). It’s the very best family entertainment of its kind featuring interactive pavilions and entertainment such as Arts & Crafts that include Ferris wheel craft, storytelling, a book raffle, a kids coloring station and photos on the red carpet; Music & Entertainment featuring live entertainment and cultural performances for adults and kids; Health & Nutrition that include healthy cooking demonstrations, an eat the rainbow coloring station and a nutritional bingo game; Home & Garden featuring flower bed activity, creating a homemade bird feeder and a nature sensory exploration and so much more!

The West Town Neighborhood is hosting the Grand Art & Design Festival (formerly known as the “Design Harvest Fest”) this Saturday and Sunday (11:00 a.m.-8:00 p.m.) on Grand Avenue between Damen Avenue & Wood Street. This revamped fest not only will continue the Design Harvest tradition by showcasing local home and garden design vendors, but it will now feature local artisans and crafters, handmade goods, neighborhood vendors, a mix of Country & Americana live music, hayrides, family activities, food trucks and much more!

The South Loop Neighborhood is hosting Moon Festival this Saturday (12:00 p.m.-9:00 p.m.) at Chinatown Square (2100 S. Wentworth Ave.). This fest features exciting performances such as the dragon and lion dance, traditional dance and music, lanterns show, Shaolin Kung Fu along with games, raffles and even a dumplings eating contest where advance reservations are required! And, due to popular demand, the feast for 1000 Elders (a grand royal banquet) returns so younger generations can learn about the history of China and the importance of showing respect to their elders!!

The Hyde Park Neighborhood is hosting the 9th annual Hyde Park Jazz Festival this Saturday (1:00 p.m.-12:00 a.m.) and Sunday (1:00 p.m.-8:00 p.m.) throughout the Hyde Park neighborhood at various venues. This free festival features the best in local, national and international jazz talent along with an outdoor dance floor, food/beverage vendors, picnic areas, artisan vendors and much, much more!

The Avondale Neighborhood is hosting its 4th annual A Day in Avondale this Saturday (11:00 a.m.-6:00 p.m.) at Milwaukee Avenue between Kimball and Belmont Avenues. In addition to food/drink specials at area restaurants, hands-on arts & crafts, and music/theatrical performances in various parks/venues, this fest will also feature “Moe-waukee Fest” at Moe’s Tavern (2937 N. Milwaukee Ave.), “FrankenToy Mobile” workshops in front of the Corner Art Gallery (2912 N. Milwaukee Ave.) and much more!

Which Neighborhood Will I See You In?



The Evanston Police Department is dedicated to building a relationship rapport with the diverse community of the neighborhood. The belief is that building trust and approachability is the most efficient way for the officers to perform their duties. So the community is invited to "Coffee with a Cop" tomorrow, Friday 9/25, from 8:00am to 10:00am at Linz & Vail (2012 Central St.). Come to meet Evanston Police Department officers for a chat and a free cup of coffee. This is your chance to casually discuss concerns or just to get to know these members of your community that are committed to social service, especially during these times when national news reports are all too often focused on the negative.


Alderman John Arena has announced that the Best of the 45th Ward Awards will continue for the second year, and you have until Monday 9/28 to nominate your favorite establishments in the eastern area of Portage Park that are included in the 45th Ward. Follow the link above for the complete the  survey to nominate your choices for Best Neighborhood School, Best Festival/Community Event, Best Park, Best Neighbor - Individual, Best Business, and Best Public Art. Final voting with take place from 10/1 through 10/15 with winners being announced on the Monday 10/19 celebration event at Bread & Wine (3734 W. Irving Park Rd.) in Irving Park.


There's been a lot of talk about the possibility of a new museum focusing on the works of filmmaker George Lucas, most famous for creating the Star Wars and Indiana Jones movie franchises. Construction plans had recently downsized and city approval is still required to begin building the proposed Lucas Museum of Narrative Art in one of the Soldier Field parking lots. So in the meantime, The Chicago Park District Board of Commissioners is sponsoring two meetings for the public to learn more about the project and to weigh in their comments. The first meeting is scheduled for Tuesday 9/29 at 2:00pm in the first floor meeting room at Columbia College Chicago's Conaway Center (1104 S. Wabash Ave.). The second meeting will take place on Wednesday 9/30 at 6:00pm in room W181-C of McCormick Place West (2301 S. Indiana Ave.).

Lincoln Park

Lincoln Park Zoo's monthly Wine & Wildlife series continues with September's event, called Biodiversity City, next Wednesday 9/30 from 6:00pm - 8:00pm. This series of adult-oriented information sessions focuses on a different topic each month for those 18 years of age or older. Members admission is $14 and $17 for non-members to learn from animal care experts and research scientists while enjoying light hors d'oeuvres and drinks for purchase. Next week's Biodiversity City will report on Urban Wildlife Institute's five-year research of studying the urban ecosystem of our city. Wildlife, such as bats, birds, insects, and even humans, have been monitored by use of technical tools that researchers Seth Magie, Liza Watson Lehrer, and Mason Fidino will explain. Follow the link above for more information and to register to attend the event.


Lincoln Square is gearing up for the 28th Annual Apple Fest coming next Saturday 10/3 at the 4700 block of N. Lincoln Ave., between W. Leland and W. Lawrence. Come hungry to this family friendly event from 9:00am to 5:00pm to enjoy everything from apple pie, to apple cider, to apple pizza. Many other food vendors will be on hand including Big Forks Brands, Gayle's Best Ever Grilled Cheese, and LC Pho. There will be plenty of activities for the kids throughout the day at the Kids Zone plus the Pooch Costume Contest at Giddings Plaza so your pup can get in on the action as well.



Start out in the shower. If you shower in a bathtub like I do, make sure you rinse out the tub and clean the drain immediately. This keeps the tub clean and rinses soap down the drain preventing clogs. Hang up the towels, nothing makes the bathroom look a mess like towels laying all over. Keep some paper towels in the bath. Quickly wipe down all surfaces while the bathroom is still steamy.

Bedroom is next. First, always make your bed. It takes only a few minutes and will make the whole room look together. Keep your make-up and other toiletries organized. Toiletries can go in pretty baskets and makeup in a plastic caddy that has sections to keep brushes pencils, shadows and everything in its place. Keep rings and other jewelry you wear every day in glass dishes. Keep other knick knacks to a minimum. All they do is collect dust.

The kitchen can often get away from us. Keeping dishes out of the sink goes a long way to keeping a tidy kitchen. Wash dishes as you cook or at least get them soaking. Washing is so much easier after soaking. Even if you have a dishwasher (I don’t) rinse and load dishes as soon as you are done with them. Wipe down counters frequently, don’t give messes time to dry and get gunky. Sweep the floor every day or use a cordless vac.

Depending on your lifestyle and number of people in your family plan how you’re going to manage the laundry. If you are single or a couple, once a week might be sufficient. If you have children, loads every day or every other day will probably be necessary. However you do it, try and DO the laundry. Just getting it to the dryer does not mean it’s done! Fold and put away to complete! Everyone needs their own hamper and should be responsible to bring it to the laundry room when full.

A lot of our clutter in the rest of the house often consists of paper. Unsorted mail being the worst. Go through the mail every day. Have a place to go through the mail with a shredder and recycle basket. Shred everything with ANY PERSONAL information. Categorize everything else. Bills with their due dates indicated in a plastic tray. Sales flyers and other material in a different tray.

A few things done every day that take literally minutes can make your life much easier and your house look tidy.



If you own an iPad, iTouch, iPod, or iPhone, you have already been prompted to upload the new iOS 9. This latest upgrade is not as expansive as the last two updates but there are several features that will improve your user experience.

I do a considerable amount from my devices and one that really stood out is that you can enable ad blocking when looking at a website. If you long press the reload button on a website you're viewing, an option will appear to enable the ad blocker function. With a device that doesn't have a huge screen, I'm really liking this function.

Another feature that I found to be pretty impressive is the battery display for all Bluetooth devices attached to my device. Being able to track my connected device battery power in one location has some great benefits, especially if you use multiple devices at one time.

Users who have an affinity for Siri are happy to report that her sound default is now muted. With no vibration or sound, you can avoid some awkward situations when Siri will say something like "I didn't quite get that." Fear not though. If you like when Siri talks to you, you can hold the button to activate Siri and then turn the volume up since the volume is independent of other sounds.

For the music aficionados, Shuffle All has returned to My Music. Many music lovers have shared their excitement about this feature which was sorely missed after the last iOS update.



Well, Well! As another weekend approaches, like it or not, autumn is coming to Chicago leaving the summer-like temps for the weekdays. I know it’s not fair to those of us who work inside during the week, but the City has scheduled some great events this weekend for the milder temps!

Helping us kick-off the first official weekend of autumn, and returning for its 3rd year, the Sam Adams’ Lakeview Taco Fest is a real crowd-pleaser taking place this Saturday (12:00 p.m.-10:00 p.m.) and Sunday (12:00 p.m.-9:00 p.m.) in the Lakeview neighborhood on Southport Avenue between Addison & Roscoe Streets also known as the Southport Corridor. Needless to say, the “taco” is the spotlight of this fest but there will also be Sam Adams’ seasonal beers on hand for some special beer & taco pairings as well as Lucha Libre Mexican Wrestling taking place daily at 5:00 p.m. at Cornelia & Southport Avenues, a kids’ activity area and an opportunity for those attending to text-to-vote for Chicago’s “Best Taco!”

With a line-up of over 350 talented contemporary indie-craft artists, as well as items from The Vintage Bazaar, the Renegade Craft Fair returns to the Wicker Park neighborhood this Saturday and Sunday (11:00 a.m.-6:00 p.m.) at 2000 W. Division Street between Damen & Paulina Avenues. Not only does this fair offer shopping for many hand-made items, but it also features interactive workshops, food & drinks from local vendors, jams & tunes all weekend long provided by Chirp Radio and Reckless Records and so much more!

An autumnal favorite is being celebrated this Saturday (2:00 p.m.-5:00 p.m.) with the Bucktown Apple Pie Party at Senior Citizens Memorial Park (2238 N. Oakley Ave.) in the Bucktown neighborhood which is being emceed by Anchor Jon Kelley of FOX 32. Neighborhood donors will be baking fresh, homemade apple pies for all to enjoy in addition to featuring live music provided by Dan Whitaker and the Shinebenders, balloon creations by ChiTwist, Magician Sean Masterson, kids’ activities and much more!

Come and enjoy local craft beers, unique food trucks and live music from great local musicians at the Independence Park Beer Fest this Saturday (4:00 p.m.-8:00 p.m.) at Independence Park (3945 N. Springfield Ave.) in the Irving Park neighborhood. A few of the breweries on hand will be 18th Street Brewery, Arcade Brewery, Boulevard Brewing Company, Haymarket Pub & Brewery, Lake Effect Brewing Company and many, many more breweries!

Finally, there’s a NEW tasting event for cocktail lovers – Wild Spirits – taking place this Saturday (6:00 p.m.-10:00 p.m.) at the Lincoln Park Zoo (2200 N. Cannon Dr.) in the Lincoln Park neighborhood. Features of this new event include 12 samples of over 50 spirits at sampling stations located in various animal houses throughout the zoo, food pairings for an additional cost, music, animal viewing and more! A VIP admission also gets you an additional 3 samples of unique & rare spirits, complimentary snacks and a VIP area above Café Wild Things. And, don’t forget to check out the “Mixology Stage” where you can learn the art of crafting the perfect cocktail from local mixology celebrities. A nice break from craft beers!!

Also, your sports line-up for this weekend has the Chicago Cubs hosting the St. Louis Cardinals and the Chicago Bears hosting the Arizona Cardinals. It’s a “Red Bird” Weekend here in Chicago!!

Are You Looking Forward to Autumn?  Bring It On!!



Chelsea Clinton, daughter of 2016 presidential candidate hopeful, Hillary Clinton, and Bill Clinton, the 42nd President, is making headlines of her own with the publication and tour of her first book, "It's Your World - Get Informed, Get Inspired and Get Going!" She began her national book tour at Jefferson Middle School (1525 N. Loomis St) yesterday, Wednesday 9/16, and was greeted by 5 students who won an essay contest to be allowed the honor of escorting her during her visit. Clinton wrote the book targeting 10 to 14 year olds to inspire the younger generations to realize that they can take an active stand in changing the world around them despite their age. She spent about an hour at the school which included a 15 minute speech in the auditorium, choosing to speak from the floor rather than on the stage. Read Chicago Tribune's enlightening interview with Clinton here.


Second City's Mainstage Theatre is up and running again as of today, Thursday 9/17, since the fire that destroyed their offices and damaged the theater and some other businesses within Pipers Alley Commercial Mall Shopping Center on 8/26. Luckily only carpet, wiring and lighting needed to be replaced so the theater is operational earlier than expected. Neighboring theaters, UP Comedy Club and e.t.c. stage, also sustained some damage and will resume performances on 9/22 and 9/24, respectively. Donations from the audience will be collected after each performance this month to benefit the Chicago Fire Department Gold Badge Society that assists families of firefighters and paramedics killed in the line of duty. There were no fatalities resulting in last month's fire.


Purchase your tickets now for Lincoln Park Zoo's first after-hours spirit-tasting event, Wild Spirits. There will be sampling stations throughout the zoo offering more than 50 brands of bourbon, Irish whiskey, rum, tequila, and vodka. Ticket holders will be allowed 12 samples with a souvenir tasting glass plus  musical entertainment, food pairings for purchase, and a Mixology Stage to learn cocktail-making tips from local bartenders. The event is Saturday, 9/19, from 6:00pm - 10:00pm. We're sharing this SECRET with you - follow the link to learn how to receive a $25 discount on ticket purchases made before 11:55pm Friday night.


The 4th annual Norwood Park Fall Fest is scheduled to bring live music, a beer garden, and family friendly activities to Centennial Park (6088 N. Northwest Hwy) this Saturday, 9/19, from 12:00pm to 10:00pm. Five bands will be providing entertainment throughout the day plus lots of activities to keep the kids happy, including Marsh-Mallo Magic Shows from 12:00pm - 3:00pm and free crafts inside Friendship Presbyterian Church at the center of the park from 1:00pm - 5:00pm. Food and local business vendors will also be in attendance for a full day of fun for everyone. The Metra train will drop you off right in the middle of the action at the Norwood Park station.


Britain's Queen Elizabeth is now a Chicago property owner of a 3 bed/3 bath condominium on the 26th floor of The Buckingham, of course, at 360 E. Randolph St. Don't get too excited because she will not be moving from Buckingham Palace to The Buckingham. According to Crain's, the purchase was made for Canadian consul Roy Norton under Queen Elizabeth's working title of Her Majesty the Queen in Right of Canada as she is the constitutional queen of Canada.  The 2,600 square foot unit was purchased at full asking price, and we're proud to report that the buyers were represented by a Keller Williams agent!



There are signs of fall in the air. Weather is turning cooler with downright chilly mornings and wonderfully cool afternoons. Fall baseball is in full swing. We just celebrated Grandparents Day. Now is a good time to take care of a few things around the lawn and garden.

Cooler weather means optimum grass growing. Plant now for sufficient growth and maturing before the hard frost. Sow seed generously as our bird friends will take their share. Keep moist every day until it sprouts, usually in 9-14 days. Remember, don’t mow too short and keep well-watered until the first hard frost.

If any of your bushes or perennials need trimming now is the time to do it. Doing it in the next week or so will ensure any new growth has time to hardy before winter’s frost. The plants will be ready for their burst of growth in the spring. Also check there is sufficient mulch to protect the roots, but don’t overdo. They need room to breathe.

Start cleaning out the garden as plants are spent. Remove them, don’t use as mulch! Any insects or disease in the plant will winter over and start over next year. Pull as many weeds as possible being careful to remove as many seeds as possible. Augment the soil with compost or topsoil and manure. Cover the garden completely to avoid any weed growth. 



Congratulations! You've purchased a new home and are now getting all the details worked out so your move will go smoothly. You may have seen the signs locally at a bus stop or while riding the El. There is now a site that is here to assist anyone during their move. It's called Protect Your Move and is backed by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. As the individual moving you have rights and responsibilities. The site is designed to help you spot red flags that indicate possible fraud as well as providing a search function.

The site lists registered interstate movers for your convenience. If you are looking for a local mover, our association in Illinois is Illinois Movers' and Warehousemen's Association, which also has its own site with steps for making your move easy.Here are several of the key tips provided on each site.

First, do your research. Be sure to get at least three different estimates in writing first. Talk to your circle of friends and family about movers they've used in the past. In the state of Illinois, discounts on residential moves are not allowed. The mover you hire should be licensed. Once again, it's state law for the mover to show their license number in all advertising (online and in print). Loss and damage protections are key to your successful move, be protected. Finally, if you plan to use storage the warehouse must have a separate license in the state of Illinois. Your storage contract should include the warehouse receipt with a detailed inventory of all your belongings, the loss and damage protection, the storage rate and the location of the warehouse.

Second, use caution before signing an agreement. Research the moving company you are interested in using. It's not just about Better Business Bureau rankings. You'll also need to review the number of complaints logged against the company you are considering. The goal is to avoid getting scammed.

Finally, be prepared for your move. There are many sites out there that offer checklists and suggestions for you. Here are some basics to get you started. Don't overload the boxes. Unplug your electronics (computer, TV, etc.) 24 hours before you move to allow them to cool down. Do not pack any valuables to be put into the moving truck as the mover will not be responsible for them. Use your car to pack important things like medicine, toiletries and any other necessities you may need at your new home.

Remember, taking some time to do your research and prepare will save you a lot of potential stress in the future.


More Posts Next page »