RedStrong Red (default) BlueCalm Blue GreenFresh Green

Chose your color scheme.

Archive for the year 2017

Anton’s Taproom Round 2

Posted on May 7, 2017 by under Food and Drink.    

The first time I had the opportunity to try Anton’s was with Selena a few months ago. This last time was with Michelle, during our final week in KC.

Untitled

We were seated upstairs this time, which I didn’t even know existed.

Untitled

It’s pretty neat up there, except neither Michelle nor I knew what the heck those things hanging from the ceiling are supposed to be. LOL.

Untitled

I love all the exposed brick, rustic ambiance, and decor.

Untitled

Michelle and I both had the filet mignon. She had a 4-oz one and I had a 6-oz one.

Untitled

I remember getting a 4-oz one the last time and, after asking for it to be well done, not having much of it left. The filet shrank a lot.

Untitled

Michelle had grilled cauliflower for her side dish.

Untitled

Not one to count calories, I opted for the mac and cheese.

Untitled

Dinner was quite satisfying.

Untitled

Before we left, I took a picture of the space above the butcher shop. They had two long dining tables up there. I thought it would be perfect for small private parties and other events like that.

I’m not much of a steak-eater but I do like Anton’s. I highly recommend it. I would totally go there again next time I’m in the area and get a hankering for some steak.

No Comments

New Keeper of the Plains Statue

Posted on May 1, 2017 by under Projects, Things to Do.    

A new Keeper of the Plains replica statue was unveiled in our office building a couple of weeks ago. It is one of several 10-foot tall fiberglass replicas of our famous Keeper of the Plains statue that’s part of the “Keepers on Parade” project launched by Together Wichita in 2014.

Untitled

Keeper

Brian and I have been anxiously awaiting the unveiling because we collaborated on the design concept last year. When work announced that we would be commissioning our very own Keeper of the Plains replica for the atrium of our Wichita office, they held a design contest.

I wanted to enter the contest but I wanted Brian to help me. Anyway, as the deadline approached, I ended up getting busy with work. On the last day, I found out from Ebony that we only had a few entries. I told Brian what I wanted drawn and he whipped it up real quick. Then he scanned them and emailed them to me for me to send to Ebony. Below is the design that we submitted.

Keeper

It’s not even colored because we ran out of time. We submitted our design literally moments before the cutoff. Who would have thought that the judges would appreciate the simplicity of our design concept.

That was last year. We’d been waiting for the completed statue since. Here’s a closer look at all the sides of the completed Keeper of the Plains replica statue.

Untitled

The artist made several changes that improved the overall outcome. They kept the general concept of our design but added and changed some of the elements. I thought all of the design changes worked. The statue turned out even better than I could have ever imagined.

If you are interested in seeing this one in person, it’s located in the atrium of the Ruffin Building on the corner of Douglas and Broadway (100 N. Broadway). There are three others at the pop up park. Those were the first three I had ever seen actually. I have seen several since. They’re scattered all over town.

One of these days I will go and check out all of them. There’s a Keeper Finder map on the Together Wichita web site which makes it a lot easier to locate all of the “Keepers on Parade” statues. If you’re looking for something to do, this would be a fun weekend activity or cheap date idea. It reminds of the time that Brian and I went on a sculpture scavenger hunt on the Wichita State University campus a few years ago. That was a lot of fun.

Perhaps we will see you around at one of these installations. Happy hunting!

No Comments

Ambassador Hotel Kansas City

Posted on April 30, 2017 by under Reviews.    

I finally found a hotel that I love during my final week in Kansas City. It’s a shame that I didn’t find out about the hotel sooner. Since September I’d been staying at the Kansas City Downtown Marriott (and enduring their horrendous service and outdated rooms) or the more modern Courtyard Marriott by the Kauffman Center.

I’d been enduring the service at Kansas City Downtown Marriott because it’s only a four-minute walk to the office and most of it is indoors. They have a skywalk that connects the main building to the old Muelebach Hotel across the street from the office on Baltimore, which makes it really convenient on extremely cold winter days and rainy days. I only have to be outside for a brief moment before I’m indoors again. My colleagues discovered the Courtyard Marriott down the street which is about a ten-minute walk. The first time I tried it, I found the rooms to be much more comfortable and nicer and the service was actually better as well, with the exception of valet parking which is usually always a wait no matter what’s going on. There was even one evening when Michelle and I returned from a leadership meeting in Lawrence and the valet was nowhere to be found. However, since the weather had improved, I’d been staying at the Courtyard Marriott more despite all of their shortcomings because they actually had the nicer rooms. I haven’t been completely satisfied, though.

A few weeks ago, one of the consultants who had previously been staying at the Kansas City Marriott Downtown told me about the Ambassador Hotel. He’d been staying there a few weeks at that point and really liked it. He said it’s about the same walking distance as the other hotel, about four minutes, just in the opposite direction. Michelle and I agreed to check it out the week after Easter.

Untitled

The hotel is pretty small. It only has seven floors. I think they had to work with the original structure because it’s in an old historic building. For this reason, they have some unique floor plans. For instance, the floor plan of the room that Michelle got is completely different than mine. I’ve also seen pictures of loft-style rooms with a full living room on the main floor and the bedroom in an open loft above it.

I really liked the layout of my room so I took some pictures.

Untitled

My room had a little entry hallway.

Untitled

The room I got was quite spacious. Opposite the bed, it had a long desk with a built-in refrigerator cabinet and some dresser drawers. The desk also doubled as the TV stand. At the end of the bed was a really nice bench seat.

Untitled

The upholstered bench looked custom because it ran the full length of the bed. I found it both beautiful and functional. I would sit on it to put my shoes on in the morning. It was also a great spot to put the clothes I had worn for the day, rather than just having them strewn all over the room.

Untitled

The door to the bathroom was a sliding door. It kind of reminded me of a pocket door but prettier. The door is a modern, polished version of the sliding barn doors that you see in high-end custom homes these days.

Untitled

My room also had a reading chair and matching ottoman. I thought they were a nice touch. I generally do my reading in bed so I mostly used it to hold my backpack and purse at the end of the day. I found it both pretty and useful, though.

I thought it was a great idea to turn that extra space into a reading corner.

Untitled

I had to take a picture of the bathroom as well. There is an upholstered stool in there (tucked under the counter) that makes the bathroom feel posh and elegant. I didn’t find it as useful because I’m too short to actually sit on one of these things and do my makeup but I thought it was pretty.

Untitled

Here’s a picture of the enormous shower. The shower was so roomy, you could probably do Zumba in there. (I do not recommend doing this for obvious safety reasons. Just saying it for effect.)

Untitled

The room I got was perfect in every way except for the view. For one, you can’t really expect a great view when you’re in the fourth floor of a seven story building among a bunch of skyscrapers. You’re just not that high enough. Secondly, it’s not really in as a pretty a location as the other two Marriott properties. Grand is just not that grand (on this part of town, anyhow).

Untitled

The other downside is the tiny fitness room in the basement. It’s literally the size of a closet and only has room for one treadmill, one elliptical, and one bike. The maximum occupancy is three people. No joke. It says that on the wall.

Untitled

I suppose that it’s such a small boutique hotel that they don’t really expect that many people to use the fitness room at the same time. Also, they have a partnership with Onelife Fitness. Guests who really want to workout can get a day pass to Onelife at the concierge desk. However, it’s not inside the hotel so you actually have to walk to the gym. It’s not that far, I know, but it’s not ideal for me and my 5 AM workouts. I really like being able to just roll out of bed and go for a treadmill run and then walk back to my room without having to set foot outside.

I’m pretty sure the sole treadmill would have been available for me that early in the morning but I didn’t chance it the week I was there. I enjoyed the comfortable bed a little too much and slept in every single day. Yes, I was a slug that week.

Untitled

My disappointment about the fitness room situation was short-lived, though. I came back to the hotel after work one day and found free sangria and cookies in the lobby. I had one of the amazing homemade cookies and a glass of the sangria.

It was heavenly. The free drinks and cookies more than made up for the small workout room.

Untitled

I didn’t take advantage of this while I was there because the rates are quite high but I found out that the hotel also offers in-room massages. It’s good to know the option is available. While I wouldn’t normally pay that much for a massage (the spa I go to only charges $95 for 50 minutes for $145 for 80 minutes), I might change my mind after a particularly stressful week. And, it’s nice that I wouldn’t have to walk or drive anywhere. They’d actually come to me.

Speaking of walking or driving, the hotel offers a five-mile shuttle service. If you need to go anywhere within five miles of the hotel, you just let the concierge know and they can have their shuttle take you. This service is actually really nice specially when the weather isn’t that great or you just don’t feel like walking.

The customer service at the Ambassador is really top notch. They go above and beyond any of the other Marriott properties I’ve ever stayed at… This is going to be TMI but they even put tampons in my room for me. Normally I am more prepared when I travel but shark week came almost a week ahead of schedule this time. My monthly visitor arrived while I was at work on Monday. Lucky for me, I had a spare in my purse but I didn’t have any others for the rest of the week. I fully intended to walk to the nearby CVS after work but then I decided to call the hotel to see if they had any feminine hygiene products on hand.

Sure enough, I had several tampons when I returned to my room that evening. I couldn’t believe it. Most husbands won’t even do that for their wives. They gave me enough for the duration of my stay, which is about the length of my periods these days. I was super impressed.

I was really bummed when my Kansas City work assignment abruptly ended because I had finally found a hotel that made me happy. I was so looking forward to staying there again the coming weeks. Oh, well.

This is my new favorite place to stay in Kansas City though, so Brian and I will for sure be staying at Ambassador for our next Kansas City weekend getaway.

No Comments

Wheat State Wine Company

Posted on April 29, 2017 by under Things to Do.    

Rain was in the forecast but we didn’t let that stop us. I’m glad we pushed through with our plans to see Piper Leigh and the Smokin’ Section because it turned out to be a beautiful day for a country drive.

Untitled

We saw Piper Leigh and her band perform for the first time last year when they opened for Jared & the Mill at the Orpheum.

Untitled

We’d never been to Wheat State Wine Company before because of the hour-long drive to Winfield but, since Piper and her band were performing, we thought we would make an exception.

Untitled

We were worried about the rain so I ended up wearing my rain boots but it turned out to be a beautiful day and the weather was perfect.

Untitled

We arrived during soundcheck and got a really good spot.

Untitled

The place is really lovely. Brian and I couldn’t believe we’d never been until that night. We will definitely be back.

Untitled

Here’s a picture of my awesome rain boots. Also, Brian really liked the print on my Lularoe leggings. I do too. They’re super fun!

Untitled

I loved all the lights, which helped to create the perfect ambiance.

Untitled

Untitled

I ended up getting a bottle of the Flat Pick. Brian had a glass of beer but opted out of getting an entire bottle of wine because he was driving. On the plus side, if you don’t drink the entire bottle, they can repackage it for you so you’re not driving home with an open container.

Untitled

They also let you taste the wines if you can’t decide what you want.

Untitled

The winery is open for free wine tastings and tours Friday, Saturday, and Sunday from noon to six o’clock in the evening. They also allow visitors to enjoy their wine and picnic on the grounds. Brian and I will definitely be back.

The 2017 summer concert series also has a fabulous lineup of musicians so I know for sure we will be back for another one of these events. I can’t wait.

No Comments

Livingston’s Diner – New Location

Posted on April 26, 2017 by under Food and Drink.    

Pictures from our first visit to Livingston’s Diner since they moved to their new location. They’re now in the old Cinnamon’s Deli location at Cambridge Market (by our old townhouse).

Untitled

One can’t go to Livingston’s and not get cinnamon rolls.

Untitled

Here are some food pics…

Untitled

Untitled

Untitled

The best part about that Saturday (the Saturday before Easter), besides our delicious breakfast, is running into the Easter Bunny at the Andover YMCA.

Untitled

No Comments

« Older Entries «                        » Newer Entries »