Why is it that some weekends seem like a blur? You feel like you need another day to actually “rest” from Saturday and Sunday. And I have a feeling the whole month of December will be a blur due to the holidays!
Speaking of holidays, this weekend began with an Olson Family tradition to kick off the holiday season. Since I was a little girl, I remember riding in my family’s station wagon down 290 into the city and then up 94 to Lincoln Square. The day was always special because for one, I knew we were stocking up on delicious German torts, candies and my favorite – bienenstich. But also because it meant Christmas was just around the corner.
On Saturday afternoon we met up with my parents. They still take 290 but they have upgraded from the station wagon. Our first stop was the Chicago Brauhaus on Lincoln where for over forty years the Brauhaus has been serving authentic German dishes.
I can honestly say, they’re just like mom makes them! And she’ll agree too. My mom got a stuffed cabbage roll, my dad a veal sausage, Matt got venison goulash and I got thuringer, another type of sausage. None of us were disappointed and left with empty plates and very full bellies.
To help work off what we just ate, we walked a few stores down to Gene’s Sausage Market. This was the second part of the Olson Family tradition – buying all types of sausages, cold cuts, spatzle, and bakery items for Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, New Years Eve and New Years Day. Matt and I tried to restrain ourselves from ogling the meat case. We ended up getting a pepper covered bacon, sliced smoked ham, smoked pork butt, spatzle, pretzel rolls, pretzel buns, chocolate bars, chocolate ornaments for our Christmas tree and of course bienenstich. Oh and some beer too!
I love traditions and I’m so glad Matt and I are continuing this tradition with my parents. Spending a day in Lincoln Square around the holidays is always a treat. But this tradition is so special, it’s one that I can definitely see us doing with our own family one day.