jessica mae burkart
designer, photographer, crafter, music + cat lover.

all text + images are my own unless otherwise noted.

enjoy the delights in my life.



one year anniversary

it is hard to believe that a year ago {August 27} the BFG and I promised to love one another for the rest of our lives. and what a year it has been. to celebrate we went back to the secret cottage for some peace and quiet. on our way up we stopped at Taliesin, the home of Frank Lloyd Wright, where we learned some very interesting facts about his amazing life. Although it was short vacation it was perfect, filled with stories of our past, snuggles, walks through the golden rod fields, bird watching, paddle boating, and relaxing with nature.

this time around i took more video than photographs and i hope in the next couple weeks to put it all together....wish me luck!


lollapolooza excitement

tomorrow till sunday i will be at grant park. this marks year number 7 of a weekend full of live music, sunshine, possibly rain, crowds, beer and more music. here are some videos of the musicians i am looking forward to dancing to.







and much much more! if you are heading to grant park this weekend for lolla have a blast and wear sunscreen.


a mansion of a wedding

last weekend we traveled to Rhode Island to attend a wedding of two good friends. it was held at the Aldrich Mansion in Warwick overlooking the Narragansett Bay. and what an amazingly breathtaking and beautiful place to have a magical event.

construction of the Aldrich Mansion began in 1896 and was completed 16 years later by it's original owner, Senator Nelson Aldrich. Set on 75 acres of land this mansion is stunning, featuring 70 rooms decorated with portraits of family members, intricate wood carvings and vaulted ceilings.

floor plan - ground level

the mansion's backyard

my favorite room - the library

the bfg and me, all dolled up


etsy loves


lately (in photos)


punta del este, uruguay

*life happened work happened and at-home-computer moments were scarce*

We spent the last couple days of honeymoon with some much needed r&r at a lovely little beach town called Punta Del Este in Uruguay. our hotel, La Serena was only 20 minutes from the center of the city. Since it was off-season there were only a couple rooms booked. we spent the morning to mid afternoon laying in the warm sun by the pool and beach, books in lap, summertime cocktails in hand. in the late afternoon we cooled down in our room, windows open allowing for a salty sea breeze to fill the air. one day was spent exploring the town and walking through its streets ohing and ahing at the lovely vacation homes; like rich New England coastal towns.

view the entire photo gallery of the honeymoon here >>>


buenos aires, argentina

second stop - Buenos Aires, the capital city, large, busy, and very European. we stayed at Mine Hotel in the trendy neighborhood Palermo; tree lined cobblestone streets with broken tiled sidewalks; small boutiques, little cafes with outdoor seating, and yummy restaurants.

La Boca - brilliant colored corrugated tin homes remind us of an older time when immigrants crowded together using whatever materials they could find.

the cemetery in Recoleta is a place you can get lost in as you navigate through narrow pathways, through the labyrinth of tombs in a multitude of architectural styles.

we walked through the May Plaza and the first cathedral, the Botanical Gardens, the Zoo, the large flower sculpture, and both museums of modern art.

click here to view the rest of my Buenos Aires photos >>


mendoza, argentina

our first stop on the trip - a quaint town called Chacras de Coria, at the foot of the Andes Mountains. the boutique winery hotel, Finca Adalgisa, was secluded, lush, and very accommodating with a free wine tasting served with cheese and bread each night. the two days we had were spent drinking wine and visiting wineries (oh malbec, my new vice), horseback riding through the Andes Mountains with four young local boys and a guide who spoke no english, relaxing pool side in the hot sun, and eating delicious dinners in the downtown area.

to view all Mendoza photographs click here >>


a south american honeymoon

after spending almost two weeks traveling across Argentina and into Uruguay my husband, the bfg, and i have returned from an amazing honeymoon. the weather was perfect, the food was phenomenal (not good for keeping up a nice figure!), and the scenery breathtaking. our last day was full of sadness, the end our honeymoon - two weeks of just us, together every minute of every day, falling back in love with each other. we left a piece of our hearts in Argentina and Uruguay and will be back (our visa is good for ten years).

pictures? alright here are a couple teasers....
the Andes Mountains - Potrerillos

Finca Adalgisa Hotel - Mendoza - pool and room entrance

San Telmo neighborhood - Buenos Aires

Cementerio La Recoleta
- Buenos Aires

La Mano en La Arena - Punta Del Este

La Serena Hotel pool - Punta Del Este - sunset

more to come later this week with in depth descriptions about each stop.


itouch repeat - The shins

ever since college i have always loved listening to THE SHINS, an indie rock band from new mexico. The voice of the lead singer, James Mercer, is distinctive and calming, and the lyrics are melodic, telling simple stories in poetic ways. THE SHINS released a new album last month, Port of Morrow (funny that it is my husbands last name), and i am slowly getting into it, for it is different than their previous albums which had hit after hit. despite this, they still stay in my top 10 favorite bands.



when my family visits

st patty's day green river / rave under the bean / florence in her green tutu to celebrate conrad's birthday / my nature installation on our stoop / green trees / mom & sis / dinner party / sister's birthday celebration


spring has sprung

very early this year! for the first time since i have lived in Chicago (almost 7 years) our trees are budding and our flowers are blooming in march. usually in march we sit and wait in cold weather and snow while the rest of the world enters spring. the last few weeks have been beautiful with temperatures reaching into the 80s...yes the 80s. i'm elated, putting away winter stuff and soaking in some vitamin d. but at the same time i am questioning why is this happening? is this global warming? will our summer be dreadful? or will fall come in august? what are your thoughts on this drastic change in mother nature?


week snapshots

this weekend i got the camera out and shot what was supposed to be a weekend snapshot post for monday. ehh a few days late is okay right?

new spring shows / little isla / yoshimi begging for the outdoors / spring bloom / bracelet order