The kids' menu at Beans & Barley -- I've always found Beans & Barley, 1901 E. North Ave., fairly kid friendly. Now that it's added a kids menu, I am even more likely to stop in for a bite with my boys. The menu is simple, but has plenty of choices. Noodles with butter, cheese quesadillas and a turkey and cheese sandwich are just a few things on the menu -- and most of the items are $3.50. The menu also features organic milk -- regular or chocolate - and organic juice boxes. Plus, the server informed me that the kids could order any sandwich on the menu as a half-order, which is good to know. Beans also provides crayons and a coloring book placemat, plus, there are plenty of fun little trinkets in the toy section of the attached market if you need a bauble to kill time before the grub arrives. --Molly Snyder Edler
Josh Radin's new EP, "Unclear Sky" -- Joshua Radin's voice is, dare I say, beautiful. Radin's latest 4-song EP is one of the year's best: moving, emotional and flat-out good. Featuring "Sky," a debut with his touring partner Ingrid Michaelson, it's a preview to a new full-length release this summer. Spend the $2.99 on iTunes for nearly 13 minutes of amazing music and you'll think you got a steal. The Cleveland-born singer-songwriter is an icon in Zach Braff's world, so there's another reason to like him. Ask no questions; just go download "Sky." While you're at, Radin's 2004 release "First Between 3rd and 4th" is equally compelling. His Web site is joshuaradin.com. --Jeff Sherman
Cheap winter coats at Burlington Coat Factory -- When another cold spell hit town shortly before the Super Bowl, I decided it was time to pull the trigger on a nice wool overcoat. I visited a few stores and quickly realized that I was in trouble. I don't do a lot of shopping and I had no idea that stores begin pushing their spring and summer lines right after New Year's. I checked a few places and the selection I found was pretty dismal. The one model I liked wasn't available in my size. I was thinking about hitting the Web or checking the outlet malls. Then, stumbled into a Burlington Coat Factory location at the local strip mall. Jackpot! They have a huge selection of sizes and styles and I found a name brand for just more than $100. BCF has plenty of merchandise other than coats, but the name is not a joke. I wish I'd have checked sooner. I might just go pick up another coat so I'm not caught short next year. --Drew Olson
12th Street -- Sometimes, I have a pressing need to move my Oldsmobile from the East Side to Westown. For years I meandered down North Avenue, turned left on Humboldt, merged onto Water and -- 15 minutes later -- found myself driving west on Wisconsin Avenue. There had to be an easier way. I remembered my high school math teacher, Mr. Sorgent, extolling the straight line as the shortest distance between two points. That made sense, so I figured two straight lines would be a good call. One day, I threw caution to the wind and drove west on North Avenue to 12th Street, where I went south. This gave me a nice view of the former Pabst Brewery site and it dropped me off at Marquette's Gesu Church in record time. Avoid the lights; try 12th Street. --John Hyland
Wasabi mayonnaise -- I didn't think I could love mayo more than I already did, and then I tried the wasabi version. The creaminess of mayonnaise spiked with the heat of wasabi is a heavenly combination, especially on a turkey sandwich, in tuna salad or on a piece of grilled salmon. Trader Joe's makes a great wasabi mayo, but regular grocery stores usually have a brand or two to pick from as well. --M.E.
Deja Vu consignment -- This shop, located at 4315 W Vliet St., is a great find. Started in the Martin Drive neighborhood in 2004, it's full of great finds, friendly service and unique items. We've found great deals on furniture and many cool antique items. My wife's the passionate consignment shopper in the family, and she loves this place. I'll piggyback saying that on multiple visits, I've always found several quality items that I just couldn't say no to. Plus, every 30 days the items are reduced by 10 percent and this reduction is clearly marked on the price tags. Call them at (414) 265-0217. --J.S.
The rum old-fashioned -- Your grandparents my love the brandy old fashioned, which certainly has earned its place as a supper club staple. If you like rum and are feeling adventurous, get them to try the rum version. Here is the recipe:
Mix a half-teaspoon of powdered sugar, a teaspoon of water and a dash of Angostura bitters in an old-fashioned glass. When the sugar has dissolved, add ice cubs and 1½ ounces of light rum. Add a lime peel twist, float a teaspoon of 151-proof rum on the top and serve. --D.O.