“I love to bake—desserts are my love language,” says TIANNA GAWLAK. This mother of two—Ania (3) and Adam (1) describes herself as a wife, mom, baker, and children’s book author. In fact, her love of baking serves as the inspiration for her first children’s picture book When You Dream of Chocolate Cake, which is also available in Polish—Kiedy Marzysz o Czekoladowym Torcie. When Gawlak—a Downers Grove South alumna who went to ASU in Scottsdale where she serendipitously met her husband Krystian, a Hinsdale native—isn’t caring for her family, writing, or volunteering, you can find her baking up her next venture—The Bakery Box. “It’s a self-service dessert ATM, offering luxurious sweets at Burr Ridge Village Center,” she explains. Gawlak shares some of her passions in the country and on the town with us this month.
Mantra? I can do anything. Best grooming tip? Vanilla lip sleeping mask before bed. Guilty pleasure? A jar of Nutella. Favorite foods? Any and all desserts—Celina’s Fresh Market cheesecake tops. Music you love? EDM – Deadmau5. Best advice ever given to you? Focus on what makes you thrive. Best advice you’ve given? Always pack baby wipes. When you wake up, you? Peek into the kids’ bedrooms. Before bed, you? Peek into the kids’ bedrooms. What’s on your bookshelf? Jodi Picoult, self-help, classic fiction, Harry Potter, children’s books of all styles, and more. Our reading room is filled with all genres. You can’t live without? Sunday mornings with my family. Love to escape to? Scottsdale, Arizona. Advice you would give to your younger self? Don’t let doubt hold you back from pursing your dreams.
WHEN IN THE COUNTRY
Your style is? “Active mom”— leggings, t-shirt, oversized sunglasses, diaper bag. Can’t leave the house without? My kids— literally! Transportation? My mom-mobile, Honda CRV Driving music? Usually a kid’s playlist. Place to eat? Toni’s Patisserie. Shop? Burr Ridge Village Center. Best thing about country? One person can make a big difference. Worst thing about country? Travel time to major destinations and activities. The perfect day is? Pushing the kids in the stroller with no destination in mind, while sipping an iced caramel coffee.
WHEN IN TOWN
Your style is? Active chic. Can’t leave the house without? A cold bottle of Evian water. Transportation? BMW M3. Driving music? Deadmau5 – Strobe. Place to eat? 3 Arts Café. Shop? Sandmeyer’s Bookstore. Best thing about town? The ambience of downtown while decorated for the holidays. Worst thing about town? Traffic, traffic, traffic. The perfect day is? Shopping for holiday gifts on Magnificent Mile, enjoying the Christmas lights, and a hot blonde vanilla latte.