ALEXIS BRADEN considers herself a California native with midwest roots. She was born at the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota and grew up just outside of the Bay Area before attending Cal Poly to study journalism and history. Upon graduation, Braden moved to San Francisco where she met her husband, Rick, and worked for the PR firm, Ketchum, and even for romance novelist, Danielle Steel. “I’ve actually never read one of her books, but I admire her so,” admits the mother of three girls.Braden eventually made her way back to the midwest, finding a home near the Highlands train station in Hinsdale. “After our home in the Bay Area sold in a day, we bought our home here sight unseen. We chose Hinsdale for its charm, history, and architecture and came to love the community and people here,” she explains. Braden continues to pursue her passion for history, serving as a trustee for the Hinsdale Historical Society (HHS) and on Hinsdale’s Historic Preservation Commission. “My most recent accomplishment was writing a script for a HHS video that I helped produce, about the famed architect R. Harold Zook. I have become a big preservation advocate and recently co-founded the Hinsdaleans for Historic Preservation group on Facebook—along with several long-standing preservationists here in town. I really believe that not every historic home in Robbins Park can or should be saved, but that as a collective, Hinsdaleans, we should work hard to protect our village’s history,” Braden says. When Braden isn’t spending time with her family, playing paddle, or saving village landmarks, these are some of her favorites in the country and on the town:
Mantra? Create a life you can be proud of. Best grooming tip? Always wash your face before bed. Guilty pleasure? Vintage home décor thrifting with friends. Favorite foods? Sushi, Greek food, and steak. Music you love? A huge variety ranging from classic jazz to ’90s rap. Best advice ever given to you? We all know people differently Best advice you’ve given? Perhaps they are not stars, but rather openings in heaven where the love of our lost ones shines down upon us to let us know they are happy. Earliest memory? Long walks with my grandfather around San Francisco—wish I could go back for just a day. When you wake up, you? Make my bed. Before bed, you? Try to respond to texts I’ve missed—I am not the best at texting. What’s on your bookshelf? Signs by Laura Lynne Jackson. You can’t live without? My family, friends, and dry shampoo. Love to escape to? Back home, Carmel, Napa, Hawaii, San Diego. Advice you would give to your younger self? Stop overanalyzing.
WHEN IN THE COUNTRY
Your style is? Athleisure. Can’t leave the house without? My phone. Transportation? My SUV—which has become a soccer carpool Uber. Driving music? 104.3 Jams, 94.7 WLS. Place to eat? Nabuki, Fuller House, and Kramer’s sandwiches. Shop? Yankee Peddler, Courtyard, Workshop, and Fullers Hardware. Best thing about country? Downtown Hinsdale shops—especially during Christmas. Worst thing about country? Driving down my brick street in the winter—potholes. The perfect day is? Hinsdale Historical Society’s Kitchen Walk—always the first Friday before Mother’s Day.
WHEN IN TOWN
Your style is? It’s been a while, I’ve forgotten. Can’t leave the house without? Lipstick and a brush. Transportation? Walking, train, and Uber. Driving music? Same as in the country—104.3 Jams or 94.7 WLS. Place to eat? RL, Fig & Olive, Next, Aba, and Gibsons Italia. Shop? Vintage shopping in Andersonville—Mercantile M. Best thing about town? Its architecture. Worst thing about town? Parking and traffic. The perfect day is? A warm summer day along the lake or river with friends.