Thursday, June 18, 2009

Chicago: Unhinged...

was the theme of this trip.
departure time: scheduled at 5am, left at 6am
it was only supposed to take 9.5 hours to get there, but who was google maps trying to fool. they don't have a place to input 3 children. if they did they would for sure add an extra 1.5 hours.

we stopped a few times then finally at Target outside of the city for some breakfast items and other essentials (who isn't curious about out of state target clearances??? hmmm???)

so we checked into the hotel, Shane got us settled then went to park the car for rest of out stay, it was mass transit for us! Shane made it back and we hit the town, joovy wheels a blazin'. we walked down to the magnificent mile where store were closing and then walked to the navy pier. we found a very busy, but very sweet boardwalk complete with a carousel and ferris wheel. we planned to stay for the fireworks over lake Michigan but the kids weren't having it. it was cold, and late. we hopped on a bus back to the room.


after eating our self packed breakfast we grabbed a bus for the Shedd Aquarium. it was all Ryli could talk about, she has a small crush on dolphins. anyway, we arrived, waited in line, and entered. it was really a beautiful place. the oceanarium had recently re-opened after a remodel and we got to watch a show with beluga whales, dolphins and a sea lion. the kids got to touch a starfish, see sharks, sting-rays, jelly's, and many other sea creatures. no octopus...a little disappointing.

the kids were ready for a change after lunch time so we walked over to a park near Soldier Field. they really needed some open space to run. we caught a bus downtown to do a little shopping. We visited North Bridge for Sanrio and the Lego Store. Both hits, but the boys were done. The girls were just getting started. Shane has some things to finish up so he took the boys back and me and Ry went to H&M then to the American Girl store. at the official stores the you can buy the twins sized dolls separately. they are the size of the bitty baby but look like the bigger girls with the longer hair. the size was perfect and the price was right so she came home with us. Ryli was/is in love.

on the way back to the hotel, i found the right bus number, but it was going in the wrong direction. needless to say....Ry and i rode the bus for a long long time that evening. i thoroughly enjoyed it though. we talked a lot. i imagine the people who ride the bus frequently must really enjoy their commute time, it's very relaxing.
we made it back to the hotel. i took a long bath and then got the kids in bed. Shane prepared.

Shane left early. we got up and readied ourselves and then attended a short family meeting. the message went something like this: "guys I'm on my own today in really big city. there are 3 of you and only 1 of kind."

we strolled to Nordy Rack (which was a block from our hotel) in search of shoes for Ty and then a trip of pure bribery to the Disney Store. then a trolley ride to the Navy Pier. we lunched at Bubba Gumps then went upstairs to the Childrens Museum. the kids thoroughly enjoyed it, we stayed until close. we landed the correct bus headed in the correct direction and boarded.

i received a text in mid-ride that Shane had passed and received a conditional offer from the state department. under normal circumstances i would've been thrilled, but i was tired and perhaps a tiny bit grouchy. i was saving all of my enthusiasm for once we were quarantined.

Shane met us back at the room, where i still couldn't muster up any sort of excitement, and we headed to Lou's to celebrate. Chicago style pizza really is all it's cracked up to be.

Tuesday:we exited the hotel to find brisk winds and chilly temps. i promptly did an about face back to the room for more layers for everyone. we covered up and hopped on a bus. we did some shopping then went for lunch at the water tower shops. we left the mall only to discover rain...and we were without umbrellas. we decided to endure the wetness and head up to Lincoln Park Zoo. this zoo was free and the reviews said not to expect much but it was wonderful. we had the most amazing lion experience, Shane and the boys saw black bears, and Shane also had a very up close and personal experience with a black bird. Shane got pecked. the story is much better when Shane tells it.

the rain picked up and we decided to call it a day. we went back to the room for some swimming and ordered dinner for the Italian Village. we went to bed early.


we packed up and departed the downtown area. we found a fabric store that i had been drooling over online and Shane found a military surplus store that he wanted to visit. then onward to Ikea. Shane dropped me and Ry off and took the boys over to bass pro shop.

we finished our business and hit the road. the drive home was long and man we took our time. we even stopped at some outlets in the middle of Illinois somewhere and shopped more. we rolled into our driveway about 3:30am. then we slept and slept and slept.consensus: Chicago was a blast, but we will be going to the Dallas American Girl store for Ry's b-day instead of Chicago. well it's half the drive....


Michelle said...

I just saw this post. I have been waiting for it. Sounds like you guys had a blast!! Eddy is drooling over the pizza right now. Congrats?! on the job offer. What did you guys decide? Glad you had fun...I would love to see all the loot you made off with:)

Natalie said...

i am also wondering about the job offer....what is happening with that? i love the run-down of each day. so fun to read!!! i am glad you had a blast...i only wish i could have been stowed away in your suitcase. :) american girl stores are really an experience every girl should experience...amazing!!!!