Sunday, September 20, 2009

A wonderful time in Chicago...but always happy to come home

I had been wanting to visit my friend Lauren and her cats for awhile, so Chris and I planned a trip to go see her in Chicago a few months ago...it just so happened Deloitte had to send me to Chicago a few days earlier, so first I flew down there by myself on Wednesday for a "Celebration Dinner" (for the promotion) and then an all-day training on Thursday. I should have taken a picture of my medal - they gave us a "Gold Medal" for getting promoted. It was the only exciting thing about the training....however, they did inform us at about 3:30 that the medals were not made of real gold. sad.

Chris flew into Chicago that afternoon and dropped Nathan off with Grandma and Grandpa...we met at the Blake Hotel around 5 PM. Chris couldn't seem to find the el at the airport either...he had to call me and ask, which I thought was hilarious because my first time to Chicago by myself years ago I figured it out (and I am horrible at traveling).

Our hotel was really nice, considering the more expensive, fancy hotel Deloitte put me up in the night before (the W City Center) was dirty and was tiny. I won't elaborate, but my advice is, don't stay there unless Uncle D is buying. But the Blake was older, but the rooms were huge, and were warm and relaxing. We didn't spend much time in it, but it was nice.

On Thursday night we decided just to walk around and eat wherever and just see Chicago. I have been at least 3 or 4 times before this, but Chris never has, so I kind of knew a little (like which way the lake is and where Michigan Avenue is, etc.). We walked a lot, all the way down Michigan Avenue, ate dinner, and then to Millineum park to see the big bean. Below is the best shot I could get of Chris standing in front of the bean.



The bean is highly reflective...so ladies...those low cut blouses you are wearing do show everything! Which, my delightful husband noticed right away...

Here I am standing in front of some sculpture canvas thing that changed color.

Here it is in blue...the purple was best I think. You could also stand in the middle of this thing and watch some sort of environmental wacko movie...
We should have taken pictures of the water tower thing that we thought Nathan would love, but we didn't, because our night pictures were just not turning out. We tried a billion times to take pictures of the fountain in Grant Park, but the below is the best we could get.


I liked it when it was blue.

My feet hurt after walking here. And the latte ran out. Chris didn't carry me home, however.

On Friday morning we slept in until 8:30, and then got up, checked out, called Lauren to come get us at the Dunkin' Donuts across the street. Chris thought his donut was awesome, I thought Cub Foods was better (*claps for Cub Foods*)!
Lauren was there really quickly, and we rushed home to see my favorite Chicago kitty, Shamu!
Here he is, in classic Shamu pose, meowing at me!
*Hugs to Shamu*! (they do have another cat who hates me...I refuse to talk about it....it still hurts too much....)

Since Chris had never been to Chi-town, Lauren suggested we go to Navy Pier...we all agreed. We were starved though so we stopped at Billy Goats for a Cheezeboorger no fries!


Aren't they cute? They love Billy Goats doubles!


We then decided to go on a speedboat...here is Lauren in front of the Speeddog!

Below we are ready to go...pre-speedboat ride!

I loved it. The best part about boats is going fast on water. I guess we were going 45 mph...I wish I had a boat.

That night we met up with Matt (L's hubby) at Giordano's for pizza. mmmmm! It was good, but I forgot to take any more pictures that night. Rats.
The next day we toured Chicago (ala via Matt) and Chris loved it. For some reason, he thought Chicago would be full of mummies and the undead...so it was much cooler and nicer than he thought. I think he wouldn't mind living there at all.
I had really wanted to go to the SuperDawg for about a year and a half now...so we made the trip. Somehow, it took us an hour to go a few miles...but it was worth it! Here is Chris with his SuperDawg box!


And Me!


This is what a SuperDawg looks like when you get it...

and this is what you look like while you eat it! True happiness. Next time I am in Chicago, its SuperDawg here I come!


Here is the classic outside:

Alas, the trip ended with Miss Hiss and I not reconciling our differences, so I will have to figure something else out. I remember I once crocheted her a mouse, but I cannot remember if Shamu ended up loving it more than she did or what. Hmpfh. I have awhile to decide...because, unfortunately, I don't think I will be in Chicago very soon again. But, maybe in another year! It will really be fun to bring Nathan in a few years...and maybe another kid or two if I am lucky!

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