Thursday, February 16, 2012

Chicago: fun, food, and things forgotten

Our family went on a trip to Chicago last week.  {Actually, Mike had a business trip and we tagged-along again...we like to do that...and I'm thankful he's happy to have us.}  It really was such a good time.  We had fun doing so many things around the city!

The main purpose of the trip was so Mike could recruit potential students during Founder's Week at the Moody Bible Institute {a college of which we pray our children will one day attend, if the Lord wills!}.  This meant all of us were able to attend the seminars during the day, go out to lunch, head back for quick naps before Mike had to head back to Moody to "work the table."  {I had a deep desire to take a picture of Mike at his display and title it, "Mike working it"...but I deterred that desire. It would have been, oh, so funny!}  Some nights, the kiddos and I would head back with him because certain sessions were projected to be amazing. (ie. Francis Chan!!!!!)  And they were.  Such great messages.  Such great spiritual nourishment and encouragement!  {Grab a cup of joe, click HERE, and go listen/watch the sessions for are SURE to be blessed.}

We visited Giordano's for lunch one day...famous for it's Chicago-style deep-dish stuffed pizza.  You have to wait 30-45 minutes for it to cook, but it's well worth the wait.  Every. single. mouth-watering. bite.

Another lunch stop was at the Rainforest Cafe.  It sat diagonally across the street from our hotel.  There is a HUGE tree frog that sits atop the roof outside that place.  Annaleigh became obsessed with it.  "FROG! FROG!" she would chant until it was no longer in plain sight.  Her fetish convinced us that it would thrill her heart if we ate there.  So we did.  We ate.  But Annaleigh just gocked.  And stared.  And hyperventilated {not really}.  But her excitement was not able to be contained inside that little body of hers.  Therefore making it impossible for her to eat anything.  Thankfully, we all just shared an appetizer and drank water.  It was large enough to feed our hunger and expensive enough to count for 2 meals.  Knowing our daughter and the excitement she's been known to show, we never thought twice about NOT ordering anything for her to eat.  No need to waste money we don't even have on food she won't even touch.  She did end up getting an adorable frog key-chain which she picked out...a slightly smaller version of the larger-than-life version found on the roof.

On the last day we were there, we shopped all along the Magnificent Mile.  H.e.a.v.e.n.  Especially going to Eddie Bauer.  You have to understand something, since birthing two beautiful babies, my body shows the proof.  Nothing fits me the same anymore.  NOTHING.  And I'm not fat.  It's just that my body has morfed into a shape unrecognizable to the human race.  Meaning, clothing designers wouldn't even know how to dress me.  So I approached this shopping trip with very low expectations.  Eddie Bauer was on our list of places to visit because my husband adores that store {and so do I...or I use to...when clothes fit me}.  My love was about to be re-kindled.  Without too much detail {so as not to bore you...good story...but long...maybe I'll tell you sometime...} this sweet little college girl {majoring in Marketing at Columbia College} introduced me to a pair of their test jeans.  Like. a. glove.  First pair of jeans I have ever put on my body that actually fit this 4'11'' slightly curvy girl.  And that's their name.  "Slightly Curvy Boot Cut Jeans" in SHORT.  And usually "short" jeans are something I have to go home and still hem.  Yes, I'm that short, people.  But NOT these!  Perfect length.  In fact, they are just perfect everywhere.  Unfortunately, they are TEST jeans...meaning, they are not a jean they make regularly and may never make again.  So I bought 3 pairs.  Dark, Medium, and Light washes.  And here's the best part:  Eddie Bauer was having a 60% sale off of ALL their SALE items.  And the jeans were on sale!  So, I got them for $15 a piece!!!!  I about fainted with elation.

Our hotel room what ginormous! Lots of room for Annaleigh to run around and play.  Two TVs.  Refrigerator.  Couch, two, count 'em, TWO arm chairs, and a coffee table.  And had a free buffet breakfast every single morning.  It was glorious.

We also ate at Portillo's, visited one of the prettiest grocery stores ever, made regular stops to Starbucks {of course!},  and took a 10 minute drive into the suburbs to visit Ikea {oh, yeah!!!!}.

Lots of fun was had by all.

When it was time to pack up, I dreaded it.  I hate packing.  For any reason.  At any time.  So I decided to do my best to whizz through it...a whirlwind it could just be done and over with.  Unfortunately, I shot myself in the foot {not really}.  I forgot my camera bag {not my actual camera, praise God} contains the battery charger and USB cord.  {However, at that point, I think I wanted to shoot myself in the foot, for real.}  I got so sick in the pit of my stomach the moment I realized it was innocently sitting in the hotel room.  And the realization came the day after we got home...when I was unpacking {I hate doing that, too...} Pennsylvania.

But GOOD news!  Mike called the hotel.  They have it!  And Mike will be taking a 2nd trip there this weekend {work-related, not just to get my camera...he loves me a lot, but I don't think he loves me that much},  he'll be staying in the same hotel, and he promises to get it from them and bring it home to me.  Hooray!

But the bad news is that my camera battery is dead.  D.E.A.D.  And I see all these life moments happening right before my eyes and I have nothing to record them with!  I'm going INSANE.  The blessing out of it all is that I'm able to actually be a part of the moments rather than a bystander with a fast trigger finger.  So, I'm learning to enjoy it!

And this also means I can't upload any of my pictures from the trip.  And I have some really good ones to show you!!!  Oh well.  There is growth in the process of waiting {they say}.

For now, I'll leave you with these sweet memories.  I've been reminiscing as I've looked through the archives of my pictures and they leave me with such an overwhelming fuzzy feeling in my soul....
Annaleigh's 1st sponge bath

Our first photo as a family of 3

Annaleigh's first smile

Memorial Day 2010

Thanksgiving 2010 - Annaleigh 11 mos.

Meeting her brother

Mama and her boy

Sibling love

John David - 1 day old

Christmas 2011 - Our sweet family of 4

No comments:

Post a Comment

Love is to the heart what the summer is to the farmer's year - it brings to harvest all the loveliest flowers of the soul. -Unknown