Tuesday, March 27, 2012


If you remember right- we are supposed to be trucking it all the way across the country this week.  With Dan's dad being so sick, we decided it would be better if we stuck close to home instead (which made my 'can't stand going to long road trips' self very happy.  Very. 
We decided to book it to Chicago instead for just a couple days.  Just a couple glorious days.
Now- in typical Mynde fashion, I will bore you to tears with fuzzy, unfocused photographs.
Which are not in order.  I tried to upload them in order and it got jammed.  Then I got frustrated and just put them in random order.  You're welcome.
Drum roll please.........
Dan wouldn't let us eat here because we have one at home.  Such a spoiler.

 Our hotel had fish and nice hotel desk ladies with cups of fish food.  Plus happy hour and omlett boys. We decided to splurge on a hotel without bed bugs too.  We're classy like that.  (But you know I spent like 20 minutes checking every single crevice- right???)
 IKEA and their glorious shopping cart escalators.  See that black and white checked roll thing in my cart, that is the blankie I put back.  It was a mistake.
 Lightening at the Museum of Science and Industry.
 Alligator ride in lego land.
 One super happy boy who almost chose to miss swimming to finish building his newest treasure.
 The coolest invention ever- a giant bouncing pillow jumping thing.  Don't think I'm not going to try and figure out how to build one of these in the back yard.
 We had an unexpected stop at Fair Oaks Dairy Farm on our way to chicago.  Dan wanted to stretch his legs, I wanted to see what the gorgeous building was.  Turns out it was TOTALLY AWESOME!
 And included a full tour on a bus painted like a cow with a visit to the Cow Carosel milking station.  Those cows hop on 4 times a day for a 7.5 minute ride that milks them as they go round.
 The tour bus drove us right through the cow barn.  And back at the beautiful building????  A birthing barn, where we got to see.........
 a cow giving birth.  I apologize for the lack of pictures, I was crossing my legs and praying for momma cow- it was amazing to watch but my heart went out to that momma.  The only thing that snapped my focus was when sam shouted, really loud, 'is she gonna poop it out?'  Perhaps some lessons we should have saved for when they are older.
When her baby came out, a farm hand helped pull it out where she could reach it.  She licked and licked and licked.  It made me sad that in just a few hours her baby would be moved to the special baby dog house kennel things, alone, and she would be moved to the milking barn to start her turns on the carosel of milking. Without her baby.

On a side note, a really gross side note, see right by the mommas tail?  That was this giant ball of bloody mess that came out with the baby- the afterbirth placenta stuff.  Sam was totally intrigued with it, the blood ball he kept calling it. Question after question after question, for the whole trip.  While in downtown chicago, he was asking about it again and if I had one or not.  He wanted to know where it was and why we didn't keep it.  I told him we had to choose, the ball or the baby. 
He declared that when he grows up and has a wife, they are picking the ball.
So much for grandchildren.

 Sam's french fry mustache.
 The bean.  Dan had no idea what we were talking about.  But I KNOW he is glad we paid to park to go to see it.
 No kidding- we spent more on parking during this trip than I have spent on clothing for myself in the past 12 months. I don't know how people afford to live here.

 The Museum of Science and Industry.  So worth the entire trip.
 Sam checking out his selection from Lego Land.

 Lego Land entry. Even the lights were made out of legos.
 That boy over to the right in the black shirt- he was prompt in telling me our turn was over and we needed to move on and let them have a photograph turn.  I explained I needed to snap one more with my daughters ipod- and he was kind enough to tell me we could have one more- just one.  Very generous he was.
 Lego Land.
 Darth Vader and whoever that is made out of legos.  Emily says it's R2D2. I'm not sure she can be trusted.
 Emily being eaten by a lego hippo.
 Chicago in legos.
 Emily in a vortex. (Museum of Science and Industry)
 The museum of science and industry- me and the kids and a complete rude stranger.  I suppose he thought if he ducked we wouldn't notice him in our picture?
 The bean again- totally marvelous.  Completely made of stainless steel sheets welded together and polished.

 Emily and I made a special trip to the American Girl store where Emily's doll Emily got her ears pierced at the salon. 
 Dan and Ally- lego land- not riding the super cool ride.
 The Art Institute of Chicago.

 My rule when we go places is if you bring something, you carry it.  It's hard to see- but sam has his jacket stuffed into the front of his sweatpants.  We're nothing if not fancy.
 Our hotel lobby area.  Amazingly beautiful.
 Air experiment at the museum.

 A giant gerbil wheel for people.
 Our super fancy tea at the American Girl Cafe.  If you have a daughter, granddaughter, or neighbor girl, you MUST take her here.  It was such an experience.
 The whole store is amazing.
 But the cafe?  It caters totally to the girl in all of us.
 And the food- so delicate, dainty, beautiful.
 And the dessert- even more amazing.  I will spare you the details of how much it cost to enjoy that tea- but I will say it was worth every single stinking penny just to enjoy it with emily.  However, Sam Ally and Dan were kind of whining about having to go so we let them roam the 7 story mall instead- which was a wise decision.  They wouldn't have appreciated it like we did.  And Dan wouldn't have thought a cucumber cream cheese sandwich shaped like a flower was worth the cost.  He doen't have an appreciation for the finer things in life.

 The stuff we brought for just a 2 night stay.  2 nights.  Proof postive that we will never be able to fly anywhere because we'd have to book a private plane just for the things we would have to take for an entire week.
 the only family picture we have from chicago (it's our reflection in the bean).
 This is underneath the bean.  It has a 'belly button'.  It's so cool.
Me and the kids without the random stranger walking in front of us.  We were in the transporation part of the museum- that has actual airplanes hanging from the ceiling including a real 727.  Wow.

We had a great time.  We didn't get to go up in the Sears Tower, visit navy pier or ride the L, but that just means maybe we get to go back someday.  It was a fun trip with lots of super fun things to do.  And we are worn out and need to unpack all the 'stuff' we drug up there with us.

Thanks for playing along!


Anonymous said...

Micken: Looks like you had a wonderful time. Can hardly wait for Ava Sharon to be old enough to take to the American Girl Store and tea. Love you all, Miss Pennie

Mynde said...

Strangely enough, I actually thought of you while having our 'tea' and wondered if you would ever bring Miss Ava there. You will just love it! (bring your big checkbook- nothing there is even reasonable)(just sayin)

Sarah said...

Next time you go to Chicago make a trip to Giordano's Pizza. The deep dish is amazing!! That is a must stop place for us when we go! Looks like you had a great time. So glad that you were able to get away for a few days of fun!

Mynde said...

This is too funny that you would mention that Sarah!!! We ordered pizza in one night after swimming- and that is the place we ordered from. IT WAS AMAZING!

The Smiling Mommy said...

Wow! That looks SO FUN!! I love the bean, and I love the cow experience. I would have cried and felt sad too over the baby having to leave Mom. That's awful. Sam and the "blood ball" had me laughing out loud!! No grandkids for sure huh?! LOL Ahhh gotta love the way those minds work. My son Kevin is a lego maniac as well. I've started to run out of room for the creations. He just loves it. When he was younger he used to say he was going to be a lego sceintist. LOL Anyway, just wanted to say hello, and that I loved the story of your trip. It sounded just wonderful!! Amy