We decided to rely completely on public transportation, so we started out by taking the train to Chicago. What was supposed to be a four hour ride turned into almost six, due to several tornado warnings along the way, but we finally pulled in at about midnight and then took a taxi to our hotel.
|Back to public transportation!|
The beautiful thing about traveling without scheduling it all out ahead of time is that you get to sleep in. Oh man, I love to sleep in! So day one (which was Spencer's birthday) we slept in longer than we had in a REALLY long time. After taking our sweet time to get up, we got breakfast at McDonald's (Spencer's favorite) and then headed to the Museum of Science and Industry.
We created hurricanes, saw a real Tesla coil, learned about planes and trains, played with the table of elements, watched a baby "grow", and all sorts of other cool science-y things. Spencer was a kid in a candy store, the nerd.
|My brother works for Boeing, it made|
Being my largely pregnant self we had to stop pretty often, and I really appreciate Spencer being so patient with me and constantly making sure that I was doing ok. After exploring the museum all afternoon I was EXHAUSTED so we went back to the hotel to take a much needed nap. Again, loving the sleep!
Feeling refreshed we walked several blocks for dinner. Of course Spencer chose pizza. Of course. I didn't even have to ask. So we did some research and Spencer chose Gino's. Luckily we got there early enough that there wasn't too much of a wait. By the time we left there was a line down the street and around the corner!
Spencer was in pizza heaven. Neither of us had ever had Chicago style, and we were not disappointed. And of course we ordered too much. I ate ONE slice.
Somehow we dragged ourselves another few blocks to Cheesecake Factory for some birthday cheesecake. Oh man it was so good.
|In our "lovely" hotel room.|
The crowning event of the day though, was the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. We love a good concert, and this one did not disappoint. The hall was beautiful and the music inspiring. I also loved having an activity that let me just sit for a while.
It was the perfect end to a perfect day. Happy birthday to Spencer!
Day two was pretty low key. My 37 week pregnant self was totally worn out, so we didn't get to everything we wanted to, but it was still really fun. Our first stop was Chinatown!
There wasn't really anything to do, per se, but we enjoyed walking the streets and feeling a little bit like we were back in China again. We went into EVERY grocery store we could find looking for our favorite soy sauce that we found while we lived abroad, but it was nowhere to be found. We enjoyed the authentic things we did see though, and we had to resist the urge to buy a bunch of stuff to take home. Again, we had to stop a lot so I could sit and rest, but Spencer was a total stud and took good care of me.
After Chinatown we headed to Cloud Gate, or the bean, and we actually ended up spending a few hours there. The weather was beautiful, and I really needed to get off my feet, so after exploring the bean and the park for a little bit we found a nice bench and people-watched for a while. I love that we can just sit and talk and it still be so much fun. Spencer and I fell in love during our late night conversations, and I appreciate that we can still find things to talk about.
We spent the rest of the afternoon exploring Michigan Avenue. Again, stopping often to rest, but we found some fun shops and ended the trip with a much needed stop at the Ghirardelli's store for ice cream. Fun story: So you order and get a number and wait for them to call yours. We ordered one scoop to share and while we were waiting they kept calling the same number over and over and no one was claiming it, so the server looks at me and smiles and says "Last call for number so-and-so, or this pretty lady gets it!" Going once, going twice, SOLD to the pregnant lady who was very happy to get a free ice cream cone. Suddenly our expensive dessert stop became affordable and exciting.
I'm so glad we were able to take this trip before baby boy showed up. We had so much fun, and it was totally worth the swollen ankles.
|Yikes! For the record, this was the one and |
only time I had an issues with swollen
ankles my whole pregnancy.