Hanging on to the Warmth and Sunshine a Little Longer

 

It’s Mid-October here in Chicago…

And you know what that means!!!!

It’s Hockey Season!

Whoo-hoooooo! Time for the excitement and heartbreak and stinky gear and adrenaline filled games and taxi-ing the boys to and from practices, etc.

Not to mention, watching the Stanley Cup Champions and screaming at my television because it’s become way too expensive to even attend an actual Blackhawk game…

Ok, seriously, that’s not what this is about at all.

~It’s about dreading what’s about to come~

The Chicago Winter

The older I get, the tougher it gets. All the snow and cold and worst of all, all the gray, cloud covered days.

But we had a few Indian Summer days here lately and it has been delightful. I just wish it would last longer. So I am sharing a little of that.

sunshine and birdsong

This summer, my neighbors moved to Florida and Gave my family their wicker furniture they couldn’t take with them. I made new cushions for it and some new pillows to go along with.

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Perfect place to read a little and enjoy a cup of tea.

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If you live in a climate like I do, you know it’s best to enjoy these days because it will feel like a very long time before they’re back!

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birdfeeder

 

Peace & Hockey,

Kathy

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Adventures Await

 

Monday Fundays in the Summer

The first in a series of adventures that take place on Mondays in the Summer of 2015

Monday, August 17th, 2015

Summer is meant to be a time of fun and relaxation, iced cold lemonade on the porch, outdoor movies and sand between your toes…lightened schedules and vacations and sleeping in.

(Side note-my children NEVER sleep in. They are up by 6:00 a.m. every morning, rain or shine or snow, spring, summer, fall, winter. Doesn’t matter.)

Anyway, I decided that we should have something called “Monday Funday” during the summer. Something different, out of the ordinary.

Today, in our first “Monday Funday”, we all hopped the train into the big mid-western city that starts with a “C”, ends with an “O” and is the home to the Stanley Cup Champions. Now, we could have driven, but who wants to fight the horrendous traffic and find somewhere to park for only $50/day? This is supposed to be a Funday!  My husband, being the adventurous, handsome man that he is, took the day off and joined us, making it all the more complete.

First stop-train ride! Unbeknownst to me, children 11 and under ride for free all summer. Whoo-hoo! Why did I not know this? (Perhaps because I was too freaking busy all summer to pay attention to train fares…)

(Train fare- three adult round trip tickets=$11.00 each. One kid rides for free.)

The train takes us as far as the financial district downtown so we head southeast (I think), to the Sears Tower, once the world’s tallest building. (It will ALWAYS be the Sears Tower to me, so don’t bother trying to correct my ability to properly name architecture.)

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After an hour wait in many lines, security check, and a pleasant little movie about the history of the Tower, we head into the elevator and race up 110 floors in about one minute to the Skydeck.

Beautiful views of the city and Lake Michigan!

View to the South, including the Museum Campuses

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All the pretty little boats on Lake Michigan

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View to the North

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And Then…Holy Crap! Are you kidding me?

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A Window Washer, 110 floors up?! My stomach did serious flip-flops watching this guy.

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Ummm….I hope he gets paid really well for this job, because you couldn’t pay me ENOUGH!  And I also wish I could interview him for my series on Interesting People I Meet. I could use more people on this topic.

(Sears Tower Skydeck tickets- 3 adults, $19.50 each, one child, $14.50.)

After all the views from the sky, it was time for some lunch! Funday Lunch!

We decided to hit some of the food trucks that were lined up outside the business centers, ripe with Traders and Brokers, Bankers and whoever the hell else works down there in the Loop.

What a variety! And, tasty!

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Chicago Beef and Cheese

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Pizza, of course…

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I had some sort of lemongrass chicken tacos with Srirachi  Sauce and a Coconut Water(-yuck-please don’t ever order Coconut Water. Tastes like warm milk and water.)DSCN3312

And my husband had a Thai dish with pork and rice and I don’t know what else was in there, (scrambled eggs?) but it was good.

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(Food Truck Lunches- about $11.00 each)

Next we decided to hop on a water taxi and head up to Navy Pier. I love water taxis, they are so choice. If you have the means, I highly recommend them. 

A little Ferris Bueller reference thrown in.

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But seriously, it is a nice way to travel along the river and arrive at your destination. But for some reason, there were kayakers also. Ummm, yeah, not sure I’d want to kayak down/up the Chicago River alongside all the boats and ferries floating around…

(Four one-way water taxi tickets from Sears Tower to Navy Pier- Adults=$8.50 each, kids=$4.50 each.)

So we arrive at Navy Pier which is very crowded and touristy and almost feels like a suburban shopping mall. But we head out and grab some fresh lake air and watch the boats go by.

But first, we need some beverages because we are parched! McDonald’s it is. (Did you ever notice how McDonalds’ Cokes taste better than anyone else’s?)

(Four Cokes from McD’s that took more than 10 minutes to acquire-$6.50.)

“Sailing…takes me away, to where I wanna be…” Christopher Cross

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There’s also a very pretty lighthouse way out there…How does one get to that lighthouse? Inquiring minds would like to know.

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After much meandering and wandering, we decided we wanted to head back to the train station and go home. (We don’t have much endurance, do we?)

But we, meaning I, needed some Haagan Dazs ice cream. Rocky Road for me, oldest son caves and asks for Cookies and Cream.

(Two waffle cones with one scoop each=$16.00!!!) “Seriously?”, I ask the girl ringing us up. “I could buy many pints of Ben & Jerry’s for $16.00!” So she gets the manager and he knocks off $2.00 from our total. So, really- $14.00 for two cones. Am I cheap, or is that just really wrong?)

We hop in a taxi headed toward the train station.

(Taxi ride, in a real taxi and on a real street, including tip=$12.50)

We are just in time for the train to depart after a pit stop to Garrett’s Popcorn. If you’ve never had it, you are really missing something special.

I’m all about the Cheese Popcorn

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 And home we head, bellies full and feet hurting, on our first Monday Funday of the summer.

Coincidentally, it is also the last Monday Funday because:

A.) I am broke, and

B.) School starts next Monday.

Thank you for taking part in the first and last of this Monday Funday Series!

But seriously folks, the memories are priceless!

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I love these guys! All three of them!

 

 

Peace,

Kathy