Monday, February 2, 2015

Annual Chicago Christmas trip

If you have been reading this blog for a few years, then you know every year at Christmas time we try to head to Chicago for the day. This started as a variation of a tradition I enjoyed as a kid, I then introduced Adam to it, and now the kids beg to go every year.

I so enjoy driving to the big city. It takes around 2 hours to get there plus a time change for us, but it is well worth it!

 After parking in the underground parking garage, our first stop if always Grant Park to see Cloudgate/The Bean. As soon as it was in sight, the kids took off running. We knew exactly where they would be, always on the underneath, shoving themselves as far in as they can.
 A family reflection selfie?
 D had decided this year to bring along her sketch pad and journal our trip with quick drawings of the sights along the way. They have added so many fun and interesting art installations over the years, and these were new to us.

Just had to say hello to the festive lions in front of the Chicago Art Institute. While we love going to look at the art work, we didn't stop in this time.

Next up was a walk across the street to hop on the cow in front of the Cultural Center. I used to frequent this amazing building when I went to school a few blocks away. The kids always have fun sitting on top. This year, we decided to take the kids inside to check it out.
 Both kids were blown away at how beautiful the building was, and they both picked up on clues that the building was once used as a library.

 D sat down in the middle of the room so that she could sketch the dome. I turned around and saw this fantastic shot.
 Then it was off to Marshall Fields/Macy's to look at the windows.

It wouldn't be a visit without waiting 2 hours to see the Big man in red himself!

Then it was time to bundle up again, although the weather was perfect, and head a few blocks west to Daley Plaza to check out the German Christmas Village.  We always get a few things to eat, and the hot spiced wine to drink out of the special mugs.

 Every year we also all go to a specific shop and pick out a glass ornament for the year. This shop has a glass ornament in just about any shape you can think of. While we wait in the line to get in, D has to get her photo with this same Nutcracker every year.
 It was then that we headed back to Grant park, stopping to watch the ice skaters and one last visit to Cloudgate on our way back to the car.

 We had to of course make a trip over to Trader Joe's to stock up, and then a kid requested dinner of Italian beef sandwiches at Al's before heading for home.


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