Sunday, August 12, 2007


I'm going to back up a little and do a few posts about things that have already happened but either I haven't posted about them or I haven't posted pictures. These posts probably won't be in any particular order but I should be able to give an approximate time just in case anyone

This past May, a group of us ladies took a train trip to Chicago. I don't think that any of us had ever been on a real train trip so it was quite an experience. My mom, my sister and I left eariler in the day than the others and we had a very nice train trip. When we checked in to the hotel we relaxed for a little bit, had a little lunch and then we went to check out the area near our hotel.

Christine and Pam at Cloud Gate

Pam and Liz at Cloud Gate

Garden in Millennium Park

We checked out Cloud Gate and Millennium Park and then took in the Museum at the Art Institute of Chicago. The day we were there was the day you could get in for free so that was an added bonus. After that we went out to dinner at a bar just down the street from the hotel and then went back to the hotel to wait for the other part of our group that were supposed to be arriving shortly. Turns out they didn't get into Chicago until well after midnight because their train had some major problems! After speaking to some other people a few days later it seems that it's kind of common for the last train of the day to have mechanical issues and since it usually doesn't come in until after 10pm it takes longer to get the train repaired and going again.

So the other set of ladies arrived quite late and wanted to sleep in the next morning. My mom, sister and I had a free architectural tour planned through the Chicago Greeter Program, , and we needed to get around and get going so we could make it on time. I would highly recomend that anyone who is intersted in learning more about Chicago choose one of the many tours this group does because our tour was spetacular. We had a woman named Maureen showing us some of the neatest arcitectural sights and taking us into the lobbies of buildings so we could see all of the interesting touches inside as well as out. I think the best part was that it was just the three of us that she was showing around and it made the tour more personal and informative because we could ask her questions and didn't have to strain to hear her speaking over a larger group.

When we were finished with our tour we called the other group of ladies and found out that they'd headed out to do some shopping on the Miracle Mile. We weren't interested in doing any shopping so we got ourselves some lunch and decided to take the train out to The Garfield Park Conservatory to see "Niki in the Garden". This exibit had several sculptures done by Niki De Saint Phalle placed in and around the conservatory. The conservatory in alone was very nice but it was also very neat to see all of these large mosaic sculptures in and among the plants and flowers.

Here we took a little break in our sculpture viewing to play in the children's section...

Christine going up the stairs to the slide

Pam under the big leaf

Liz after going down the slide

After our play time indoors we went outdoors to look at the rest of the sculptures. Little did we know that we'd get to play a little more...

Liz inside a sculpture

Holy cow! It ate Christine! they're friends!

Liz and Pam inside the kitty

If you are in the Chicago area by October 31st of this year I would suggest a visit to the Garfield Park Conservatory to see this great exibit!

After our fun visit to the conservatory we took the train further out to Oak Park to view some of Frank Loyd Wright's architectures. He's well known for Prairie Style architecture and we got to see some amazing looking houses, such a distinctive style. We did a lot of walking and then caught the train back to our hotel where we were to meet the other ladies to go out to dinner.

Sarah with her new ipod

We had a great dinner at one of the restaurants in the Italian Village. After that we split mom, my sister and I went back out to do some walking around the city after dark and the others went to the Coyote Ugly Bar.

The next morning they slept in again while we checked out, had our bags stored and took off walking. We headed toward the lake, it was such a beautiful morning!

We also went to Shedd Aquarium and then took the train up near the Miracle Mile to get Arlexis a few things at the American Girl Store. Finally we met the other ladies back at the hotel to retreive our bags and headed to the train station for the trip home. The train was delayed an hour or so but once we got on and got going it was smooth sailing.

So we made it home and had had such a great time that we're looking forward to another trip soon!