May 30, 2016

going places: chicago part 1

This trip had been in the making since last fall, and we finally made it happen. We did a little mother-daughter weekend trip to Chicago with my cousin and aunt. We had such a good time, and I wish I could stay in that weekend a little longer. It was the perfect getaway for all of us. I'm already thinking about making it a regular trip.

Being the planner that I am, I made a loose itinerary the morning after we booked the hotel. After searching hotels and dates well into the night, we ended up booking 3 nights Thursday-Sunday of Memorial Day weekend at the Courtyard Chicago Marriott. These dates worked out best for our budget and schedules and even ended up being over my cousin's birthday. Even more reason to treat ourselves on vacation! The hotel was great. I've stayed there before and would stay again next time I'm in the city. We took the Amtrak train to the city on Thursday morning. With about a 5 hour train ride, the 4 of us had plenty of time to chat and get excited about our weekend.

After a few minor medical emergencies were taken care of and memorable travel moments were made, we were ready to start our vacation. And we must have had a guardian angel that weekend because with everything that could have gone so wrong, everything turned out so well. We spent the afternoon exploring Navy Pier and took a boat tour on Lake Michigan. The boat tour was great! We were able to get drinks on the Pier and take them on the boat. That night we had dinner at Quartino and were lucky enough to get seated on their 2nd floor patio. Great location and appearance but average restaurant.

Day 2 was for shopping. We kicked it off with breakfast at my favorite Chicago spot, Yolk. Definitely recommend this place in you're in the city. Then it was on to the shopping. We walked up and down the magnificent mile. We stopped at Sprinkles for a midday snack, and the cupcakes were delicious. Another recommended stop. After a day on our feet, we had to get some Chicago pizza. For dinner we went to Lou Malnati's pizzeria after some searching on Yelp. This place was popular! We put our name in and were able to preorder our pizza during the hour wait. The pizza was great (and very filling), service was great, and the restaurant was pretty cool. They also do take-out if you want to bring it back to your hotel. That night we hung out in our hotel room and watched a movie. Sometimes just hanging out in the room is the best time!

Part 2 coming soon!
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