We left around 1 a.m. The kids were beyond giddy with excitement, but they did go back to sleep, and even I caught a few winks in the van. Josh did well driving through the wee morning hours, and the cool thing about leaving at this time--no traffic. ;o) We stopped around 8 a.m. in Rock Falls, IL and made use of the picnic tables in front of a Dairy Queen for our breakfast. (There was a detour so we weren't traveling on a road with rest stops . . . which would have been preferred over the Dairy Queen, but oh well). I drove for about an hour afterwards, Josh napped a bit. We got into our hotel just after 10 a.m. And YAY! our room was ready for us (check-in is technically 3 p.m.) so we got our stuff unloaded, had our lunch and mapped out our day.
The Museum of Science and Industry
What Actually Went Down:
Getting INTIMATELY acquainted with Chicago's rail system
Rather than drive to the heart of Chicago and pay lots of money to park our vehicle we thought it would be a great experience to "take the 'L." Well, we did get an experience.
1) Every employee will give you a different set of directions
2) Families of seven with strollers don't typically ride the rails
3) The elevators between floors smell like urine REALLY bad (like worse than the building at the Children's Zoo that has the naked mole rats bad)
4) Our hotel was a LONG ways away from the museum--2 hours each way
5) After an afternoon of trying to keep my kids away from the edge--and what I envisioned to be a certain plummet onto the tracks of an oncoming train--I am a nervous wreck
6) I can nurse a baby just about anywhere now
7) Josh and I have great senses of humor--because if we didn't I think we both might have been in tears to discover ourselves *somewhere* in the midst of Chicago after getting off the train with what Josh claimed was "6 blocks" of walking . . . let's just say that after a mile and a half we were not even close to our destination.
New Family Phrases:
"We should have Garmin'd ourselves," said by me in reference to the GPS we left back at the hotel when we found ourselves *somewhere* in the midst of Chicago.
"Everybody huddle 'round," said by Josh as we gathered around Emmett to give him some privacy because he had to "go" BAD and we were again *somewhere* in the midst of Chicago. At least there's a lot of us--we formed a complete circle, which I'm sure didn't look the least bit suspicious. ;o)
Nope, we didn't quite make it to the museum today. After about three hours of trying to get there we decided to admit defeat.(Which was a hard thing to admit after devoting the good part of a day to trying to get there). It took us two hours to get back. But the good news we DID make it back--which counts for something, right? ;o) And we're resilient--we'll be trying again tomorrow, with van and GPS in tow--and I vow, we will prevail!!!
(and as a sidenote, I have the best little baby in the world--just one 10 minute melt-down through all of that!)
pretending and getting real
5 weeks ago