Monday, May 25, 2009

Chicago: Then and Now

Just came across our old pictures from our first trip to the Chicago Field Museum. It was January 2004 --- That's Riley, age 5 in the black Hulk shirt; Maya, almost 3; and Seth at 5 months.

May 2009. Riley is 10, Maya is 8, and Seth is 5.

January 2004

May 2009


January 2004

May 2009

Chicago Trip: Field Museum

Maya, with "her" peeps, THE Maya!

A picture of the foot injury that made the crutches necessary, if you're into seeing that sort of thing, is here on the Fickle Skateboards site.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Chicago Trip: American Girl store

After Matt hurt his foot at the skatepark on Friday, we picked up some crutches and attempted downtown Chicago again on Saturday. It was a bit rough getting to bus stops and navigating around. We did manage to make it to the destination Maya had been *so* looking forward to since the very first mention of us going to Chicago: the American Girl store.

I don't think I've ever been to a store where things were priced like they are priced there. We don't pay nearly that much for our own clothes or hair!
This whole trip to Chicago was difficult for me this time. I've been not feeling very good about what feels to me like excessive spending (though I know "excessive" is in the eye of the beholder and that my ideal way isn't any kind of One Right Way). I tried on these excursions to *breathe* and *trust* and focus on seeing these things through my kids' eyes -- which see Magic and Joy -- rather than through my own frustrations around $$$ and how it is used. Not something I have figured out by any stretch, but...
Anyway -- here are pictures of some of the Magic and Joy.

Seth's favorite thing about Chicago: the Metra trains

Maya with Kirsten (the doll whose story is set in 1854), a hand-me-down that used to be my cousin's when she was little and that my grandmother had kept and then passed along to Maya.
American Girl Place

I waited while Matt was looking at the price tag on some blue jeans to snap a shot of the reaction. I think the look could be described as "Amused Shock" maybe???

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Chicago Trip: Lincoln Park

Our first attempt to spend some time in downtown Chicago started with a trip to Lincoln Park for Matt to skate at the Wilson skatpark. Riley, Maya, Seth and I walked over to the nearby beach on Lake Michigan. Afterward, we were planning to go to the American Girl store and walk around downtown. Unfortunately, Matt hurt his foot really badly while skating and we had to head back to the hotel for some ice and elevation!!!

Icy cold water!!!

Maya followed this bird around all over the beach. It actually let her get close and touch it.

Playing with some glasses frames she dug out of the sand

Chicago Trip: Spring Valley

We visited the Spring Valley park near our hotel in Schaumburg. It has a beautiful nature preserve area and an 1880's style German farm.

Entrance to the trail that winds along a grassland area and then wetland area

At the end of the nature trail, we found the Heritage Farm. The staff were all busy with some school groups, so we did a self-guided tour.

This is Otto, the very friendly cow.

The dressing room inside the farm house

Venturing down into the very cold cellar

Maya, the moment she realized why there were corn cobs in the outhouse