This past Sunday afternoon, after church and a quick lunch at home, we headed up to Chicago for the auto show. We enjoy going to the auto show, and we try to do it every year…even if it gets more, uh, interesting every year as our family grows!
Once again, we were able to get $5 adult tickets through an online deal. Kids under 7 are free, so the show itself is pretty cheap for us! (Parking is still pricy, though…)dancing in a truck bed…
Typically, we reserve a Saturday for this adventure. That way we can get an early start, devote the morning and early afternoon to the show, and then the kids can nap in the car on the way home.
This year, we had so many things going on that we couldn’t find any other time besides a Sunday afternoon. Let me tell you…getting to Chicago at 2:30 PM for the auto show is c-r-a-z-y!
adding to the dry-erase grafitti wall
We’ve got our morning auto show trip down to a science. We park inside McCormick’s garage, make a VERY short indoor walk, and we’re right there at the auto show. Not so if you come later in the day. Lesson learned! :)
The parking lot we normally use was full, so we were re-routed. After waiting in a long line of cars, we were eventually able to park in a lot at Soldier Field. Rather than waiting for the shuttle, we decided to hike on over to McCormick Place…with three kids and a double stroller. We put the boys in the stroller, and I carried Jensyn. Uphill. In the cold. (Don’t worry – she was wrapped in a fleece blanket over her coat.) I think I need to exercise more often, as it’s now Tuesday and my leg muscles are sore from the walk! Keith wore no coat…because he’s smart like that ;)
I’m not complaining…I just know that Keith and I will both laugh at this memory!
enjoying the ride…for the moment
She wanted to be carried a lot, too.
Before heading in, I wrote “Mommy” and my cell phone number on the boys’ hands with a sharpie. I explained that if they couldn’t find mommy or daddy, they should stay RIGHT WHERE THEY ARE and show their hand to another mommy or daddy. Thankfully, we didn’t lose any children! :)
I was so impressed with the kindness of strangers. I’ve come to expect that in our small town, but it’s something you don’t see quite so much in the city. When we were walking from the parking lot, we encountered a spot where we had to carry the stroller down a flight of stairs. We ran into two similar spot throughout the day. We hit the same spots on the way back to our car, too. Every time, strangers stopped what they were doing to help Keith carry the stroller down the steps.
There was one time when the boys were not in the stroller, and Keith just carried it down along. I was holding Jensyn, Alex was walking, and Max was going down the stairs on his own. A sweet grandmotherly-lady took Max’s hand to make sure he didn’t fall. (A little bold, but very sweet….)
There was also a time when we took a little break in a side hallway to have a drink, use the restrooms, and nurse the baby. The tops of the benches in this hallway are slightly arched. (Strange.) Max was sitting next to me, and Keith was sitting on the other side of me. I turned to say something to Keith, and a lady behind me gasped. I turned just in time to see the lady lunging at our bench…and then I heard a THUD.
Max had lost his balance on the bench, and he fell backwards. Poor kiddo CRACKED his head on the hard tile floor. Before I could even get up, this lady (who had barely missed catching Max) scooped him up so Keith could check Max’s head. Thankfully, other than a small goose-egg, Max was just fine!
“test-driving” a jeep
pretend-play while “driving” the taxi
Alex was “delivering newspapers” from the passengers seat.
Does this actually happen in real taxis? ;)
Even Jensyn checked out a few cars…
We finished our night with dinner at McCormick Place’s McDonalds. For future reference, they do not serve Happy Meals at this location. Nor do that have apple dippers on the menu. I asked. Isn’t that strange? That’s okay ~ they enjoyed their popcorn chicken and french fries!
Jensyn shared a cheeseburger and a yogurt parfait with Mommy…because I forgot her baby food in the car and wasn’t about to make that hike in the cold just for some pears ;)
Other than one near-concussion and some chilly walks to and from the car, it was a great day!