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Chi Town Recap

Well I am back from my long weekend in Wisconsin/Chicago, and I am exhausted.  This post is probably going to be a pretty picture heavy recap, only because my brain isn’t functioning on a high enough level right now.  I had a fantastic time, it was a great trip, and Chicago just might be my new favorite city.

So let’s see, the trip got off to somewhat of a rough start due to the ridiculous weather here on Thursday night.  From the start my flight was delayed by about an hour, so I hung out at the airport bar and had two beers.  Then, once the plane actually arrived, they rushed to get us boarded and in the air, only to then have the airport shut down because of storms rolling in.  I sat on the airplane, not going anywhere, until 9 pm.  It was awful, but we finally did take off 3 hours late, and I made it to Milwaukee around 9:30.  Upon leaving the airport, I immediately requested a giant glass of wine, and after I finished that, Darren and I headed to his mom’s house to spend the night before leaving for Chicago in the morning.

We arrived in Chicago around 2 pm on Friday, and spent the afternoon walking around and shopping.  Dar was a good sport, and sat playing Angry Birds while I tried on 37 pairs of jeans and actually helped me pick out a pair.  After a few hours of shopping, we headed back to the hotel to get ready for dinner.  Darren’s 27th birthday was Friday, so I was treating  him to dinner, and he decided on N9NE Steakhouse.

Dar's 27th B-day Dinner

I’m not a big red meat eater, but I figured when in a steak house order steak, and I am so glad I did because it was seriously one of the best things I’ve ever tasted.  Amazing food, a cool atmosphere, but not cheap, so save it for a special occasion.  Saturday morning I did not wake up to run, but instead slept in, and then got up to do some more shopping, and meet Amy for lunch!  Saturday was Chicago’s St. Patrick’s Day parade and celebrations, and the mass amounts of drunk people wandering the city were hysterical.

In front of the green river

Both of us


reflections in the bean

We finally managed to find our way to Miller’s Pub to meet up with Amy, and after a few minutes in line and a short wait inside the bar (green beers were enjoyed of course) we sat down to have lunch.  Amy was one of the first people to comment on my blog way back when, and keep coming back, so I was very excited to finally meet her in person.

Dar was once again a good sport and took pictures for us, and put up with our conversations about other bloggers and internet friends.  He barely uses Facebook, so the blogging and tweeting thing is pretty bizarro to him.  Amy already wrote about this, but the funniest part of the day came right after Darren finished talking about how funny drunk people are because you never know what they’re going to do.  A drunk guy stumbles over to our table, starts to lean towards Dar’s head with his mouth open, and pretends to blow on it and polish it with his arm.  Amy and I lost it, she was laughing so hard she was crying, and I couldn’t pull it together either.  Luckily Dar was in a good mood, otherwise that guy could have very well ended up with an elbow to the face :).  After lunch the three of us did some more walking around and shopping, well Amy and I shopped, Dar sat on a couch playing more Angry Birds.

Then it was time to say goodbye to Amy, who hopefully I will get to hang out with again when I’m back in Chicago for work in June.  Saturday night Darren and I decided on a more low-key dinner, and all I wanted was traditional Chicago Deep Dish so off to Giordano’s we went.

Seriously the best pizza ever.  I loved it, and am pretty sad I had to leave the remaining four slices in Wisconsin with Darren.  Yesterday we packed up and left Chicago to head back to Wisconsin to hang out before my 7 pm flight home.  I was very tempted to offer to stay behind when they announced the flight was overbooked, and needed three people to stay until today.  Here I am back in VA and at work today though.  Darren is flying out here in 6 weeks to visit, so it will be fun to have him in VA and show him around my town.  I’m off to get more coffee.

Bloggy Date

Last night I was fortunate enough to have this pretty lady accompany me to dinner!  I met Kacy outside the metro station in Clarendon around 6:30 and the two of us ventured over to Harry’s Tap Room to enjoy some dinner and drinks.  The last time I was at Harry’s was the night of my 23rd birthday party, and I remembered the food as delicious and the wine list as extensive.  I was correct on both counts.

Kacy and I both started with a glass of the  Sawbuck Vineyards Malbec, and it was pretty great in my opinion.  I’ve tried my share of Malbec’s over the past three years and this one rates high on my list.  Then, as an appetizer I ordered the Roasted Red Pepper and Crab Soup.  It was a red pepper puree with lump blue crab, and kind of tasted like tomato soup with chunks of crab meat.  It was tangy and sweet, and the crab meat was plentiful.

I was having trouble deciding on an entrée, and Kacy and I had to tell our waiter three times to come back in a few minutes, haha.  Eventually I decided on the Tagliatelle Ala Creme, Tagliatelle pasta, all natural chicken, mushrooms, bacon, and a Parmesan cream sauce.  It was really good, but now that I’m thinking back on it, I don’t remember tasting any chicken.  Hmm, interesting. Either way, I liked it.

While we ate, we both indulged in another glass of wine and chatted and chatted and chatted.  That’s one of the things I love most about meeting fellow bloggers.  There is never a lull in the conversation, and you can talk about everything because most likely you both are reading the same blogs, and you already know what the other has been up to for months.  Although, I agree with Amy on something, the more bloggers I meet the more convinced I am that I am freakishly tall.  Especially in heels.  Thirty minutes after our waiter dropped the check off on our table, Kacy and I finally paid and ended our dinner date.  We said our goodbyes at the metro, and I told her to come back again soon so we could go out again!

After dinner I headed home and relaxed on the couch for a little bit with this fur ball before calling it a night.

I think she is cold and trying to burrow into the couch to stay warm.  I’m with her, the temperatures here this week have been absurdly and unseasonably cold.  I maintain that if it’s going to be this cold it should at least snow, and apparently it might a little bit on Sunday night depending on if the temperature drops enough.  We’ll see.

No set plans for the weekend yet, one of the roommates is in Orlando so it’s just two of us until Monday.  I’m sure we’ll manage to find a way to entertain ourselves :).  Happy Friday everyone!


I Like Happy Hour

One of the things I was always most jealous of, and therefore looking forward to the most once I moved, was weeknight happy hours with my friends.  You see, ever since 2006 when a bunch of our group that was a year ahead of us graduated, we’ve had a group email chain going.  Originally it was so those of us still in school could keep in touch with the ones that graduated, and eventually we all graduated and it became the best way for us all to keep in touch.  There are at least 100 emails exchanged, daily, between us and with most of the group residing in the Arlington/DC area it also serves as a way for them to organize plans.  Anytime there was mention of something going on (like a weeknight happy hour) that I couldn’t go to since I lived far away, I would definitely get a little jealous.

Well, last night was my first happy hour in the area since moving, and it was so much fun.  In fact, it was really the only thing getting me through the day yesterday after my incredibly stressful morning.  A bunch of us, including my two roommates, met up at Mister Days in Clarendon to take advantage of their $2 draft beers and food menu for Wednesday nights.  I got there around 5:30 and after driving around to find parking for a little while, finally made it inside the bar.  Dani and I ended up staying until a little before 9 pm before calling it a night and heading home.  It was a lot of fun and I can’t wait until the next one!

Actually, the next happy hour for me is technically tonight because I’m meeting up with Kacy, who is in town for work!  I’ve been reading Kacy’s blog for almost as long as I’ve been blogging, so I’m very excited to have the chance to meet her in person.  Plus she needs to get out of her hotel and see more of the area ;).

No work-out this morning, as I was somewhat more tired than usual due to last nights events, but I am extremely sore from the strength training I did yesterday.  I guess I managed to get a good workout in despite only having about 20 minutes.  The morning commute was much less stressful today, and only took about the usual 40 minutes.  I can’t believe it is Thursday already, this week really seems to be flying by!  Have a great one!