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Oh, we met on the Internet

Way back in the day, when it was 2009 and I was still in my early 20s, I started this blog because I was pretty damn bored living at home, and it seemed like fun. No one read for a while, but then I started getting comments, and Amy was one of the first to comment. Maybe even the first? Who can remember that far back. Anyway, it was an instant soul-mate connection and I’ve since been to Chicago three times to play, she’s come to DC, we’ve been each other’s wedding dates, and traveled to Boston together. Prior to our first IRL meeting, my then boyfriend was convinced she was a serial killer, and I’m really glad she turned out not to be… even if our story of how we met is “prison pen pals”.

I had the most fabulous time in Chicago over the weekend, despite the cold I think March is an awesome time to go because no one does St. Patty’s like Chicago. Sorry, Boston I’ve never been for your festivities but I think I’m still partial to Chi-town. Yes I’m aware the actual holiday isn’t until Monday, but the city was getting itself ready anyway. My flight arrived at noon on Friday, and Amy and I had grand plans to tackle a lake-front run together. However, I am old and brittle and after running 4 miles on Tuesday evening and 5.5 on Wednesday I was feeling a somewhat scary pain in my hip that hurt to stand, walk, and move. The run was put on hold in favor of window shopping on Michigan Ave, and we still managed to squeeze in about 9,000 steps in a few hours.

Eventually we decided it was a socially acceptable hour to have a cocktail, so up to the top of the Hancock Building we went for a $15 glass of wine with complimentary views of the city.

Since this winter has been absolute frigid, the Great Lakes are like 90% ice-covered and flying into the city over Lake Michigan looked like you were actually about to touch down in Antarctica somewhere. After our drink, we headed back to our hotel for the night (the Hyatt off Michigan Ave) where we drank more wine and got ready for dinner. I had one request food wise while in Chicago and it was deep dish. Now, I’m traditionally a New York style pizza girl, but man I do love some deep dish every once in a while.

because pizza that pretty deserves a photograph

I ate three pieces, because I am disgusting and have no self-control, but it was worth the stomach ache I had after. Predictably we were both ready for non-restricting pants and our comfy beds after this, and after traveling all morning plus the time change I had no complaints about calling it a somewhat early night.

Amy and I both early risers, so we were up and ready to go on Saturday laughably early. Like we were at Millennium Park at 9 am early. Fine by me, beat the crowds and got some fun pictures in. You should try dragging your suitcase through the city as it’s snowing, it adds some resistance training to your walk.

Chicago River

Our weekend of un-healthy living continued with a pre- St. Patrick’s Day pub crawl which involved a lot of $3 Miller Lites and fried appetizers (I’m on a serious detox right now, lol jk I had wine last night). It was a perfect weekend, and if anything just not long enough. I can’t wait to go back when it’s warm and drag Amy on the architecture tour with me.

sister wives ❤

Oh, and I arrived home in DC to sunny skies and 55 degree temperatures. Madison was kind enough to pick me up from the airport.

Workouts this week? Three miles on Monday to test out my achy hip, felt a little off still but no pain so fingers crossed it was just a strained muscle. Elliptical and core work yesterday, interval run tonight.

Swoon

So I miss Chicago and my boyfriend already, it’s a shame he doesn’t actually live there, because that would be fantastic.  I suppose Milwaukee isn’t thaaaaaaaaat far of a drive, I’ll just have to find a room to rent for weekends :).  Yesterday was a pretty uneventful one.  I brought gym clothes with me, but that ended up just being silly since I sat on my ass at my desk all day without moving.  Made it easier for today though, since they’re still packed and sitting at my desk.

Dar gave me a Nook as a “just because I love you” gift, or an early birthday present,  whichever you prefer, so I spent some time yesterday trying to play with that.  Unfortunately my wireless network here at work blows chunks so I couldn’t connect for very long.  Then I ended up leaving it sitting on my desk, because apparently I was still half asleep at the end of the day.  At least it wasn’t stolen.  Any good suggestion of books I should download?!

Anyway, so I stayed at the Chicago Hilton during my trip, and positively fell in love with it.  Not the hotel itself actually, wifi wasn’t free, they charged $15 to use the gym, and it took me one whole day to figure out why the air conditioning wasn’t working, but the building.  From the second I walked in the front doors, I was amazed by how beautiful the lobby and was, and then I got the chance to explore the ballrooms and could immediately picture Darren and I getting married there.

Yes, I’m well aware we’re not engaged yet, but we were once and I know we will be again sometime in the future, so don’t go telling me I’m all crazy and insane.  He actually put up with my nonsense and went exploring with me, and then sat down at the grand piano and played me a song <3.

grand ballroom

mood lighting

Waldorf Room set up for a wedding

staircase in the great hall

Seriously, it’s beautiful, and I’m sure like a bajillion dollars, sigh.  I guess it’s good I have a longgggggggg time to save?  All Dar says is “whatever you want hun” haha, although he will want a budget.  Also, I don’t have nearly enough friends or family to fill up that room, but whatever.

Back to regular routines today, which means a workout at some point during the day.  I hate trying to get back in the swing of things after a vacation, I have zero motivation.  Well happy Tuesday and first day of summer, longest day of the year!  Oh, and I spent some time editing photos yesterday and am in love with this one, I just ordered it in an 8×10 print.

Second City Love

I’m so tired I want to cry.  I honestly don’t know how I made it to work this morning without driving off the road, especially since I had to drive all the way to work before I got that first sweet sip of coffee in my system.  The silver lining?  My boss is OOO all week in Chicago now, haha we traded places.  Chicago was AWESOME, well the part where I wasn’t working anyway, and well worth the sleep deprivation.  I worked 10-6 on Friday, 8-4:15 on Saturday, and 8-12 on Sunday and played well into the night each night.  Exhausting. I’ll let the pictures do most of the talking.

before heading out for dinner Fri night

In front of Buckingham Fountain

hanging out at Wrigley on Sat night

Amy showed us an awesome time

We met up with Amy in Wrigleyville on Saturday night to take advantage of the Wrigleyville Block Party happening outside Cubs stadium, and it just so happened the Yankees were playing as well as Amy’s favorite band.  Dance party shenanigans and lots of beer drinking ensued.  Thanks for showing Dar and I another awesome time Amy, and introducing us to our future wedding band haha.

Rod Tuffcurls and the Bench Press

sweet dance moves

I passed out cold before midnight that night haha, only to wake up at 3 am to Dar still wide awake and watching Inception.  Talk about a weird movie to wake up in the middle of.  Uh, the next day at my training was a little rough.  Sunday, we had a little time before my 4:50 flight, and had lunch and did some more walking around.

No trip to Chicago is complete without a slice of this

Gorgeous Lake Michigan

being a dork

Ha, I actually almost missed my flight because we significantly underestimated Sunday afternoon traffic.  I made it to the airport with about 50 minutes to spare before my flight, flew through check in and security and made it to my gate just as they were starting to board.  It was stressful, but the crazy rush kept mine and Darren’s goodbye from being too sad.  A little more than six weeks until our next visit in August!

I’m off to try to figure out how to file my expense report, and to find more coffee.  If you are so inclined, full album of photos here, and fun video of Rod Tuffcurls here.