there is no cohesive quality to this post. it's just stuff going on in my life right now. that's all. don't fret and wonder how one thing goes with another. it doesn't.
so, chicago was awesome. in that "wonderful, fun, doing-something-different, we want to claw each others' eyes out but hey! that's a family trip!" kind of way.
henry went to his first slumber party that friday, so i picked him up around 8 a.m., we came home and packed, finished laundry, and i got my third box of layouts off to f+w for the
book untitled michele skinner project. we *finally* took off around 3 p.m. ... were shooting for 2, left an hour late, typical for us. after stops for potty breaks and meals and snacks and more potty breaks and who knows what else, we didn't roll in to chicago until about one in the morning. and it was freezing.
next morning we woke up and were treated to views of the chicago river, the sears tower, and a beautiful sunrise. we got up, dressed, fed, and were off to the shedd aquarium for the day. harper didn't so much like the 4-d planet earth movie experience (she didn't want to see a 15-minute movie in the first place, but when she got squirted in the face with water it was all over.), and henry mainly read all the computer interactive information and was unimpressed with actual wildlife, but marc and i had a good time.
monday marc went to work, and the kids and i met up with my friend jessie and her family. i've known jessie for, what, almost 10 years? but only over the internet and email. we met on an ivillage message board for women who were trying to decide whether and when to have a baby, and we just bonded. our families are so freakishly alike that we've always said we should meet. well, turns out jessie's sister got them tickets to see oprah, they were going to be in chicago, and marc's in chicago every dern week so i said we'll be there. and i'm so glad we did. we all got along so well ... even marc and jessie's husband found each other mutually fascinating. wow. and henry, i think, has found a new kindred friend in michael. it was great.
anyway ... with jessie & the fam ... we spent the day at the children's museum at navy pier. the kids had a blast with each other, jessie and i had a blast with each other, and once marc joined us after lunch, he and jimmy had a blast with each other. (jimmy is swat in florida ... i think marc was actually a little smitten.)
tuesday, marc was again at work all day. the kids and i had breakfast and caught a cab to the john hancock building and took a $20 ride to the observation deck on the 95th floor. that may sound anticlimactic, but honestly it was so much fun. the place was nearly deserted, so the kids could run the length of the floor, peer through those oversize telescope things, and take as much time as they wanted. we were hoping to meet up with my dad and stepmom for lunch that afternoon - there were in chicago for an appointment, but dad had a bugger of a cold and didn't want to share, so they headed home before we could meet. which was sweet of him, but i caught it anyway. oh well. the kids and i headed back to the hotel and swam until marc got home. that night we found an awesome indian place about two blocks away from
marc's home away from home the hotel and stuffed ourselves silly.
(i think maybe this was the night harper fell out of bed at 2 a.m. and spent the next hour screaming at the top of her lungs that her crotch hurt ... yeah. that was fun.)
wednesday marc had appointments north of the city, so the kids and i drove to yet another children's museum and spent the whole ding dong day there. literally. marc finally picked us up around 4 p.m., in the snow, and we started for home. five hours later we were about halfway ... and the whole trip usually takes six hours. so we gave up, got a hotel in janesville, wisconsin, and called it a day. thursday we were finally home.
so that was fun.
and now i'm sitting here in a house that's periodically racked by these BOOMS as the ice in our gutters snap and contract in the sub-zero-not-including-wind-chill temps outside. they're scaring the heck out of me ... the kids were so freaked out at dinner that we had to call our neighbor, ray, to come listen and tell us what on earth was going on. everyone should have a ray-the-neighbor ... he knows all.
and earlier today ... wow. this was weird. harper and i went to the mall to play on the indoor play area and grab some lunch. she'd been asking for a cheeseburger since 8:30 a.m., so i foresaw happy meals in our future. but as we were walking to the car, she saw a chinese buffet place and put on the brakes. seriously? but yes, mandarin palace. (or whatever it's called.) she ate orange jello, mushrooms, and white rice.
and then - this is the weird part - we were sitting there eating and i noticed the couple in the booth behind harper. the woman had her eyes closed and looked on the verge of yelling and/or crying. i because intrigued and started to listen without really listening. turns out she and the man were having an affair, and she was complaining that he says he loves her but won't commit to more than wednesdays, and his wife somethingsomethingsomething, and she's sick of it and wants out.
now, these people were probably in their mid- to upper 50s, and not only were they cheating on someone with each other, but they were ending it over crappy chinese at the mall on a tuesday. i don't get that. i was both so mesmerized and horrified by this couple that i immediately upon leaving had to call marc and tell the story to his voice mail. i hope we're never so unhappy with our life together that we get to the point that one of us is getting dumped over crappy chinese at the mall. on a tuesday. that's got to be pretty unhappy.
after that, harper and i ran to target ... and the clouds opened up, and the sun shone, and the angels sang, and i saw them: THE SHOES. the shoes i will wear until the day i die:
it's like god decided i needed a shoe of my very own. i mean, really: light yellow?? there's so much light yellow in my life that marc's officially put a moratorium on it. and chuck's?? hello ... most perfect shoe ever. and polka dots? stop. you're killing me. thank you, jesus.
such a nice day.