“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”
|Train buds, so fun to have sleeping cars.|
|Some waiting was long, but overall the train was a very smooth process.|
|Michagan Ave Bridge & truly good Chi town deep dish|
|Stans is worth a visit|
|Lu was pretty excited about the American Girl Doll store!|
|How wonderful to travel with Grandparents!|
|Bulls game! Such a fun game and entertainment with Benny the Mascot's Birthday!|
A fabulous trip exploring Chicago. We took the train from Minneapolis/St Paul to Chicago and spent most days walking all over the city. What a wonderful city to explore. It is not always easy to travel with kids, especially a big group but we had so much fun.
We only took 2 phones, no other electronics, i pads and i pods stayed home. We took photos, talked, read books, played lots of word games and drew on paper placemats. It is a great tradition to be as unplugged as possible and made us much more connected as a family.
|City Kids for a few days, they walked and played and rode the bus!|
|We managed to enjoy ourselves in the midst of it all!|
|Kids named the chick "Otis" after watching it hatch!|
Now time for laundry and the re-entry period! One quick tip is after any trip I make a list of notes for the next vacation and keep in in our largest family suitcase. I have a note for camping, a note for hotel stays and for cabin vacations. I also keep an updated plastic bag in the suitcase with things like first aid, a hardcopy list of phone numbers, a box of crayons and toss in new small toiletries the week after we get home so its set for next time. I also have index cards that I can hand to kids for packing, such as 4 t-shirts, 1 pair of jeans and so on. I always have them pack one "church" shirt in case of a nicer resteraunt, if we happen to travel over a sunday or need to be presentable on the fly.
I covered the cards with packing tape so they can be re-used. Then they can check things off with dry erase marker as they pack things in their own packback.
We started doing this after Big M packed three pairs of fleece pajama pants, and nothing else, for a week stay for a very hot summer 4th of July at a friends cabin. We ended up cutting them and they were swim-trunks and shorts for the week. So, it worked but I figured a system for future packing would save me time and teach them independence!
|An amazing kids park near the water on the other side of MillenniumPark by the loop, |
a true highlight for everyone.