My cousin had her first baby back in May, Max was born a bit early, but he's doing great now. He was being baptized near their home in Milwaukee, so we drove up to share in the celebration. I also booked a hotel for the night so we could spend some extra time in Milwaukee. I knew I had driven through it a number of times, but couldn't recall every actually being there. My sister had heard about the Safe House downtown and wanted to check it out.
The baptism was a nice opportunity to see family that I hadn't seen in a very long time. Ten years is along time... it was nice to be part of a family party. We've only gotten together twice since I moved, once in Vegas for my wedding and once back home when my grandpa passed away (we were only missing my brother). It was wonderful to see everyone for a happy occasion. I'm the oldest on both sides of the family. It's wild to see my cousins grown up and having families of their own, and my little cousins are in High School and Middle School. Just crazy, I tell you. I swear I haven't aged that much, but judging my them it's true. Ten years has gone by.
Bike Fest was in Milwaukee the same weekend, so it made for an interesting visit. The city rumbled and every street was lined with bikes. It was a really neat experience. I imagine on a regular weekend it is a lot more laid back. We did get to Safe House. And we were able to complete our Missions. We stayed for beers and fried Cheese Curds. Burt Reynolds heart on was our favorite.
I would've like to visit the Public Market or walk the Riverwalk but we had to get back. We stopped at Mars Cheese Castle on the way home. We had a nice brunch on the road, we filled up on cheese curds, sausage links and crackers. It was delicious!
Back in Chicago, I got to visit with friends, dear friends from High School had their first, so I also got to meet their son. Before I know it, he'll be high school. It's best if I accept that now. I also got another opportunity to see family at my cousin's going away party. She's moved to Denver to be with her boyfriend. I'm incredibly excited for her to begin this adventure. It was bittersweet for my sister, they grew incredibly close after I moved away. And now, both of her favorite ladies have moved out west.
I was also able to have lunch at Giordano's with a few cousins from my mom's side, again it's great catching up and I just can't believe how their kids have grown.
Chicago was experiencing a heat wave when I first got into town, but after some thunderstorms temps cooled - THANKFULLY - and I finally had an opportunity to go downtown. I've been wanting to go, but every trip is insanely cold or hot. We weren't about to let the beautiful day pass us by, so I drove us downtown so I could finally see Millennium Park. It is beyond weird to have grown up in Chicago, but to have only seen "the Bean" on TV and in photos.
Traffic was incredibly light it was a nice ride and the city streets were pretty empty too. All the hustle and bustle had the day off. So, we could leisurely see the sights. Cloud Gate is pretty neat, people definitely flock to see it. My favorite perspective is underneath it and along the side with the curve where the reflection melts into the sky.
After walking around Millennium Park, we strolled over to Buckingham Fountain. It was my favorite place downtown was I was young. As long as I can remember I've been fascinated by moving water and I have fond memories of running around with glow in the dark necklaces on warm summer nights.
I'm happy I was finally able to get downtown. I was also thrilled to get my fill of real egg rolls. It's what I miss most these days.
I could really go for one right now!