Fun, Family and Freezing Rain

October 4, 2010 at 12:41 pm (Uncategorized) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

The title pretty much sums up my weekend.

Thanks to Abe and all the others

My cousin and sister drove in on Friday evening, as my cousin’s husband was deployed to Afghanistan for a year last week and she deserves a good vacation – and on that note, any prayers/chants/good vibes/well and safe wishes you could send their way are greatly appreciated.  You don’t have to support war to support our troops.  Anyway,  she’d never been to Chicago before so after they picked me up from the train station we had a few drinks at my place and headed out for the night.  I took them to The Blue Line Lounge, which is a bar I know I’ve blogged about before.  We had martini’s and I ran into five different people I know (the Lounge had some nice outdoor seating that makes for good people watching – and since Friday was likely one of the last warm nights we’ll have until mid-2011, everyone took advantage of it).  The food was good and the drinks were slow-coming but strong when they arrived.  Then came the rain, which we avoided by going into a different drinking establishment.  Good times were had by all.

The Magnificent Mile is only magnificent if you've got lots of $$$

We woke up early on Saturday (and I mean early…I enjoy sleeping in on weekends but as my cousin was up and moving by 8am, so was I) and I made a huge breakfast before we headed out.  Now, my sister is a shopper and my cousin even more so, so of course we headed to Michigan Avenue.  Personally, I avoid this area most of the time as the majority of my clothing comes from Kohl’s around Christmastime.  I’ve never been much of a fashion expert and while I like looking nice, shopping and trying on clothes for hours usually makes me want to poke my own eyeballs out with a high-heeled shoe.  I did manage to find a scarf and jacket for myself so that was good, and my cousin and sister came away with some purchases they were more than happy about so that made it worthwhile.  At one point, I was sitting on a bench in H&M (clothing store) with some poor forgotten husband and we were both playing games on our phones.  We commented to each other how the store would make lots more money if they had a bar set up, but since there was no liquor in sight we were stuck with our cells for entertainment.  It made me feel slightly better that I wasn’t alone in waiting.

The weather on Saturday was a big bunch of crappy so we had to dodge high winds and cold rain as we walked from store to store.  Seeing as how the high on Friday was in the mid-seventies and Saturday’s temps were roughly 20 degrees colder than that, even I was in a bit of a weather shock.  The rain may have not been literally freezing but it felt like it, especially to the two visiting girls who have been used to warmer weather.  We shopped til we dropped, with a pizza break at Unos in between stores.  We all got the traditional Chicago deep dish and we all felt like taking naps when we were finished.  And while we didn’t nap, we did have a bit of down time at my place before getting ready to go out Saturday night.

We went and had dinner at Deleece Grill and Pub in Lakeview, and I was pleasantly surprised.  I’d never been before but have heard amazing things about their macaroni and cheese so we gave it a shot.  And it was delicious.  They had a lot of food to choose from but apparently their mac and cheese is a well-known specialty so I enjoyed the Gruyere and roasted root vegetables with crispy fried

Mmm food

shallots dish.  As much as I loved it I had some extra at the end, so I took that to our next stop, a birthday party (I left it in the fridge and I like to think it provided help to someone’s late night munchies).  A friend of mine was throwing down at his place that evening and the festivities involved a keg of tasty micro-brewed beer.  I don’t even remember the last keg party I went to so it was entertaining to say the least.  The keg was also strategically positioned in the tub of the one and only bathroom, so you could multi-task while taking a leak.  Handy, if not entirely sanitary.  It was funny to be out with my cousin and sister because all three of us look quite alike and we even had some stranger on the bus ask if we were related.  My friends at the party commented on it too…I haven’t had that happen since high school, when we all lived in the same town, so I got a kick out of it.  We partied for a while but my poor cousin was almost falling asleep on her feet so we headed home before it got super late.

After a huge brunch at my go-to breakfast spot for taking house guests (yup, Chief O Neills), my sister and cousin headed on home.  I headed onto my couch, where I spent a large part of my evening.  I also cleaned a little, watched a movie and had dinner…but yeah, most of the night involved my couch, which was exactly what I needed after a super busy weekend playing tour guide.  I love when people visit me but it’s always tiring (and expensive!).  We all had a great time though so that’s what really matters.  And hopefully the next time my family comes to visit, the weather will be warm and sunny so I can really show Chicago off.  I realize that probably won’t be for another eight months or so and I’ve made my peace with that…plus I have a new scarf and jacket to help me out until then!


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