Thursday, my nephew's and my first day in Chicago, we went to Shedd Aquarium and the Field Museum of natural history.
The stingrays were Jake's favorite at the aquarium...you should have seen the look on his face when I told him he'd get to pet some when we visited the zoo :) He also enjoyed the dolphin show.
My favorites were the pirahna and the jellyfish.
We had lunch between visiting the aquarium and museum...we got Chicago style hot dogs from a cart in the green space in front of the museum, then sat on the steps in the warm sunshine eating our hot dogs while gazing at the downtown Chicago skyline. Ahhh...
When we walked into the Field Museum Jake dragged me right to Sue.
We didn't have time to see all of the exhibits, but made a point to see the rest of the dinosaurs, the Egyptian artifacts, and the birds and mammals.
Friday we spent the day at the Museum of Science and Industry. We saw all of the exhibits except BodyWorks (I've already seen it and Jake wasn't interested). We even went down the coal mine. When the German WWII submarine U-505 came into view as we rounded a corner I heard Jake gasp...he looked at me in amazement and said "it's real!". When I told him on the drive down that we would see a submarine at the museum he assumed it would be a scale replica.
I particularly enjoyed The Great Train Story...a model railroad traveling between miniature cities of Chicago and Seattle.
Friday evening we had dinner with Brae, then Brae and I attended the miniature show. Saturday I took Jake to the miniature show.
Brae bought a spectacular pair of sterling silver griffin candlesticks crafted by Don Henry that I am very jealous about.
You can see her other purchases from Friday on her blog, as well as Sunday's, when she went back for more. I already showed you what I bought.
Sunday Jake and I went on a hop-on hop-off double decker bus tour of downtown Chicago. We stopped first at the tallest building in the United States, Willis Tower (which used to be known as Sears Tower), where we went up to the Skydeck to look down at all the other skyscrapers.
From there we went to Millenium Park, where we had lunch and saw the sculpture Cloud Gate, by artist Anish Kapoor . I've seen it in photographs, but it's truly impressive in person.
Jake and I took a picture of ourselves reflected in the sculpture...it is one of two I have of myself on the trip (I was too busy taking pictures of Jake)....the other is of me at the observatory at the top of the John Hancock Center, which was our last stop on the bus tour.
We also stopped briefly at the Michigan Avenue bridge and Navy Pier.
I wanted to stop at the water tower, but we ran out of time. We did see it from the bus, but I didn't get a picture.
Jake and I both found the architecture of Fourth Presbyterian Church unsettling. The symmetry normally found in such a structure is totally thrown off by having a spire on only one side of the church. Jake was sure it had to have been built with two and one 'fell off'...I couldn't convince him otherwise.
We spent our last day of vacation at Brookfield Zoo. After the excitement of petting and feeding the stingrays we were both pretty worn out so did a lot of sitting on benches while watching the animals. We also saw another dolphin show.