Happy days and haircuts

We've figured out that a "Children's Museum" is actually just another term for an indoor playground where you can easily lose your children, so we optimistically set off for the Chicago Children's Museum on a Sunday afternoon. Afternoons really are the time to do things as most families are starting to head home shortly after lunch time, as are school trips if it's a weekday, so we had an easy morning at home and then headed into Navy Pier, home to the museum, around the top of the day. The nice lady on the desk let a dozing Miss H in for free (everyone over 12 months of age has to pay), and when she woke up shortly afterwards both kids had a brilliant time playing with building tools, skittles, fishing nets, climbing walls, and the perennial winner: water!

chicago-children's-museum

chicago-children's-museum

chicago-children's-museum

chicago-children's-museum

chicago-children's-museum

chicago-children's-museum

chicago-children's-museum

chicago-children's-museum

The next day we took it easy and stayed local. The weather was starting to pick up a little, so we went out to the beach near us which unfortunately had quite a bit of broken glass on it, so instead we practised some baseball in the adjoining park.

practising-baseball

The streets round about our place are really rather pretty. Chicago isn't quite as flag-mad as some places, though there are a fair share of Cubs flags out on game days (our place is very close to Wrigley Field, home of the Chicago Cubs baseball team). But each of the houses is distinct and stands with an almost tangible little sense of pride.

lakeview-streets

lakeview-streets

Temperatures were by now starting to feel distinctly more Spring-like, so we reckoned the time was right to take a day trip to Starved Rock State Park, a 2.5hr drive inland from Chicago (out past the amusingly named Romeoville and then Joliet). Mr H had done some research and found it was one of the most popular day trips one could do from Chicago, so we set off with a packed lunch, plenty of snacks, sensible shoes and responsible suncream. The kids were remarkably good in the car so we got there quite swiftly. Then after a quick chat with the friendly chap at the visitor centre we decided to take the short, easy hike to French Canyon.

starved-rock-state-park

starved-rock-state-park

starved-rock-state-park

starved-rock-state-park

starved-rock-state-park

We didn't know quite how the little ones would manage - and we didn't have the baby carrier with us on this trip - but Miss H seemed in good spirits, so after stopping to enjoy our picnic lunch we carried on to the trail leading to Wildcat Canyon. We were climbing up to a fair height which isn't the best for me with my vertigo, so I messed around with the little lady who was keen to show you all her plaster while Mr H took some of the high-vantage photographs that follow.

starved-rock-state-park

starved-rock-state-park

starved-rock-state-park

starved-rock-state-park

On the way back we all took the low road, thankfully, and after several pauses for stone-throwing, flower-smelling and sand-swirling, a couple of meltdowns over mislaid pine cones and an emergency snack stop, we made it back to the visitor centre looking like we were all still friends.

starved-rock-state-park

starved-rock-state-park

starved-rock-state-park

starved-rock-state-park

Reviewing the photos that evening we decided our children looked shamefully shaggy-haired, so the next morning we took a chance with the $5 haircuts for children at the salon on our block which I'm pleased to say worked out just fine - phew! We rewarded the kids with a play in the park and then went out for lunch at a local family-friendly favourite, Crosby's Kitchen. Chips for hair #parentingwin.

park-ladder

park-slide

park-climbing

lunch-restaurant


Coming up: cruising down the river, and the Chicago theatre scene.


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Cheerio, Chicago