So smart of me to ship Ada to the Grandparents' for the weekend.
It took a ton of coordination (okay, an hour maybe), but boy was it worth it.
A huge thanks to Great Aunt Terri for driving Ada out to Sycamore and for signing songs to her until she passed out at Rt 59. (I'm not sure who had more fun. Terri was pretty excited...maybe she always wanted a little girl???)
Another huge thanks goes to Grandma Ba and Grandpa Rich for swooping her up and entertaining her for day one. Rumor has it that Ada had fun testing out the cushions on the couch shopping trip. And her Easter egg hunt at home prepared her for the real deal Saturday morning in Lake Geneva. She had to show those Wisconsin Cheeseheads how it's done.
My only question is...who is the yellow animal in the green dress? I know it's a character from a Dr. Seuss book and it came from Kohl's, but I can't find a name of the thing for the life of me. I think it's a bird of some sort, so she remains nameless...
And a final big thanks goes to DD and Bobpa for venturing to Lake Geneva with a two-year-old in tow. Not an easy feat, but one they made look super easy (which secretly enrages me since Ada's been such a little devil for me lately and she got rave reviews from all of the grandparents, including being referred to as an "angel". Is it possible that they are blinded by love?)
In Bobpa's house, you can't go Easter Egg hunting on an empty stomach. Turns out Ada likes his cooking (and I think he likes cooking for her, too.)
After a rain delay in the park and relocation of the big event to the dry indoors, DD, Bobpa and Ada arrived just in time for the hunt to begin. Somehow, DD rigged it so Ada got in with the "Under 2" category and could dominate the competition with her 3 month age advantage and towering size. She came out with 5 eggs, 2 of which she shared with a little boy who had none. That's the spirit DD! Get her nice and rich and teach her how to donate to the less fortunate. Now all she needs is the "Future Philanthropist" bumper sticker on her tri-cycle.
I'd say the hunt was a huge success since one of the eggs had a coupon for a free treat from Culver's inside. Lucky duck.
Then there was the photo opp with her newest furry friend. This is also DD's maiden voyage with my camera so I have to give her credit for getting it in focus and not cutting Ada's head off. She gets a B+ for her first attempt.
Rick and I on the other hand...I guess it really isn't the other hand if we had fun too. We had our first date in months as we kissed Ada goodbye and wished her well on her Easter adventure. Thursday night was an average dinner at a local pub and early to bed. Friday I got a ton of work done, and laundry too. I met up with Rick and his co-workers downtown for happy hour at the Lakefront Brewery Rooftop. His thoughtful co-workers found me a chair since they felt bad for the preggo having to stand at a bar drinking lemon water as they partook in the local fare. So sweet of them.
Then we went for a fabulous dinner at La Scarola, an Italian family restaurant on Grand near Halstead. I had the best Sea Bass I've ever eaten. So delicious. And then we came home and grabbed a slice of banana chocolate cake from the Bagel Deli near our house and nursed that over the next 3 days whenever my sweet-tooth craving kicked in.
Saturday we went to breakfast at a local diner on Clark (The Golden Nugget) that was AWFUL. So beyond bad we should have just left. At least now we know better. It was rainy and I wanted to try something new, but close since we didn't have a car. That was our best solution as I thought a friend had recommended it. Clearly I was imagining the recommendation. We won't make that mistake twice.
Luckily, we made up for it with a trip downtown to see Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland -- in 3D! I'm sad to admit, but it was our first 3D movie since the new technology has become so popular. I was shocked by the ticket prices and almost fell over at the kiosk. Yaozers! But it was worth it. We are crossing our fingers that Avatar comes back to IMAX in 3D at some point so we can see that one as it was meant to be seen since a 3D flat screen TV isn't in our near future.
My mishap of the weekend involved a bit of spilled water -- typical me. I forgot to check my SIGG bottle to be sure the lid was fastened securely inside as I filled it with water from home to take into the theater. I stuck the bottle in my purse and hopped into a cab. Poor Rick was worried my water broke in the back seat since I slid out at our destination and the seat was drenched. I quickly assured him it wasn't me, or the umbrella, but my water bottle. The contents of my purse weren't spared, including my library book and a membership application to the Shedd Aquarium (How ironic--I wonder if a place full of water would accept a wet check?). Whoops. I'll be making a donation to the Chicago Public Library here in the near future to make up for that poor book. It did air out nicely at home so it wasn't a complete loss.
And the final highlight of our weekend was a trip to a new local restaurant that knocked our socks off. Chilam Balam is a new place that opened just a few months ago and is super close to our house(yeah!/dangerous). It's BYOB. They use sustainable ingredients from local farmers=tasty. And the food is delicious -- Mexican inspired tapas. The waiters all wear t-shirts from Threadless, which happens to have its first retail store 30 feet south of the restaurant (way to support a local business!). And, of course, we had dessert. The chocolate mousse cake with some sort of creamy goat cheese inside and an orange sauce with marshmallow something on top...whatever it is, it's delicious. And I'm a fan of the virgin sangria. YUM!
Somewhere amongst all of that eating, we watched Guy Ritchie's Sherlock Holmes and thoroughly enjoyed it. I'll admit that the critics had tempered my hopes of it being anything close to good, but I was delightfully surprise and entertained.
I also managed to get a ton of work done so I could meet my Wednesday work deadline. Whew. All in all, an awesome weekend... and we haven't even made it to Sunday yet...
Moral of the story: If you have the good fortune of loving family members nearby, bless them with your children so you can again experience freedom and maintain your sanity.