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Wednesday, July 6, 2011


I could write the longest blog post ever about Chicago.  Since I'm also going to make an iMovie and a digital album I'm going to keep this relatively short.

There are so many details and fun things and inside jokes after just three and a half days it's hard to believe.

Before I left I had to get a Vacation Pedicure:

First, what are the odds that I'd see a friend from school while checkign into the hotel?
Turns out we stayed at the same hotel, same floor, for the exact same amount of days.

Too weird!!

On my first subway.
Technically it's not a real subway, it's an elevated train called the 'L' to locals,
and now by Liv & me as well.

I was comfortable riding the 'L'
however I didn't hang my body off the side where strict signs say to stay away.

Our first lunch at the Rooftop Brewery.

My usual quesadillas
but with a new hat.

The best thing we did was sign up for this double decker trolley ride.
Three days of 14 stops that you can hop on and off as much as you like
for $35 and a free t-shirt.
I learned a ton of Chicago facts from our fabulous guides.

See Liv at the top with Josh, the tour guide?
The tour was over and I had to shout at her to get her to leave.
She was having a lot of fun!

On the tour.
We had gorgeous weather and got more and more sunburned each day.

The top of The Tribune Building.
This building won 1st prize for the most beautifully constructed building.

Trump Tower

I was feeling daring.  ;-)

So many gorgeous buildings.
One taller than the next.

Even more gorgeous at night.

We spent several hours on Michigan Avenue.
Also known at the Magnificent Mile
to locals and now to Liv & me
the Mag Mile.

The shopping is fabulous.

Only one store on the Mag Mile ever turns a profit.
The rent is so expensive the rest of the companies use it as advertisement for their other locations.
The Apple Store is the only one with a profit.

My favorite store on the Mag Mile: Forever XXI
We found some amazing accesories in there!

We got back on the trolley and headed to Soldier Field.

It's known by locals as the Mistake on the Lake.
It is not impressive and we decided not to get off the trolley and headed over to
Navy Pier.

Navy Pier is the #1 tourist spot in Chicago.

Do you know what Chicago means?

Land of the stinky onions.

This Ferris Wheel is 15 stories high and it takes seven minutes to get around once.

We rode it and it was fun.
At the top it seems as if it stops.
I got a little nervous but got through it.
It's really really high to be semi - locked
in a little plastic box.

The best part of Navy Pier, in my opinion,
was the most perfect Sangria of my life.

Delicious on a gorgeous day!

Oprah's Chicago apartment:
199 Lake Shore Drive

On our way to the Oprah kiosk:
only to find it out closed two weeks earlier.
Boo hoo!

Friday at 5:00
Beginning to get ready for the NKOTBSB concert.

Autographed memorbilia in place and tix ready.
We thought we'd head to the United Center and grab dinner and drinks down there for a couple hours before the concert.
Little did we know it seems the United Center was dropped in the middle of a not-so-nice neighborhood-
With not a bar or restaurant in sight.

Instead we stood with a handful of diehard fans watching AJ McClean play catch with a sercurity guard and Brian's dog get walked.

Finally a New Kid made an appearance and the crowd went wild.

There's Joey Joe himself.
He looked right at us and waved and smiled.  He was eating an ice cream cone.
I didn't get a good shot of that because I was one of the crazy ladies screaming.

What do you suppose this guy did to deserve standing there for an hour 
before the concert holding his girlfriend's purse?

Can you read the sign?
New Kids on the Block & Backstreet Boys

We've had the Right Stuff and we were Hangin' Tough
waiting for the show to begin enjoying a

There they are!!

Jordan popped out at the end of our row.  When I figured out what was happening I bolted down to the end of our row.  Every step I'd take he'd get one step further away.  I wasn't even close to touching him.  And unfortunately didn't even think to take a picture until it was way too late.
What I did get out of it was a gigantic bruise on my left leg from banging into every single armrest all the way down the aisle.

This is my favorite shot from the concert.
Considering we had one dead battery and one filled memory card and two smart phones hard at work we did get some good shots!

All of these cars are people leaving the United Center and that's just one side of the building.
We waited about 40 minutes for a cab and there were none!
As I was walking against traffic looking to snag one as soon as possible as car full of girls called me over to take a picture of my autographed vintage nightshirt.

Finally I ran across three lanes of traffic and got in one technically one already taken.

After the concert we went to Jordan's after party at En Clave night club.
We weren't on the list (obviously since we'd only learned about it three hours ago) and didn't make a real attempt to get in.
Then his limo pulled up right next to us.
He didn't get out there and went around the other side of the building instead. . .
maybe he recognized me and thought I was an actual stalker.

The night ended on a very happy note at 4am.  Finally I said, "Liv, I'm sorry! I gotta get back to the hotel!" She replied, "Kel, you never have to apologize for wanting to leave a bar at 3:50am!!"

The next morning afternoon we headed over to the John Hancock building.

We took the fastest elevator in North America to the 94th floor.

The sights were amazing!

Enjoying real Chciago style pizza in Chicago!
All weekend I kept taking left overs back to the hotel and never ate them.
So, here, I ate two pieces and left the rest there.
Broke my heart.

Next, we walked over to Millenium Park.

The best part was by far, The Bean.

A breathtaking piece of artwork.

Can you spot our reflections?

A view from under The Bean.
It was hard to find our own reflections.

At about midnight on our last night was explorered our gorgeous hotel
The Hilton Palmer House.
We managed to go to all 23 floors.

The view from our room.

On our way out of town on Sunday morning.

As usual, I way over packed.
But I wouldn't change a thing about the entire trip.
It was amazing and - oh - so memorable.

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