Surprise Trip Revealed…

From my birthday post, I mentioned that Carl was going to take me on a surprise trip. Well, we just returned from the trip to about 3 inches of snow on the ground and a temperature of 48 Degrees in the house. Burr…

Sorry ahead of time for a longer post! πŸ™‚ Have to get all pictures and experience in!

From the beginning-

On Thursday we both traveled to our old University. (We met in college-maybe a later blog post of the story) I was asked to speak to a few classes about my journey thus far from college to work world. I really enjoy speaking because it is my way to give back to my University. Carl had told me that we had to leave right away after because we had to get on the road. He still hadn’t told me where we were going. He loves keeping secrets for all the special events. We were about an hour into the ride and I fell asleep. Oops! πŸ™‚ I think we were by Madison when I started to guess where we were going. He didn’t say. After we continued our drive, I realized we were going to CHICAGO!!! I got so excited, I have never been there before. The drive was pretty smooth down there until we hit the Tollway road by O’Hare Airport, traffic got pretty congested. We had gotten off of a exit to a main street. It looked like we were driving down University Ave in the cities, but worse. I was guessing where we were going to stay, but he still wouldn’t tell me. We had pulled up to neighborhood with lots of apartments. He had surprised me by meeting up with my dear college friend and her husband. We ended up spending the night there, which we are so grateful for. We enjoyed the conversation and the company! Oh, we can’t forget their cat Howard either, interesting character. We visited for a couple of hours then it was head to bed, we had a fun day ahead. πŸ™‚


We had gotten up and headed downtown to our hotel. Carl said that he had reservations for us at a hotel downtown and within walking distance! We had a perfect day for weather. It was sunny and not too cold. We had parked our car, checked in our bags and started our journey. We had grabbed coffee for our walk and headed towards Millennium Park. I was on a mission to find the “Big Bean” and get a picture, like everyone else who visits Chicago. At the park we had seen the Cloud Gate (which is the real name of the big bean), the Jay Pritzker Pavilion, Crown Fountain (50-ft glass block towers with pictures), and a few abstract sculptures. We then walked down State Street to the Historic Macy’s Department store. It was built in 1892. The architecture is beautiful, I had bought a nice pair of winter gloves. πŸ™‚ Then we had went back to check into our hotel, which had an awesome view of Lake Michigan. We had done a little research on what we wanted to do next. It was either the Art Institute of Chicago, the Adler Planetarium or the Shedd Aquarium. We had decided the aquarium because they had a Jelly Fish exhibit. The aquarium was so neat of all the water animals we had seen. We then walked back to our hotel and figured out where we were going to eat. We had suggestions from Miller’s Pub. We had went there. What a neat pub, it was established in 1935. After supper we had went back to our hotel and the view at night was so pretty with all the lights. We could see the lights from Navy Pier from our hotel window. It was nice because all of the places we went were within walking distance. I told Carl, I want to figure out how many miles we walked! πŸ™‚

Here are some pictures.

Top pictures are of drive into downtown and our hotel, Congress Hotel.

Middle Pictures are from Millennium Park.

Three pictures of the Macy’s Christmas decorations in the store.

Next set of pictures are of our walk to the aquarium. If you look close enough in one of the pictures you can see the Chicago Bears-Soldier Field Stadium.

Next, is our pictures of the Jelly Exhibit.

Lastly, the night view from our room.

Then our Navy Pier pictures and driving out of Chicago.

And my cool new magnets!


We had gotten up early and checked out of the hotel. Good thing we were heading back home, the weather was cloudy, misty and cold. Then we were off to Navy Pier. We had gotten there early enough to get parking. We had grabbed breakfast and a coffee. Then we had walked around to a couple of shops. I got a few more magnets for my frig. πŸ™‚ Then we had walked outside to take a picture by the Navy Pier Beer Garden. We then headed home and stopped a few places on the way home. We hit some nasty snow weather once we hit Minnesota.

Not enough Thank You’s can tell Carl how much I enjoyed the trip. I had never been to Chicago before, hadn’t seen my college friend in a long time and had the best time ever. He said he had the trip planned for almost a month. So glad he can keep a surprise a secret better than me.

Thank You for a great trip Carl, I love you!

6 thoughts on “Surprise Trip Revealed…

  1. Oh wow, what a nice get away. I remember the first time I went to Chicago was to get paper work done for Nandini’s adoption at the Embassy. I even rode on the “L” train!

    Way to go Carl…what a nice surprise for Julia.

    We love you both most.

    • I remember you going there for Nandini! πŸ™‚ We didn’t ride any trains or buses, reason is similar to why Carl doesn’t like the post office! hehe

  2. What a great birthday present, very thoughtful and sweet! Sal probably wishes he would’ve thought of it…and then planned it around a Bears game for my birthday.

    • Haha. We made sure we got out of there before Da Bears game! haha When we were walking and got closer to the stadium, it looked like a spaceship. lol

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