Wednesday, December 7, 2011


     A few weeks ago, we made a trip to Chicago to visit a couple of residency programs and see the city.  It is taking me a little while to get pictures on the blog because Mark takes about 1000 (literally) in each city we visit, so there are quite a few to choose from!
     Our first stop was for some Chicago deep dish pizza, and it was so yummy!  On the other side of that pizza was our good friend Matt Lapine.   He and his wife Molly, who was back at the hotel with their precious daughter Bella for nap time, were able to meet us for the weekend and it was so good to see them!  We met Matt and Molly pretty soon after we were married when we were in the same church small group, and we became fast friends.  We have missed them dearly since they moved last July, but have been excited for them as Matt enjoys a new job in Toledo, Ohio.  It was so fun to spend time with them again!
     Molly and sweet Bella.
     Bella loves leaves.  She would be perfectly content to sit in her stroller with a leaf in each hand.  She is such a laid back kid and smiles more than any little one I've ever met!
     A pretty view from our walk along the water toward Navy Pier, which is in the background if you can see it.  Mark and I realized that every city we are looking at is on a body of water, which we are so excited about because it is so pretty!
     This one was taken from Navy pier.  I love the silhouette of the city and the bird in mid-flight.  Mark is such a great photographer!
     The Art Institute of Chicago, where Mark's aunt studied.
     Running Bella up a ramp.  She was pretty unfazed by the excitement.
     Can you spot the two people in the center of the bean, one is much taller than the other?
     There they are.  I didn't realize the last time I saw this structure how cool the reflection of the city looks.  I'm guessing I was missing the main point of it.
     Another thing you learn when you are married to an artist with a background in art history and architecture is to appreciate buildings.  An interesting little tidbit Mark brought up is that we've seen a Frank Gehry building in each city we've visited.  In Seattle it was the Experience Music Project, in Chicago the Pritzker Pavilion (below), in LA the Walt Disney Concert Hall, and in NYC the 8 Spruce Street building.
     The "L."  Mark and I are really excited about living in a place that has good public transportation.  We are looking forward to selling our cars and spending more time walking outside.

     You don't have to know Mark very well to know that he has been a lifelong Cubs fan.  So, of course we had to make the pilgrimage to Wrigley Field!  He was such a happy guy.
     After we left Wrigley field, we walked around the Lincoln Park area which is a neat more-residential neighborhood.  We were walking by this park and I said, "Um, I think that's a rhino."  Apparently, there is a free zoo in Lincoln Park!  So, of course we walked through.  I did not wake up that morning thinking I'd see lions and tigers and rhinos!
     The tiger was roaring.  Mark started to make some comment about how he was probably roaring because he was miserable, but I stopped him mid-sentence because there was a 5 year old boy standing next to us.
     The lions were taking a rest.  They were right up next to a window, so we could see them up close.  The picture doesn't do justice to how massive they were.  Their paws were the size of my face.  We talked about how powerful and majestic they are, and got a better picture of our God's power and majesty as he is often described as a lion in the Bible.
     Overall, we had a great time in Chicago.  It is such a neat city with a lot of natural beauty paired with the excitement that a big city brings.  Mark was with me for a three day weekend and then he flew home to get back to work and my mom joined me for the rest of the week.  We had a lot of fun walking, shopping, and of course, eating.  I interviewed with 2 programs and we left feeling like Chicago will be a definite possibility for our next destination!

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