Travelling with your family at any time of year can prove challenging.
This year, for Christmas, The Man and I decided to travel to Chicago and visit my family for the holidays.
At 11:30 on Wednesday morning, we embarked on a seemily simple adventure downtown Chicago to enjoy the sights and sounds of the Windy City at Christmas.
It never ceases to amaze me how even the best laid plans can go awry.
While logistically sound, our trip into the city was less than a fun and happy family adventure.
I recommend taking the opportunity to visit the Winter Wonderfest at Navy Pier if it were to arrive.
I don't suggest bringing 3 ungrateful preteens.
The train ride in was filled with excitement. The Man's son had never been on a train and my children's memories of train rides weren't too clear. The kids marvelled out the windows for the majority of the hour long commute. Once arriving to Union Station, they were filled with the anticipation of the cab ride across town.
Out the windows of the racing cab, they saw the Chicago River, the El, and other famous Chicago landmarks they recognized from The Blues Brothers. (Yes, I let my kids watch The Blues Brothers, don't judge me.) Upon arriving at Navy Pier, my children were baffeled that the cold and icy channel by the pier was the same channel Grandpa has taken them into in his boat this past summer.
7000 miles down the pier to the event center, we were ready to take in all Winter Wonderfest had to offer. There were hundreds of beautifully decorated Christmas trees, models and explanations of Christmas traditions around the world, an ice skating rink, and rides galore.
So what could possibly go wrong?
The fighting started in line for the very first ride.
The ride sat three per seat and apparently our children find it impossible to amicably decide who would sit where.
We took the kids out of line and made each of them sit in short timeouts until they could agree not to argue with one another. Once they agreed to get along, we tried again. Ultimately, every ride we went to, one of the kids had a complaint.
"It's to babyish."
"The line is too long."
"That looks dumb."
You name it, we heard it.
Needless to say, $75 and three ungrateful children later, The Man and I had had our fill.
Before heading back to the 'burbs for the day, we made a pit stop at Harry Carey's for some grub and beer. (Root beer for the kids, geez! What kind of mother do you think I am!?!)
While the night never really got any better, I can thankfully say the kids went to bed relatively early and I got a bit of quiet time before I hit the sack.
I hope you're all enjoying your winter break.
Wish me luck today as we brave the Streets of Woodfield and
Legoland Discovery Center.