Spring can be a cold and yucky season in Chicago, but this year she decided to change things up a bit . . . and, oh my, how the city has finally come back to life.
It would be a lie for me to say I wasn't ready to jump out the window at any given moment during the cold months of January and February. I don't have access to the car every day, so my little monkeys and I had our moments of stir-craziness in this condo. Winter was unusually warm for most parts of the country, and I'm pretty sure we only pulled out the sled a couple of times. At least we could have played outside if there was more snow, but it's kind of hard to play in the cold mud. Since we went through two pairs of cheap Target snow boots for Mimi last year, we actually bought nicer (ahem, more expensive) ones for this winter. I think Mack only had to wear his twice.
But lucky for us, Spring showed up fashionably early, and I have found myself throwing the kids in clothes as soon as they can devour their breakfasts and then getting all of us out of the house so we can, aaaaaahhhhhh, breathe in some fresh air.
The really awesome zoo in our area is the Brookfield Zoo, but I prefer the smaller (and with better views) Lincoln Park Zoo.
Yes, they were totally trying to escape. My children hate it when I say, "Everyone snuggle in and say 'cheese'!"
This was the first time Mack was allowed to run around like a maniac at the zoo -- it came naturally since his sister has set such a great example for him.
I am kicking myself for taking this with my phone and not my fancy camera.
Smitten with these two boys.
I hatched a toddler!
It makes me giggle that Mimi's favorite part of the zoo is the farm. There's a red barn and cows, chickens, bunnies, and more cows . . . this was basically my backyard as a child. But now we pay $25 to see it in a zoo.
A couple of weeks ago it was seriously warm -- like 80 degrees warm. What is up, Global Warming? I think it was still snowing at the same time last year. So I finally pulled out the summer clothes from the box under my bed, and Mimi was sooo pumped to see all of her "new clothes" (she totally doesn't remember any of them). Once we sorted through the things that still fit and are not completely covered in stains, this was her favorite outfit -- a tie-dyed t-shirt and gray leggings.
It makes me giggle that I spend so much time checking for deals on Zulily and browsing fabric stores and sewing up a storm for my daughter, and she just wants to throw on a t-shirt and wear her hair in braids like Jessie. And I can't blame her . . . because I dress almost exactly the same way.
But I finally made something she could wear every day -- striped knit ruffle pants. Yes, I would like a pair for myself, but we can't be that matchy-matchy.
And what's spring without the Easter bunny? Because he's in at least one store on Roscoe Street every weekend, Mimi's convinced he lives in our neighborhood in the spring.
We finally celebrated St. Patrick's Day in true Chicago style . . .
. . . by putting a puppy in a Leprechaun hat. That's what everyone else does, right?
If you can't tell by looking at me (and my red-headed brother), I'm Irish. Clint laughs at me when I say this because I know absolutely nothing about Ireland other than U2 and the Cranberries. So honestly I'm just a southern redneck with an Irish heritage, but I still felt that I deserved to celebrate this year. Last year we sat in our den and watched the droves of drunk twenty-somethings dressed in green pants and boas and tutus (I'm not even kidding) stumble down our street, and I told Clint we would be a part of that next year. So when a college friend told me she was coming to town, you better believe I booked a sitter.
And the rest of the photos I'll keep to myself :). If you haven't experienced St. Paddy's in Chicago, then you don't know what you're missing. Imagine the parade in Jackson, MS, times a thousand. Yep. It's that awesome. And at 80 degrees, this was the warmest St. Patrick's Day in over 100 years . . . fan-tastic.
I'm playing catch-up right now, so (fingers crossed) there'll be more to come in the next few days.