For the long Labor Day weekend I traveled to Chicago for a long overdue reunion with my closest friends from when I lived in the city after college. I had such an awesome weekend packed full of friends, seeing all things Chicago and eating delicious food!
I drove to Williamsburg to stay with my sister on Thursday night, so I could have less drive time on Friday. Of course I forgot to set my alarm and I slept in late, so I didn’t take off as early as I wanted. Oops!
When I got to the city on Friday I headed to my cousin-in-law’s salon on the north side of the city. It was so fun to see Sejour, which she has built from scratch. I am so proud of her!
After visiting my cousin-in-law, I headed downtown to Emily’s apartment, where I stayed for the weekend. She lives in River West in a great apartment complex with amazing amenities. I had so much fun staying with her and am so thankful for her hospitality!
Friday night I went with our friends and some of Emily’s friends to the Girl Talk concert at Congress Theatre. What. A. Blast. We had the best time and danced non-stop for three plus hours. If you haven’t been to a Girl Talk concert, it’s quite the show. It’s one guy (Gregg Gillis) who mixes songs together, and it’s a huge dance party the whole time. We didn’t get home until 2:45 a.m. Needless to say we were a little tired! The whole time we were all sweating like crazy in our 80’s/neon gear. So much fun!
On Saturday we slept in after a late night, and I headed downtown to see my dear friend Ali Montag, who was my colleague and friend from Weber Shandwick Chicago, before the Iowa vs. NIU game. Go Hawks! Downtown was swarming with Iowa fans everywhere you looked; it was a sea of black and gold and it was awesome!
After seeing Ali I met up at The Bongo Room to have brunch with Katie, Matt and Regan. It was so delish! I was pretty traditional in my order with an omelette, but Matt got pancakes with pretzels and a caramel syrup. That’s totally what I should have gotten! I was so jealous, and I think I ate more of it than he did.
After brunch we headed up to Old Town for a street fest. The street fest was sparse to say the least. I think it was more of “we want to have one more event at the end of the summer, so let’s get any vendors together that will come and call it a street fest” kind of deal.
We walked around for a bit and then headed into Benchmark’s for the Iowa game and a drink. And thankfully they pulled out a win!
After the game I headed back to Em’s apartment for a quick nap. I was knocked out within minutes after the late night from the concert. After a quick nap I woke up to get ready for dinner. We headed up to RoseAngelis in Lincoln Park for dinner with the rest of our friends. I had lasagna that could have fed the whole table, but I quickly gobbled most of it down myself. It was so good!
We also celebrated Regan’s birthday during dinner by singing her a lil’ birthday diddy and sharing some dessert! Happy birthday, friend!
After dinner we headed to the J.Parker Rooftop, a new rooftop on the top of The Hotel Lincoln. It had a gorgeous view of downtown and the lake. It was terribly windy, but we still had a blast hanging out! There were also fireworks downtown, which I loved to see. Many of my favorite memories in Chicago involve watching fireworks in the summer.
On Sunday I slept in, Em made a fantastic brunch, and then she and I took off for some shopping on Michigan Avenue! We met Katie downtown and headed on a mission to find bridesmaid’s shoes for Emily’s brother’s wedding. We found a few options but nothing she loved. Hopefully one of the options will work with her dress!
While shopping memories come flooding back of walking to work everyday down Michigan Avenue. It seems so long ago! What a great time in my life where I took a risk by moving far away to a big city hardly knowing anyone to chase after a dream career. It was such a great learning experience for me personally and professionally, and I am so glad I took the risk and moved to Chicago!
After shopping we headed to Jewel to pick up dinner supplies for grilling including steaks, corn on the cob, asparagus and potatoes. I spent my last night in Chicago grilling with friends on Em’s rooftop. What a view!!
I had such a fantastic weekend with my friends! I am so blessed that I have friends I can pick up with where I left off even after I don’t see them for months. I can’t wait to go back to Chicago for another trip to spend time in a city that has a special place in my heart!