August 21, 2012

Cupcakes and Piers

We had quite the weekend full of major long walks and subway rides!  First off let me just say that I don't mind the subway except for the fact that is smells strongly of urine, and there is no airflow to speak of.  Ugh.

Gary's brother Rick came to visit us this weekend!  He works for Delta so he is able to fly for free, and he brought us a few extra things we didn't have room to bring originally.  We only had a short time to spend with him so we didn't do anything except walk around the entire city and show him some key areas.  Him and his wife will be back in September and we'll do it up right next time.  

We did make sure to stop at Sprinkles though and get ourselves the best cupcakes EVER!!  My favorite is the red velvet.  It takes a lot of self control not to walk their everyday.  Droooooool!!!

We also ordered some more deep dish pizza for Rick to try while he was out here!  Chicago definitely does their pizza differently, but he really liked it.  

Rick was here and back home in just a little over a 24-hour period so it was a very quick trip! We had a great time and Dori loved having him here! Thanks Ricky!

On Sunday after church and lunch we went to explore more of the city, and somehow wound up at the Navy Pier.  What a fun place!  Lots of shopping and food, and there is a children's museum out there as well.  We are going to go back this Saturday to the museum and check it all out again.  It's about a half hour or 45 minute walk from our apartment so it's not too far away.  

The docked boats.  How great would it be to have one of these?

View of the city from the pier.  

As much as Dori and I go out walking during the day, it's nothing compared to Saturdays and Sundays when Gary is off work.  Those days require some serious athletic shoes!  It's good for us though since there is sooooo much delicious food everywhere here!

August 13, 2012

Weekend Sights

On Saturday we walked for hours looking at new parts of Chicago, including Millennium Park.  We saw the big bean!  I always think of 30 Rock when I see the big bean because Liz Lemon goes to see it when she visits her boyfriend who lives in Chicago.  Anyway, I guess it's real name is the cloud gate, but I like the big bean better.

We also saw Buckingham Fountain.  Quite beautiful!  I'd love to see it at night but there isn't really a way unless we cut into Dori's bedtime, and I'd rather sever my thumbs than do that.

Yesterday we took a couple shorter walks and saw the Willis Tower, formerly the Sears Tower.  It reminds me of "Whatchoo talkin' 'bout Willis?"  Which reminds me of a Chuck Norris joke..."Chuck Norris knows what Willis is talkin' 'bout."

We didn't make it to church yesterday because Dori woke up (no exaggeration) every hour of the night if not more.  None of us slept until about 5am, and that was after a diaper change, another bottle, adjustment of temperature, IB Profen, a blessing from Gary, and lots of cuddling.  Turns out she is sick or teething.  She has a runny nose and some unpleasant diapers.  Poor girl!  And poor us!  We all like our sleep.  Anyway, she took a nap right before we needed to leave for church and we didn't try to stop her.  She slept a little better last night and woke up about every 4 hours instead.

It was really nice being able to spend all that time with Gary.  Usually when we're home there is yard work to do and lots of errands to run, and people to visit.  It was good to just have us.  

Also, I must make honorable mention to the food we ate.  Giordano's Pizza was our first Chicago style pizza we've had here.  It was delicious!  I'm excited to compare it to what we'll try in the future.

Also, Garrett's popcorn will be the reason I get fat while I'm here.  And broke.  Holy cow it's the best caramel and nutty popcorn ever!  And the best buttered popcorn!  And for someone who dislikes cheesecorn...I must say even that was heaven!  Thank you Garrett.  You're a good person.

August 9, 2012

One Whole Week

We have officially been here a full week, which I have to say has not gone by as fast as I would have hoped a week would go.  While I really enjoy the city and seeing how different the people are, I really miss my own home and the routine I had going on there.  We'll settle into a routine here I'm sure but it's really hard when it's just Dori and I all day.  

Gary works long hours and I don't have my "go-to" people here to visit when being a single-ish parent gets overwhelming.  Of course I always have my phone to call people, but it's really not the same as being with family and friends.  As bad as it sounds, I really don't have an interest in going out and making friends with anyone here.  If I happen to meet a person and we easily become friends, that is a different story, but I don't have a desire to actively search out a BFF.  Luckily I met a really nice girl a couple of days ago who has 2 daughters, one of whom really loves seeing and playing with Dori!

We try to stay as busy as possible during the day so that Dori gets worn out and takes long naps so I can recharge my mental and emotional batteries.  She loves going out and taking walks in the stroller.  There is so much for her to see!  A lot of people have little dogs out here that they take walking and she goes bananas whenever she sees one.  She likes to people watch and shamelessly stares are people for long amounts of time.  Silly girl is just like her dad in that way!

When the weather gets bad and it rains I start to panic a little bit because I know we can't go out and I have to figure out how to entertain her indoors.  Thank heaven for Baby Einstein!  

August 8, 2012

Oakwood 200 Squared

This is the apartment we have been at for the past 2 days, and will stay the rest of the time we're in Chicago.

The lobby, complete with Doorman.  Lee is my favorite so far!

This isn't our exact kitchen, but it's just about the same with a better view of everything.

The patio right outside of the gym, pool, and theater. We could barbeque if we wanted!

The amenities room with the pool table and theater.

I couldn't take a decent picture of our room so I got this one online which is almost like our room.  You would think the floor-to-ceiling windows would be cool, but not when you have a baby who likes to sleep in pitch black places. We had to tape tinfoil to the entire window area to make it dark enough.  Even at night there are still a lot of lights from the city shining into the room.  Oh the things we do for a good night sleep!

I'm still getting used to this part of town.  I don't like it as much as the area we were in when staying at the Drake.  In this area it's all business people and no families or children.  When people see Dori they act like they have never seen a baby before!  

We are on the same street the the elevated train goes down so whenever we step outside it's really loud!  Dori is getting used to it though and she doesn't jump every time a train comes. 

We walk EVERYWHERE!  It keeps Dori and I busy while Gary works his long hours, so  walking more than a mile to the grocery store everyday is normal.  

The Drake

We had to stay in a hotel for 6 days to wait for our apartment room to become available.  I loved staying at the Drake!  Everyone absolutely adored Dori there and we felt really at home and comfortable.  The staff would call her "princess" and "your highness" every time we walked through the lobby.  The only down side was how loud it was.  I would be trying to put Dori down for a nap and then someone would slam their door leaving their room.  I ended up walking a few blocks down to a Walgreen's to buy a box fan to try to drown out any of the noise.  

Here are a few pictures of where we stayed.

The hotel was right by the lake, and it sat right at the top of the Magnificent Mile.  There was a lot for us to see everyday and a lot of places to explore.  I found the most amazing Italian place for lunch called GoRoma and the pasta and the pizza and the salads were all to die for!  

The first time I went in for lunch was kind of by accident.  I was walking all over the stupid city trying to find a 7-11 and wore myself out doing so.  I was hot, tired, hungry, and I decided to go into the first place that offered food.  GoRoma!  I ordered a really delicious salad and the manager of the place welcomed me to the neighborhood and said if I brought Gary back that same night he would buy our dinner.  Who am I to turn down a free dinner???  So we did go back that night and he was true to his word and bought us dinner.  I was only able to go back one more time while we stayed at the Drake, and it's a good 2 miles from our apartment now.  I'm sure the walk is worth it though!

Travel Day

This wasn't Dori's first airplane ride.  She had gone to Arizona with her grandma and grandpa Fifield while Gary and I were on our cruise.  This was, however, her first airplane ride with her parents.  It went relatively well and we did all we could to make sure she wasn't "that baby" on the plane.  She fell asleep right away and probably would have stayed asleep the whole time except....

The flight attendant was going down the isle giving everyone drinks and snacks, and when she got to us, she could see that we had a sleeping baby, but still talked very loudly to us.  We got our drinks and snacks and Dori slept through everything miss loud mouth had to say.  But then the dumb lady started to ask us how old she was, and told us she had a 7-month-old at home, and how she likes to come to work to get away to be social, and blah, blah, BLAH!!  So of course that woke Dori up which only gave her about a half hour nap.  Stupid broad.

We made it Chicago in one piece and took the airport shuttle to the hotel which was about a half hour or so drive.  I talked to the driver the whole time and she told me about all the things I could do while I was here and while Gary worked.  

As a side note, Gary's co-workers Justin and Iliana traveled with us the whole time and were beyond helpful with all the luggage that comes with travelling with a baby.  I'm not sure we could have done it without them!

July 27, 2012


We are moving to Chicago for 3 months!  The exclamation point attached to the end of that sentence doesn't mean I'm terribly excited, it means that I'm scared beyond all measure.  There is a bit of excitement in there as well, but I don't know anything about the city, how to get around, what to do with just Dori and I, and not knowing anyone at all.  

Gary's job has asked him to go to the office in Chicago for 3 months to help with a project, and we agreed it would be the best thing for him and his career.  He was so flattered that they had asked him since he hasn't been with the company for very long and already wanted his help in other areas.

Yes, it's an adventure.  Yes, it's like a long vacation.  Yes, Chicago is supposed to be the greatest place on earth.  But let me just tell you my side too.

Becoming a mom was the hardest thing I've ever had to do.  I'm not saying it was easy for anyone out there, but I seemed to take it much worse than others did.  I did not adjust well at first and I was very unhappy.  Over the last 9 months it's gotten easier, and better, and I love Dori with all of my heart!  She is my best friend ever!  But I didn't get there on my own.  I had the support of SO MANY people.  My family, my friends, my neighbors, my ward...everyone helped me get where I am now, which is feeling quite content with being Dori's mom.  And now I'm supposed to leave it here for 3 months?  

I know I can do it, I know I'll adjust and learn how to get around, I know I'll meet new people, I just know it's going to be hard not to have the physical support I have here.  Gary will be working a lot in Chicago which means Dori and I will be attached at the hip every day all day.  Literally.  

I could very well be blogging that I don't ever want to leave Chicago behind, but for now, it's nerve racking.

July 25, 2012

9 Months Is She!

I'm not sure if today is the day for me to write sweet sentiments about my beautiful baby girl because she is a being a fussy little gus, but maybe I'll find a bit more tolerance for her after doing so!  

This girl in on the move!!  She is army crawling all over the place and she's bumping her sweet little head into every hard object in sight.  I hear a little whimper every couple minutes, but I've been able to distinguish the "kind of hurt" crying from the "hurt real bad" crying.  

She's losing patience with being in the car seat.  She used to love going for drives and just chilling, but now that she's more active it just holds her back!

She's going through a phase where she will not eat anything solid but Cheerios and yogurt bites.  I'm still not giving up though!

She LOVES Baby Einstein.  Give her a blanket and her binky and she is happy as can possibly be!

She gets so excited every time she sees an animal.  She has the craziest laugh ever when she sees them and gets to pet them!  I'm thinking of getting a cat to keep her entertained!

She is a jibber-jabber little monkey!  She says "da-da" a lot and that's about all, but she likes to spout off a bunch of nonsense all the time!

She can clap her hands, wave "hi" and "bye", she can high five, and if she's in the right mood she'll give me the most slobbery kisses ever!  I love it.

She's a smart little lady and she loves her mom and dad a lot!  We think she's pretty awesome too!

July 24, 2012

Updates with Pictures

I have found it difficult to find the time to update my blog, so this is going to be the Reader's Digest version of updates.
 Dori's first time swimming
 Gary graduates!

Dori's first haircut

We went on a cruise to celebrate Gary's graduation.  Dori stayed with family for about 9 days.  Thanks everyone for helping out! 

Gary finished the brick path! 
Jumping on the trampoline with Uncle Dan 
Mother's Day 
My family went to St. George to celebrate my dad's 60th birhtday 
Father's Day 
Dori learns to crawl 
We both knee boarded in Bear Lake 

Dori's first trip to Bear Lake 
Our white trash/redneck 4th of July 
We all made our own croquet mallets 
Enjoying the pool in her 2-peice suit.

March 5, 2012


My grandma asked me yesterday how old Dori was, and I told her 4 months. My niece then said "she's only 4 months? It seems like she has be around forever!" I agree with that to an extent...I can't remember what life was like without her very well, but I also feel like it's going by pretty fast too.
Everything went really well at her 4-month appointment and she's pretty much perfect! She's still on the skinny side but at least she's on the charts right? Don't you just love this face?! I just want to chew on her!