Sunday, March 19, 2017

A Trip to Illinois

We left yesterday for Illinois after Cam's band concert.  Our mission was to make it to DeKalb to eat dinner with Doug's family and to also sort through items that were not going to make the move with Carl to his new town home.  There wasn't a lot on our list to keep, but I had promised Jeanette the last time we visited her that we would find room in our home for her miniature tea sets and Meg wanted to look through all of the art work and blankets that she had made with her over the years.

We found several more treasurers while we packed up the tea sets and art work including Jeanette's wedding dress, her baby book, a glass unicorn, a ceramic bunny and two bronze bears.  We also discovered several boxes of pictures and mementos that she had saved for us specifically.  We decided as a family to keep all that we wanted, plus items that we thought others in Doug's family might want later.  It wasn't about the items as much as it was about the memories.  It was sad to search through her prized possessions and to remember once again that she wasn't here to tell us about each piece especially those from the Holmes and Brucker family.  My favorite moment of the night was when we found the Macarena Monkey that Brett and Cal gave her.  Both boys called dibs, so it will now find a prized position on a shelf in the basement.  After dinner we settled into the Hampton Inn in DeKalb to watch basketball and relax.

Since yesterday was especially hard on Meg we thought that a trip to Science and Industry was in order today.  She had been asking to go and we haven't been there in several years.  The first stop for us was the U-505 submarine tour.  The story was fascinating and the tour was well worth our time.  I am not sure that any of us wanted to be submarine captains after it, but we enjoyed the history lesson.  From there we went to the coal mine.  Doug said that we had taken the tour before, but I didn't remember it.  It also was very interesting and we learned a lot.  That being said, none of us were ready to be coal miners either.

Once our scheduled tours were over, we made our way through the rest of the museum.  Meg remembered the airplane that hung from the ceiling.  We walked through that and then got tickets for the math exhibit.  While we were waiting for our scheduled time we ventured toward the whispering chamber.  That was a neat experience as we could hear each other perfectly from at least 25 yards away.  The math exhibit was worth the wait although I will personally never walk through the maze of mirrors again.  The exhibit focused on the Golden Ratio which I loved as we just finished our projects on that subject in 6th grade math.

As much as I like everything that we did today my favorite part was walking through the fairy castle. It was absolutely beautiful and the history behind the making of it was extremely interesting.  Meg said to me as we looked through the rooms, "I like the castle, but it's a little too gaudy for me."  I, of course, loved it just for that reason.

Cam made a stop at the museum store to buy a puzzle cube before we went to lunch at Giordano's.  The pizza was delicious and the wait was minimal.  We were disappointed to find out that The Hershey's store had closed, but that left more time for walking to The Disney Store.  We drove out of  Chicago around 4:30 tired, but happy with our day.  It was the perfect way to offset the sadness of last night's adventure.

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