Sunday, April 2, 2017

#TheKerrieShow Goes to Chicago Day Three: Shedd Aquarium!

I wrote this in my journal on June 18, 2016:

Joel wants to go to sealife downtown KC now that we saw the movie Dory. I want to take them to florida even worse. Chicago is where shedd aquarium is? THERE! Can you imagine a trip to Chicago with them? They would love it.

A few weeks ago I saw a picture of the Caribbean Reef in Shedd Aquarium on their website and I almost cried. I told myself that if I could just sit there on a bench in front of that, it would be the most amazing thing ever. I was so excited to go.

Then I stood in line in 25-degree weather with snow for AN HOUR with five annoyed kids before paying $212 for what turned out to be about 3 hours of Shedd Aquarium and I was a little ungrateful and disgruntled. By that time we were hungry and so there went another $80+ at the food court in Shedd and 30 minutes of fun time gone. Should have packed PB&Js; note to self for next time! Be careful what you ask for because you just might get it and then it might not live up to what you had in mind but at least you got to experience it!

I could have spent two full days wandering that place, with or without kids. The older my kids get, I start thinking things like, "Hey, in the not-so-distant future I might find myself in Chicago another time with my husband but the kids will be grown and I will be here alone. I will have to learn to deal with not being a mom of little kids anymore and I will have to enjoy the silence in my mind as I check out places like this ... but I will also be able to go to places like Frank Lloyd Wright's house and Ernest Hemingway's birthplace without worrying about anyone getting stolen or bored."

But I digress, like always. Here are the pics.


The kids were thrilled with the snow but we didn't have a ton of time to play in it plus the younger two were the only ones with boots :-( Praying for a huge Kansas City snow next year!

Heading to the red line from the blue line in the cool tunnel

Waiting for the bus to Shedd. It wasn't too far but it was COLD so we just waited.

The kids loved taking pictures of these birds.

The bus to Shedd in Chicago. I can't tell you how great my kids were on this trip. True travel champs for real. So proud of them.

Here we go. A long tent up the steps of Shedd and it was COLD and took forever to even get into the lobby then MORE waiting but were at least warmer. I was so impatient because I knew it would cost a fortune and that they closed at 5 so we didn't have a ton of time.

Cold Sammy

Cold but happy Eva

WE MADE IT TO THE CARIBBEAN REEF!!! I can hardly believe it! The room is kinda dark, though, and not perfect for pics, but whatever.

A dream come true!

At some point we broke way from the reef and went to a section of lake and river fun.

Then we went to a 4D Spongebob show and then it was time for lunch. Our view for lunch.

Touch pool

Seriously, we could sit here all day. I hated the feeling of being rushed around the place (self-inflicted because we wanted to see as much as we could). We are the kind of people who like to take our time and enjoy things and mess around, so this was tough for us to rush through an aquarium of this caliber. It was amazing. WE HAVE TO COME BACK SOON.

I can't tell you how moving this was. Incredible to see these gorgeous creatures ... so peaceful.

We call these ponguins.

Time to head downstairs to the Wild Reef, included in our ticket price. I hate that crap, and it's confusing as heck ... just pay one fee and see the entire dang place, seriously. Stop asking me what I want to add on for extra money and confusing me about what's included because then you get kids standing around wanting to do something that's not included in their ticket price and how annoying is that for a parent? Somehow we got everything included in ours, but remember we spent $212 for 6 people. And we could have done without the 4D experience.

Time for the indoor show

Then the littles and I were beat so we sent the big boys off down an alley off the Reef to check some things out and take pictures.

This was my chilling-out view. I was happy resting here.

Joel went to town taking pictures. What the heck are these suckers?

Yes. This is the picture I went for. This, with the Reef behind my precious children. Yes, this is why I do what I do and dragged them on a train to get downtown and pay a fortune and wait in line in the cold. To see them tired and happy at the end of a good day with their brains full of new visions of sea life.

You should have heard them griping at me about this ONE MORE PICTURE with sun in their eyes. I'm such a mean mom. Then we hopped our bus and off we went.

They liked to use their own Ventra cards at the train stations.

Such cool tunnels.

Dunkin' Donuts almost every day. They were at most of the train stations. Brilliant.

Joel took this with his phone and it uploaded to mine ... they went to the workout room together at the hotel that night.

I had to go to Target Tuesday night for a stand-alone phone charger (highly recommended if you're traveling and out all day) and groceries. And saw the next Nerf gun I want. The Lawbringer.

Check out Day Two (Monday), when we went to Adler Planetarium! Day Four was Museum of Science and Industry and Dylan's Candy Bar, so check it out!

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