The Windy City

My travel’s picked up again at work. I spend most of last week at our annual conference in Connecticut. Because I had to be in Chicago this week, I decided to make a weekend of it with a sweet friend from St. Louis whom I haven’t seen since her wedding in October.

She found a great deal on Hotel 71, a boutique hotel right off Michigan Avenue. When I arrived, I realized that I’d stayed nearby for work in June. I was able to navigate us (with no wrong turns!) to some nearby restaurants. We grabbed supper at Theory (chips and queso, buffalo chicken salad, turkey burger, and John Dalys).

When I suggested that we head to the gym for a quick run on Saturday morning, she was game (love that!). Afterward, we headed to Michigan Avenue for some shopping. We stopped in at the Benefit Brow Bar at Bloomingdale’s and had lunch at Oak Tree Restaurant (ginger lemonades and two amazing Epicurean Toasted-Cheese sandwiches). We also stopped at an Aveda store for complimentary hair consultations and mini-massages.

After a quick stop at the hotel to drop off our awesome sale finds, we headed to The Tasting Room for wine flights (champagne and riesling) and a cheese and charcuterie platter through a great travelzoo deal. Then we headed to Butterfly to meet up with a former supper club pal. The next morning, we had a delicious brunch at Yolk (cinnamon roll french toast and the Tour De France french toast sampler).

Sunday afternoon, I met up with a work colleague to head out to Oak Brook for a leadership retreat at Hamburger University. (Highlight: They accidentally served alcoholic sangria at lunch!) The McDonald’s campus was surprisingly nice. We went for a morning run and dropped in on a spinning class at the gym. One evening we took a quick trip to Oak Brook Center for supper at Baisi Thai and attempted to find something for me to wear over my poison-ivy-covered legs.

The retreat proved worthwhile, mostly for the opportunities to engage with and learn from some respected maternal child health leaders. We headed back to DC last night on a flight full of revelers headed to the Omega Psi Phi Centennial Conclave. It’s nice to be home!

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