Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Friday Foto Fun - The Chicago Tourist Edition

I spent the afternoon (I know I probably should have been clearning, or washing, or ironing - ironing?) going thru the 300+ pictures I took of our trip to Chicago last Friday.  Oh I was such a tourist with camera slung around my neck, snapping pictures at everything in site.  It was such a spectacular day, the skies were that drop-dead-gorgeous blue, the breeze was slight and the temp was just about perfect.  We drove to town and parked 1/2 block off Michigan Ave. the home of the magnificent Mile.  Made a note as to what floor we were on, took our parking ticket with us, because the instructions said TAKE TICKET WITH YOU AND PAY BEFORE RE-ENTERING YOUR CAR!!  I actually looked for the Parking Lot Police as I took the ticket and gave it to Lane to put in his wallet for safe keeping, God forbid we should not take it with us or worse, loose it!!  The day was ahead of us and we were ready to tour.  First we decided to get our tickets for the Architectural Boat Tour that was definitely on the agenda for the day.  Walking to the boat dock the Tribune Tower was right across the street and we were greeted by.......

Marilyn Monroe, a rather large Marilyn Monroe, I might add.  The newest piece of "art" to adorn the streets of Chicago.  I won't mention what the men were doing as they gazed up at the famous billowing dress, the iconic pose from "The Seven Year Itch".

The Tribune Tower is such a gorgeous building, it is seal of greatness in its gothic design .  If it had a cross on top you would swear it was a grand cathedral.  This building houses all the writers of the Chicago Tribune along with the talk radio station WGN.  In the last few years the radio emcees now sit on the 1st floor behind glass windows so we on the street can watch them while they do their 2 hour or so talk show.  It was so sunny that day that we had to press our faces right up against the glass to peer in.  Can you imagine what that poor emcee sees on a day to day basis? 

Not the best time of day to take a portrait picture, but being a delighted Mom, and so happy to have him home,  just had to.

Right around the corner was this young man with his horse & buggy waiting for some customers.  He looked like a proud papa as he looked toward his horse. 

After lunch we strolled around the city, there were so many beautiful spots along the way to enjoy dining outdoors.  Chicago has many open areas and small parks throughout the city.

It was time for the boat tour and as we boarded and took a first glance in back of us, the Trump Tower (the building with the tall spire on top) was gleaming in the sun.  If you decide that is where you want to live, it will cost you a few million, a couple of 0's too much for me.  The building on the far bottom left is the Merchandise Mart.  As a children's wear buyer for a small department store in my former life, I spent some time in this building. 

The Marina Towers.  Remember Steve McQueen driving a car off of one of the upper floors in the 1980 movie, "The Hunter"?  Surely you do, it was famous!!

Love the collection of so many different building designs....

The older buildings all had clocks built on them because at the time most people did not carry or even own a watch.  They depended on the city to keep the time. 

Most of the newer buildings are now being built of glass and steel.  No more of the beautiful stone work that adorned the early buildings in Chicago.  But even the oldest buildings in Chicago are less than 150 years old because in October of 1871 the Great Chicago Fire burned over 2,000 acres of land, destroying 18,000 buildings and killing 200 people.  So the city literally rose from the ashes. 

When the city began the clean-up of the Chicago River, the city became a popular place to live.  Now there are literally thousands of places to live in downtown. 

One of the most famous buildings in Chicago is the Sears Willis Tower.  It's still tough getting used to calling it the Willis Tower, I think it will always be known to us that have been here a long time as the Sears Tower. 

After the boat tour, we decided we would walk down to Millenium Park.  

Along the way there are huge islands filled with over-flowing flowers.  You will find greenery and flowers all over the city making Chicago one of the most beautiful cities in the world. 

Not only are their colorful flowers, but colorful paintings on the sides of many buildings. 

The family that soaks their feet together, stays together, except perhaps for the teenage son.  He needed to be sitting just a tad away from Mom, Dad, & little sis.  He was a good sport tho, and let me take his picture. 

Lush flower beds fill the area around Millenium Park. 

Cloud Gate, or us in Chicago refer to this as "the Bean", see photo below for the obvious reason we call it the bean.  It was built by a British sculptor and unveild in Chicago in 2007.

Great photo ops take place at the bean...

Us in the bean....now if this would have been designed by a woman, instead of making us look fat, she would have designed it to make us look skinny....just sayin. 

A short walk from the "bean" is the bridge to the Modern Wing of the Chicago Art Institute.  Standing on top of the bridge there is an amazing view of the city. 

This darling young couple was trying to balance their camera on the side of a rock to take a picture of the two of them.  I stepped up and volunteered to take their picture with their camera (I do that alot).  After taking the pictures with their camera, I asked them to pose for me.  Both of them are real beauties. 

We decided it was time to start walking back to the car.  We were all tired but it appears this group was more pooped than we were.  The girl on the left couldn't even hold her head up. 

Even as the sun began to set, the sky had this lush deep blue...  What a cut-above-perfect kinda day we had.  One that I shall remember for a long, long time!!!

"My happiness derives from knowing the people I love are happy."  -  Holly Ketchel

Until next time.....


  1. I was just in Chicago a few weeks ago n the midst of a horrendous heat wave. We wanted to do the architectural boat tour so badly, but it was just too hot and we needed all our energy for a game at Wrigley. I do love Chi-town!! Love that photo showing the reflection of another building in the glass. It looks so sparkly! Great photos all around. And congrats on your son's engagement.


  2. Deanna-- fantastic shots in the middle of the day ... generally my photos of mid day are so blown out. Yours were wonderful!

    I bet you are over the moon happy about your son's engagment and wishing them both well!

    I love your bravery in asking others if you can snap a photo of them. I am working on that!

    Have a lovely week.


  3. Wow, what variety of architecture and amazing too. Seems you had a wonderful time.

  4. Now I want to hop on a plane to Chicago. Nice tour!

  5. Wow, thanks for the tour, I'm with EG, ready to hop on a plane and spend a few day.s

  6. Deanna, this was a fantastic post -- I really enjoyed the photographs, but your commentary made every one more special than the last. I know this post must have taken some time to put together, but I appreciate your effort, truly. :)

  7. Great shots, Deanna! I've never been to Chicago but would love to visit one day. I noticed that your son and daughter-in-law-to-be have matching sneakers. It was meant to be!


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