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Adventures in Chicago – Aventuras en Chicago

Javi and I are currently sprawled out on the sofa recovering from a crazy weekend (well, for me it’s been 10 days!) in Chicago. I posted last week about my weekend in Wisconsin, after which I rode back to Chicago with my friends and stayed at my brother’s apartment for a few days with my younger cousin Casey. My brother’s wedding was this past weekend, so there was no reason for me to go all the way back to Nashville since I was already in the area, and my cousin was in Chicago after a weekend playing in a beach volleyball tournament (she got 1st place!). Ian and Andi graciously let us crash in their apartment for a few days until our families arrived, so we helped them prepare for the wedding as much as we could. In the meantime, Casey and I went shopping and exploring around Chicago, including a quick trip to the zoo! We also squeezed a night at Navy Pier into Ian and Andi’s busy schedule, complete with Hagen Daas ice cream. Javier y yo estamos en este momento hechados en el sofa recuperandonos de un fin de semana de locos (bueno, para mi fueron 10 dias!) en Chicago! Yo escribi la semana pasada sobre mi fin de semana en Wisconsin, despues de eso volvi a Chicago y me quede con mi hermano en su apartamento junto con mi prima Casey. La boda de mi hermano fue el fin de semana pasado, asi que no habia razon para volver a Nashville ya que estabaya en el area y mi prima estaba en Chicago tambien juganod un torneo de volleyball playa (saco primer lugar!). Ian y ndi muy amablemente nos dejaron dormir en su apartamento por unos dias hasta que nuestras familias llegaron, asi que los ayudamos a preparar algunas cosas para la boda. Por mientras, Casey y yo salimos de compras y exploramos la ciudad, incluyendo un viajecito al zoo! Tambien fuimos una noche al puerto con Ian y Andi a pesar de que estaban super ocupados, y lo completamos con helados!
A post-it note on Ian's mirror in his apartment when we arrived ๐Ÿ™‚
Casey - another family photog
The guests started arriving on Wednesday night – namely the Jacobs side of our family which meant all our cousins and all my aunts and uncles on my mom’s side. We all took a big family trip out to Navy Pier to see fireworks on Wednesday night and Javier met us when his plane landed. The fireworks were beautiful but, much to the chagrin of the cousins, we were about 10 minutes too late to get a ride on the big Navy Pier ferris wheel (for which Javier was thankful, I’m sure). Los invitados comenzaron a llegar el miercoles en la noche – la mayoria de la familia Jacobs, tios, tias y primos por el lado de mi mama. Todos fuimos otra vez al puerto a ver fuegos artificiales y Javier nos encontro alla cuando su avion aterrizo. Los fuegos estuvieron geniales pero no alcanzamos a llegar a tiempo para subirnos a la rueda de la fortuna (Javier estaba muy agradecido de eso, haha)
Andrew and Matt - Navy Pier
My mom and her older brother John
My mom with my aunts Shelley and Regena
One of our favorite shows to watch at home is Man vs. Food (but for some reason it’s always on when we are eating, which often ruins my appetite…some of the stuff he eats is just horrific). Javier has made a habit of looking up the Man vs. Food landmarks for every city we visit, so for Chicago the lucky winner for our lunch visit on Thursday afternoon was Al’s Beef for a beef sandwich. The place is an absolute dive but the sandwiches were cheap and DELICIOUS. I was lame and didn’t have mine dipped, but Javi and the rest of the folks who went with us (my cousins Matt, Steve, Andrew and uncle Warren) got a fully dipped sandwich in some beef sauce – soooo messy, but apparently sooooo good (according to the guys). Uno de nuestros programas de television favorito es Man vs Food (Hombre vs Comida), siempre lo estan dando cuando cenamos y a veces me hace perder el apetito porque come algunas cosas asquerosas. Javier ha creado el habito de revisar los lugares que Man vs Food ha visitado, asi que para Chicago el ganador de nuestro almuerzoย  el Jueves fue Al’s Beefย  y su sandwich de carne. El lugar es pintorezco y un poco descuidado pero los sandwiches era baratos y DELICIOSOS. Yo fui fome y no deje que sumergieran el mio, pero Javier y el resto de la familia que fue con nosotros (mis primos Matt, Steve, Andrew y mi tio Warren) lo pidieron sumergido and un caldo de carne – muy desordenado pero aparentemente muuuuuuy rico (de acuerdo a los chicos)
Uncle Warren with his sandwich
Cousin Steven
Cousin Matt
Javi and his sandwich
After that little outing we went to Halo salon for men, which my brother rented out for 3 hours on Thursday afternoon for all his friends plus Javi, my dad and my cousin. Their pampering included a hot shave or a beard trim, a hair cut, hand wax and hand / head massage…and for those who were brave enough, eyebrow wax or trim. They brought in a cooler of drinks and had highlight videos from Ian’s highschool basketball days playing on a flatscreen on the wall all afternoon – a great weekend kickoff for them. I went along to document everything with my camera, of course, so I’ll be posting many photos from this experience on my photography blog in the coming month or so. Luego de nuestra pequena aventura fuimos a un salon de belleza para hombres llamado Halo, el cual mi hermano arrendo por 3 horas el Jueves en la tarde para todos su amigos mas Javi, mi papa y mi primo CJ. Los servicios incluyeron efeitada caliente y retoque de barba, corte de pelo, masaje de manos y cera para manos…y para aquellos mas corajudos arreglo de cejas. Ellos trajeron un cooler con cervezas y pusieron un DVD con videos de buenos momentos en partidos de basketball de los tiempos de Ian en el colegio. Yo tambien vine con mi camara y saque fotos de todo, por supuesto, asi que pondre mas fotos de exta experiencia en mi blog de fotografia en unas semanas.
Javi at the end of his beard trim
Ian getting his hot shave
After the salon trip, we all headed over to the rehearsal at 4th Presbyterian Church on the corner Michigan Ave. and Chestnut. It’s by far one of the most beautiful churches I have ever seen! It also has amazing acoustics and since I was the soloist for the wedding I was able to fully enjoy the view from the choir loft above the altar – I got a first-rate view of Ian and Andrea as they were about to exchange vows! But more of that in the next post. The rehearsal was brief and seamless thanks to the extra-experienced staff of 4th Pres (I think they said they have 360 weddings a year and that’s not including the off-season), as all rehearsals should be but never are, and then we were off to Moe’s Cantina for the rehearsal dinner. Luego del salon, todos fuimos al ensayo de la ceremonia en la iglesia 4th Prebyterian en la esquina de Michigan Avenue y Chestnut. Es lejos una de las iglesias mas bonitas que he visto! tiene tambien una gran acustica y como yo cante en la ceremonia tuve la oportunidad de ver todo desde el balcon del coro sobre el altar – tuve una vista de primera clase en el momento que Ian y Andrea intercambiaban votos! Pero mas de eso en un proximo post. El ensayo fue corto gracias a el experimentado grupo organizador de la iglesia ( creo que dijeron que tienen 360 bodas al ano sin incluir la temporada baja), luego del ensayo nos fuimos a la Cantina de Moe para cenar.
Inside 4th Pres for the rehearsal
Ian and Andrea met for the first time at Moe’s on St. Patrick’s Day 2008 – Andrea was bartending and she told Ian he was cute; he was obviously smitten because he wrote “Ian – brunch tomorrow?” and then his phone number on a cocktail napkin and slipped it to her. 3 years later, the napkin is framed next to a picture of them on their wall (remember this – it’ll be an important detail in the next post about the wedding!). My folks rented out the top room of Moes for the rehearsal dinner, so we had an open bar all to ourselves plus a Mexican buffet for dinner! That event itself could have counted as a mini wedding reception – there were at least 80-100 people there and it was an AMAZING party! The speeches were fun (I gave one and cried through all of them), there was a slide show and a bunch of Ian’s friends got together to do a musical roast to the tunes of Saltwata (someday I’ll write about my brother’s other life as a rapper with the stage name Saltwata, affectionately known to some of his friends as Salty). It was an all-around wonderful night and a fantastic way to kick off the official wedding festivities. Ian y Andrea se conocieron por primera vez en esta cantina en dia de San Patricio el 2008 – Andrea trabajaba en la barra y le dijo a Ian que era buen mozo; el obviamente no dejo pasar la oportunidad y le invito a tomar desayuno al otro dia escribiendo en una servilleta “desayuno manana” con su numero de telefono. 3 anos despues la servilleta esta enmarcada y colgada en una muralla de su apartamento. (Acuerdense de ese detalle, sera importante en un futuro post sobre la boda!). Mis papas arrendaron el segundo piso de la cantina, asi que tuvimos bar abierto y comida mexicana de cena! Eso solo se podia haber contado como celebracion del matrimonio, habia entre 80 y 100 personas y fue una fuesta genial! Los brindis fueron entretenidos (Lo llore todo), hubo un video con fotografias y un monton de amigos de Ian crearon un video musical para reirse del pasado rapero de Ian como “Saltwata”. (algun dia tengo que escribir sobre eso). Sumando todo, la noche fue fantastica y una excelente manera de empezar la celebracion.
me and gma ๐Ÿ™‚
Dad giving his father of the groom speech at the rehearsal dinner
The 5 Jacobs siblings! (my mom in the middle!)
The 9 Jacobs cousins
my parents
Ian and Andrea
I’m going to skip over the details of the wedding day and save it for another post, so I’ll pick up again on Saturday. We all had brunch in the morning (it was shocking how many folks showed up – I for one was up with Javier and my parents at Eggsperience at 3AM after the wedding party so it was a miracle that I was awake and coherent by 9) and then we went to the beach by Lake Michigan. I’ve never been to Panama City Beach on Spring Break, but the beach we went to by Lake Michigan feels like what I imagine PCB to be on a much smaller scale. It was PACKED with thousands of bodies, everyone playing loud music and throwing footballs and drinking (not so covertly) out of red solo cups. This wasn’t really Javi’s scene so he and my Aunt Regena went to the zoo across the road from the beach. I stayed stretched out on the sand for 2 solid hours – it was beautiful! Me voy a saltar los detalles del matrimonio para un proximo post, asi que me saltara hasta el Sabado. Todos desayunamos juntos el sabado en la manana (fue impresionante ver cuanta gente vino – Javier, mis papas y yo fuimos a Eggsperience, un lugar de comida 24hrs a las 3 de la manana una vez que la fiesta termino, no se como me desperte coherente a las 9AM) y despues fuimos a la playa en el lago Michigan. Yo nunca fui a Panama City durante el Spring Break, pero la playa del lago Michigan se parecia mucho a Panama City pero miniatura. Estaba lleno! con miles de personas, todos con musica a todo volumen y jugano futbol y bebiendo con sus vasos rojos. Este no era el panorama favorito de Javier asi que el y mi tia Regena fueron al zoologico que quedaba cerquita. Yo me quede y tome sol por 2 horas en la arena – fue maravillozo!
me and my aunt Marilyn at the post-wedding brunch
The last big outing of the trip was a family stop at Gino’s East. My brother and Andrea rented out a party room where we had all-you-can-eat deep-dish pizza and soft drinks – SUCH a perfect way to end the trip! La ultima actividad del viaje fue una visita familiar a Gino’s East. My hermano y Andrea arrendaron una sala donde comimos mucha pizza de plato hondo y bebidas – fue la mejor manera de terminar el viaje!
one last photo of the 9 cousins before we all left Chicago
Now Javi and I are back in Nashville and back to real life (sigh) – but very happy to be home with the pups! I think they missed us. Did you? ๐Ÿ™‚ Ahora Javi y yo estamos de vuelta en Nashville, de vuelta a la realidad – pero muy felices de estar en casa con los perritos! Creo que ellos nos extranaron…….Y tu??

3 thoughts on “Adventures in Chicago – Aventuras en Chicago Leave a comment

  1. Wow Leslie. This is a really great overview of an amazing wedding weekend. The only addition is that about ten of us went to Buddy Guy’s blues club, Legends, and HE SHOWED UP! It was his 75th birthday, and he just walked in the door, went up on stage, and did a couple of songs. Annie and Ann (Scott’s wife) bought shirts and he signed them. A perfect evening – and another 3 AM outing!

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