Musings of a Museum Fanatic: 2016

12.27.2016

10 Things that Happened in December

Whew! It's hard to believe just like that Christmas is over and done with. I do realize that we still have New Year but since we're going low key this year it feels like I can just relax for the rest of the year. There has been so much happening the past month that I don't think I've had a chance to really share any of it!

1. Thanksgiving
Thanksgiving was tons of fun. Kevin's parents joined in the Giles family fun. It was great because we got to really enjoy time with family instead of heading to the next place.

2. Gamma Phi Christmas 1, 2, & 3
Gamma Phi Beta dominated the Christmas parties this year for me. I had my usual Northwest and Far West parties but this year I made a point to head downtown for the Chicago Christmas party.


This was the only photo I got from the Chicago festivities. The lady on the left is the current international president of the sorority right now. She came in to Chicago especially for the party, which was in it's 40th year of being hosted by Dr. Ruth, on the right. Dr. Ruth is an amazing woman, I've been lucky enough to meet her and know a little bit about what she's done for the sorority and as a doctor.


For the Northwest Suburban Christmas party we held a cookie exchange and historic house tour at the Arlington Heights Historical Museum. We enjoyed the tour through both of the historic homes that make up the museum.



After we toured we cookied. Instead of doing some sort of gift or ornament exchange like we have done in the past we decided to go with a cookie exchange. All the cookies were yummy and I made to sure to go home with plenty of the spritz cookies, some of my favorites!


3. Windy City Blogger Collective Christmas party
I was so excited when the info for the Windy City Blogger Collective party was sent out. It's been tough to get downtown to connect with more Chicago bloggers but I knew I didn't want to miss this one.



Hubbard Inn hosted us with some extremely tasty food and drinks. Perk of taking the train was that I could actually enjoy a couple of the special martinis and not have to worry about getting home. The Food was really good. The ladies I was hanging out with and I decided that the mini burgers and meatballs were fantastic and definitely worth a return for dinner the in the future.



In addition to good eats and company there were pop up shops from local blogger vendors including two I really enjoy, The Trendy Sparrow and See Song Designs. I'm a big fan of The Trendy Sparrow, totally have the Bloggers Gonna Blog notepad.




4. Christkindl Market
This was actually one event I did get to share with you, so head on over to that post to check out the fun we had at the Naperville Christkindl Market.

5. Vendor Fairs Galore
I had a really good Pampered Chef month. This is month I had several shows that I closed up and four vendor shows. December is usually a busy month for most consultants but you just never know. All the work was worth it because it ended up being about $300 in commission for the month for me plus I earned some of the new spring products. Wahoo!

6. Chicago Fun Day
Kevin and I were planning on a full four day weekend up in Lake Geneva but when we found out his work party was that Friday night we decided on a Chicago Fun Day. We started out at one of my favorite downtown museums, the Chicago History Museum. I had been talking to a former professor who is the head of exhibits earlier in the fall about what exhibits were coming up and they definitely did not disappoint. In fact they were some of the best exhibits I had seen in a long time, plus Kevin loved them both. More on those later this week. 



We also got a chance to check on of the Chicago restaurants off my list, Smoque. It was probably about a 35 minute trek by bus and L from the history museum but holy crap and smack your mama it was SO worth it. 

That chicken was insane. Between the crust and the insane moisture I could have eaten the whole bird.


Kevin went for the brisket sandwich. After trying some of his I wish we had added on more of that to share instead of the sausage. Ridiculous good. I haven't had that good of BBQ since our trip to Dallas. Also I should have gone for two helping of the mac and cheese. I could have licked that little container it was so good.



That BBQ is definitely worth the trek!

7. Kevin's Work Christmas Party 
It was a great time and totally different from my work Christmas party! I connected really well with one of Kevin's favorite coworker's wives. She and I had a great time and found out that they live right by Kevin's parents. Kevin ended up with the third pick from the gift table this year and hooked me up with a Kitchenaid mixer!! I am so pumped about it. We used it to make our holiday cookies this year and it was amazing. Can't wait to save up and get some of the attachments.

8. Lake Geneva Weekend
In order to check things off my 101 List I make Kevin do all sorts of things. Sometimes it's stuff that he's not entirely excited about but I try to make sure that most of the time it's things he'll enjoy. One of those being a quick road trip weekend. After much discussion and polls taken we had decided on Lake Geneva. With the weather turning to snow on our trek up there we were glad we didn't go with a further road trip place.




We got to the resort an hour before the snow started to come down. After relaxing and enjoying drinks in the bar we ordered pizza and watched a movie. The plan for Sunday was to go out and enjoy Lake Geneva, maybe try some cross country skiing. Well after enjoying a lovely champagne Sunday brunch, we turned on the TV to a ton of cancellations and closings of churches and other institutions. Since church was closed because of the extreme cold there was no way we'd be venturing out!! Good thing Kevin brought his bass and I had stuff to work on. We were quite productive. I enjoyed the first of my scheduled spa treatments, a lovely pedicure.





We got to the resort an hour before the snow started to come down. After relaxing and enjoying drinks in the bar we ordered pizza and watched a movie. The plan for Sunday was to go out and enjoy Lake Geneva, maybe try some cross country skiing. Well after enjoying a lovely champagne Sunday brunch, we turned on the TV to a ton of cancellations and closings of churches and other institutions. Since church was closed because of the extreme cold there was no way we'd be venturing out!! Good thing Kevin brought his bass and I had stuff to work on. We were quite productive. I enjoyed the first of my scheduled spa treatments, a lovely pedicure.



 
Monday we slept in and I headed to my massage. This wasn't just any massage, I went crazy and did the hot stone massage. It was divine. Sometimes even when I tell the masseuses to lighten up the pressure it can still be a lot but because of the stones the pressure had to be on the gentle side which was perfect. Kevin and I headed out after my massage.




Even though we weren't able to enjoy Lake Geneva the town like we planned on the weekend in the resort was lovely and relaxing.

9. Christmas with my family
As usual we headed down to Lisle for Christmas Eve with my family. We enjoyed an earlier service with wonderful music. The songs this year were great.


Afterwards everyone headed to Lou & Bethany's for the big kitchen reveal. They had just totally renovated their kitchen, changed some windows and doors, tore down walls, added a deck ... you know just a small renovation. We all oohed and aahed over it all evening. I'm now very jealous! Our tradition has been to have a casual munchies night. I had to show you our Pinterest worthy veggie platter!




As we munched and munched the puzzle Lou & Bethany brought back from their Labor Day weekend D.C. trip made it's appearance. Everyone including Lane got in on the puzzle action.





We were doing well until Lane decided to put together the puzzle his way. This involved pulling apart the edge Lou & Bethany so painstakingly put together. The look of terror on their faces when they realized what he was doing was pretty priceless.



I love this family portrait. It's definitely the best of the bunch! Christmas Day they finished up the puzzle and Lane promptly took to taking it apart again. I'm in love with this photo haha.


10. Christmas Day with the Glenns
Christmas Day and the 26th with spent with Kevin's family. Kevin's mom sprung his grandma from the assisted living place and his uncle's were in town. Before everyone got their Kevin pulled his ugly sweater from hiding with the intention of joking with his grandma to get her to wear it. Well the joke was on all of us she actually loved it and took it home ha!



Kevin's brother and wife, Eric & Becky, surprised everyone by coming in to town late Christmas Day. We met up with everyone Monday for lunch and hanging out. They broke out the puzzle we gave to Kevin's parents and everyone enjoyed putting it together.



There may have been a little pushing and shoving to get to pieces. Kevin and I may have hid the last two pieces so we could put them in ... just saying ...




Then there were several games of Uno. Before which Rennae protested playing since she always looses ... she won the first two rounds ...





WHEW!!! That was December 2016 for the Glenns! It was a busy but oh so worth it month. 



How was your Christmas?!