Musings of a Museum Fanatic: January 2017

1.30.2017

Making Mainbocher at the Chicago History Museum


Earlier this winter Kevin and I had a Friday off before our Lake Geneva weekend. We decided to spend it in the city. In addition to checking Smoque off my bucket list we went to the Chicago History Museum (CHM) to check out the special exhibits. The head of the exhibits at CHM was my professor for an exhibits class a couple of years ago and had told me earlier in the fall about the fabulous Mainbocher exhibit that they were working on so I was excited to finally get a chance to see it.


As the curatorial team says of Mainbocher was a man who really should not have become a successful high fashion designer. A kid from the west side of Chicago neighborhood of East Garfield Park Mainbocher started his career at Sears, Roebuck and Company.




Following the his time in the Army in Paris Mainbocher settled there becoming a fashion illustrator for Harper’s Bazaar followed by his move up the ladder at French Vogue. 



He then opened up a salon in Paris but moved it to New York before the Nazi invasion. We loved seeing all the different pieces that he designed. Not just haute couture but there were Girl Scout uniforms and military uniforms as well.




One thing I always appreciate in a good museum exhibit is the interactive. There was a blank canvas dress form and we were able to design our own couture dress! Kevin got really into it and enjoyed making this crazy outfit.






Making Mainbocher is a must visit for those fashion geeks, those who just enjoy beauty and everyone in between. It's at the Chicago History Museum until August 2017 so you've got some time to get your butt there! 

Thanks so much for stopping by! You can also join me on InstagramTwitter, and Pinterest. In addition to life-capades and doing it for yourself, I love all things 'real life' so use the hashtag #museumfanatic on social media so I can see your beautiful unstaged life. Oh and on the top of the side bar to your right, you can follow me on Bloglovin or on social media to be alerted to each new post!

1.27.2017

Swagbucks Tips & Tricks


As I submit my points for another $50 gift card from Swagbucks I really start to think about the few things I do to really rack up the points. There are other tricks that I'm sure are out there if you have the time and want to put in a ton of effort but with being so busy I've always got so much happening. These are tips and tricks that I use to maximize my earnings.

1. Download the Swagbucks TV app so you can have the videos playing on your phone. When you're at home or somewhere with Wi-Fi just start the videos and let them play through. This will allow you to reach your daily allotment on the app.

2. Continuing on about the videos! You can save some of your favorites aka the shorter videos. Then you can have the app just run through those videos and not waste time on the long ones. Some of the shortest videos are the health ones.

3. With the Swagbucks app (different from the TV app) you'll get notification of when there is a Swagbucks code. Those codes are usually 3-5 point freebies! The only work involved is looking them up and plugging them in.

4. Surveys are your new bff. I've come to realize that the earlier in the day I can do surveys the more I will actually be able to complete and not have them be full. Even if I'm able to check right after work and before the evening hits there always seems to be a good chance.

5. Check before you shop. This is a big one because it can really add up points wise. If you're one to forget download the extension for your browser of choice. When you start to shop it will pop up if there is cash back and you'll be able activate it without going through the website every time. 

6. Invite your friends. I really like sharing the link with people. I know that peoples reasons are different, some people just want a little extra money or some people might really need the money to pay bills. I've been able to add a couple hundred extra bucks the past few months. It's been nice to be able to buy one really nice pair of sandals instead of a couple cheap ones for the summer and stuff like that.

7. Hit your base daily goal every day! This gets you bonus points at the start of the next new month. It's better if you can get to the bonus goal and get more bonus points but I try to at least hit 

8. Print off grocery coupons. I print a lot of coupons from online sources already but when you go through them on Swagbucks you're printing off the same ones but getting extra points when you redeem those. My theory is if you're going to print them anyways make them do double duty and get points!

Thanks so much for stopping by! You can also join me on InstagramTwitter, and Pinterest. In addition to life-capades and doing it for yourself, I love all things 'real life' so use the hashtag #museumfanatic on social media so I can see your beautiful unstaged life. Oh and on the top of the side bar to your right, you can follow me on Bloglovin or on social media to be alerted to each new post!

1.25.2017

Disney Drinks

Taking on certain 101 List tasks has been more difficult than I expected. There are several task I thought would be quickly crossed off, one of those was concocting the three Disney inspired drinks. Much to my surprise it was actually a task that require some new skill learning.

Inspired by several info graphics I had pinned to my Drink, Drank, Drunk Pinterest board Stephanie started the ball rolling at my birthday. She came prepared for us all to enjoy the Lilo and Stich inspired Ohana Colada. A fun blue cocktail complete with yummy gummy worms you can't really go wrong with that right?


Look at that beautiful cocktail! We did really well for a fancy birthday cocktail didn't we? Since most everyone had to drive that evening we ended up with the extra booze in our fridge. Obviously we all know how cheap I can be and I'm not about to just buy booze for two more drinks when Stephanie already hooked me up.

We decided to go simple with the next cocktail and partake in the Fair Maiden, inspired by Snow White & The Seven Dwarfs. We already had the Blue Curacao so purchasing the pineapple juice for the drink was an easy, cheap addition.


This photo is of I think my 8th go at these drinks. I thought that the liquids had different densities or something so I thought that they would just naturally layer themselves as I poured the Curacao over the juice. HA. That sooo did not happen. It made a really pretty, deliciously mixed green cocktail but not one that resembled Snow White.

So tried several different courses of action. I put it in a little mini pouring measure cup, I tried spooning it on top, among a couple other attempts. Those methods weren't terrible they actually resulted in something that was quite similar to this drink. The ah ha moment came from my visit to South Bend when we had drinks with Becky's friend who happened to be the drinks expert at the paper. Yes part of her job is to write about drinking.

Her recommendation of pouring slowly over the over turned bowl of the spoon was life changing. It resulted in the beautiful blue and yellow concoction you see before you. Next I moved on to the Sleep Cycle inspired by Sleeping Beauty! Did you really think I was going to do a Disney challenge like this and not have one of them be Sleeping Beauty related? Unlikely.


We first tried this drink with mini bottles of a different kind of blue and pink liquor but those did not work out at all. When it comes to making it look right go with the top shelf! Since I already knew the trick for making the distinctive layers it was super easy to finish this delicious cocktail and cross it off my list!

Have you ever made any Disney inspired cocktails? What's your favorite cocktail in general to make at home?

Thanks so much for stopping by! You can also join me on InstagramTwitter, and Pinterest. In addition to life-capades and doing it for yourself, I love all things 'real life' so use the hashtag #museumfanatic on social media so I can see your beautiful unstaged life. Oh and on the top of the side bar to your right, you can follow me on Bloglovin or on social media to be alerted to each new post!

1.23.2017

Interview with Krazy Kevin

Kevin has shown up on the blog several times in the past. He's always game for joining me in my museum and blog exploits. I thought what's better than a full blown Kevin post! To make it easy for him I searched and pulled together questions I thought would be fun for him to answer. There were even some answers that were new to me!


Who was your first celebrity crush?
I don’t have a clue.  I rarely paid attention to the names of female celebrities when I was growing up.


How involved are you with Betsy’s blog?
I have been dragged to a multitude of interesting events.  They have all been fun and worth it because I get to be with my lovely wife. 

If you could go on a cross country road trip with a famous person, dead or alive, who would it be?
John Candy. 

How often do you read the blog? 
I read through it once every two weeks.  After writing that, I plan on reading it much more.  That doesn’t make me sound like a very involved husband.


What song would you sing for your American Idol audition?
Lynyrd Skynyrd’s “Simple Man”.  When I took singing lessons ages ago, I could sing this song really well.


What do you enjoy most about Betsy’s blog?
The reactions Betsy has about things I have been involved in.  Many times I do not realize how much my own actions affect her in such a positive/negative way.  It’s always interesting to hear Betsy share such a positive outlook on past events we have spent together.  It makes me realize that I am too pessimistic at times and that I really should look at certain events differently.

Describe your perfect sandwich.
Sour dough, peanut butter, pastrami, spinach, swiss cheese.  Microwave and toaster oven combination of food items in whatever manner I wanted to do at that moment. 

What‘s something about Betsy that her readers might not know (but she would be ok with you sharing)?
Betsy is committed to making others happy, making events go well, and is the best present/gift decider I have ever met.  She constantly stresses about planning and making sure people are going to be happy in the end.  Whether it is planning dinner, vacation activities, or airport details, 95% of the activities go really well.  The other 4% of not so great times usually deal with factors that cannot be controlled or planned for.  The 1% is things that just happen.  In the end, we are human!


What does Betsy REALLY want for Valentine’s Day? And what are you getting her?
I don’t have a clue and if I did, I am not telling you!

What is Betsy’s most endearing habit?
Betsy’s most endearing habit is constantly making sure I will be content with whatever we decide and any big decisions I make.
One example: I told Betsy I was going to buy a new bass and she immediately replied, “It better be a Spector otherwise you will not be happy with it”.  She was right!

Do you like kissing or hugging more?
Hugging in general as it convey the same emotions to MANY different people.  Kissing for the two of us.

What do you think Betsy loves most about you?
That I will support and join her in just about anything she wants to do.  That I love her just the way she is.

What is your most hated household chore? 
Cleaning the bathrooms.  Feels endless once you start doing it and it’s purely disgusting.  Then I feel horrible for letting it go so long and it takes even longer.  I still have not figured out what products I should be using and which ones will result in less paper towel waste.  The Swiffer Wet Jet for the floors is the biggest joke on this planet.  It does not pick up enough.  It seems to push the filth around….

What was the first thing that attracted you to Betsy?
Her smile, easy to talk to, and she cared a lot about her education. 

What do you think is the secret to a happy marriage?
Understanding each other’s expectations, being less selfish, and communicating on the same wavelength. 


What is your favorite memory of dating me?
Surprising you on our first date.  We had spent between 9am and 5pm together and I told you let’s go see a movie and that I will buy dinner.  I saw you smile and I know you were secretly shocked that I wanted to do more with you.  It was basically two dates in one - a full 12 hours.

What’s the happiest you ever felt?
Seeing you walk down the aisle towards me after your Dad let you go.

If you were in a witness protection program, what would be your new name and where would you go?
Armando Venezuela and I would go to Ontario, Canada, and be a fishing guide. 

Which Disney princess do you find to be the most attractive?
Belle from Beauty and the Beast.


What’s something you always wanted to do as a child but never got to do it?
Drive a boat onto a local retention pond in Palatine and see how deep it really goes. 

What is your favorite smell?
The smell of fresh rain on Lake Waubesa.

Have you ever been drunk in public?
A few times, yes.  Betsy was there for the WORST moments!


Who is your favorite cartoon character?
Peter Venkman – The Real Ghostbusters (younger)
Piccolo – Dragon Ball Z (as I got a little older)


Thanks so much for stopping by! You can also join me on InstagramTwitter, and Pinterest. In addition to life-capades and doing it for yourself, I love all things 'real life' so use the hashtag #museumfanatic on social media so I can see your beautiful unstaged life. Oh and on the top of the side bar to your right, you can follow me on Bloglovin or on social media to be alerted to each new post!




1.20.2017

5 Elements of a Good Mix CD


If you grew up in the 80's you spent a lot of time waiting to record songs off the radio to make that perfect mix tape. If you grew up in the 90's you took a great amount of time to make that perfect mix CD. You didn't have to wait by the radio anymore but it was just as much of an art. As the music snob lover that I am I was always one to make sure that every mix CD was perfect.

1. Theme
Even in my younger years I was all about themes. Picking the right theme to a CD is crucial. It could be something easy like "Soundtracks" but if you get into more cerebral types of themes, "Sappy Songs" & "High School Memories" those will take some more thought.

2. Mood
This goes along with Theme somewhat. You want to make sure you know the mood of your mix CD. It doesn't really apply to certain CD, say you're doing a "Sappy Songs" CD well that's a pretty obvious mood so no need to worry about it with that one. If you're doing other themes such as "Broadway Musicals" you'll want to decide if you add the slow sometimes sad songs and vary the mood or if you want to keep it uptempo the entire time.

3. Deciding on Songs
Obviously this is the most important aspect of a mix CD. You'll want to make sure you spend plenty of time time deciding on the right songs. Don't just pull together songs that might fit the theme and plunk them on the CD. That's how you end up with a CD where you only like two songs and always skip through the rest of them. I know I for one have more than enough CDs where I didn't actually take time to decide on a good song and now can't even stand half of the CD.

4. Order
If you're the type of person who listens to their CDs on random, like I do, then feel free to skip this one. If you listen to a CD straight through then be sure to make sure that the songs are in a good order for your listening. Be sure to start and end the CD with good songs too, you want them to have punch!

5. Name It
Get creative with this! Don't just be lame and describe the type of music on the CD go crazy and make it a name that means something!

Thanks so much for stopping by! You can also join me on InstagramTwitter, and Pinterest. In addition to life-capades and doing it for yourself, I love all things 'real life' so use the hashtag #museumfanatic on social media so I can see your beautiful unstaged life. Oh and on the top of the side bar to your right, you can follow me on Bloglovin or on social media to be alerted to each new post!

1.18.2017

Tips for Organizing Your Digital Photos


Organizing your electronic media can be a pain in the butt. I helped you get a start on your general electronic clutter before but now it's time to tackle most people's biggest offender, photos! I won't lie I can be really bad with photos sometimes. Now with cameras attached to our hands most of the times we take way more photos than we ever did in the past. Most people's photos are a crazy mess since photos tend to be on multiple devices. It's useless to have all those photos if you can't share or use them in the future.

1. Everything in one place. 
Don't just leave them on your devices!! Make a point of pulling them off on a regular basis. Take time to do it at least once a month, maybe even more depending on how many photos you take each month. If you're a person who takes tons of photos invest in an external hard drive to store just them. It's a pain having to check multiple hard drives and you computer as you mutter under your breath that you know you put that darn photo somewhere. Seriously I have stuff on multiple thumb drives and hard drives at the moment and it's chaos. Don't be like me, be monogamous and put it all in one place.

2. Set up a specific folder system
I've discovered that the more specific I can get with my foldering system the easier it is to find what I'm looking for. For the longest time I was just putting stuff in a year folder then breaking it up by seasons. This was ok but I was still scrolling through hundreds of photos in each season folder. Since then I've realized that it's still good to break it up by year but I need to be more specific with the sub-folders.

There are always those events that you just end up taking tons of photos at, like the weekend up at Kevin's parents lake cottage or at the AC/DC concert. Within the year folders I'll make sure to give those events their own specific folders with the date! The date is really important, it helps you remember when these memorable events happened.

With my blog photo folder I've been breaking down into topics then specific post folders. Such as "Recipes" then "Taco Ring". This helps especially if you're not working on the specific post right away, it makes it so much easier to go back and find the photos you took during dinner a month ago!

3. Delete
No I'm not suggesting you delete photos you actually like. I'm talking about that accidental photo you took of someones leg as you were pulling the camera out of your purse or that one where you and all your friends weren't ready for the shot.

Why keep photos like those that you're never going to share or even look back on? That's right don't keep them! Plus this will open up more room for more photos that you actually care about and you won't have to wade through tons of excess photos.

4. What's in a Name
I'm not gonna lie this is one that I have a really hard time with it because it can be time consuming and there is no way to really do it quickly. You should really be renaming your photos especially if you're using them on your blog (that's a different post for another day). By naming them logically you make it so much easier to find in the future. Yeah I remember that Easter at Grandma's when I was little. Hmmmm I didn't put it in the logical folder but I can now find it because I changed the title on the photos to Easter at Grandma's 1995.

5. Back That Thang Up
Yes I know I said earlier to have them all in one place but this is after you've organized them in that one place. You should always have a back up. Life happens and stuff breaks. I've had hard drives die on me, lucky for me my brother was able to pull almost everything of the broken drive but I won't always be lucky and neither will you! Have a hard drive that is just a back up. Don't work with the photos from that drive. You plunk them on there when the photos are done being organized and that's it. 

I also would recommend invest in cloud back up as well. There are several great options like Dropbox or Google Drive. It's better to be too prepared and be backed up in multiple places rather than in just one place. Also don't leave any files, photos or documents, on thumb drives as storage. Those are less stable than a large hard drive. 

What do you photo files look like? Do you already have a system in place or are they in need of some serious organization?


Thanks so much for stopping by! You can also join me on InstagramTwitter, and Pinterest. In addition to life-capades and doing it for yourself, I love all things 'real life' so use the hashtag #museumfanatic on social media so I can see your beautiful unstaged life. Oh and on the top of the side bar to your right, you can follow me on Bloglovin or on social media to be alerted to each new post!

1.16.2017

A House Tour through our Walls

I know a lot of bloggers enjoy doing tours of their houses to share on their blogs for a personal look into their lives. I thought about that but that would require me to actually having the entire apartment cleaned and organized all at once. If you know me that it quite a feat, one which I am still working to accomplish! Since I knew I probably wouldn't be able to accomplish that I set myself to thinking of what the next best this would be. 

A look at our walls! I feel that the walls are the perfect place to show your personality and fun but it's out of the way and not taking up room. 


I love the gallery wall Kevin put up when we moved in. As you can see the G on the upper right is a lovely share a blue ... it started out a bright turquoise!!


A couple years ago I made the Glenn sign at a local Color Me Mine as a gift for Kevin for an anniversary. It does seem like most of the tiles are about Kevin but I used scenes that represent both of us and our enjoyments.



That moment when you realize that your photos are totally askew! Whoops.


This photo collage is the gift Kevin gave me for our first Christmas together. I remember being impressed that he thought of the idea all on his own and carrying it out without any help from his mom or anyone else!


So the above collage was Kevin's first present to me, this was my first to Kevin. While I was interning at the Chicago History Museum they had a sale of images that were printed but never sold and other such items. When I saw this early photo of Soldier Field I knew it would be perfect!


Before our wedding I showed a close family friend a Disney fine art painting that I was in love with. Much to our surprise she painted us our own inspired by that one. It feels very adult to have our own one of a kind piece of artwork.





We have a number of other wall art pieces and photos hanging all over the place, I think the post would be twice as long if I shared them all! The last one I want to share is by far my favorite piece of wall art. For our wedding my mom and I made a photo collage of Kevin and I with a large piece of mat around the edge that served as our guest book. I absolutely love walking by every day and seeing the love of family and friends.




Thanks so much for stopping by! You can also join me on InstagramTwitter, and Pinterest. In addition to life-capades and doing it for yourself, I love all things 'real life' so use the hashtag #museumfanatic on social media so I can see your beautiful unstaged life. Oh and on the top of the side bar to your right, you can follow me on Bloglovin or on social media to be alerted to each new post!

1.13.2017

Quick and Dirty Illinois History


Illinois has a really interesting and quite long history. Since the state has been around for so long it would be a really really long post to share all that interesting history. I thought it would be fun to take you through it in a quick timeline! So here is a quick and dirty Illinois history in 20 quick points.

1673 -  French explorers Jacques Marquette and Louis Jolliet explored the Mississippi and Illinois Rivers. 

1699 - Cahokia, IL founded, is the oldest town in Illinois

1803 -  Fort Dearborn was established 

1809 - Creation of the Illinois Territory 

1818 - Illinois became the 21st U.S. state

1853 - First Illinois State Fair is held

1871 - Fire consumes much of Chicago

1893 - Chicago World's Fair

1908 - Springfield race riot leads to formation of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) in 1909

1940 - John Balaban establishes WBKB, the first television station in Illinois

1952 - Governor Adlai Stevenson is the Democratic nominee for president

1954 - Raymond A. Kroc opens the first in a chain of McDonald's fast-food restaurants in Des Plaines

1958 - Our Lady of Angels elementary school fire claims the lives of ninety-two children and three nuns.

1972 - Abraham Lincoln Home in Springfield designated the first national historic site in Illinois.

1986 - Chicago Bears win Super Bowl XX

1991- Chicago Bulls win the first of three consecutive NBA championships

1992 - Carol Moseley-Braun becomes the first African-American women elected to the U.S. Senate

2008 - Barack Obama elected President of the United States

2009 - Governor Rod Blagojevich impeached

2016 - Chicago Cubs win World Series first time in 108 years

1.11.2017

Chicago Museum Free Days 2017

Another year has begun, which means it's now time for another round of museum free days!! I live for free days at museums. It's like Christmas all year round. I highly recommend if you're visiting the area or live in Chicago full time take some time this year and head to a new cultural institution. You never know you might find your new favorite!

There are also usually discounts for certain groups, such as military personnel and teachers. Be sure to check websites or call and check to see if you can get that discount before you go. If you're from the Chicago area I would also highly recommend you become a member of your favorite museums you visit often. This not only gets you into the museum for a discounted rate and in most cases special member perks but it supports the museum and the work that they do. There really is no better deal that becoming a member.



The Big 6 Chicago Museums
Adler Planetarium
1300 South Lake Shore Drive, Chicago IL 60605
312-922-7827
These are free days
  • January 6–13, 16-20
  • February 6–10, 20–24
  • June 5–9

Art Institute of Chicago
111 South Michigan Avenue, Chicago, IL 60603
312-443-3600
  • Free admission every Thursday 5-8PM for Illinois residents
  • Free admission for Illinois residents every weekday January 9–February 16, 2017

700 East Grand Avenue, Chicago, IL 60611
312-527-1000
  • Target Free Family Night - Free admission every Thursday 5PM-8PM
  • First Free Sunday - Free admission for visitors 15 and under on the first Sunday of each month

Field Museum of Natural History
1400 South Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, IL 60605
312-922-9410
Illinois residents can enjoy free Basic admission on Field Museum Discount Days. On these Discount Days, Illinois residents may upgrade to a Discovery Pass or upgrade to an All-Access Pass.
  • January 4, 5, 16, 28, 29, 30 
  • February 1 - 28

Museum of Science and Industry 
5700 South Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, IL 60637
773-684-1414
These are Illinois resident discount days
  • January 10-12, 16-19, 24-26, 31 
  • February 1-2, 7-9, 14-16, 21-23, 28 
  • June 5-9, 12 
  • September 5-8, 11-15, 18-22, 25-29 
  • October 2-5

Shedd Aquarium
1200 South Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, IL 60605
312-939-2438
During Discount Days, Illinois residents can upgrade to a Total Experience Pass for just $15.
  • January 9, 10, 16, 17, 23, 24, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31 
  • February 6, 7, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 21, 27, 28 
  • June 5, 6, 12, 13 
  • August 28, 29 
  • September 5, 11, 12, 18, 19, 25, 26 
  • October 2, 3, 9, 10, 16, 17, 23, 24, 25, 26, 30, 31 
  • November 6, 7, 13, 14, 20, 21



    Art
    Elmhurst Art Museum
    150 Cottage Hill Ave. Elmhurst, Illinois 60126
    630-834-0202
    • Free admission first Friday

    Lizzadro Museum of Lapidary Art
    220 South Cottage Hill Avenue, Elmhurst, IL 60126
    630-833-1616
    • Free admission every Friday

    Loyola University Museum of Art
    820 North Michigan Avenue, Chicago, IL 60611
    312-915-7600
    • Free admission every Tuesday

    Museum of Contemporary Art
    220 East Chicago Avenue, Chicago, IL 60611
    312-280-2660
    • Free admission every Tuesday

    National Veterans Art Museum
    4041 N. Milwaukee Avenue Chicago, IL 60641
    312-326-0270
    • Free daily admission

    Smart Museum of Art at the University of Chicago
    5550 S. Greenwood Avenue, Chicago, IL 60637
    773-702-0200
    • Free daily admission


    Ethnic Museums
    DuSable Museum of African American History
    740 East 56th Place, Chicago, IL 60637
    773-947-0600
    • Free admission every Tuesday

    Mitchell Museum of the American Indian
    3001 Central Street, Evanston, IL 60201
    847-475-1030
    • Free admission every first Friday

    National Museum of Mexican Art
    1852 West 19th Street, Chicago, IL 60608
    312-738-1503
    • Free daily admission

    Oriental Institute at the University of Chicago
    1155 East 58th Street, Chicago, IL 60637
    773-702-9514
    • Free daily admission

    Swedish American Museum
    5211 North Clark Street, Chicago, IL 60601
    773-728-8111
    • Free admission every second Tuesday of the month

    History Museums
    Robert McCormick Museum 
    1S151 South Winfield Road, Wheaton, IL 60189
    630-668-5161
    • Free daily admission, $5 parking fee per car

    Chicago History Museum
    1601 North Clark Street, Chicago, IL 60614
    312-642-4600
    Illinois resident discount days
    • Free admission every Tuesday

    Clarke House Museum
    1827 South Indiana Avenue, Chicago, IL 60616
    312-326-1480
    • Free admission on open days

    102 E. Wesley Street Wheaton, Illinois 60187
    630-510-4941
    • Free daily admission

    120 E. Park Ave.  Elmhurst, IL 60126
    630-833-1457
    • Free daily admission

    Glessner House Museum
    1800 South Prairie Avenue, Chicago, IL 60616
    312-326-1480
    • Free on Wednesdays

    Illinois Holocaust Museum
    9603 Woods Drive, Skokie, IL 60077
    847-967-4800
    Free days for Bank of America/Merrill Lynch ATM, credit or debit cardholders ONLY.
    • January 7-8
    • February. 4-5
    • March 4-5
    • April 1-2
    • May 6-7
    • June 3-4
    • July 1-2
    • August 5-6
    • September 2-3
    • October 7-8
    • November 4-5
    • December 2-3

    Jane Addams Hull House at UIC
    800 S. Halsted Chicago, IL 60607-7017
    312-413-5353
    • Suggested donation of $5

    International Museum of Surgical Science
    1524 N. Lake Shore Dr. Chicago, IL 60610
    312-642-6502
    • Free on Tuesdays

    McDonalds #1 Store Museum
    400 N. Lee Street Des Plaines, IL 60016
    847-297-5022
    • Free daily admission

    Naper Settlement
    523 S. Webster St. Naperville, IL 60540
    630-420-6010
    • Free general admission for Naperville residents. Discounted rate during the winter season (November-March)

    Local Historical Societies
    These local historical institutions usually have free admission, suggested donation or an extremely low fee which will usually include a tour. Since a majority these institutions are run by volunteers be sure to check what their hours are since sometimes they will only be open certain days of the week to the public.



    Nature Museums, Farms & Zoos
    Brookfield Zoo
    8400 West 31st Street, Brookfield, IL 60513
    708-688-8000
    • General admission is free from January to February Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays, and Sundays 

    Chicago Botanic Garden
    1000 Lake Cook Road, Glencoe, IL 60022
    847-835-5440
    • Free daily admission, parking fees apply

    Cantigny
    1S151 South Winfield Road, Wheaton, IL 60189
    630-668-5161
    • Free daily admission, $5 parking

    Garfield Park Conservatory
    300 North Central Park Avenue, Chicago, IL 60624
    312-746-5100
    • Free daily admission, street parking available

    Lincoln Park Zoo
    2001 North Clark Street, Chicago, IL 60614
    312-742-2000
    • Free daily admission, parking fees apply

    Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum
    2430 North Cannon Drive, Chicago, IL 60614
    773-755-5100
    • Thursdays are suggested donation days for Illinois residents

    The Grove
    1421 Milwaukee Avenue, Glenview, IL
    847-299-6096
    • Free daily admission

    Wagner Farm
    1510 Wagner Road, Glenview, IL 60026
    847-657-1506
    • Free daily admission

    ***While this list is pretty comprehensive there are a number of museum's that don't advertise free/discounted days but you should definitely be sure to check them out as well because there are some amazing museums in the Chicago area***





    Thanks so much for stopping by! You can also join me on InstagramTwitter, and Pinterest. In addition to life-capades and doing it for yourself, I love all things 'real life' so use the hashtag #museumfanatic on social media so I can see your beautiful unstaged life. Oh and on the top of the side bar to your right, you can follow me on Bloglovin or on social media to be alerted to each new post!

    1.09.2017

    Swago Shopping Edition

    Swagbucks is hosting another round of Shopping Swago! What is SWAGO you ask? It's a bingo-inspired promotion run by Swagbucks, a website that rewards you with points (called SB) for completing everyday online activities. You can redeem those SB for free gift cards. If you've never used Swagbucks, participating in SWAGO is a great introduction to the site and an easy way to earn a good amount of points quickly. Now that the holidays are over and you bought presents for everyone else, why not treat yourself to some online shopping and earn cash back while you're at it?
    Here’s what you need to know to get your 200 SB ($2) Bonus (and don’t worry, you don’t have to make a purchase to complete a pattern):
    • Shop Swago will begin on Monday, January 9th at 9am PDT/12pm EDT, make sure you hit “Join” otherwise you won’t get credit for completing the action items. Each square on your Swago Board will contain an action item to complete.
    • Once you complete the action item in a particular square the square will change color signifying the action item is complete.
    • You have a limited amount of time to mark off as many squares as possible so use your time wisely.
    • Be mindful of the patterns and their corresponding bonuses located on the right of your Swago Board. The patterns will vary in difficulty and bonus value.
    • Once you’ve achieved a pattern the corresponding “Submit” button will light up. You can have multiple patterns available for submission, however, you can only submit ONE pattern so choose wisely.
    • The game ends Thursday, January 12th at 12pm PDT/3pm EDT. So make sure to hit “Submit” on the pattern you wish to submit. If you don’t hit “Submit” before the game ends you won’t receive your SB bonus.
    Thanks so much for stopping by! You can also join me on Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest. In addition to life-capades and doing it for yourself, I love all things 'real life' so use the hashtag #museumfanatic on social media so I can see your beautiful unstaged life. Oh and on the top of the side bar to your right, you can follow me on Bloglovin or on social media to be alerted to each new post!