Ah, the unparalleled joy that is the four day weekend. I had a terrifying moment on Wednesday when, after celebrating to myself after I walked out of the office, I realized just how thrilled I was at the prospect of having four days to do with as I pleased. I am concerned I’m continuing to become more and more of an adult with each passing day, and I’m not sure how I feel about that.
Anyway, onto happier things! The Fourth of July was picture perfect in Chicago this year: a nice change from last year’s melt-inducing heat. As soon as I refueled after my run, I packed my bag, drowned myself in sunscreen, and headed to the beach!
Bliss. Pure bliss. I went to Montrose Beach, which I’m hesitant to blog about for fear that I’m revealing Chicago’s best kept secret. I obviously wasn’t the only person at the beach, but it wasn’t crowded by any means, even with a huge chunk of the beach sectioned off for Wavefront, an EDM festival that took place Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
I only stuck around the beach for a couple of hours (so as to avoid the always exfoliating song and dance of reapplying sunscreen while surrounded by sand. Not my favorite practice.), but I didn’t leave before dipping my toes in Lake Michigan.
Which was disturbingly black, yes, but it had to be done. Though I’ve been to the lake several times on its east side, I don’t think I’ve ever been in the water on the west side, so I had to do the requisite stand-in-the-water-for-thirty-seconds-and-call-it-good.
When I got home from the beach, it was time to get to work on my holiday “cook in.” I hosted a friend from college and her brother for a traditional Fourth of July meal, complete with chicken hot dogs, chips and salsa, corn on the cob, and red, white, and blue fruit salad (plus a red and blue fruit salad for my allergic-to-bananas roommate). My crowning achievement, however, were my patriotic cupcakes, courtesy of Sally’s Baking Addiction.
After making her vanilla cupcakes and following her tie dye instructions (which, yes, food coloring, chemicals, blah blah blah. It’s a holiday, people. Worth it.), I frosted the cupcakes with her vanilla frosting (only used half the recipe, and it made more than enough for my purposes) and decorated them with blueberries and strawberries like such:
After feasting, the four of us returned to Montrose (this time the Harbor instead of the Beach) to watch fireworks. Again, best kept secret in Chicago. Montrose wasn’t crowded at all and you could see the fireworks from Navy Pier in addition to ones people set off at North Ave.-ish. Plus the view of the skyline is just out of control beautiful.
I filled my Friday with errands, which I promise was way more fun than it sounds. I got a haircut and chopped somewhere between three and four inches off my hair, I did so much grocery shopping, I went thrifting (?? I’m sorry, who am I ? Since when do I thrift shop? Or clothes shop just for fun in general? I scored a J. Crew tank for $8.50, though!), and most importantly, I finally went to Oberweis, where I got birthday cake in a chocolate dipped sprinkle cone.
Go big or go home, eh? I legitimately cannot remember the last time I had real ice cream, so I figured I deserved to go all out.
On Saturday I Zumbad and went to Taste of Lakeview, as I mentioned yesterday, and then decided I had had quite enough activity for a four day weekend, thank you, and essentially sat on the computer doing little of value (well, I suppose I wrote this blog post, which may have value) for the rest of the weekend. All in all, it was the perfect balance of doing a lot of great things and relaxing, and can you really ask for more out of your four day weekend? I think not.
What did you do for the Fourth?
Do you often get four day weekends? Pretty sure my last real one was for Thanksgiving, although I did take a lot of time off around Christmas. That was more like a 12 day weekend though haha.