Good Times in Chicago

Danny and Kevin and I were scheduled for a 1 AM flight leaving Paraguay, heading to Chicago via Panama for a three week trip.  Brian and Patrick graciously offered to drive us to the airport.  Unfortunately, due to “bird migration” in Panama, our flight was delayed about 90 minutes.  Finally though, it was time to give goodbye hugs to Daddy and Patrick and board our flight.

Once we were on the plane, Danny quietly and happily watched a movie on his tablet and then fell asleep for a few hours.  Kevin was another story.  He screamed for about four hours.  We were not very popular on that flight.  I was hoping Kevin would sleep (so I could sleep), since it was the middle of the night, but apparently he preferred crying and didn’t fall asleep until just before we landed.

After a six-hour flight to Panama, we scrambled through the airport to make our connecting flight to Chicago. Thankfully the bird migration that had delayed our flight to Panama also delayed our flight from Panama.  We got to the gate just in time to board the plane. The boys were pretty good on the flight. They liked looking out the window, napping, and playing with tablets and Kev had fun feeding Danny little snacks.

Once we got to Chicago, we had fun seeing family, visiting a few sites, and eating food we can’t get in Paraguay.

Baby Kevin had minor surgery a couple days after we arrived and he handled it like a champ, though he did throw up all over me after waking up from anesthesia. After that, all he wanted was snuggles from Mama and I was more than happy to oblige. Thankfully surgery was a success and Kev recovered quickly!

One night during our trip, we had a nice dinner at the newly-purchased home of my sister Sheila and her husband Mike.  Mike cooked burgers on the grill, telling us that though they had only lived in the house a short time, they had already used the grill for steaks, burgers, brats, and chicken.  Danny was especially excited for the s’mores we had for dessert, cooked over Mike and Sheila’s fire pit.

After dinner, Danny and Kevin put on a dance show for Sheila and Mike, performing to the boys’ favorites including La Bamba and Despacito.

While on a break from dancing, Danny come over to me and asked, “Right that we don’t hurt animals?”  I assured him that he was correct, and we should not hurt animals.  With a look of concern, he said to me, “But Uncle Mike said he put a chicken on the grill and that probably hurt the chicken, right?”  After I explained to Danny that Mike had cooked a chicken breast from the store and not a live animal over fire, Danny was relieved. He must have been worried about that all throughout dinner!

During our trip, the boys enjoyed playing with and eating the harvest from my dad’s garden, especially the giant zucchini. Some of the zucchini was even larger than my nephew, Barrett!

We also had lots of nice lunches with my sister Sheila who often has lunch at my parents’ house, since she works nearby.

One of the trip highlights was the total solar eclipse which was partially visible in suburban Chicago.


The boys were especially excited about their special eclipse glasses.

The eclipse was really neat to see.  It was a cloudy day, so it was difficult to see anything without the glasses.

Danny kept clapping his hands and saying, “This is so exciting!”

Danny and Kevin enjoyed lots of play time with their cousins while we were in town. Kevin and Evelyn were very cute holding hands with each other while on a walk one afternoon. Kev had fun playing shirtless with cousins Griff and Jack.

Evelyn, Pierce, and Kev had lunch together one afternoon.

Kevin had lots of kitchen sink baths during our trip.

Kevin and his cousin Evelyn took baths next to each other one afternoon.

Kevin and his cousin Pierce took a bath together another afternoon.

One afternoon, Kevin insisted on taking a chicken leg with him into the bath.  My sister Colleen commented, “How come it’s cute when he takes a chicken leg into the bathtub but it’s disgusting when I do it!?”

Danny visited the eye doctor and got a new prescription for glasses while we were in town.

Danny and Kevin were excited to give a wedding gift to Uncle Kevin and Aunt Matty who celebrated their wedding during our trip.

Meanwhile in Paraguay, Patrick and Brian kept busy doing big kid stuff, like going to a golf tournament.  Patrick was so excited when a golfer tossed him a golf ball as a souvenir. When Danny and Patrick spoke via FaceTime, Patrick showed Danny the golf ball and Danny showed Patrick how big his muscles were getting.

At Patrick‘s request, Brian took him to eat at TGI Friday’s and they sat at the bar. They also went grocery shopping, but decided against buying a product called “barfy burgers”.

Brian and Patrick also went to check out a fire in the neighborhood.

Danny and Kevin and I sure had a nice three weeks in Chicago, but we were glad to get back home to Brian and Patrick in Paraguay! Danny gave Patrick some superhero pajamas we had picked out just for him.

The boys were glad to be reunited and Brian and I were happy to send them off to school on Labor Day especially since the Embassy was closed and we both had the day off.

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