That Toddling Town

My very first trip to Chicago was in March of 2005. I went with my church young adult group on an inner city mission trip. I remember arriving and immediately sensing something familiar. Home. I didn't understand it all that well but voyaged on with the mission trip. We visited some pretty hard core parts of the city. Places that most would warn you to never go to because you wouldn't come out alive. Well, I did. Call me lucky. But I love that, that was my first taste of The Windy City. I saw the slums, the poverty stricken, the gangs and even hung out with some convicts at the Cook County Corrections facility.

My second trip would be a much different visit. It happened July of 2010 for my very first CHA experience with the gals at ScrapStreet. Again, I felt like I was returning home. Such a strange feeling when it has never been your home and really don't know anyone. On my first trip, I did get to know the streets pretty well. I knew where Michigan Street was and how to find it by following certain corners. I knew how the El worked and loved the whole vibe of walking with everyone and getting on and off. So on this trip back, I knew I would remember a lot. And I did!

However, with CHA, you spend most of your time at the convention center. Which was fine because I was in scrapbookers "disney land!" :) But we did take a day to go explore the city. As we walked the pavement to Navy Pier, I found myself breathing it all in. Loving the atmosphere, the people and even the smell. Yes. I love big city smell. Somehow my brain is able to block the exhaust and yucky smells. What I smell is the concrete meeting the food aroma's, the air blowing off the lake and the mix of perfume and cologne in the air. By the time it hits my nose, it's blended into this wonderful big city smell! And then, I'm jolted back to reality when a big bus drives by and blows a plume of exhaust in my face.  Yes, I love the big city.

My third trip was this past July 2011 for my second CHA experience. Once again, I felt like I was home. We did the scrapbook trade show thing and then spent a day in the city. This time we took the El which was fantastic. It's so much easier as opposed to trying to find parking, paying for that parking AND paying for the gas. And I think it's a bit faster. No lights. No bumper to bumper traffic. And the stops in between are brief. At least it's more relaxing anyway.

This time we walked to Millenium Park and then took in the sites of the Magnificent Mile. Found my new favorite accessories store Charming Charlie (we have in Washington now!) and found an AMAZING new restaurant called China Grill. They have the best customer service in the whole wide world. Seriously. Treated like royalty there and the food is divine.

I am almost certain there will be a day when I will be living in Chicago. Don't know how long or what I will do there but I have a dream of something in the graphic design industry. I'd love to experience the city for an entire year. The brutally hot and humid Summer, the gorgeous Spring time, the bitter and frigid cold of Winter with heaps of snow. Bring it on! The uncertainty is when will it happen?

I used black and white photos to go along with the symbolism of this layout - the uncertainty. The Little Black Dress collection from Basic Grey helped me go along with this black and white theme.  The blues from the alpha and mist help encourage the dream like, unknown vibe I wanted to convey with this layout.

I shared a close up of this flower because I cut it with the Silhouette SD. Afterwards, I used some Tattered Angels mist, found in the SFTIO December kit  Uncertainty, and sprayed the paper like crazy before constructing it. You all should know by now I'm a sucker for paper flowers! And the shapes from the Silhouette store are perfect.

Speaking of SFTIO (Scrapbooking from the Inside Out), all contents used on this layout are from the December kit. I thought this topic of my favorite city and wondering when I'll ever get to live there went perfectly with the topic of Uncertainty.

Do you have a favorite place that you'd like to think you'll be living there someday? Even just temporarily? Maybe a place you'd just like to try on for size. See if it suits you. I'd love to know!