Pardon the delay, friends! I’ve just been living my best life and spending time celebrating and being with my favorite people on the planet. I’m absolutely POOPED, but wish I could relive this weekend because it was so jam packed with so many fun events and activities. Before we get back to typical programming, I wanted to recap it and share some snaps!
This morning started with blue skies and sun. When I walked to the train to go to the work in the morning, it was around 75-80 degrees. Sandals and a light cardigan were appropriate. Not so by mid-morning! It quickly cooled off and luckily I was able to go home early to change into more layers and freshen up for something I’d been waiting months for: Taylor Swift Reputation Stadium Tour!
I met up with Marge at Chicago Oyster House beforehand, which was about a 10 minutes walk from Soldier Field. Initially, it was just us, then the surrounding tables filled up with other guests, predominately mothers and daughters also going to the concert. This place was lovely inside with a slightly nautical, yet minimalist and modern look. We split delicious scallops smothered in butter and garlic for an appetizer. I ordered the Chilean sea bass and Marge got teriyaki salmon for our entrées. We were so impressed! I told our server I was depressed because the meal was over. I really was because everything was outstanding, even the house pinot noir. In the midst of our meal, I remarked how rich Taylor Swift must be, looked up her net worth, and told Marge I could totally do all that. We’re the same age, Taylor and I, and neither of us are really dancers. Although, I am allergic to cats…
We then wrapped up our meal and trekked to Soldier in a line of women, girls, and gay men with a few boyfriends and dads speckled in, the latter looking slightly bewildered. I didn’t realize there was a clear bag rule to enter the stadium and I had brought a purse full of (shocking) makeup and a portable phone charger among other things. Marge suggested I stash my bag in the bushes, which we DID find afterwards, and empty the contents into a merch bag. I was kind of ticked, but then I got a baller crop top and a hat for my little peanut “niece”, Lily. We met up with Lily and her mom, one of my best friends, Andrea, so that I could drop off the hat, introduce Marge and Lily, and say a quick hello!
While Marge guarded our seats, I was sent out to fetch vodka lemonade pouches she had seen being sold somewhere. After no success, I stood in line at a bar for about 15 minutes where, only to realize I’d forgotten my ID in my wallet. Genius. Eventually, I made it back to Marge with some vodka lemonades in mason jars.
I didn’t pay much attention to the openers, Charli XCX or Camila Cabello, but hustled when the latter rapped up her set so I didn’t miss what my mom calls, “Taytay Swizzle”. Oh my god, was it a fabulous concert! I’ve never seen a production quite like this. Taylor covered most of her current album Reputation of course, while peppering in songs from 1989 and some of her earlier country hits that I am not as familiar with. The lights, fireworks, set design, dancers, snakes, costumes, video, etc. were all exquisite. I was very into the snake theme. Taylor looked adorable the whole time and seemed like she was having a blast. She was a consummate pro, especially considering it was pretty nonstop and she took hardly any breaks. “Delicate”, “Shake It Off”, and “Look What You Made Me Do”, were my favorite numbers performed. I was so impressed by Taylor’s energy and the entire production with the light up bracelets and everything I’ve previously mentioned. That said, I do not think she sang live that much in the concert, but that really didn’t bug me. I also thought Taylor created intimacy that was very surprising given the size of the crowd (52,000). Marge and I ducked out about 10 minutes before the finale, making it home around midnight.
I woke up Saturday morning to prepare for my trip to South Bend, IN to attend the wedding of a dear friend from college, Connor, and his beautiful fiancé, now bride, Kristen. This was a special treat because not only did I get to see Connor beam with joy more than I’ve ever seen him do, or anyone for that matter, I got to reunite with my Indiana University crew, including Britt, my best friend who is only weeks away from the birth of her first child!
The wedding was my second Catholic wedding that I’ve been to. It was in the same church where Britt was married and it’s really a beautiful church with colorful gradient stained glass windows and an open, light, airy feel. Kristen looked stunning in her dress and so very happy as she walked down the aisle. One thing that struck me as both funny and sweet was when Connor’s sister called him a hopeless romantic during her speech. Never a truer word said! He deserves a beautiful life with a beautiful wife. I’m so happy for him and honored I was even invited. One thing I loved about this wedding was that each guest had a little notecard sharing something special about them and their relationship with the bride and groom, from both of them. Totally stealing that if I ever get married! Such a great idea.
The day got more and more beautiful weather wise as it went on. The crew went to a local restaurant to catch up more and have a nosh and cocktails before attending the reception at The Armory, a very cool, open event space. The rest of the night was full of more cocktails, dancing, laughter, and silliness. This included being caught by myself at the end of the night next to the pizza table in the corner just eating away. A lot of the evening also included trying to find out how I can marry into the groom’s family because I love them all so much. I was offered future marriages to a few toddlers. I think I’ll pass, ha!
With destroyed feet and a happy heart, we returned back to Britt’s house. Sadly, Hoosier, her beautiful golden retriever that I’m obsessed with, didn’t sleep with me, but I was able to snuggle him a little bit before the wedding. Thank goodness for lint rollers!
Oof. Sunday morning was a bit rough. I set an alarm for 7:30am as I was headed back to Chicago early, but for good reason! I had no traffic going back and was armed with a very large soy chai tea latte and water on the way back to the city. When I got home, I unpacked, rested for a bit, then got ready to attend the baptism of Andrea’s newest baby, Isabelle. It was cool being inside of another beautiful Catholic church and experiencing a Catholic baptism, which I never have before. Some of the prayers I recognized hearing at the wedding the day before.
Anyway, Izzy was so cute it was ridiculous. She was wearing a beautiful little gown with lots of tulle material that made her look like a baby princess. She was asleep at first but then was very interested in the tulle during the picture taking. Afterwards, we went to a pizza restaurant in the Roscoe Village neighborhood. GREAT, more pizza! I kid though, it was absolutely delicious and I loved seeing Andrea and Eric’s family again, including Izzy’s great grandfather (how cool is that?) and rehashing Taylor Swift since half of them had gone to see her too that weekend. It was a special day and made me thankful for my mom and brother, but it would be nice to have more occasions to be surrounded by that much family. It was a lovely feeling.
Afterwards, I drove to Wilmette to give Margie her car back. I picked her up at the beach and she dropped me at the Linden CTA station. I ordered a Lyft and was driven home on Lake Shore Drive with my hair whipping around because all the windows were open. He asked if I wanted them closed, but it was too smelly in there, so I said no. Back at home, I switched into sweats then treaded a few doors down to Nail Story to get a spa pedicure for my battered feet and legs as well as a manicure.
Afterwards I went home and quite honestly, I don’t really remember what I did. I do recall putting a pot of water on the stove to make some chickpea pasta for dinner but while I was waiting for the water to boil, I started passing out so I rushed to turn the stove off and just went to sleep without dinner (not that I needed it after this weekend). On Monday, my colleague Trish said she could see a pillow line on my face. I think that I must’ve fallen asleep at 6:30pm with my head in a pillow and didn’t move once.
I felt like a zombie Monday morning and I ate mostly vegetables and whole foods to detox. I also did a little strength workout and threw on a soothing coconut face mask in the evening. But as my boss astutely said, it’s hard to feel bad for me since it was all fun stuff. And it really was. There is so much to celebrate in life and not to be cheesy, but sometimes I could cry because I feel so honored that people want to include me in the important moments and memories of their own lives. I’m also a Swifty now; who would’ve thought?
Anyway, thank you, thank you!
Now, someone massage my feet!
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