It was his first time on a plane and he did really well. All the tips that I gleaned from the internet really helped us plan a smooth plane ride. The best part was taking him to the DuSable Museum though. It’s free if you go on Sunday, so as soon as we got off the plane we drove the 20 minutes down 55th street and headed over to the University of Chicago (the DuSable is right across the street).
The baby got to see the hall of heroes, the animatronic Harold Washington and a wonderful exhibit on the trans-Atlantic enslaved African trade featuring a walk-in piece that replicates the hold of a ship made to move enslaved peoples. It scares the bejeezus out of me and I have not worked up the courage to enter it yet. It smells a little earthy, the wooden floors creak and you can barely see anything except the bodies closest to you. There is some really good type and lots of good information about the history of enslaving people, but this piece always stands out to me. I can’t imagine being in that room for a few minutes let alone weeks on end. =(
We also visited the National Museum of Mexican American Art. The first time we went there ( before we had the baby) was a bust of Benito Juarez that I was SUPER excited to get a photo of the baby with but it was gone. I didn’t expect the exhibits to rotate so quickly since it’s a free museum, but the National Museum of Mexican Art does not rest on it’s laurels. It moves on to bring in other educational exhibits. In place of the exhibit on The Revolution (which Benito Juarez was large part of) was a HUGE exhibit on Dia de los Muertos with tons of amazing pieces of art such as:
What I didn’t realize at the time was that since we became members at the DuSable Museum we also gained free entrance to the Chicago History Museum. We didn’t get to go on that trip, but I returned to Chicago a few weeks later and saw the Chicago History Museum by myself. I highly recommend it. Not only is it a wonderful museum with great exhibits (a whole room that looks like a nightclub with tables and chair where you can sit and listen to jazz and blues singers, part of a train, wonderful dioramas that present key facets of Chicago history, etc.) but it also has a really cute little kid’s play area where you can become a Chicago hot dog, experience taking in a baseball game at Wrigley Field and a few other fun kid things.
I wanted to visit the Peggy Notebart Nature Museum because #1 I love it and #2 it’s also free with our DuSable membership, but He wanted to go thrifting instead. We’re booked to return in February so I guess I’ll try again in the spring.
Anyhoo … we took the baby on his first flight. It was really fun and super easy to get around thanks to: gate checking his car seat, getting a rental car, gps and tons of super fun, free things to do in the city. If you’re thinking of taking a domestic trip with your newborn, or infant, baby Chicago is a great place to go.