The third and last day we had decided to go to Aurora Temple at Chicago. We got ready, had complimentary breakfast from hotel and left by 10:00 am. The temple was an hour's drive from the hotel. After doing darshanam we went to the cafeteria to get food for the journey back home. There I saw medu wada and could not control my temptation. We ordered wada/dosa which was super yummy. Then we packed curd rice/tamrind rice and upma for our journey back home.
The return journey was one long drive home with a one stop halt for lunch.
Thus ended our family vacation to Dells-Chicago
This time I did not have any intention of having a baby shower done. Thursday nite I was talking to friends and one of them asked if I did it. I said, 'No' and then she suddenly said to another friend..Let's do one for her.
And so they planned and got everything ready to be done for Sunday. My main agenda was to not go into labor by then.
7 families decided to come with 1 item each, we decided to make Papadum and Payasam.
Sat evening G went and bought flowers and chocolate and fruits etc.
Sun morning after waking up and having breakfast I draped a Saree, since none of my blouses fit I put a T-shirt and a new Saree.
Everyone came by 11:15 and started arranging all the items on the table. They started at 11:40 by putting chandanam, kumkum,rice and bangles.
Once done we all ate, there was a variety of items, lemon rice, curd rice, wada/chutney,coconut rice, tamrind rice, kesari, mushroom biryani,plain rice,sambhar , papdaum and payasam.
Everything was yummy and delicious. There was so much left over we asked everyone to come at night and have dinner too.
Thus ended a beautiful day. A big Thanks to all my friends for doing this.
The next day we woke up after 7 and got ready, since this hotel had complimentary breakfast we had waffles and bread, juice and tea and filling our tummines we left for Chicago city at 9. Our first stop was at navy pier, we parked our car there and decided to explore the remaining city by walk/bus.
As we were walking across the city we clicked some snaps of the buildings.
First stop was the Millenium park, we clicked pictures near the bean and then went for a walk around the garden which had beautiful flowers.
Then we wanted to take the red/green trolley which we had done about 6 yrs back but this tiem everything was pretty expensive. We wanted to get to Willis Tower(sears Towers renamed) and were getting tired alkign in the hot sun, Since it was lunch time we stopped at a McDonald's and had lunch. From there we went to Willis Tower and there was a long line waiting outside. me and G waited outside while the others went and it took them nearly 3 hours to finish the whole tour what with the long waiting lines.
From there we caught the city transit and went to the Shedd Aquarium. It was nearly 5 when we reached there and since the Aquarium would close at 6 we took just the General Pass and visited. There were lots of fishes and other animals to see .
Since it was getting late G asked us to wait there while he went to navy Pier ang got the car. From there he went to Devon Street which is like the Asian place in Chicago and we got to see lots of Indian/Pakistani shops.
We had dinner at a place which was not so great and then reached our hotel by 10:30 and went off to bed.
Since the whole family was here and they have not visited Chicago we decided to go there for the long week-end with a stop at Wis Dells.
Since we were taking our own car we did not have to worry about booking rentals. G booked the hotels, Fri evening me , mom & sis decided to go and get some stuff from Walmart like ice/bread/jam etc. As we were gettign ready to go I heard R crying downstairs, on reaching him I saw his nose bleeding and he had got hurt all over his face mostly his nose. He was trying out some stunt on the swing and fell on his face. by the time I consoled him and put some dettol it was nearly 9pm.
Then we went to Costco to fill gas, from there we went to mall as I wanted to get a hat for R and then to Walmart , by the time we came back it was 10pm. I had not even packed our clothes. After dinner I packed mine and R's clothes and then slept asking mom to wake me up at 5 as I had to make paneer chilly curry and target was to atleast leave by 7.
Next day I was woken up at 6 as dad got late getting ready, I quickly made curry and took bath in 15 mins, then one by one everyone was gettign ready. Finally after packing everything when we left it was nearly 8. We loaded everything in the car and left, took a break after 2 hours and eat some snacks, then by 11:40 we reached Wisconsin Dells.
Our first stop was at the TOP Secret. Me and G waited outside wheras mom,dad,sis and both the kids went inside. They came out pretty quickly and then we went for the boat ride. We took the jet boat rides for mom, sis and kids.
We waited outside while they went for thier ride, they enjoyed it and as my baby said, it was awesome Amma.
We then stopped for lunch and had our packed chapati/paneer chilly sabji/pulav with curd.
Then we went to the Tommy Barlett Exploratory Interactive Science Center. It was hands on fun for all of us as we went about exploring all the things over there.
Finally we had to rush out as they ahd to attend the Tommy Barlett Water Show which is a very famous must see in Wis Dells.
Leaving them there me and G went to a nearby casino for some relaxation and fun.
We returned by 6:15, picked folks up and drove off to our hotel. On the way we stopped at a rest area for making tea but were surronded by mosquitoes that we quickly left from there after having hot tea.We reached the hotel by 8:50 but some drama ensured there too, apparently the site we booked gave us a preference of Smoking Room and the hotel did not have any Non-Smoking rooms available. After debating with the owner we had to go to another place 40 mins drive from there, by the time we reached there it was 11:00, we all had the remaining chapati/curry and went off to bed.
Wanted to try out something different and I ended up making this Lemon Olive Cake.
Healthy, Tasty and Moist is the 3 words that can be used to describe it.
I copied the recipe from here and am going to put it down here from her blog so that I can remember it the next time.
For the cake:
1 cup wheat flour
1/2 cup maida
A pinch of salt
About 3/4 cup granulated sugar
About 1 tablespoon lemon zest
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup oil
1/4 cup buttermilk
For the glaze:
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1-1/2 tablespoons powdered sugar
1. In a bowl, mix together the lemon juice, egg, oil, buttermilk, lemon zest, and granulated sugar. Beat well, till the sugar melts fully.
2. Add the other ingredients – maida, salt, baking powder, baking soda and wheat flour – to the bowl. Fold into the wet mixture gently. Mix everything thoroughly.
3. Preheat the oven for 10 minutes at 180 degrees. In the meanwhile, grease and flour a cake tin and keep ready.
4. When the oven is hot and ready, pour the batter into the cake tin. Let it bake for about 40 minutes at 180 degrees, or until a knife inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean.
5. While the cake is cooking, prepare the lemon glaze. For the glaze, mix together the teasponfull of lemon juice and powdered sugar well. While the cake is still warm, remove it from the cake pan and spread the glaze evenly all over it.