WHEW. March…was a lot. There were high points (the end of the month) and a whole lot of lows. All right! Here we go!
At the tail end of February my son got sick – not Covid and he got over it in two days – but he got his sister sick (her first time ever) and that, coupled with four teeth coming in at once and some pretty serious brain upgrades made for a really cranky baby. And then she abruptly stopped nursing. And drinking. We needed to spoon-feed and eyedropper milk into her. Three medical doctors and two lactation consultants agreed that this particular case was not normal self-weaning, but even a week and a half after recovering from her illness and stuffy nose she was flat-out uninterested in nursing anymore. Oh hey, and did you know that abrupt weaning can cause depression due to the hormone changes? It wasn’t a very easy month emotionally for anyone in the family.
The giant snowfalls from February melted away to leave snowdrops in their wake! I loved going out for quick walks around the neighborhood to see spring slowly arriving…some of my favorite shots are of the tenacious bulb shoots punching up through autumn’s leaf fall!
Haha! After the guest bedroom/my office was finally finished we used it to take photos! My daughter is obsessed with choking hazards and in this case the temptation of the spaghetti pile of cords under my desk proved too tempting when we tried to take her 11 month photo.
The first part of the month was emotionally terrible and we were glad to get out to a new set of walls for the first time during the whole pandemic – we rented an AirBnB in Rogers Park (very north Chicago) in a bid to go visit the town of Evanston and the Chicago Botanic Garden.
Our first stop was Loyola Beach Park which has a fun playground and a very pretty beach! I bet it would be amazing in the summertime because it was pretty great even in 40 degree weather! We got Ethiopian food, a rare treat, and then we went north to….
Evanston!!!! Oh, what a gorgeous town! It’s similar to Oak Park but it right on the Lake and is home to Northwestern University. My husband and I have lived in various college towns on the water for close to 15 years and so this town made us feel right at home! Need an photographer up in Evanston? I’m ready!
View of the Chicago skyline from Northwestern’s visitor center.
And it had a lagoon! We felt extremely at-home.
55 degrees in the middle of March meant everyone was out enjoying the rare warmer weather! I enjoyed hearing red-winged blackbirds calling up in the trees; they’re common birds in the Bay Area and led to more feelings of being at-home.
First trip to eat a restaurant since the beginning of the pandemic, and first ever trip to a restaurant for our eleven month old! It was called the Firehouse Grill in Evanston and with 55 degree weather plus patio heaters it was warm enough to sit outside!
The next day up north: we visited the Chicago Botanic garden which I’m sure is amazing, but not during March when the only thing up is snowdrops and evergreens and the greenhouses are closed due to the pandemic. We’re planning to visit again in May. We drove through Wilmette on the way home and saw the Baha’i temple and it was like, “hey! I see that temple on Instagram all the time! Pretty cool!” Then finally, going through Chicago on the way home we saw the Chicago river dyed green for St. Patrick’s Day weekend.
We got to the fancy Starbucks Reserve downtown – 5 stories worth of cafe! – it was….kinda underwhelming?? 5 stories and there’s cafes on each floor each serving slightly different things than you can get at a regular Starbucks. I’m not sure I’d head back there again.
HERE THEY COME!! Back home charging through play tunnels.
Opening early birthday presents!
Investigating the backyard (or not) during a warm day…and found one of Mom’s bootlaces to chew on. She loves strings so much.
And then the month got a lot better!! Here’s Bug staying up late to watch (vaccinated) Grandma and Grandpa come to visit! We hadn’t seen Grandma since August of last year after she visited post Covid infection, and we hadn’t seen Grandpa since Christmas of 2019. Their visit also allowed my husband and I to drive to the country so I could get my first Covid shot!
Seeing Grandma (and playing with the strings on her mask).
Meeting Grandpa for the first time ever!
Grandma and Grandpa brought tangerines from California and the kids loved them. Our daughter…maybe needed a bit of help figuring out the best way to eat them.
She loves Grandma and Grandma’s shoelaces.
It was SO NICE to have other adults in the house to interact with!
We took them to the Morton Arboretum on their last day here and it was really fun to see the hellebores, daffodils, witch hazel, forsythia, and other early spring flowers starting!
It started out poor, but ended on a high note! Some of the other major items of note: our daughter figured out how to crawl on hands and knees, started pulling up to a stand on furniture, got four teeth in (with two more hot on their heels), and started saying “Dada”! Tune in next month to see her first birthday and the amazing, sudden arrival of spring in Oak Park!
Kristen Hazelton is an Oak Park, IL (Chicago, IL metro area) and Livermore, CA (San Francisco East Bay Area) senior, family, and engagement photographer. She occasionally photographs in San Diego, CA, Tucson, AZ, and Seattle, WA. You can inquire about your own photoshoot here!