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As I mentioned a few days ago, I’ve been a href=””missing in action/a. My hubby was scheduled to go to Chicago for a business conference the week of MY BIRTHDAY. How wrong and cruel is that? I’m not a big celebrator of my birthday, but I do like a little pampering, cake, and a day off from being mommy. That wasn’t going to happen. nbsp;My mom, being the best mom in the world EVER, offered me her ilast /ifree airline ticket so I could join my hubby and leave the kids behind. I jumped at the opportunity to take a plane trip and stay in a fabulous hotel for FREE! I made arrangements for a wonderful, sweet, loving friend to take care of my kids, packed my bags, and enjoyed the week!br /br /Since it was my 10th anniversary of celebrating my 29th birthday, I decided that I was going to do whatever I want! nbsp;I don’t think I have had the opportunity to do that in strikeyears/strikenbsp;decades. It started with an upgrade to business class. nbsp;i{Birthday gift #1}. /iOnce I arrived at Midway Airport, I hopped on the CTA train for a ride downtown. I had looked into renting a car, but I couldn’t get anything under $200. nbsp;I also found out the hotel charged $52 a night for parking. i{No thank you…public transportation please!}/ibr /ibr //ibr /a href=”” imageanchor=”1″ style=”clear: right; float: right; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-left: 1em;”img border=”0″ height=”119″ src=”” width=”200″ //aWhen I got off at my stop, I was starving. i{I used a href=””Google Transit/anbsp;to tell me how to get everywhere.}/inbsp;I stopped in at a place called Potbelly’s for a bite to eat. OMG…YUM! I had about a mile walk to our hotel so I needed somenbsp; /br /a href=”” imageanchor=”1″ style=”clear: left; float: left; margin-bottom: 1em; margin-right: 1em;”img border=”0″ height=”200″ src=”” width=”190″ //abr /br /br /I then treated myself to Dunkin Donut’s new Frozen Hot Chocolate. It was….interesting. nbsp;It kinda reminded me of a very cold chocolate a href=””Yoo-Hoo/a. Not sure if I’m gonna order it again unless it’s /br /br /When I finally walked the 1 mile i{uphill both ways}/i with my luggage, I finally got to the Swissotel and went to the counter to get my key. My hubby had already checked in and was at his first meeting. When I got to the room, this is the view I saw:br /br /div class=”separator” style=”clear: both; text-align: center;”a href=”” imageanchor=”1″ style=”margin-left: 1em; margin-right: 1em;”img border=”0″ height=”300″ src=”” width=”400″ //a/divdiv class=”separator” style=”clear: both; text-align: center;”br //divdiv class=”separator” style=”clear: both; text-align: left;”Wowee!! nbsp;It was a fabulous view! I kicked off my tennis shoes, sat down and just enjoyed the moment. nbsp;It was a great start to a fabulous week.nbsp;/divdiv class=”separator” style=”clear: both; text-align: left;”br //divdiv class=”separator” style=”clear: both; text-align: left;”Tomorrow I will tell you how I spent my birthday!/diva href=”” target=”_blank”img alt=”Anna” border=”0″ src=”” //a