Chicago times

I’m in the windy city this week for the National Human Services Data Consortium (NHSDC) conference. While that probably doesn’t get most people’s juices flowing, it makes me pretty happy. The content presented is phenomenal and I always come back rejuvenated and inspired to do my job better. The conference doesn’t actually start until this morning, but our staff always try to tie in at least one extra day wherever we’re going for sight seeing and exploring.

It wouldn’t be Chicago if it weren’t rainy and windy, but that didn’t stop us from checking out some of the sites and walking around the city. In a city of 10 million people. we were the only people on Navy Pier yesterday. Although it was desolate I think I preferred it that way. We were able to listen to Lake Michigan water slush against the sides of the pier and the seagulls flying above us. It felt serene.

I call this one foraging my own path.

Navy Pier Beer Garden. Too bad it was 9am.

Our next stop was to Millenium Park which was by far my favorite part of our sight seeing festivities yesterday. I don’t think playing in mirrors ever gets old – it made me feel like a kid again.

Our last stop for sight seeing was to the Sears Tower. They’ve changed the name to Willis Tower, but it’ll always be the Sears Tower to me. There were some gorgeous views all the way around the sky deck. With the storms rolling in, the skyline just looks awesome against the backdrop of the city.

We spent the afternoon walking around the city. We stopped in at Garrett’s Popcorn – a go-to place for locals of Chicagoland. No pictures, but it was delicious! We got the Chicago Mix which is caramel and cheesy popcorn mixed together – the perfect blend. Liz and I ended our night eating at Oysy, a sushi place in downtown Chicago. I had the best sushi of my life at this place. I wish I could wrap them up and move them to Central Missouri. If you’re a sushi fan and you’re in the Chicago area, definitely check this place out.

For not being much of a city person, I think I like Chicago. It’s a vibrant, classy city with a laid-back feel to it at the same time. I’m here for one more night. Although I’ll be spending the day in meetings, I’m hoping to explore some more tonight. If you have any suggestions on places to check out (and that are relatively inexpensive) drop a comment here!



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3 responses to “Chicago times

  1. Dina

    Wow! I love your blogs as a follower! You are creating your own life story through this blog. I really like the picture of you with the umbrella. Singing in the rain! And, do you remember you developef your first crush on top of the Sears Tower? He was that boy from Australia! Wonder what happened to him? Anyway, glad you had fun. You enjoyed the city as a child. Now, you see it through the eyes of an adult. This is your last day being 23. I started going into slow labor with you on this day in 1988. Whoa! You came into this world screaming all the way. Yet, you were so tiny and sweet laying in my arms just a few munutes later. Beautiful brown eyes with your left thumb in your mouth. Precious baby always!!! Love, Momma

  2. Sarah Stackley


    So I’ve been searching the web looking for a blogger who has been to the NHSDC before. I was hoping to go this spring since it’s in Minneapolis but my company doesn’t have funds in the budget set aside to pay for the registration fee. Even though it’s pretty steep at $375, I would be willing to pay for it myself if it would be worth it. What I would like to know is who in what type of position would benefit most from attending the conference?

    Just so you know a bit about me, I work at building that is both a homeless shelter and housing for LTHers. I do a mix of administrative and compliance reporting along with direct service and outreach. I’m the HMIS person at my site (for just our housing units) and am hoping to do more reporting and research work in the future. I’m also very pumped for Coordinated Assessment, when that comes along.

    Thank you,


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