Our baby girl just celebrated her 3rd birthday. (How did that happen so fast?) In order to celebrate, we thought a little weekend in Chicago would be fun, fun, fun! Here’s what we did on our little Chicago weekend staycation.

Places to PLAY

Playground Fun at Maggie Daley Park

We visited Maggie Daley Park when it first opened up and were long overdue for a return visit to the awesome Downtown Chicago park again. It truly is an urban oasis right in the middle of the bustling city, and kids absolutely love it with its Skating Ribbon, Wall Climbing, Mini Golf, and awesome playgrounds. Just a fair warning: It was busy, busy, busy with kids running around in all directions making it hard to keep an eye on little (or big) kids.

Unfortunately, I just noticed I didn’t grab any photos since I was running around after them the entire time. But here are a few pics from our last visit.

Museum of Contemporary Art

I was so excited to finally check out Takashi Murakami’s exhibit, “Takashi Murakami: The Octopus Eats Its Own Leg” at MCA. What a visual experience with lots of color and amazing pop art.

Click through to check out a gallery I made for you:

So excited to finally check out the Takashi Murakami exhibit at @mcachicago #otheplaceswego

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Hurry, the exhibit ends September 24th!

Shedd Aquarium

Our hotel for the weekend provided tickets to the Shedd Aquarium as part of their package. Loved it!

We saw the dolphin show…

…went through the Amphibians exhibit, watched divers feed fish, touched stingrays, and saw more colorful fish and sharks at Wild Reef.

A fun weekend staycation in Chicago - Shedd Aquarium

A fun weekend staycation in Chicago - Shedd Aquarium A fun weekend staycation in Chicago - Shedd Aquarium

We always love our visits to the Shedd.

Tip: If you have a stroller, head to the accessible entrance on the lower level to avoid the inevitable long line at the main entrance. We waited for a couple minutes tops.

Where to EAT

Protein Bar

We’re sort of on a health kick so we headed to Protein Bar for a few healthy eats. My go-to is always the spinach and pesto quinoa bowl. The shakes are amazing as well!

Eataly Chicago

Family Dining at Eataly Chicago

We tried out the new kids menu and the kids were stoked! How could they not enjoy choosing their own pizza shape and toppings? Plus, the pizza was fantastico! My husband and I devoured every single last bite of their leftovers. We ended the birthday dinner with a couple scoops of sorbet from downstairs. She was definitely happy about that! Read more about the rest of our Eataly Chicago experience.

Where to STAY

Fairfield Inn & Suites Chicago Downtown/Magnificient Mile

Our Chicago home base was the Fairfield Inn Marriott Chicago. It was trendy, cool, and comfortable. We loved the location less than a block away from Michigan Avenue. It was less than a 10-minute walk to the Museum of Contemporary Art and about a 7-minute walk to Eataly. Stay tuned for an in-depth review.