Wisconsin + Chicago Trip Recap

As a super fun way to kick off our summer, we planned a little long-weekend-roadtrip to Wisconsin to visit our friend Austin’s hometown. He grew up in Chippewa Falls, WI and worked in Eau Claire, WI growing up. We weren’t exactly sure what the trip would look like but we knew we’d have a blast regardless. So last Wednesday we piled 5 of us into a car and drove 10 hours north to this adorable little town in Wisconsin. As soon as we arrived we were smitten. Chippewa Falls is straight out of a movie. Small town, beautiful and quaint little neighborhoods, family businesses and local storefronts…we were in love. Austin’s wildly hospitable, beautiful, bubbly older sister Jessie and her wonderful husband Zach opened the doors of their (absolutely stunningly perfect) home to us to stay for the weekend and as soon as we arrived we were, once again, blown away by the perfection. You can see how we said “thanks for having us” here.

Eau Claire, Wisconsin / Chicago Summer Road Trip Avenue126.com

Our stay in Wisconsin was SO MUCH FUN. Our first day was chalk full. We began the day with a hot breakfast at Jessie and Zachs, then headed out to explore for the day. Our first stop was Irvine Park, a beautiful little park with a miniature zoo inside! We hiked for a hot minute then checked out all the animals — hyenas, peacocks, black bears, bengal tigers, lemurs, and more. Then we went to the Leinenkugel factory — home of everybody’s favorite, Summer Shandy. We took a tour of the brewery and even got to sample some products! We had so much fun. We wrapped up our day with lunch at a fun little spot in town, the Livery, and then headed home. Our day trip caught up to us and we all crashed for much needed afternoon naps — isn’t vacation just the best!? Oh and then to top the day off we had an outdoor movie night in the backyard with a projector and a sheet. So dang fun!

Friday started out super chill and we loved every second of it. Jessie and Zach’s, as mentioned before, is a literal dream. We just hung out and had some individual quiet time with the Lord, hung out on the porch in the beautiful weather, laughed, talked, and just relaxed. We each mentioned how much we loved the time to just refresh and unwind about 100 times. It was perfect. In the afternoon we ran some errands and explored the town with Jessie, then we stumbled upon a big, fat shoe sale in town. We hung out there, bought some shoes, then headed home for a grill out. The evening was spent laughing and hanging outside in the beautiful Wisconsin weather and topped off with root beer floats and New Girl. Bliss.

Saturday was unexpectedly SO MUCH FUN! One of Austin’s friends, Jared, invited us to Lake Wissota to grill out and go boating and kayaking with his family. We were STOKED! A day with no set plans turned into an absolute blast! We spent the day on the water, and ended it with chinese takeout back at J+Z’s and lots of good conversation!

(DSLR pictures)

(iPhone pictures:)

We were so sad to leave Zach and Jessie after they made us feel so welcome, but we had one more fun little stop to make on our road trip — Sunday morning we woke up, packed up, and headed to CHICAGO! We found a beautiful 4.5 star hotel on hotwire and stayed Sunday into Monday. After 5 hours in the car through nasty rain, we decided to take it easy Sunday night. We walked through beautiful Millennium Park and then ordered the famous Giordano’s Chicago-Style Pizza for dinner. Our night ended with cards and more laughter. So fun.

On Monday we wrapped up our little vacation by exploring Chicago in the morning, then headed home.

(DSLR photos:)

(iPhone pictures:)


And that was our trip! We had SO MUCH FUN. It would be a wild understatement to say how thankful we are for dear friends who understand us, spur us on to know Christ deeper, make us laugh, and refresh our spirits! Psalm 126 absolutely came alive in us this past week(end) and we, once more, can joyfully say — The Lord has done great things for us and we are glad!

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