Chicago, from the top

While we were in Chicago we went to the top of the WIllis Tower (formerly Sears Tower). It was such a beautiful and clear day – the views were amazing. It’s kind of pricey to get up there, but once you’re there it’s worth it. At 1300+ feet up in the air, you can step out into a glass box that extends off the skyscraper and look to the city below you. It’s a crazy experience, but lots of fun.
– Photos © Holly Carman –

Our Big News!!

If you’re friends with me on Facebook, or follow me on Instagram, then you probably already know our exciting news. If not, here it is… Luke proposed to me in Chicago! We’re over the moon excited! I couldn’t be happier with how everything happened and can’t believe that I’m now engaged to my best friend.

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It was Tuesday afternoon and I was heading back from work in the suburbs. I had to drop off my rental car at the airport and then hop on the orange line train back downtown to our hotel, where I was meeting Luke (who had just arrived about an hour earlier). We decided to go out for a few drinks since it was pretty early (4pm early). We went to the Wit Hotel, just around the corner and had a few drinks at their Rooftop bar before we got ready for our dinner reservations.

Beforehand, Luke had done some research and found Le Colonial, a French/Vietnamese restaurant on Rush street, that he knew I’d just love. After a short cab ride, we arrived at the restaurant and proceeded upstairs to the bar because we were kinda early. While up at the bar we casually chatted and I just remember being so happy that Luke was finally in Chicago with me. I could tell Luke was even more excited than me, because Chicago is HIS city.

We had the best time at dinner and our restaurant was absolutely amazing. Luke couldn’t have picked out a more perfect place for us. The food was to die for and the atmosphere was so romantic with a south pacific flair. There was soft French music playing in the background as we kept smiling at each other and raving about our food. A sweet couple sitting next to us took our picture and we took theirs as well.

After we left the restaurant we decided that we should go up to the Hancock Tower (just a few blocks away) and have a drink on the 95th floor Signature Room. Before we got there, Luke kept trying to find the Water Tower Building. He kept looking at his phone and trying to figure out where it was… Of course me being oblivious to everything around me, I just thought that he wanted me to see it because it’s a Chicago landmark. We leisurely strolled up to the stairs of the building, hand-in-hand, when Luke stopped me. He turned around and said that he brought me here for a reason. It was right then when I knew what was happening. He was down on one knee and giving me the most beautiful speech that I could have ever imagined. He explained the significance of our location, what it meant to him, what it meant to us… The tears started flowing immediately. I couldn’t believe it was happening. I tried to remember everything he was saying, but it was all a blur. It was such a sweet moment that I wish could’ve lasted forever.

After a lot of hugs and kisses and more crying (happy tears!!) we walked over to the Hancock Tower & rode the elevator up to the Signature Room. Once we got settled in at our table and ordered a few drinks, we called our families and texted a few friends. We kept the celebrating going at a few more bars on Rush Street before we took a cab back to our hotel. I went to bed thinking that was one of the best evenings of my life!

I had always wondered what Luke would do, when the time came that he proposed to me. Nothing I ever imagined came close to how perfect everything was on Tuesday night. The drinks, the dinner, the ring, the guy… that entire night – was the best I could ever ask for. I truly am one lucky girl.

This is where Luke proposed
– Photos © Holly Carman –

Chicago Sunset Cruise

I was sitting in my hotel room on Sunday night at 7 o’clock trying to figure out what to do for the rest of the evening. I was talking to Luke on the phone & he said I should do a sunset boat cruise. I then remembered that I wasn’t too far from the Wendella Boat Tour dock, so I got online, looked up their schedule, bought a ticket & ran out the door to go catch the boat! I arrived all hot & sweaty (ya know, Oregon girl in humidity…) but it was so worth it because once on the boat there was a nice warm breeze & a sunset that was absolutely gorgeous. We cruised around on the water for a few hours taking in the Chicago skyline (& me snapping a million pictures). It was by far one of the best spontaneous adventures I’ve taken 🙂
– Photos © Holly Carman –


I’m in Chicago right now and let me tell ya, it’s hot and humid. The opposite of Portland weather, but I’m loving it. I’m here for work for a few days and then vacationing with Luke and his family for the rest.
When I got to town, I checked into my hotel and then hit the streets with my camera and started snapping away. Chicago is such a beautiful city, it’s hard not to. I grabbed a quick dinner and the walked over to Millennium Park, came back to the hotel for some wine tasting in the lobby and then I headed back out to walk across some bridges and hop on a last minute sunset boat cruise of the city. Whew, that was a lot for just the first day.
I’ll be working all day today and Tuesday so I wanted to get some fun stuff in beforehand. Depending on how much time I have during the week, I might be back to blogging, or I might not. But I promise that I will get around to showing you all some Chicago pix soon.
Have a great week!