Day-Date for a Chicago Winter

Winter is difficult for those of us who aren’t really into winter outdoor activities. I’d much rather stay in by the fire with some hot cocoa or wine instead of be out on the slopes or snowshoeing. Take that lack of desire to be outside in the winter and add in the Chicago wind? It’s a miracle I do anything during this season.

What that turns into is a lot of staying inside during the winter. My husband is a homebody anyway so he’s just fine with having lazy nights in, but eventually we both need something different. Here’s our idea of one of the best day-dates (because evening is just too cold) for Chicago winters.

Part 1: a morning indoor activity

Luckily, Chicago has a great list of options for this kind of thing, but in particular check out the museums that have free admission during certain winter days. We chose the Field Museum – which is free ALL of February for IL residents! Other great options include The Garfield Park Conservatory, the Art Institute of Chicago, and the Shedd Aquarium.

field museum chicago
field museum chicago
field museum chicago

Wherever you go, go right when it opens. Fewer people gives you time to enjoy the exhibits. We were able to take our time through the special Tattoo exhibit without feeling rushed. After that we went through a couple of the permanent sections and headed out right as several families were arriving – the perfect time to head for brunch!

Part 2: something to eat!

st lou's assembly chicago

Hubs and I got something for ourselves for Christmas that we’re already LOVING. It’s called A La Card and it is a “deck” of 52 restaurants in Chicago. Each card describes the restaurant, gives you logistics info like what payment is accepted, and serves as a $10 off coupon to the restaurant! The best thing? It costs $30. Meaning if you go out 3 times in 2017 it pays for itself (we’ve already used 2). We chose St. Lou’s Assembly in the West Loop.

st lou's assembly chicago

We were a little bummed that they no longer do their “Brunch N Three” where you pick a main and three sides, but with breakfast options. But we managed to sort of make our own by splitting an order of chicken and waffles and ordering a few sides.

st lou's assembly chicago

The biscuits were my favorite part. Warm, fluffy, and great with the butter and honey mixture they came with.

st lou's assembly chicago

Step 3: However you want to extend the rest of your day!

When you’ve finished your warm meal, it’s up to you if you want to stay out or go home. By this point, we were full and tired from wandering through the museum, so we opted home for a nap! On other day-dates, we’ve hung out in a coffee or book shop, or even used the afternoon to run errands together before making dinner at home or seeing friends in the evening.

“Day Dates” are great because they allow you to get out of the house a bit, but still finish the night with simple dinner at home and a movie on the couch. What have you done to enjoy some time out during the coldest days?


Lydia Jane

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