Chicago area fun and Choo Choo’s Train Cafe

Landon and I made the day trip over to see our dear friends Cambria, Eric, Will, and Finn in South Bend, IN. Landon is right in between the boys in age and they had so much fun together! Landon and Will spent the entire time spinning each other up into super crazy toddler hyperness. We had to physically restrain them and sit them down to calm down and watch a show together… that’s how much fun they were having. It was great to catch up with great friends and hang out in a home for the day. Thanks, Grahams!
The boys playing in bed 
The boys eating a snack

One day when I was cleaning up the kitchen in our room, Landon came to me looking like this. He wanted to find a ball to play baseball with. He found a tennis ball and wanted to play baseball. He had a beanie on his head for his hat, one glove on his hand for his baseball glove, and a ladle for his bat. He tried hitting the ball with the ladle unsuccessfully for quite awhile. I found it extremely cute.

Landon playing baseball
This was a coin operated little ride that moved back and forth like a train. Landon loved it. I loved it because it only cost 25 center

One Saturday, I wanted to take Landon on a little outing to do something fun. I found a little cafe in Des Plaines, Illinois that is train themed. The food comes out on a model train, perfect for Landon and other little boys! Looking at the history of this place, it opened in 1951 as The Choo Choo, Hamburgers on Wheels. Just a block down the street, McDonald’s opened its first store soon afterwards. I guess we all know which restaurant was more successful. It was a little disorganized in that there were waitresses in the middle of the restaurant with the train going around it. There was just enough room for tables around the train and tables around two of the outsides, so not a ton of seating. It was also seat-yourself, which made it a little chaotic and stressful with a room full of excited toddler boys and limited seating. We waited for 20-30 minutes before finding a booth right next to where the train came out from the kitchen.

Landon and the train
The food itself was good, but nothing to write home about. Really the draw here is the entertainment for the child. He was so enthralled with the train and wanting to see where it was going that it was hard for us to get him to eat his food. He ended up finishing all of his french fries, but we took his grilled cheese home with us. I had turkey chili that was actually very good, and Austin had a mediocre burger. We decided that next time, we would suggest grandparents take him because it would be fun for them!
The best mother-son picture we could get on the day…

My favorite part of the train restaurant was all of the old things scattered throughout. They seriously used the cash register below. Not much had been updated since the 50’s, but that’s part of the charm of the place. We had a fun time, even with the 30 minute eating limit due to limited seating and a long line to be seated!

Cash register!
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