In a recent trip to Chicago to attend Book Expo of America (I went to sign copies of Saving Abby) I had a few hours to myself where I could enjoy the city and so of course, I went to the Art Institute of Chicago.

This has been on my list of places to visit and even though I had just a little over an hour, I enjoyed every single moment of it.

CHICAGO, ILLINOIS : Lion Statue. I saw the famous lion sculptures out front, walked up those steps to the front door and took a long deep breath, just soaking in the moment of just being there. I checked out the website before hand and knew about the different exhibits I really wanted to see…for instance, the Thorne Miniature Rooms Gallery.

I wish I had brought my youngest daughter with me – she would have loved it! I was one of those girls who had an old fashioned farm house made by her grandfather and for years, I would decorate those rooms with miniature furniture. I wish I still had that doll house and the furniture. My youngest – who thinks she’s too old now for dollhouses – loves the miniature furniture as much as I do (but if you ask her, she’ll probably deny it).

I spent at least thirty minutes in that miniature gallery looking through all the rooms, being in awe at the level of detail – it blew me away. I was really hoping they would have miniature furniture you could purchase in the gift shop but I walked away empty handed.

I spent my remaining time in the European art section, taking in all the breath-taking pieces, letting them really sink into my soul. I want to go back, to stay longer and really enjoy everything.

If, like me, you don’t have much time but you really want to head to the Art Institute, they offer a ‘one hour must-see guide‘ at the back of their Visitor Guide.