My wife and I will be celebrating our 14th wedding anniversary on July 26th.  We decided to go to Chicago for the weekend to celebrate and it just so happens that Disney is releasing Urban 7 on July 22nd.  So we began looking for a hotel in the downtown area.  OUCH!!  I couldn’t believe how much it is to stay near Michigan Avenue. A decent hotel will set us back $200 plus $40 for parking. Then we toyed with the idea of just going up for the day and then coming back.  Driving back home = more vinylmations.  That’s my vote.

So I called the disney store and got confirmation that Urban 7 would be sold at the store on July 22nd.  I found 4 disney stores in the greater Chicagoland area just in case one was sold out we could go to another one.  I was hoping to buy 10 boxes.  Then I found out, through some great collectors on this site, that the Disney Store is having a friends and family sale for 20% off. Thank you to one member for sending me some coupons from Hawaii. I will also try to use my Disney visa card for another 10% off.  So maybe I can get 30% off my purchase.  So now  I am thinking maybe 13 boxes.   I really like this set so it didn’t really matter which ones I got but of course the goal would be to get no duplicates and the chaser.  We left early Saturday morning.  It took us about three hours to get there.  We stopped at Krispy Kreme on the way for breakfast and our first stop once we got there was Shedd’s Aquarium.

We had a great time and what was even better was I got in free since I am a teacher!   Free admission means more money for vinylmations.  The whole time i was there I was still thinking about the Disney Store.  So we decided to take a water taxi over to Navy Pier and then walk to Michigan Ave. to the Disney store.  If you have ever been to Michigan Ave before then you know the street is littered with people and their causes.  Now my wife is someone who never wants to talk to people on the street who ask if you have a minute.  We walked past a human rights campaign person who asked if we had some time to talk about a bill that they were trying to get passed in the house.  Of course I said no we were not interested, I’m on the hunt for vinylmations!   We walked about 4 feet when she looked at me and said “I might be interested.”  We turned around and listened to the woman.  Well my wife was thinking she was just looking for signatures for a petition but found out she was after a monthly donation.

Ok back on track, only about 4 more blocks to the store.   I walked in headed straight over to the vinylmation display. I saw muppets 2, CLY, Robots, HAL, Urban 5, and an open box of Urban 7.  As I was trying to figure out which boxes I wanted to get my wife said why don’t you just get a case.  WHAT???   Well I’m not going to argue with that.  I found a case but it wasn’t sealed.  I opened the box and it was full.  I went to the register and asked a CM if there were any sealed cases in the back and she said she would go look.  She came back out with a sealed case and also a sealed case of Urban 5 because the BOGO free sale was still going on.  GREAT!  My wife picked up 2 robots for my son, I tried to convince her not to buy them and just get him some more Urban 7’s but no luck she made the purchase.  I asked the CM about using my Disney Visa Rewards for 10% off.  She asked the manager but he said no.  You cannot do double discounts. Ok I guess I can’t be greedy.

I spoke to my son who asked if I had opened my boxes yet.  He had no idea that I bought a sealed case so I told him that I would wait until I got home so he could help open some of the boxes.  We spent another 3 hours walking around Michigan Ave.  Have you ever been to Sprinkles cupcakes before?  That place has the best cupcakes.  The owner of the shop is also a judge on the Food Network show Cupcake Wars.  We pre-ordered our dozen online so my wife just went in to pick them up. She came back out and told me that the owner of the shop who is on Cupcake Wars was in the store that day greeting customers and taking pictures.  After our run-in with a “celebrity”,  we went to the Cheesecake Factory for lunch.  The food was great.  I had orange chicken and my wife had pasta.  Then the best part was of course the cheesecake.  I tried the red velvet cake cheesecake and she had the 30th anniversary chocolate layer cheesecake.  So by this time we are both stuffed we could hardly move and we had to walk all the way back to Navy Pier.  Once we arrived we made our last stop at Garrett’s Popcorn shop.  The BEST popcorn in the world if you have never had it.  We placed our order of 14 bags.  My wife asked almost everyone at her work if the wanted some.

Ok try to picture this, we are in line waiting to get on the water taxi and I have the disney bags with the two cases plus robots and free HAL, a bag of 12 cupcakes and my wife has a HUGE bag filled with different smaller bags of popcorn and also a smaller bag filled with more popcorn.  Now to the moment you have all been waiting for.  We got home around 9p.m. and my son was so excited to see us and even more excited when I showed him the 2 cases of vinyls we were about to open.  It was very exciting opening the Urban 7’s and finally seeing them in person.   So here is a group shot.

Do you notice someone that is missing?  Any guesses? Oh yeah that brown one that no one quite knows what it is. Well I didn’t get any of those weird brown cyclop looking thingys.  Here is what I found instead-

I couldn’t believe my eyes!  I was SHOCKED when I opened the first one and really SHOCKED when I opened the second one.  This is the first time I have ever opened a variant, let alone two variants.  Now my decision is to keep one or use both to try to get other vinyls from other older series that I want. I’m not big on having to have variants as long as I have the regular one for my set.  All in all it was a great trip to Chicago and a great trip to the disney store again. Oh and those robots my son opened, I caved and let him put them in the display case with the others.  After seeing the new mold in hand I can say that I am proud member of the OMC!