Hey, all! It’s been a minute since I posted, as we’ve been on the road and also did a bunch of site maintenance. Anyway, we went to Illinois this year to visit family and friends, and to hang out a bit.

This is part one of some random photos from these visits, even though you might have caught a lot of them on social media. Enjoy!

Jets Like Taxis on Iberia Airlines

Back with the family, back with their local craft bar, Tap House.

Tap House Palatine by Jets Like Taxis

Tap House Palatine by Jets Like Taxis

It was cold when we arrived! We had to up our wardrobe warmth game.

Jets Like Taxis in Palatine, IL

Jets Like Taxis in Palatine, IL

Louis was tired.

Jets Like Taxis in Palatine, IL

‘Merica. SMH.

Jets Like Taxis in Palatine, IL

Fortunately, we have the smile of our niece to make us forget about that ridiculousness.

Jets Like Taxis in Palatine, IL

Cold weather makes us grumpy, though.

Jets Like Taxis in Palatine, IL

But! Bentley is always here to hang out and make us feel better, too.

Jets Like Taxis in Palatine, IL

A 4-foot-tall bobblehead luchador? We really wanted to steal this and we even tried to find one online. So. Cool.

Modelo Luchador by Jets Like Taxis

We went shopping for those aforementioned winter clothes, and stopped by Ten Ninety Brewing Co. in Glenview, IL. These guys are doing great things!

Ten Ninety Brewing Co. by Jets Like Taxis / Hopsmash

We were still cold, though. 🙁

Ten Ninety Brewing Co. by Jets Like Taxis / Hopsmash

This is hilarious. Much better than that ridiculous sticker I showed you earlier.

The Ass Family by Jets Like Taxis

Now that we’re in America, we naturally have to eat all the goodies we can’t get in Europe. Fried chicken time with our brother-in-law, Ben! At Mother Cluckers in Palatine, IL.

Mother Cluckers in Palatine, IL by Jets Like Taxis

Mother Cluckers in Palatine, IL by Jets Like Taxis

Mother Cluckers in Palatine, IL by Jets Like Taxis

We also swung through Mikerphone Brewing, one of the best breweries in the area – and the entire country, for that matter. Big thanks to Nick, Mike, Kyle, Randy, Pete, Frankie, and Jimmy for the hospitality and good times!

Mikerphone Brewing in Elk Grove Village, IL by Jets Like Taxis / Hopsmash

Mikerphone Brewing in Elk Grove Village, IL by Jets Like Taxis / Hopsmash

Mikerphone Brewing in Elk Grove Village, IL by Jets Like Taxis / Hopsmash

Mikerphone Brewing in Elk Grove Village, IL by Jets Like Taxis / Hopsmash

Delicious Italian food at Ciao Baby! in Barrington, IL, with the family.

Ciao Baby! in Barrington, IL by Jets Like Taxis

Ciao Baby! in Barrington, IL by Jets Like Taxis

Ciao Baby! in Barrington, IL by Jets Like Taxis

A super-yummy birthday dinner for me with the family at Wok’n Fire in South Barrington, IL. #yumface

Wok'n Fire in South Barrington, IL by Jets Like Taxis

42 years on the planet. Oof! Time for delicious cake by Mom, and tasty beer by The Mitten Brewing Co.

The Mitten Brewing Co. by Jets Like Taxis / Hopsmash

Watching our niece’s team play softball is always an integral part of our visits back to Illinois. A little powwow after their 19-0 victory. Whoa!

Palatine Softball by Jets Like Taxis

Thanks to the fine folks at Perrin Brewing Co. for sending us this care package for our Hopsmash project. Helps keep the blood warm during these cold times. Brrrr!

Perrin Brewing Co. by Jets Like Taxis / Hopsmash

Another very important mission we have when in Illinois is to head over to Balkan Taste in Mt. Prospect, IL, to enjoy some of their great Balkan food. It always gives us great memories of our time living in Montenegro.

Balkan Taste in Mt. Prospect, IL by Jets Like Taxis

Balkan Taste in Mt. Prospect, IL by Jets Like Taxis

Balkan Taste in Mt. Prospect, IL by Jets Like Taxis

Ang, trying out what life would be like with a fancy mustache.

Jets Like Taxis in Palatine, IL

Stopped by The Craft Beer Store in Libertyville, IL, to check out their goods and stock up…because we certainly needed more beer. Ha.

The Craft Beer Store in Libertyville, IL by Jets Like Taxis / Hopsmash

Our friends’ dog, Annie. Super-cute, but also super-crazy!

Annie the Dog by Jets Like Taxis

Our friend, Bob, and his family had us all over for BBQ. So. Many. Drools.

BBQ by Jets Like Taxis

It also snowed. What. The. Fuuuuuuuuu……..

Snow in Palatine, IL by Jets Like Taxis

Jets Like Taxis in Palatine, IL

I had to take a nap with Bentley after that trauma.

Jets Like Taxis in Palatine, IL

Louis wasn’t having it, either.

Jets Like Taxis in Palatine, IL

Ang made cookies, though, which made us all feel better. Phew.

Jets Like Taxis in Palatine, IL

A couple of really cool beer gems and whatnot we got at this particular time…

First up, from Founders Brewing Co. in Grand Rapids, MI! An eisbock beer that actually bent the tank it was in at the brewery.

Founders Brewing Co. by Jets Like Taxis / Hopsmash

And some treats from New Holland Brewing Co. in Holland, MI.

New Holland Brewing Co. by Jets Like Taxis / Hopsmash

We also headed into Chicago to visit some friends, but not before stopping at a couple of breweries to taste some more delicious goodness.

First up, Begyle Brewing Co. A huge thanks to Chelsea for the hospitality!

Begyle Brewing Co. by Jets Like Taxis / Hopsmash

Then, we headed a block over to try out the German-inspired beers at Dovetail Brewery. Thanks to Tanja for the good times!

Dovetail Brewery by Jets Like Taxis / Hopsmash

Dovetail Brewery by Jets Like Taxis / Hopsmash

Then, it was off to Tandoor Char House for some Indian food.

Tandoor Char House in Chicago by Jets Like Taxis

Tandoor Char House in Chicago by Jets Like Taxis

We also finally got a chance to visit Noon Whistle Brewing Co. in Lombard, IL. So, so good. Many thanks here to Kassie, Billy, Jess, Mike, and the two Matts!

Noon Whistle Brewing Co. by Jets Like Taxis / Hopsmash

Noon Whistle Brewing Co. by Jets Like Taxis / Hopsmash

Noon Whistle Brewing Co. by Jets Like Taxis / Hopsmash

And…more! We also stopped by Solemn Oath Brewery in Naperville, IL, to try their goods in person. Thanks to Nichole and David!

Solemn Oath Brewery by Jets Like Taxis / Hopsmash

And, after that very long and random post…that’s a wrap!

Jets Like Taxis in Palatine, IL

Also be sure to check out our Hopsmash project on Instagram and Facebook.

A very special thanks to everyone at all of these establishments for their delicious concoctions and hospitality. An extra-special thanks to Ben, Heidi, and Grace for hanging out and hosting us. Always great times!

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Have you ever been to any of these places? If so, what’d you think? If not, what say ye? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!