Other than getting sunburned as all heck(though not surprised that happened, since I haven't gotten into the routine of putting on sunscreen due to the slightly below average spring weather we've had), the rally was amazing. Had the mishap of getting to the parade route a tad too late to see that, but it's okay since I was taping it on TV, and I saw all of the rally from the opening history/2013 season montage video on. Noticed the FYE on Randolph that day had a sign saying their last day in business was Tuesday, June 25th, so I missed getting a last visit in there to see if anything was left there by a few days. It's okay, since I didn't quite find anything I wanted there on a earlier visit after their closing sale started.
Anyone know if Underground Retrocade has reopened yet? I keep looking on their website and on facebook, but they still haven't posted any word about a reopening date and new address yet. They've only indicated to my knowledge, that they'll remain somewhere within East Dundee. Also my only other question is, does anyone know the status of the Blockbuster stores at 67th/Pulaski, North/Harlem(Elmwood Park), and Ogden/Harlem(Berwyn)? Interesting to hear the one at Milwaukee/Ashland is closing, since it goes to show how very fast they've been closing locations. And sometimes I'll look at these closing stores, in the remote chance I do find any interesting deals there(though I often don't).
Mt. Prospect might give you life a little more like Rockford. Metra Service is good that direction, and you would come into Olgilvie station which is the closest Metra station to 121 Union. Plus Rockford isn't hard to get to from that location.
I've lived on the south side as well (95th and Cicero), that SouthWest line sucked (and probably still does because it crosses tracks used by freight trains). The Rock Island is more dependable but goes into a station a good distance from where you'll be at versus the SouthWest line that goes into Union Station which is a bit closer.
Worst thing about the SouthWest Service line IMHO, is that the service is extremely scant on weekends(ONLY 3 trains each direction all day on Saturdays, and that the Sat. train times are very spread out, that you may as well take Rock Island instead if you miss one of those SWS trains. plus it's one of 3 Metra lines with NO SERVICE on Sundays). Personally the few times I've ridden that Metra line, I've NEVER had a problem with delayed trains, except for the usual very minor delays that you notice every so often that are 5-10 minutes late. Also, a flyover bridge is currently being built('Englewood Flyover'), that'll probably reduce the majority of the freight train delays that are talked about on this line.
Also, you could look at residences near stations along the Milwaukee District West line going to Elgin, and which I imagine would be cheaper than ones near the Union Pacific Northwest line(Harvard). I like UP-NW(don't get me wrong), but have always gotten the impression that it must be more expensive to live in most of the communities along that line, vs. MD-W). I'm probably replying too late to your post(and since I procrastinated forever in finally getting a s/n registered here, plus had a past failed attempt in trying to register), but I hope you were able to find somewhere to live that worked out for you.