Monday, August 13, 2012

Rockefeller Center

I think Top of the Rock was one of everyone’s favorite things.  We went at night and it was amazing.  There is big debate in the city about which views are better—Empire State, or Rockefeller.  I choose Rockefeller.  The reason is….at Empire State there is a tall metal safety fence that really obstructs the the view.  You really have to look in between the bars to get a great view.  But at Rockefeller, there is just a huge glass wall, so the view is totally unobstructed.  LOVED IT.  Doing it at night also added to the magic.


We ate dinner at Tang Pavillion, which was the best Chinese we had in Manhattan.  Ended the night with some bananna pudding and cheesecake from Magnolia’s.  Little taste of heaven.                       


NYC from the top of a double decker bus

Nothing says tourist like the sight seeing buses in NYC.  BUT….my parents wanted to see and do as much as possible, and these buses are a great way to get around!  We went everywhere you can imagine, and it was actually really interesting to listen to the tour guides and learn fun and interesting facts about the city.  I can’t even begin to list the places we visited.  One day we did the downtown tour.  Next day the uptown tour.  And finally a harbor cruise. 

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(We couldn’t get a good pic, but Blake was fast asleep on Papa’s lap)

Funny story about the cruise.  We were running tight on time, and so we asked on of the tour guides what the quickest way to the harbor was.  He said we could wait for a little shuttle that would take us over, or we could just walk.  It would take 6-10 minutes is what he said.  Now….I should have been very suspicious of that because we had to cross 5 Avenues, but I just took his word for it.  It was over 90 degrees and super super humid.  We walked and walked, then we walked a little faster, walked some more, started running…smack into a building.  We were almost at the address we had been given, but there was a very large building in our way.  We went one direction around the building—dead end.  We went the other direction.  After a few more twists and turns, AND running with the stroller across the Hudson River Parkway, we finally made it with about 5 seconds to spare.  We were so hot and so sweaty!  Lucky for us we had stopped at Carnegie Deli (Rudest place on earth) right before this adventure and we had a nice fat slice of cheesecake, and a giant slice of 5th avenue pie to enjoy on the boat.


I have to say, my favorite views of Manhattan are from the water, so it was worth all the running.  The poor kids, their little faces were SO RED. We saw all of downtown, the statue of liberty, Brooklyn, Manhattan and Queensboro bridge, South Street Seaport, and everything in between. 



Hanging at the Conservatory Gardens in Central Park. These gardens were BEAUTIFUL!  I can’t believe we’d never been there before now.

We also hit up Grand Central Station and learned that there is something in the pattern and color of the floor that makes it so you could run from end to end and never hit another person, no matter how crowded it was, unless you intentionally ran into them.  Interesting….


Sunday, August 12, 2012

The Cornell’s come for a visit

I took a red-eye flight home from our Ragnar race in Seattle so that I could be home when my parents arrived on Monday afternoon. I caught a weird cold and was pretty wiped out from the lack of sleep. Cute little Halle took care of the boys all morning—fed them breakfast, played with them and kept them upstairs while I caught a few hours of sleep.  The kids couldn’t wait for Grandma and Grandpa to get there so they could show off their NYC prowess. My dad had only ever spent 1 night in NYC, so he was excited to see all the sites, and we were happy to oblige.  They got in around dinner time, so we headed down to the Boathouse CafĂ© on the Hudson River for dinner.  The food wasn’t fabulous, but it was affordable, and the view was incredible. 

The next morning we headed to Central Park and took the kids to the Swiss Cottage Marionette Theater to see “Miss Muppets Monster Sitting Service.”  It was super cute.  We then toured around Central Park a little bit, going through Shakespeare Gardens and Belvedere Castle. 

That evening we hit up Lombardi’s Pizza for dinner—they boast that they are the oldest pizza joint in Manhattan.  We sat in a little room that was down a hallway, past the kitchen, and up some stairs.  I was kinda afraid we were going to be part of some Italian Mob hit….

My Dad has been dreaming of dessert at Rice to Riches ever since he saw the pics from Rusty’s birthday.  So, my belated Father’s Day gift to him was many flavors of rice pudding.  We had 6 different flavors, and enjoyed them all.  The store signage is so funny.  It’s worth going just for the humor, even if you don’t like Rice Pudding. 

We ended the day on the Brooklyn Bridge.  Josh had been so excited to do this again.  He had been keeping one of his athletic shirts clean for about a week so he would have it to wear when we did the Brooklyn Bridge.  I noticed that he was acting sad and ornery and so I asked him what was wrong.  He said, “I have been looking forward to RUNNING across the Brooklyn Bridge for such a long time and Dad said I couldn’t because I would be too far away from him.”  So, cute little Josh and I ran all the way across the bridge. He tearing through the crowds and almost being mowed down by bicycles, me following behind apologizing to everyone in his wake.  Of course we beat everyone to the end, and he couldn’t have been more proud.  It was adorable.  314071_4235595535799_75271243_n