Sadly, today was our last day in New York. While my husband is there on business for another week, we were only able to be there for a week ourselves. Eating out for a week is a bit strenuous on the pocket book.
We have had lots of fun and laughs, with many ooo’s and ahh’s. Thursday we partied at the hotel by swimming all day. We took a break for lunch and that was about it. Friday, however, I took the kids to the American Museum of Natural History.
There is not a lot of young kids there unless they are on field trips or summer camp, and I’ll tell you the reason why: there is a lot of history and reading involved. While observing my kids around the museum I came to the conclusion that all they are really doing is looking at the pictures and displays, and assuming or guessing about the object in front of them. The museum is not like the Museum of Science where you can walk around and touch stuff. In fact, the only place you could really touch stuff was in the Earth and Space exhibition. The kids liked that area a lot. Although they really enjoyed looking at all the dioramas and other displays, they weren’t interested about the history itself. Could just be my kids.
They insisted on taking pictures themselves so I fearfully let my son (the oldest) man my Nikon 3200. I was nervous at first but he did an incredible job! They both were allowed to get one thing at the store. Josh came out with a stuffed Eagle (a larger version than the one he got at the zoo) and Elizabeth got a stuffed Red-Ruffed Lemur. Of course, with each new stuffed animal comes a new name I have to remember.
Elizabeth has a Polar Bear named Snow, Stitch (which he was already named), and a Red-Ruffed Lemur named Sparkle. Josh has a small Bald Eagle named Baldy and a large Bald Eagle named Frank. Honestly I’m not sure how they come up with their names but I remember each of them. We feed them, fly them around, play catch, and most of all, make sure they are well snuggled.
That evening we went to an Irish pub for dinner (St. James Gate http://stjamesgatenyc.com/), watched some firemen show up at a building across the street from the restaurant, and gazed at all the puppies that trotted by with their humans. The food was great (especially the sweet potato fries and the giant 100% Angus beef cheeseburger I had), however I was disappointed with our server. He was quite unfriendly and did not come to see how we were doing very often. It’s a shame cause I’d much prefer to go to a place with great service and okay food, than a place with great food and pitiful service. Here is a couple of pictures from the Museum.
Dum Dum give me Gum Gum!
Josh and Ellie in front of Museum
The Three of us plus animals… and one Dinosaur!
Since Jon had the weekends off for work, as a family we went to the Aircraft Carrier USS Intrepid and to see the Space Shuttle Enterprise which is currently housed on the carrier.
I come from a family of military veterans (a long line). I joined the US Navy, however I was discharged just before graduation, on 9/11/2001 out of all days! That is another story for another time. If I would have graduated and gone through A and C school I would have been stationed on the Carrier USS Enterprise which was just recently decommissioned. My husband served in the US Navy as well and did 6 months on the Enterprise.
Being that we have strong military ties the Intrepid was an incredible experience. Jon was having flash backs aboard his time on a carrier and I was crying cause I never got to go. My son was soaking it all up. He loved to see the planes and hear the stories about what happened on the USS Intrepid.
Short history lesson: The USS Intrepid was commissioned in 1943 where she set sail to the Atlantic. She guarded our borders from the ongoing war between the US and the Japanese. The Japanese put together a small group who’s mission was to fly an aircraft laden with explosives into their target. Their target was the USS Intrepid. She also fought during the Vietnam War and the Cold War. After 9/11 she sat in the middle of the Hudson River housing the FBI agents frantically working to resolve the situation. After this she was decommissioned, pulled into dock (she could still be used again) and turned into a museum.
We had a blast. The SR-71 (my favorite Jet) was on the carrier along with the Space Shuttle which blew me away entirely. I was like a giddy school girl again when I got to walk underneath it!
We wondered back to Time Square and went Midtown Comics to peruse the back issues which were on sale. Got 4 comic books! All Star Trek! Been trying to work on my collection again.
We went to dinner at Red Lobster which had us wait for a good 40 minutes before seating us. I was a bit irritated by a woman who kept telling her friend to steal my husband and daughters seat after they got up to go to the bathroom. Honestly I would have offered until she started telling her friend to beat me up if I did allow her to. Her friend was much nicer and never did but it was still a shock to me.
On to happier notes… here are a couple photos from that day!
See… giddy school girl! That’s the front wheel of the Space Shuttle behind me!
SR-71??!! YES PLEASE!!
We are go for launch… or rescue… either one!
:) Yay for family pictures!!
The first place we went to on Sunday was the 9/11 Memorial. The kids were not even born/thought of at the time it happened, but they had been hearing about it in school and wanted to see it. Jon and I had went a month or two ago for the first time and I couldn’t stop crying.
Everyone around me was just walking around, looking at things or talking to each other, while I sat there having flash backs.
I was not in NY when it happened, however it was the day I signed my discharge papers while in Basic Training for the Navy. Just before the first plane hit I had walked back down stairs from signing the papers to see people gathered around the television. It was a horrific sight for all of us and I’m sure those of you who remember know what I am talking about. Sometimes you just don’t get over something like that. It sticks with you.
I thought I would be fine the 2nd go around, but I wasn’t. Tears flooded my eyes as I opened up books in the store and saw the images that have been burned in my head for 13 years. Once over to the memorial it just got worse as I stood looking at the memorial. One thing I like is that you may take something of ours down, but we are just going to rebuild more. :) There is now 3 WTC’s and the first one is even bigger than the twin towers.
The Statue of Liberty was quite amazing as well. Although the walk up the 195 stairs to the top of the pedestal was pretty grueling. The view was spectacular, but could’ve been better if the city was not so infested with smog! I’m not talking about the dragon either!
Nonetheless we had some beautiful family moments and a couple of extremely happy kids.
Liberty in all her glory
The new first world trade center! :D Taller than the Original! We make them bigger and better!
One of the new World Trade Centers
Kids in front of the memorial.
The older torch which was corroding so they replaced it.
Skyline. The space between the two tallest buildings is where the Twin Towers stood
Today was the drive home and though the New York adventure has come to an end… and new one has began. Fun and Fitness Week… HERE WE COME!
PS: The kids were not the only ones to come out of NY with stuffed animals! I got 4 small ones; a Red Panda named Red, Giraffe named Spots, Killer Whale (unnamed right now), and Snow Owl named Hedwig; a Triceratops named Topsie, and a huge stuffed Panda Bear that I named Po! :) You can never be too old for a stuffed animal!
My new Panda Po!