We ❀️ NY

I’m blogging this from the back seat of Kiki and Mike’s car as we head back to Virginia. We left New York City a couple of hours ago, and while I’ve been terrible about blogging our trip so far (I mean the one to Virginia) at least I can get this one down now, while it’s still fresh.

We arrived yesterday (Sunday) a bit after noon (it’s about 4 hours from their house and we left bright and early.) Got the car parked and dropped our bags off at the hotel (a Courtyard by Marriott that we got for an absolute steal) and headed out to explore.

We decided to walk to Rockefeller Center since it wasn’t too far away, and one of our ideas was to go to the top.

The east coast was going through a nightmarish heat wave this weekend, so we didn’t want to do anything that involved being outside much. But when you are in a city where you walk everywhere, it’s an impossible goal. But at least we could duck into air conditioning as often as possible.

So far, Linus approves.
In front of Rockefeller Center
At the Top of the Rock
Group selfie!

After we baked on top of a skyscraper, we headed to the Nintendo store.

Oh and we ate pizza before going up, and the boys were not happy that it was square instead of traditional NY pizza. It was delicious though. πŸ€·πŸ»β€β™€οΈ

Afterwards, we walked around Rockefeller Center a bunch because there was ice cream and air conditioning. And then went back to the hotel so we could check in. We rested for a while in our rooms, then headed back out for “real” pizza and to see Times Square.

Went to John’s Pizza for dinner. Was delicious but hot. Like, my shirt was soaked with sweat. πŸ”₯ But the pizza was fantastic. The boys were thrilled to have “foldable” pizza.

It was getting dark by the time we left, so it was time to see the lights of Times Square in all of their glory. The boys loved it.

My favorite part was the group of Sri Lankan men who asked me to take their photo. And then wanted everyone in the picture. πŸ˜€ They were adorable and pointed out a few times that they were politicians back home. I had to get a picture with my phone as well, of course.

Next, we went back to Rockefeller Center to make use of its facilities and got some dessert for the boys. We were all exhausted by the time we got back to the hotel and I slept like a rock. (I have said “rock” a lot in this post.)

This morning, we woke up and went to stand in line for bagels at Ess-a-Bagel, which was handily right by our hotel. I was nervous about ordering, but I did okay and didn’t get yelled at. The boys loved the bagels (they got butter, I got lox spread.) They were totally worth the wait.

After eating, we walked up to Central Park and we all climbed on rocks. The temperature was much lower today, thank goodness.

Ahhhh!

Our next stop was a cookie dough shop that Oliver had been dying to go to ever since we decided to make this trip. We took the subway down to Chelsea, and when we got there, it was closed! 🀬 Poor kid was heartbroken. There was another cookie dough shop around the corner, but it took a while for him to recover. (As an aside, as fond as I am of sampling cookie dough when I make it, these places where they scoop it out to eat raw – it’s egg-free so safe – make me want to retch and I honestly couldn’t even look at it. But I’m weird.)

The next stop was the one I was most excited about….MOOD!!!!!! You know, the fabric store from Project Runway?

No one else was excited, though. πŸ˜† So I very thoughtfully made my choices as quickly as I could. But I mean there are 3 stories of fabric! I had a list of patterns I want to make dresses with and the amount of fabric I needed, and tried to decide fast. It was actually good for me because otherwise that place would have sent me into a tailspin of indecision. I ended up getting a few yards of cotton voile (a light woven cotton) for a dress:

And then went to search for swim fabrics, because I wasn’t thrilled with what I’d bought at Joann’s. And I hit the jackpot! I found these (the blue is for contrast):

And I love it, but after it was cut out, I saw this, and was all 😍😍😍 so got some of it as well.

Dreamy, right? And the blue will work with it as well.

The people at Mood were so nice, but sadly we did not see Swatch the dog. 😒

This was happy Pam:

It was time to head back to get the car and go back to Virginia to beat a bad storm that was coming. But first, more pizza! The boys wanted to try 99 cent slices, and the cheapskate in me was happy to oblige! They said they liked it best of all. Of course.

We made it back to the car just before the sky opened up, and that is the end of our New York adventure! I’m happy that writing this post has taken up a good part of the journey back to Kiki’s. Woo hoo!

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Various things

I forgot to mention in last week’s post that we also got a new security system. So many improvements!

Also, we were looking at putting the boys in Cub Scouts, so we went to a meeting the other night to check it out. One of the activities they do is sleep on a warship, which sounds really cool, but Oliver told us later that he’d rather just sleep in his own bed. So we decided that Cub Scouts maybe isn’t for them, and instead, Oliver and Miles will be playing soccer and Linus will cheer them on. I hope.

The other night I made waffle pizzas for dinner. It was actually George’s idea. I guess he’s been perusing Pinterest in his free time. I toasted some waffles, let the boys put cheese and pepperoni on them (no sauce for them) and then stuck them under the broiler. Yum! They all gobbled them up.

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Waffle pizzas are a hit!

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Speaking of gobbling things up, I relented and bought those cotton candy grapes at the store. I’ve always been a bit weirded out by them for no rational reason, but Linus and I are huge fans. At $4 a pound, this could get expensive.

My ankle is doing a bit better, thank you very much. I got a brace that has these little gel pockets right around my achilles tendon, and I’ve stopped going barefoot. I hate wearing shoes all the time, but it’s working, so I’ll just have to suck it up.

Saturday, we went to my cousin’s house to have a big ol’ cousin hangout. We’re going to try to start doing that more. It was really great. Got the kids together for a pic:

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A friend from work got a photo made into a cartoon of herself, and I loved hers so much that I went on fiverr.com and found an artist whose style I liked and got my own.

I had them use this picture:
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Which resulted in this:
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but a “friend” said I looked like THIS:
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so I did a little photoshopping and ended up with this, which I hope looks more like me. Hmmph.
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If not, who cares, it was $5.

(But everyone who agreed with Betsy is on my shit list.)

The end. Happy Labor Day.

Fun with friends

One of my coworkers, Deborah, came through New Orleans today with her family, and the boys and I met them all for an adventure. I haven’t seen her since we were in Barcelona, so it was exciting to see her again.

First, we braved the boiling heat to meet them at the streetcar stop on St. Charles. We stopped for fun pictures at the steps of One Shell Square first.

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Then, we met up with them and made her daughter, Vera, take pics with the boys, since they were all wearing their Wapuu shirts. Meanwhile, her son Isaac closely scrutinized the boys to figure out how best to tell them apart. (I will be asking him for tips.)

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We got on the streetcar and had a great ride down St. Charles.

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Until they kicked us off and made us get on a bus. At first we were disappointed, but then we realized it was air conditioned, and the kids got to stand up, and hey, the bus is really better than the streetcar!

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We got to the park where Deborah and I sat on a bench in the shade while the kids played. And she realized her hat was still on the bus. Ack!

If you look closely you can see Vera putting her stuffed animals in a swing. (Foreshadowing!)

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We made them pose by a tree.

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Got back on the streetcar and bus to go have lunch at Slice. Yum! I bought a Groupon on the way. Handy!

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After we ordered, Vera inquired about the whereabouts of her stuffed animals. ACK! Still in the swing back at Audubon Park!

Deborah zoomed off in an Uber to retrieve the animals – luckily they were safe! while I hung out with the kids and stuffed ourselves with yummy pizza and salad.

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After lunch, we headed back to the streetcar, and then to our car. I was sad our adventure had come to the end. I was very tempted to swipe Vera and take her home with me. She’s adorable and sassy. But I left her with her family, alas.

The end!

Chickpeas, jello, Wendell Pierce, and other random things

Got these chickpea snacks from Costco. They’re tasty, for sure. But the main thing is, the boys tried them, claimed they liked them, and Oliver (Oliver!) even asked to bring them to camp as his afternoon snack.

We got the sea salt ones, but I’m intrigued by the Thai coconut ones. May have to look for those…

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The state of my Achilles’ tendon:

It hurts.

Back in May, I went to the orthopedist and he prescribed physical therapy. I spent a lot of money on half a dozen sessions, and then we went on our trip to England. My ankle wasn’t really improving. To be honest, the only thing that helps are prescription anti-inflammatories, that my primary care doctor gave me for my back. I’ve also been icing and doing the stretches and exercises I learned in PT, but let’s face it. I’m not great about doing them all twice a day like I’m supposed to.

For now, I’m going to keep icing and stretching and taking anti-inflammatories. I’m also going to start doing yoga with the girls in the neighborhood soon. I am so inflexible, it’s insane. (Only physically, of course.) So hopefully that will help.

I am signed up for the Rocketchix triathlon later this month. I’ll just walk the run bit. Meh.

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Last weekend, Teresa and I went to a play. That was pretty fun. I haven’t been to many plays, but this was one thoroughly engrossing. It starred Wendell Pierce, which was pretty cool. We got to go to the afterparty with the actors and crew, but we didn’t stick around too long. I kind of wanted to tell him hi since he did a voiceover for a movie my brother made, but it was getting late.

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Saturday is the 4th of July and the boys are excited to see fireworks. I am excited to make watermelon Jello shots.

However, I may not be feeling up to eating said Jello shots since Friday night is a birthday party for some friends. I got a fancy beaded gown at the thrift store for $13. Only problem is, it’s about 13 sizes too big.

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Teresa helped me pin it and I’m going to take it in so it fits a bit better. It doesn’t really matter if I do a terrible sewing job. It was $13.

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The boys had a friend over yesterday after camp. They made mini-pizzas and all pretended to looove pizza sauce since Silas does. Peer pressure is great. Of course, once it came down to eating the pizza, Oliver was not thrilled with his choice to slather it with sauce. Oh well, kid.

Okay, I think that’s about it for now.