June 27, 2011

Summer Fun List!

Hey Local Peeps!  I know so many of you are reading this...even if you don't admit it!  I'm putting together a google calendar and attempting to plan out our summer fun in New York City.  We would love to have any and all of you join us on our adventures this summer.  If you want me to share the calendar with you let me know (comment, email, text, etc).  It's not finished yet...

Many friends and acquaintances have expressed interest in doing more "adventures" in the city, so I thought this might help and inspire you.  Hopefully not overwhelm you, since there's a whole lot out there.

Disclaimer: You do not have to commit to coming with us to any of the events if you want to just view the calendar.  Also, I am biting off more than I can chew, so I know I won't do everything on the calendar.

It's inspired by Mommy Poppins 100 Free things to do this Summer.

June 25, 2011

Right Now

No photo. One of the ushers insisted I delete them. And made sure I
did. (I have one hiding still...)

We are enjoying a PERFECT night at the Delacorte Theater. Our first
time at Shakespeare in the Park watching All is Well That Ends Well.
The acting, set, weather and fireflies flickering behind the stage are
perfect. Seriously!

This night has made it to my top 10 all time favorite New York City
experiences ever!

P.S. We won the tickets via the online lottery!

June 24, 2011

{this moment}

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

Inspired by my favorite blog: SouleMama

Swedish Cottage

Yesterday we took a "down day".  I made no plans and we just were going to chill, go walk around the park, and chill.  I felt tired.

It was misty and damp out, we ended up by the Swedish Cottage Marionette Theater right before a show was going to start.  There was a woman aggressively pushing a preschooler in a stroller leaving the cottage when we approached.  She insisted we take their tickets and not pay her.  I didn't fight her.  We walked right in, sat down, and enjoyed the show.  The show, The Secret History of the Swedish Cottage, was beautifully done.  The sets were gorgeous!  The story was probably difficult for the kids to follow since there was no dialogue.  But Isabella was entertained the entire time and Oliver lasted all but the last 10 minutes (longer than I expected).

I just asked Isabella what she thought of the production, she said, "It was great!  Except the thunderstorm.  It made my belly hurt.  It made me feel sick inside."  I had completely forgotten there was a storm in the show.

getting ready for the show

these photos don't do justice to the amazing sets

Simon: 6 months

Okay, so it should say: Simon: 6 months, 1 week, and 3 days.  This boy changes so fast that a week (and 3 days) can make a big difference.  Like , since last week he's now moving and getting places.  No he's not scooting or crawling yet, but he rolls and somehow can get his little body from one corner of our apartment to the other within minutes.  He's becoming more aware and in control of where to go and how.

Simon is awesome!  He always has a huge happy open mouth.  He loves to be thrown up in the air and tossed about.  He's so close to sitting up on his own and I know he can't wait to master that so he can play with his toys and see everything around him.  He has amazing grabbing skillz.  If I'm holding him and reaching for a plastic bag he's got a grip on it before I do.  Prying his little fingers open from plastic bags and his sister's hair is a tricky task.

He has a sweet, soft nasally laugh.

Oliver has been more interested in Simon lately and tries to play with him, move him, or sit on him.  Oliver loves it when Simon shows interest in him (i.e. when Simon reaches out to grab Oliver's face or something like that) and Oliver makes a game out of it.

Isabella still adores Simon (a little too much sometimes) and greets him first every morning.  She tries hard to make him laugh and is a little confused (sometimes) when her goofy tactics don't work.

When Brian is near Simon gets super excited and kicks, kicks, kicks his little legs until Brian picks him and swings him around.

More Coney Island

The reason we went to Coney Island last weekend was for the Mermaid Parade, but we did some other fun things too.

playing at the beach
battle of the bands (from the parade) in the water
Isabella getting her mermaid on
riding the Wonder Wheel
There was a "bubble battle".  So many bubbles.  The camera just couldn't capture its awesomeness.
my little urban monkey

June 20, 2011

The Mermaid Parade

On Saturday we checked off another item on our "must do while in New York" list:  Go see The Mermaid Parade in Coney Island.  Friday evening, as we were preparing to go to the parade, Brian read (somewhere) that it was the busiest day at Coney Island.  I instantly remembered my first trip to Coney Island on the 4th of July in 2006 when the masses on the beach were so great that we could not see where the land and the water met.  I thought, "If the Mermaid Parade is busier than that, I do not want to go!"  But, go, we did.  And it was not as crowded (by far) as my first visit.  It was a hot day, but not blistering, and by mid afternoon the clouds covered the intense sun and the breeze felt refreshing.

The Mermaid Parade was as expected: fun, creative, revealing, and at times, a bit odd.

Their expressions cracked me up!

Aquaman and woman were totally hilarious and cute.

I loved the vintage swimsuits and swing dancing.

And, yes, there were some mermaids as well.

Right Now

Spending some solo time with Oliver at the playground. Isabella is
playing with friends at Camp Runaround and Simon is home, napping,
with Brian who is home sick.

June 17, 2011

{this moment}

{this moment} - A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

Inspired by my favorite blog: SouleMama

Battery Park Fountain

After our trip to Governor's Island last Friday we met up with Brian at Battery Park and played in a favorite fountain.  I took tons of photos; it was hard to choose these "few" for the blog.  Lots of tourists were taking photos of my kids.  I don't blame them--I couldn't stop snapping photos either.  The pure, unfettered joy of children running through fountains is one of my favorite things.

I am grateful for New York City's awesome fountains! 

He was very trusting of his sister.  It was very sweet.
This is what happens when you let your sister drag guide you through a fountain.
I love the beaming smile.
Possibly my new favorite photo of Oliver.

June 16, 2011

Governor's Island: FIGMENT

Last Friday I took the kids out to Governor's Island for a fun art festival called FIGMENT. Despite the longest line ever (full of school groups) to get onto the ferry we really enjoyed our time on the island. It was relaxed and fun, just as it should be. FIGMENT itself was fun and interesting, but I didn't feel like it was worthy of a special trip to Governor's Island. It was more, "if you are going to go, there will be more things to do once you are there". Some of our favorite activities will be at Governor's Island all summer; like The Children's Museum of the Arts.

Here are several photos of our adventure:

Lunch on the ferry.  The lines were so long we missed the first one.

Painting with water.

Silly Putty transfer art.

Postcards for peace.

Don't mess with the bubble gun!


Oliver kept climbing all over this sculpture that had "no climbing" signs posted all over it.  Can't he read?!  I chased after him all the way to the top.  Once.

This was a favorite.  It's made out of bottle caps and makes a fun noise when you pull the rope.


Picnic lunch with Lady Liberty.

This was my favorite.

The coolest golf cart ever.  Gave people rides.  Played cool tunes.

June 11, 2011

Oliver: 2 YEARS!!!

How can Oliver be two years old already?!  He's still as adorable as ever!  (Except maybe a few times this last week.  He's making sure I know he is a two year old!)

a few hours old
When this little boy was born two years ago I knew I'd love him with all my heart, but I had no idea what awesome joy he would bring.  He's such a happy boy.  I remember at only 4 months old he would crack up when we just looked at him.  Many people are drawn to him and his cheerful demeanor.

a few days old
Lately he really loves his brother, Simon.  If Simon reaches out to Oliver and touches him, Oliver cracks up and then stands close so Simon will do it again.  When ever Oliver sees the letter "s" he says, "ssss" and then points to Simon.  Isabella knows Oliver's ticklish spots and often gets him to laugh and scream (happy) while he's strapped in the stroller and can't get away (usually while we are in a crowded subway car).

June 2010
Oliver loves:

  • to be chased
  • the letter "o"
  • the color blue
  • being surprised
  • surprising others, he say's "boo" in a deep voice
  • his sister
  • watching movies
  • playing with Daddy
  • attempting to ride the scooter
  • doing anything Isabella does
  • pretending he's a baby
  • pretending he's a sea lion
  • going down the slide
  • mama to hold him in the mornings
  • breakfast
  • cooking with me (real or pretend)
  • pirates and saying "ARRR"
Halloween 2010
Oliver is very good at:

  • following directions
  • making us laugh
  • sharing 
  • getting into mischief
  • brushing his teeth
  • blowing raspberries
  • understanding what we ask/say
  • pretending he's a sea lion
  • climbing up and down stairs
  • recognizing letters
  • helping clean up

He recently went on a see-saw for the first time.  He loved it!  He could-not-stop-laughing.  At one point he laughed so hard and long he couldn't breathe.  His face turned red.  His worried wide eyes searched my face, and then he gasped.

spring 2011
He doesn't use many words yet (most things are labeled as "da" or "na"), but he can communicate quite well.  He will often string 4-5 signs together to help us understand, pull us, point, etc.  Words he uses: Mama, Dada, Lelela (Isabella), eesh (cheese), ow (water), ca-ka (chicken), boe (shoe), moooe (no).

self portrait Jan 2011
He's become a picky eater but loves his breakfast.  He can down a Papa Bear sized portion of oatmeal or 4 eggs in one sitting.  But then he may not eat much the rest of the day.  He usually likes chicken.

spring 2011
Despite his extremely happy demeanor he definitely has a bit of strong headedness.  The last two weeks he's begun screaming (bloody-murder type) when he doesn't get his way.  Like yesterday, when we were at Isabella's (future) school office filling out some paper work.  It was, of course, very quiet.  He didn't get his way.  And he was angry.  His face turned bright red and he screamed!!!  For an entire minute (I'm sure).  All my attempts to calm him failed.  I turned red too (with embarrassment).  I was so uncomfortable that I began laughing nervously.  (So, no Grandma, he's not a perfect angel!  :0))

I really love seeing him grow.  I can't wait to hear what he has to say this next year.

Oliver, we love and adore you.  You are such an amazing little boy.  I am so happy to be your Mama!
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