Thursday, June 30, 2016

Day 14 of 30 Days of Mayhem: New York City

We got a much later start today.  It was lovely.  When I woke up at 8:30 none of the kids were awake.  We woke all of them around 9:00 and got moving for the day, slowly but moving.

I honestly don't remember what time we left the apartment.  I know when we go to the ferry station there was absolutely no parking to be had.  They are currently doing construction on part of the lot or one of the lots or something and there is not much parking to be had.  There was none.  It took us 30 minutes or more to get a space from someone getting off of the ferry, of course then we got inside the ferry station and had to wait another 30 minutes for the actual ferry to arrive and be ready to depart.  I think it was 1:00 pm when we finally were underway.  The price of sleeping in.

On the way over we went over with the kids our subway plan.  Michael first, then the kids with me bringing up the rear.  If somehow they got separated from us they were supposed to stay together, find someone in an official uniform or a mom with a child to ask for help.

We walked to the subway stop, passed out subway cards and started our adventure.  Our first trip on the subway went without a hitch and even included getting off one train to get on a different on at Grand Central Station.  Easy peasy.

Our first place to visit was Central Park.  We had lunch there.  It was nice.  The kids played a bit.  We did not see huge amounts of the park but enough for them to get a feel for the area.  While we were eating lunch, Rehm was talking about how he could live in the city and how nice it was.  I pulled up a real estate app to show him prices of the area we were in.  He was floored. Granted we were in Central Park at the time and anything overlooking the park is crazy expensive but to be able to show him the size and cost even in such a prime location was eye opening for him.

From there we hit 5th Ave.  The first stop was the Plaza Hotel.  We walked just inside the lobby so Charlotte could see it.  Then we walked across the street to the Apple store.  Since all the kids have been in a local Apple store the size of this one made an impression.  We saw Tiffany, Trump Tower, 5th Ave Presbyterian (sad that it was under scaffolding at the moment),

Fifth Ave. Pres

Then we went to the MoMA.  We spent about an hour in there.  I could have spent more time but after doing the 6th and 5th floors, Eliza Claire, who had requested an art museum stop in the city, was ready to go, so we did.

They we went by Radio City Music Hall, NBC, Rockefeller Center, and the LEGO store - just long enough to walk in one door follow the dragon from tail to head and out the other door.

30 Days of Mayhem brought to you by Charles Schwab

Charlotte trying to get her dad not to act a fool in front of Radio City Music Hall.

All my people walking down the street in front of me.

Ruby was mad that the "big toy story" was no longer on 5th Ave. and want to see something she wanted to see.  So we went back over to 5th Ave. to the American Doll Store.  I guess she has never been in an American Doll store before but I was not impressed, it really was no different than any other AG store.

Walking back from the AG store to our next stop we passed back by the NBC studios,  Rehm decided he needed to look for a t-shirt there.  I was exhausted by this point and found a very out of the way corner of a stair to sit on while I waited.  The security guard made me move.  He was nice about it and told me were there were tables, on another floor, but dude, I just needed to sit for the 5 minutes my kid was looking for a t-shirt.  He said it was a "fire hazard" though me standing in the same spot I had just been sitting was not a hazard.  Yeah, I'm not made for this city.  Or at least not made to walk around it all day two days in a row while keeping up with four kids.

Next we headed to Time Square.  It was crazy!  It was absolutely packed.  It is the one place we've been so far that I was really afraid that I was going to get separated from someone.  We did not linger long here.

These pictures do no justice to the amount of people in Time Square 

We walked a bit further to the Richard Rodgers theater, where Hamilton is playing, for those of you not living with a fanatic so Charlotte could see where it was and have pictures made.

We were finally done with our list of must dos and headed for dinner at John's Pizzeria.  It was perfect.  The wait was not long at all, the food was good and the atmosphere was beautiful.  A nice bonus was the table next to us had 8 Aggies sitting at it.  They noticed Michael's hat.

When we left there we found the nearest subway station to head back to Staten Island.  We happened by a shop that had a t-shirt that said "Drama Queen" on it.  It made me stop and reminded me that Charlotte wanted a Hamilton themed T-shirt.  We hopped in the store and they had two to choose from.  She picked one and was giddy!

I bet we walked a mile underground (length not depth) to get to our line.  We got on the train with no problems.  A nice man and his son offered two of our girls their seats.  Rehm noticed there shirts (The Late Show) and struck up a conversation with the son.  They had been to the taping of the show.

Somewhere in the conversation, while we are at a stop, the dad mentions that only the first 5 cars open for the stop we need at the ferry station.  Michael tells the kids to get off to move up cars.  Charlotte and Eliza Claire do what he says.  Before he or any of the rest of us even get out of our seat the doors start to close.

Panic ensues.  My heart drops to my stomach as my two daughters are on a subway platform with no adult. Michael jumps up and yells "Get back on the train!" and sticks his arm out to block the doors from closing.  Charlotte jumps back on.  Eliza Claire freezes.  Rehm, Charlotte and Michael all yell at her to "get on NOW!" She does.  I start breathing again.  Mostly.  Eliza Claire bursts into tears.  I don't blame her.

At the next stop Michael insists we all get off and move up cars.  We move up two to three at most but not enough to get in the first five.  Michael things we need to continue to do this process until we are where we need to be.  My solution is we just get off a stop early and walk or board the next train to our stop as this is complete and udder madness and my youngest child is scarred for life and it is all my husband's fault because he didn't follow the rules and be the first person off like he was supposed to and my babies almost got stranded alone on a subway platform by themselves!

A nice lady in this car tells us that at the stop before the ferry stop, there will be enough time for everyone to move up to the first five cars.  That there is a long break.  I thank her profusely as she has probably just saved my marriage.

We get to the next to the last stop, move up to where we need to be, sit down.  I look up and guess who waltzes into our car?  The man that told us that only the first 5 cars opened at the last stop!  He told us that part but didn't bother to tell us the part about having time to move up.  Given his accent, and the fact he ended up in the car, I'm thinking he knew all of that and just enjoyed watching us make fools of ourselves and my kids almost get lost on the subway.

After that, we made it back to the ferry and back to Staten Island without incident.  Eliza Claire would not let go of my hand and would not speak to her dad.  She was very upset with him.  When he tried to talk to her, she grunted at him and turned away.  I might have reacted similarly to him, or maybe I just glared.

Charlotte in the ferry terminal wearing her new Hamilton t-shirt

Charlotte was not to happy with this guy over the almost left alone in the subway incident of 2016

Everyone is back on speaking terms again, but I'm not sure if we will every get Eliza Claire on the subway again.

Tomorrow, we pack up and head to DC by way of Philly.  It will be mostly a travel day, and hopefully an very uneventful one.

I apologize to both the grandmothers for almost losing your grandchild today, but it really wasn't my fault,

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Day 11 of 30 Days of Mayhem: Connecticut, Rhode Island, and the Beach

Connecticut just keeps getting better and better! I'm never going to leave, or I'm going to visit so frequently Beth and Chuck are going to charge me rent, get sick of me, and evict me.

Today we to a drive into Rhode Island, simply to be able to see another state on this trip.  And honestly, when else were any of us going to see the state?  RI is also beautiful.  I could definitely enjoy spending time there.  We saw one of Taylor Swift's vacation homes.  Who knew she had a home on the coast of RI?  I sure didn't.  Though word on the street is that it is on the market.

After our excursion into Rhode Island, we went back to the house and got ready to head to the beach.

The beach was very different to any beach I've been to.  We loved it.  The water was cold!  As in after a few minutes of walking in the edge and I didn't really feel my feet.

Relaxing on the beach.

Team work.  I love it!

See Mom, they will all fit on it.
The kids found lots of different sea life to observe.  I think they caught 14 green crabs.  They found lots of hermit crabs and sea snails as well.

After the beach we came back to Beth and Chuck's and got cleaned up for lovely dinner of roasting our own hot dogs/brats and smores for dessert.  It was delicious!

Charlotte using her hot dog on a stick as a microphone.  

Mountain Laurel
And with that, I think I am back to being caught up with blogging this awesome trip!  Whoop!