CT—17 months

My are you growing!  You are so much fun… a constant bundle of energy, but so much fun.  We are so busy on this furlough, but I wanted to take a moment to record some things about you right now.

1.  You love utensils.  You love walking around with a big spoon.  You will whine at the table when we are eating until we realize you are happily content to hold your own fork or spoon.  That independence is creeping in…

2. We spank your hand when you throw something or disobey.  Sometimes we choose to say “No, no” to you first, and it is clear that you understand because out of your frustration for getting in trouble, you spank your own hand.  (it is actually kinda funny sometimes)

3.  You have taken to throwing things when you don’t get your way.  We are working on that.

4.  You favorite word is still “Hola.”  You have caused many people to smile here when you decide to charm them with your Spanish greeting.  What is extra funny is that you know you are cute when you do this.  Because of that, you say “Hola” kind of like “MERCY, MERCY, MERCY…” when you think you are getting in trouble.  Hilarious.

5.  You have added “Hi” to your words.  Not surprising considering where we have been.  You are repeating lots of things you hear.  The speaking is picking up.

6.  You don’t take to anybody very easily (except when you want me to hold you).  You are fine to be left alone and choose where you want to go.

7.  Anyone that we leave you with says that you are easy to babysit.  That is a good thing.

8.  You love playing with pots and pans and pretending that you are eating something or serving us a bite of something.

9.  The most “boyish” thing you do that is new to me is your animal sound for a cat.  You are good to repeat after me.  I do a higher-pitched meow.  You repeat with a low-pitched, manly “Me-yow.”  I love it!

10.  You LOVE using a straw, and it drives you crazy if we are all drinking from straw cups and you are not.

Here is a shot to show where you are compared to your sisters. You are heavier than Maggie! They don’t know what is coming when you get a little bigger.
You are the youngest great-grandchild on your Daddy’s side. Every grandchild receives a quilt. You got a cowboy quilt!
Cowboy Cohen
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CT—17 months

NYC 2012

looking out at the city from the Empire State building

Traveling to NYC, with my husband of almost 8 years, was such a blast. This was an anniversary trip for us, and the FIRST vacation we have taken kid-less in 5.5 years–– the age of our first child. I wanted to share some pictures of some places we visited and things we did. I also want to take this time (while it is fresh on my mind) to share what we liked and things we learned. I asked so many people before leaving, and if any of my family or friends out there reading this are planning an NYC trip anytime soon, maybe they can take something from this post…

Hotel on 42nd Street

It was such a great location. Anytime we were out and about and asked the Nyorkers about where to go to eat, they would always say, “42nd street.” We shared a room with Marci and Randy. That is the only way we could afford it. But we were walking distance from so many places.

we stayed on the 39th floor! We were shocked to see that the windows weren’t locked.

Pershing Square Cafe

So yummy. It was two blocks from our hotel, right in front of Grand Central Station. I had the best sweet potato fries of my life in that little place. It was also our wakeup call to “you are not paying Peruvian food prices anymore.” When they brought out my coke, I was reminded of the new law NY City passed for sugary drink consumption. So, 3 bucks for a small coke. It ain’t cheap.

Street food: Giant Pretzel

I am going to say that I wasn’t greatly impressed with my pretzel. But I only tried one.

Central Park

A must. It is so nice to stroll through. We didn’t have the time, but I would have loved to do one of the bike rides through the park. We stopped part ways through and watched a small band performing. We loved walking through the park.

on our way to the Colbert Report through Central Park

The Colbert Report

This was the highlight of Greg’s trip. We went to NYC knowing three things for sure: (1) we were going to enjoy the food, (2) I would see a Broadway show of my choosing, and (3) we would try our hardest to see Colbert. Luckily, Greg got two tickets the day before we left. Twitter just posts off and on about having groups of tickets available and it is a first see, first serve deal. The tickets are free. But even after you get your tickets, you have to show up early to stand in line. They overbook, and it is a first come, first serve deal when you arrive. We showed up at 3:30 pm (standing in line for 4.5 hours before the show started). We were 21 and 22 in line.

arriving. He was so happy.
after waiting in line outside for 3 hours, we made it to the holding room where we waited an additional hour.
He has worn it ever since. 🙂
our take-home gift. We saw the show on Sept 6, the day after the Democratic Convention.

It was an absolute blast! It is pretty fun to be there for the show, and then go back to the hotel room and watch yourself on TV. Colbert comes out and does 10 min. out-of-character for the audience to ask questions. We enjoyed that part. Also, at the beginning of the show, he flips about 6 bracelets out into the audience. I caught one! You would have thought I was a celebrity by the look on Greg’s face when I handed it to him. So fun, and I am so glad Greg got his wish.

Indian food

Incredible. I will dream about this meal for years to come.

Bagels and coffee

Also a must if you are going for the food experience.

Empire State Building

We bought a fast pass that included a ferry ride. It was worth it.

Randy and Marci posing inside for me.

Street Food: Hot Dog

How can you not visit NYC and not get a hot dog?

Museum of Natural History

It was nice, but Greg and I both agreed that we enjoyed the Museum of Natural History in Chicago much more.

in the front entryway

Subway

Greg and I took the subway to meet up with a good friend of his in Brooklyn. We got lost, but we learned a thing or two about the subway system. 🙂 I think since we use the public transportation in Arequipa we were over some fears that we might have had otherwise. I am glad we did it, and it is sooo much cheaper than a taxi.

Meeting Cynthia in Brooklyn

Brooklyn was so lovely. We were planning to go to a famous pizza shop. We arrived so late it was an hour and a half wait! But they had a plan B. We ended up having Thai food for our very first time. It was GREAT. We loved walking around their quiet neighborhood. They told us walking the Brooklyn Bridge is a must. We ended up not having time. But next time. 🙂

a great night to hang out as old friends and new friends.

Ferry Ride

You get up close and personal with Lady Liberty. That makes it worthwhile for sure.

It is spectacular to see her up close and try to imagine her being the first one to greet the new immigrants to the USA.

New York Pizza

So delicious! We had it more than once. Look up your options before going. Greg could look up suggestions for the area where we were walking. That was such a great tool. We found a little hole in the wall. I walked in and asked if I could order supreme. The owner (in his thick Italian accent) says, “What is supreme? You tell me what ya want. I put whatever you want on your pizza.” We loved that. It really was out-of-this-world good.

my favorite was sausage and Greg’s favorite was meatball

Broadway Musical: Wicked

If you ask me, it is a must. And we all LOVED Wicked (even Greg who isn’t too big on the whole musical thing).

such a great story and twist on the Wizard of Oz backstory.

Times Square

We were able to walk there from the Broadway musical. We went to the Matinee and explored afterward. So many people. I would NEVER want to be there for New Year’s.

5-star restaurant

We saved up for this meal (it was super expensive), but it was so worth it. I highly recommend eating a meal like this before or after your Broadway experience. And the restaurant we were to had a special pre-show menu they offered between 5 and 6 pm.

running through the rain

It is smart to watch the weather and bring a rain jacket just in case.

Israeli cafe

The variety of food is unreal. This is a cafe that Greg researched ahead of time. It was great, and so fun. Nothing we would normally find in the South.

Great Breakfast food

Bagels aren’t the only good breakfast food.

Ground Zero

Reserve your tickets on-line AHEAD of time. We didn’t, and they make it a little bit hard to get the tickets (that are free).

The Memorial is really neat to see. It is a time of reflection and quietness. We were in there a total of 20 minutes.

The MET

Worth it. You could spend the good part of a day in this place.

we enjoyed the ancient Egypt area

bus ride

Again, soooo much cheaper than a taxi.

NYC Starbucks

They are literally on every block.

going with friends

We really enjoyed traveling with Marci (Greg’s sister) and her husband Randy.  We had times together and times apart.  I highly recommend going with someone else.

time of travel

We went in early September.  The weather really was perfect.  The buildings were all so cold, I was so glad I packed a sweater in my purse.  Also, we came in on a Thursday afternoon and flew home on a Sunday.  Traffic was great going to and from the city from the airport.

I know that I left out a lot of details.  Just talk to me about it.  I won’t hesitate to share more.  🙂

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NYC 2012