Thursday, October 27, 2011

saying goodbye to Uncle Caulin...

We decided to spend the weekend at grandma and grandpa's house to have one last get together before Caulin left on his mission. The boys love going up to the "country". We hit the playground, painted pumpkins, and walked the "Walkway over the Hudson" while we were there. It was fun to hang out with Caulin and make some nice memories before he headed off to the MTC.

While we were saying our goodbyes, Caulin told Noah he wouldn't see him again until he was 7. It was really interesting to watch him process that! He kind of laughed and thought it was silly and kept telling Gabey, "You're going to be 4 when Caulin gets back!" But then later that night before bedtime, I think he realized what that really meant and got really sad. Then he started asking me how old I was going to be when Caulin got back and he thought that was hysterical!

Good luck on your mission, Caulin -- you're gonna rock it!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Apple Picking 2011

Yet another successful apple picking trip! Lawrence Farms did not disappoint this year. We were able to squeeze in a visit upstate to see my brother before he left on his mission to Toronto. The weather was amazing -- nearly 80 degrees in mid October -- so we decided to hit Lawrence Farms while we were there also. The boys really love this place, and so do we! I fear it's gained some serious popularity with the city folk as it was pretty crowded the day we went -- almost losing a little bit of its quaint atmosphere. But luckily, the apples were amazing even after surviving the hurricane (the pumpkins, not so much!) and the children's village was super fun as usual! Next year, I'll think we'll try a weekday if we can manage it...

We ran into a few of my good high school friends, which was fun. So cool to see their little families! And then we even met up with our good city friends for some playtime in the village.

little city kids in the country!

still has the best spot for a family photo!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Finally some family fun

September was crazy -- I mean SUPER crazy! It seemed like school just swept in and took over our lives, Jon was super busy trying to get settled back into work after being gone on vacation, and every weekend was filled with some random obligation that one of us had to attend with no time left for some much-needed family time. October finally made an appearance and we couldn't have been more excited. So, we tried to cram tons of fun into our first free Saturday!

We took Gabriel to get a haircut with at a kid's hair salon after several failed haircut attempts by me and grandma. He's totally let me and my mom cut his hair before with no problems at all, but he just wasn't having it lately (he's definitely 2 1/2!). So, we headed down to Cozy Cuts on the UWS hoping for a miracle. The miracle was not so much the barber or the awesome jeep to sit in or the Little Einsteins DVD blasting in front of him, as it was the GIANT Thomas train that he spotted right as walked in! Oh yes, these people aren't stupid. You walk in the salon and have to walk through a huge toy boutique filled with any/every children's TV character ever created in order to get to the hair cutting stations.

So, GIANT Thomas was brought to our station, opened, and sat in the jeep only to witness a huge meltdown from Gabriel. He totally freaked when he realized what was going on and nothing could calm him down. I wasn't really impressed with the barber either who just sat there and did nothing to try to help the situation. Finally I just sat on the stool and held him super tight and she cut his hair like that. We were all covered with hair, and there were several straggling hairs but it got done! Totally NOT worth the price or the trip or the other random toys that seemed to leave with us -- I should've just let his hair grow out until he got over this phase! But it got us downtown and we were able to do some fun things after that.

There's a great little playground (The Wild West Playground) on 79th and Amsterdam that we always pass, but never have time to go to -- so we stopped there for awhile to let the kids play. It's also conveniently located right around the corner from Shake Shack, so that was a must. Jon ran and got food and then we ate it at the playground (a much better dining experience with children!).

After lunch, we decided to go bowling! There's a great bowling alley at Port Authority that we had heard was really fun. It's been re-done and we were pleasantly surprised as to how nice it was. We were the only ones there which was super fun (I guess that's what happens when you bowl at 1:00 in the afternoon on a Saturday!). We all had a GREAT time. We had been in need of some good family fun for awhile, and this was the perfect activity that day. I highly recommend it! (Tip: it's a great rainy day activity because you don't actually have to ever go out in the rain... just come up from the subway at 42nd street and go right up to Port Authority without ever going outside!)

GIANT Thomas in all his glory!

Shake Shack picnic!

Wild West in NYC!

Noah bowls a spare!

Gabey keeping score

here it comes!

***Unfortunately the haircut situation was much too traumatic to photograph -- it would've been priceless though!***

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Day off of school!

In light of my recent post about the craziness of school, we were actually really excited about a day off of school! I never understood some of the moms I would hear talk about actually enjoying when their kids had days off of school -- I just thought they'd be happy to have them out of the house if they were in school -- but I kind of get it now. No school means a free day -- no running around, picking up/dropping off, planning baby brother's naps around everything -- and being able to go do something fun! So, thank goodness for NY and Jewish Holidays! We spent one of our Rosh Hashana holidays at our favorite Central Park playground, Hecksher Playground, and had a great time. And with the Indian Summer we've been having, they still even had the water on! It was a great day and a much needed break from our new daily routine and well-timed because we'd been missing summer.