We <3 New York

I truly consider New York City to be my second home.  The sounds of the city, vibrations of the subway, smells of burnt salt at the pretzel stands and the hustle and bustle are truly something to be experienced.

Standing in front of the New Years Eve ball in Times Square

Since we were young, my mother has been taking us into the city for plays, Broadway shows, shopping and of course, to see the sights, so when we go, we truly feel as if we are coming home again.

We came in this weekend for a visit with my sister, Colleen, the Revlon 5K, and to enjoy the spring weather amidst the fresh grass and new leaves on the trees.

On Friday, we headed to Kenneth Cole’s corporate offices where my sister works for a quick hello and to have a chance to meet her coworkers.  As we suspected, everyone there was so nice and welcoming.  Jack was thrilled to tour the place and made himself right at home.

Jared and Chris at Kenneth Cole

Aunt Colleen and Jack at KC HQ


Afterwards, we went down to the pier to check out the water, submarines and cruise ships followed by a quick cocktail while Jack napped for a bit in the stroller.

Out at the Pier (submarine behind him)

The submarine at the Pier

Yum...an $11 bottle of beer

We took it easy on Friday night in anticipation of the early wake-up call on Saturday morning.  Read all about the Revlon Womentum 5K to eradicate Women’s Cancers here.

After our 5K, we had some brunch and let Jack nap for a while before heading back to SoHo.  Chris met up with friends and headed to the new Yankees stadium to catch the afternoon game for another friend’s 30th birthday.

On a side note, if there were a contest for a free apartment anywhere in Manhattan, I would absolutely choose SoHo, TriBeCa or The Village.  Hands down.  The people, the shops, and the neighborhood feel just bring happiness to my soul.  The little local shops that can sell fun trinkets for my mother-in-law for Mother’s Day and the fabulous dining al fresco in Little Italy makes my heart sing.

First cab ride (We usually take the subway)

Following dinner with the best little date that I have ever had, we hit the hay and left that one for the record books.

My date in Little Italy

Since a lot of the weekend for Jack was spent in someone’s arms or strapped in his Maclaren stroller, we decided to take him somewhere that would be an activity just for him.  So, off to the Brooklyn Children’s Museum we went.

Just a fabulous and busy weekend with my sister and with my little family.  Such a beautiful city, and I hope that Jack can one day feel the same love and passion that his mother feels for the city.

Photo taken by Colleen's coworker

And someone had so much fun, that this was the scene in the car seat on the way home.

Passed out on the ride home

Exploring at the Brooklyn Children’s Museum

After our adventures in Manhattan and Brooklyn over the weekend, we let Jack run free at the Brooklyn Children’s Museum.


Upon our arrival, we were told that the art class was about to begin and headed in that direction.  The art room supervisor spoke with the children about puffy paint, “A Starry Night” and sharing with others.  Jack was less than enthused to hear that he would need to use a brush instead of his hands, so the art session ended rather quickly.

Learning about "A Starry Night"

We began around the sound station where children had the opportunity to bang on pots, play the zylophone, crawl, climb and slide their way all over the place.  Jack had fun playing hide-and-seek with Aunt Colleen and Mommy.  Daddy showed him the ropes and acted as his spotter as he slid down the slide.

Playing the zylophone


In the room over, we put Jack in a smock and away he went as he played, splashed and poured water on the water table.  This was by far his favorite exhibit as he is most interested in water at home.  And mind you, this can be any collection of water; the bathtub, the dog bowl, toilet bowl, sink…you get the point.


Love that smile!

The museum had a meet and greet next with some of the sea life that they have in-house.  Jack was still upset over leaving the water room, but quickly fell in love with the sandboxes downstairs.  He had no desire to learn or to touch the slugs, crabs and other sea creatures that were being shown just feet away.  The sand was where it was at for him.



The museum had so many things to offer for so many ages.  There was a mock pizza kitchen, a mock bakery and a mock grocery store for learning and pretend play for the older children and simple things included like a phone and plastic foods to capture the interest of the younger children.  Jack was mostly excited for the phone and for the large 20lb turkey that he kept trying to carry around.  🙂


Cruisin' with Aunt Colleen

And your total is...

Carrying the 20lb turkey

Our travels brought us back to the main play area where Jack played with more sand on the sand tables, built with blocks and jumped on the stuffed animals in the baby play area.

Block corner

Sand table

Admission was dirt-cheap and if it hadn’t been so close to nap time, Jack could have spent the entire day there.  Very clean, friendly staff and such great activities for children.  We will absolutely go back the next time that we are visiting Aunt Colleen in Brooklyn!

The family at the BCM

Spring Days

For the past two weeks, we have been in hyper speed mode and things are finally starting to slow down a bit.  My Great Aunt has her hip replaced a little over a week ago and was moved to a rehabilitation home to begin the long process of getting back on her feet.  The doctor assured me that she is absolutely not out of the woods yet and that infection would be the biggest worry, but she seems to be getting back to her 98 year old self.

Jack and I visited her several times at her new rehabilitation center and she reminded me that Jack is tall and that no 16 month old should weigh 26 pounds.  Her suggestion?  Stop feeding him so much.  Her wry sense of humor and the candid way that she can put things gave me a sense of relief when she told me that the food there was not as bad as my cooking.  Yep, I would say that she is on the road to recovery.  She loved the hybrid Stargazer lillies that we brought her and told me that she would love some cake.  Done and done.

The next several days will be nothing short of craziness.  Jack and I will be trying a new Mommy and Me class in town this Thursday, and the Irem Shrine Circus is in town, so we will be taking Jack tomorrow night to see the animals and acrobatics.

Last Thursday, I took my Mom to the Oncologist and we had a good report.  Her counts are good, but unfortunately, there are still no new treatments available for her.  The doctor said to enjoy the time and the good days that we have, so we are!  She leaves tomorrow for a week getaway to Naples, Florida to visit with her girlfriends.  I am thrilled!

Oh yeah, back to Spring!  We spent much of Holy Thursday and Good Friday running errands, getting the things for our Easter dinner and hanging clothes outside.  Jack ran through the lines and played with the dogs as we laughed and played with bubbles.

Running through the sheets

Chasing Bailey

Spring is truly here

An after-dinner walk was in order to get a child’s sundae from Dairy Queen.

It has been great to see some warm weather, take some walks in the sun and just enjoy the fresh air and the beautiful weather!

Going for a ride

Kindermusik: Zoom Buggy

We have been debating registering Jack for the Kindermusik classes because of the time that they are offered (in the morning during the week, but we weren’t sure if I would have a job and we would have to stop early).  However, we think that socialization with other toddlers his age and the exploration of music and dance are important for development.  A friend of us finally convinced us to go to a trial class to see if it is something that we wanted to get involved in, even if it is just temporarily.

So, at 11am, we jumped in the car and drove the four blocks over to the class (I was running late, otherwise we would have walked).

The class consisted of 4 other boys ages 8 months to 12 months.  Jack towered over all of them.

All in all, everyone was really nice and welcoming, but Jack spent the entire class running for the door.  He didn’t want to Zoom, go in and out the window or have anything to do with the class.  To be honest, I think he was just a little too old for it.  Even though the class is birth to 18 months, it was geared a bit more for 6 month olds and many of the activities and songs were very soft and slow.  Don’t get me wrong, I liked all of the songs, but Jack had other plans.

I will consider the 18 months – 3 year old class for this summer, but Zoom Buggy is not for Jack.

*Also, I did not get any pictures because most of the class was spent bringing Jack back to the circle from the door.  😦

Smart Cookie

Granted that I know he is NOT reading, but simply identifying objects that he knows to see and hear.  We were impressed with how much he understands and doesn’t say.  And thank you to Aunt Rachel, Uncle Scott and Sarah for the awesome book!  Jack LOVES it!

Fun with Daddy

As was previously mentioned, I had an AWFUL stomach thing over the weekend and into Monday, which prevented me from doing anything other than laying down, sleeping and begging Jesus to come down from the cross and just to let me die already.  Definitely not something that I would wish on anyone.

So, Daddy was essentially a single parent for the weekend.

He made light of it by spending time playing with Jack, taking him for walks, bringing toys outside, bubbles, etc…  For me, it was great to see the two of them just have some one-on-one time.

Getting ready to go

Heading out

On the move

Jack REALLY wanted to play on his new tricycle from Aunt Colleen

Steppin’ Out Saturday: Farm & Dairy Edition

In the midst of fighting whatever-it-is-in-my-belly, I actually felt like Lazarus on Sunday and decided that if I was well enough to go to mass, then I was well enough to go spend the day outdoors with my family.  (Although I am back in the throes of the stomach thing again as of Monday morning)

We had such beautiful weather (almost 60 degrees) and the girls I used to babysit for were performing their Irish step dance to benefit a local health clinic, so we packed up and headed over to see them dance.  Unfortunately, I was unable to get a photo of them dancing between trying to coax Jack to sit still and be quiet and from collecting stray Goldfish from the floor.  🙂

On a side note, there was an adult Irish step class who performed at the show, and when I say adult, I don’t mean ages 18-20.  Many of these women were in their 30’s and some even in their late 40’s!  It has always been a dream of mine to do Irish step, so maybe I will look into signing up for a class.  🙂

We were also out of milk for the house, so a trip to the dairy was in order.  Since it was such a beautiful and sunny day, we decided to see some of the new calves in the barn.

One week old calf

New calves

The new calves ranges from a week or so old to 3 months old.  And I thought newborns grew quickly!  These cows put human growth to shame!

Among the “moos” and licks all around, Jack mimicked the cows and their mooing and thought the tongues that just seemed to keep coming at us were a hoot!

We headed over to the milking barn where many of the cows were getting ready to be milked and were being whisked in from the fields.  These are mainly grass-fed cows there, so the milk, ice cream and the meat are truly organic (and local!)

Outside the barn

On our way from the barn, we stopped to see the horses and the pony as they rolled on the grass and came by the fence for a few hellos.

Looking at the horses with Daddy

Jack and Mommy looking at the horses

Mommy’s Outfit: Coat- J.Crew, Cardigan- J.Crew, Cami- Banana Republic, Denim- J.Crew Matchstick denim, Wellies- Hunter

Jack’s Outfit: Coat: Target, shirt- Baby Gap, Denim- Baby Gap, Shoes- Stride Rite

After we left the horses, we headed into the dairy for our milk and a little ice cream treat!  Jack had the vanilla with rainbow sprinkles!  He absolutely LOVED it!!!!

Vanilla with rainbow sprinkles!

The dairy had some sirloin steaks also, so we picked up two of those, our milk and headed for the car.  We were greeted by a few roosters who came to say goodbye before we left.  One crowed at us, which Jack found to be HILARIOUS!

Chasing roosters

It was just a fabulous day with the family.  Oh, and those steaks?  Everyone who had some (I don’t eat meat) said that they were delicious!  And the dogs didn’t mind some steak bones either!

Grass fed beef

Bailey with her steak bone

Oh, and there will be plenty more photos and stories from Hillside Farms this summer.  They have great events (sheep shearing anyone?) and a lot of fun and educational events throughout the year.  We love Hillside!

Opening Day

A family friend who is a BIG Yankees fan was kind enough to buy this for Jack for his birthday.  So, the best time to wear it would be Opening Day for the Yankees!

Also, just so everyone knows…we are all Mets fans in this house, and no, we do not condone cheering for the Yankees or the Sillies.  Oh, I’m sorry.  Did I write Sillies instead of the Phillies?  Yes I did.

And yes, it was crazy being the only Mets fans living in Philly and going to Sillies games to see the Mets beat them.  🙂