Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Macy's Santaland - NYC

Saturday morning, our fourth and final day in New York City, began across the street from our hotel at Macy's flagship store. We got there early so we could enjoy Santaland (all 10,000 sqft of it) and Santa before the crowds became overwehelming. I knew there was no point in trying to get Jackson to take a picture with the girls and Santa so we decided to take a family picture with Santa. I can't believe we managed such a great picture of everyone! :) 
 Santa and my sweet girls
 After our visit with Santa we went on a harbor tour to see and learn a little more about New York.

 It was pretty windy!

 We had great views of the city sky line and the Liberty Tower under construction
 Our last stop in NYC was the Empire State Building. None of us had every been to the top but it ended up being a really neat thing to do and a great way to finish off our NYC experience! I guess we were having a windy sort of day because the wind from the observation deck was crazy!
 Grand-Dad and his girls on top of the Empire State Building
 Grammy and Grand-Dad
 Tim and I with Missy K and Missy Reagan
 Another one of Grand-Dad's beautiful pictures
 The girls each had to have an Empire State Building sucker to enjoy on our way out of town. We also had to get a picture of one of the many beautiful Christmas displays that featured the Empire State Building on the ground level as we left the building.
I'm so glad we were able to see the Macy's Day Parade and Santaland with the kids. It's something I've been looking forward to doing since even before I had kids. Celebrating Kennedy's birthday at the American Girl Doll store and seeing the Lion King were also activities I had been looking forward to doing with children. All in all it was a great trip and we were so thankful to have Grammy and Grand-Dad along to assist us! While we had a great time in NYC I can't think what would ever possess anyone to actually live there! I also don't think I'll be brave enough to go back until McKinley is at least 5. It is just way too nerve wracking to keep track of multiple small children in such crazy crowds! So while we throughly enjoyed our NYC experience I think Disney cruises are more our speed. lol :) We had a great time, but we were perfectly happy to be headed south to one of my favorite cities in the world and a place we called home for the first 6 years of our marriage, Washington DC!

Kennedy's NYC Birthday

We celebrated Kennedy's 4th birthday in New York City the Friday after Thanksgiving. We had a few presents for her to open including a new American Doll, Caroline, before heading out for a day of fun. The thing that is funny about this picture is up until this morning Jackson had refused to open any presents (and pretty much refused to open most Christmas presents). For some reason he became absolutely determined to open Kennedy's main gift which was her doll. What a little stink! Thankfully Missy K was pretty sweet about it and let him assist her in opening her gifts.
 Our first stop of the day was the American Girl Doll Place where we had a birthday brunch planned. It was so much fun! The girls, Grammy and I had a blast! The food was delicious and everything was super super cute!!! I would highly recommend doing a birthday celebration for anyone who has a little girl who is an American Girl Doll fan!

 The flower pot is actually ice cream - so cute!
 Missy K with her new doll and birthday cake
 While the girls were celebrating at the American Girl Doll Place the guys started Black Friday at FAO Schwarz. We met them there to see if there was anything we couldn't live without. This is the clock that originally hung outside the store but is now displayed at the top of an escalator (which is always a top attraction for my munchkins).
 Daddy and Jackson picked out a new Thomas train named Kevin while they were shopping at FAO Shwarz. Jackson loves all cranes whether they're truck or train related!
 We spent Kennedy's birthday afternoon seeing The Lion King. We had seen it in DC while we lived there so I thought the kids would really enjoy it. They all three enjoyed the first half but the second was a little long and began slowly for Jackson. My fault entirely, but I'm still glad we tried it out especially since Reagan enjoyed it as much as she did! For anyone who hasn't seen it I would highly recommend the experience for the 5 and up crowd! :)
 Family picture after the Lion King at the theatre
 Grand-Dad decided to pass on the Lion King and spent the afternoon taking pictures around NYC. These are a few of my favorites. 

Friday evening we took a night tour of New York. We've done that once or twice before and other than the cold it is such a nice way to see the city! Thank you again to Grammy and Grand-Dad for helping to make Missy K's 4th birthday so special!!!

Thanksgiving 2012

I have always wanted to see the Macy's Day Parade. I have also always wanted to take the kids to Santaland while they were both old and young enough to enjoy it and still believe. I realized last fall Reagan might be getting to the age where we didn't have too many years left that I could count on her believing. So since we already had a trip planned to DC the week after Thanksgiving (due to Tim's work) we decided to add a few days to the beginning of our trip and begin in NYC. Grammy and Grand-Dad decided to join us which made the trip even more fun! We all arrived in New York the Wednesday before Thanksgiving and started the festivities by heading down to Central Park to see the balloons close up.
 It was a madhouse by the balloons! We had heard it was a good opportunity to see the balloons but I think we all decided it was too crazy and many of the balloons are face down under the netting and difficult to see. Hello Kitty was one of the new balloons for 2012 and one of the easier ones to see. 
 Thursday morning we found a good spot on the parade route not far from the hotel to see the parade. Here are Grammy and Jackson waiting for the parade to begin. 
The Thanksgiving Turkey!
 Here are a couple of our favorite balloons as well as some excited parade watchers :)


 The kids discovered the Sprout channel last fall. For a couple of months leading up to Thanksgiving Sprout advertised that they would have a float in the parade. So seeing Chicka in this float was a very much anticipated event on our trip.
 The end of the parade and the even more anticipated big man himself!
 After the parade we found a wonderful restaurant around the corner from our hotel that was serving Thanksgiving dinner. It was excellent and the company was even better!
 The kids love to "Cheers!"
In the evening we ventured out to Times Square. The kids had a great time riding the subway system.  

 We got to Toys 'R Us just in time to ride the indoor Ferris Wheel before it closed. Grammy and Kennedy road on the Potato Head cart and the rest of us road Scooby Doo (with Jackson screaming most all the way). 
Thank you to Grammy and Grand-Dad for coming along and sharing our New York City/Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade experience!

Monday, April 29, 2013

Halloween 2012

Happy Halloween everyone! Even if it is 6 months late we hope you had a great one! :) We started our Halloween celebrations off with a couple of our Girl Scout friends at a local nursing home. The kids had a great time collecting candy and all the residents were so sweet and excited to see them!
After the nursing home we headed next door for the girl's gymnastics classes. While I couldn't get him in the pictures at the nursing home, Jackson agreed to smile for pictures with the promise of candy. I LOVE this duck costume, I think it's my favorite Halloween costume of all time! :)

 As per our tradition, Heidi and Holden joined us for Trick-Or-Treating around our neighborhood. Here's our happy crew ready to head out for candy! :)
 Jackson enjoying an early piece of candy - before leaving the house!
 Better watch out for these three beautiful red headed beauties!
 My not so cooperative picture taking munchkins
 Daddy taking off with his kiddos in the wagon
Something about this picture just seems so classic Halloween to me. Not sure what it is, but I really like this picture of this crew of cousins celebrating another Halloween together. :) 
 Reagan with two of our neighbor's kids
 Jackson checking out his loot
 We went to a neighbor's Halloween party for a bit (which I managed not to get a single picture of - no one who knows me will believe that!) and as per tradition we then headed over to the Hamlin's to trick-or-treat. Everyone enjoyed the girl's wigs including Uncle Barry who made the best Princess Merida of the night hands down! lol :)
Thanks to everyone who made Halloween so much fun! :)