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Bright lights, big city

`Wayne and I decided earlier this year that we wouldn't have big birthday parties for the kids this year.  We inevitably end up spending a bunch of money and spend a lot of time getting the house together before and afterward and I just haven't wanted to deal with it.  Instead, we decided to give the kids special experiences.  Something fun and memorable and out of the ordinary.   Lexi's seventh birthday was on the 12th of April and our big experience for her was a trip to New York City. 

Originally, the plan was to take her to American Girl Place for shopping and the Plaza Hotel for tea a la Eloise.  We begged my mom to babysit Nathan and she agreed, but as we got closer to the day of the trip, we decided to take Nathan along too.  (Bad move on our part there...) We expanded our plans to include a trip to the Museum of Natural History to see the dinosaur bones and the Easter Island "Dum Dum" statue from the Night at the Museum movie with Ben Stiller.  

We drove to Newark and popped in to my parents' house for a potty break before taking the PATH train into the city and switching to the subway to get to the museum.  Yeah, doofus that I am, I put us on an express train that took us to Harlem before we crossed the platform and headed back south to the museum, which has it's own subway stop.  I thought that was pretty nifty.

The kids enjoyed the museum even though it was crowded.  Nathan was a little nightmare.  He wanted to climb on everything and he wouldn't stay with us and he kept pulling away.  He was clearly tired but there really wasn't anything we could do about that.  Lexi was adorable, carrying her American Girl doll in her little matching outfit.  

We took a cab from the museum down toward the Plaza but with crazy traffic and pedestrians, the drive dropped us off a block away and we were fine with that.  We spent an hour or so in the Eloise shop-- a total frenzy of girliness and pink.  It was adorable and as overpriced as expected.  We didn't do tea at the Palm Court because it was really expensive and I'm not sure that the kids would have really behaved.  

We walked from the Plaza to American Girl Place and we were all starting to get worn out but Lexi had fun picking an outfit for her doll and then having her doll's hair done.  Yes, the doll.  Got her hair.  Done.  Seriously.  The whole experience was very cute.  

We walked to my favorite BBQ place in the city- Virgil's- and waited half an hour for a table.  Dinner was fantastic but Nathan was falling asleep.  It had been a long, active day for all of us.  We walked from Virgil's out to Times Square so that the kids could see it and I could snap a few photos and then we walked back to Macy's to take the PATH back to NJ.  






( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
Apr. 26th, 2011 02:18 pm (UTC)
GAWD you guys have great adventures!

LJ just informed me of this entry a few minutes ago - a week later! :/
Apr. 26th, 2011 02:28 pm (UTC)
I just added it and put the date back to the Monday after we went. :)

This one was really great because we didn't spend a lot and I think the kids will remember it. Now I just need to come up with something for Andy and Joey!
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )