New York City

Maddie, Mom, Cousins Storm Top of the Rock

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Mom, we need to talk
This glass barrier is cramping my style

This light show is blowing my mind
Not too close to the tracks buddy!

How come I can’t go up there?
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Mommy Joins Maddie for Lightning Lunch Break

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I’m getting a puppy??

After getting a bit of rest, Maddie was in search of a little action for her lunch break on Friday afternoon.  And as luck would have it, her mom had just enough time to squeeze in lunch with the family. We met at a local spot called the Liberty House with amazing views of Lower Manhattan.  At this point, even Maddie seemed impressed.

That is until we sat down.  I don’t know if her seat had electricity coursing through it, but she instantly started thrashing around like there were ants in her pants. I whipped out a dried plum just in time to calm the savage beast – but it was obvious that Maddie was a little too pumped up. We had to stay on top of her before she was able to put together a special shock and awe campaign for her fellow diners.

We used a variety of Jedi Mind Tricks including food and entertainment to keep the baby in a civil frame of mind. Much to our surprise, things were shaping up very nicely. The food came out fast, but Maddie’s patience had finally run out. Just as her meltdown was taking shape, the server saved our skin with a box of crayons.

We took the crayons through our normal progression of keeping Maddie’s interest for as long as possible. First we helped her examine the box before releasing the crayons inside. Maddie seemed interested in the coloring aspect for a while, but soon lost interest and was ready to start chomping on them.

The baby took great offense when she realized that she would be allowed to eat the crayons and it obvious that it was time wrap things up. We thanked the waiter, called for the check and started giving Maddie a quick tour of the grounds. Even though it was brief lunch, we all had a great time and can’t wait to do it again.


Maddie Takes Grand Tour of Battery Park

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How can I see Lady Liberty facing this way?
Maddie took advantage of her father’s birthday weekend by taking a grand tour of Battery Park at the southern tip of Manhattan. This area offers a stunning view of New York Harbor that was chalk full of sailboats and sun-lovers.

We came off the Path train at World Trade One and it was just as busy the height of rush hour. The only way to push a stroller through that mess is full speed ahead and Maddie was more than pleased to see pedestrians diving for cover around every corner. We came armed with an arsenal of snacks in case the baby went off the deep end.
We walked passed the Wall Street Bull and made our way down to Wagner Park. We enjoyed a great lunch on the water where Maddie quickly made friends with two French women at a nearby table. As usual, she stared at them with unabashed curiosity until they started speaking to her. 
Maddie also made sure to fire food all over the restaurant including bits of salmon, bread, beans and even a few spears of asparagus. After one of the patrons lost an eye, it wasn’t long before we were asked to leave by armed security personnel. They marched us at gunpoint to the edge of the harbor before we made our escape to the sprawling lawn that lay before the water.
Maddie tested the grass for its taste and texture before making friends with a little boy named Luca. Luca was about four-years-old and seemed taken with my little girl. “Back off buddy!,” Maddie obviously has a thing for older men. The little boy took turns entertaining his sister and coming back to speak with Maddie. She did seem a bit taken with the young lad. But when he tried to hug her, she gave him a quick smack to the chops. Maddie made it very clear that she must be properly courted before a little boy gets fresh with her.
By the time we started strolling home, Maddie was spent from the day’s activities. We rolled no less than 100 yards before she was down for the count for a long hard nap in the stroller. We all had a great visit and can’t wait to come back in June with her cousins Catie and Porter.

and to all a goodnight!

Baby Dumbfounded by Canadian Quarter Confusion

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What's wrong with this picture?

It’s very rare when I actually wake up the baby. Maddie either wakes me up or I cater to her whenever she wakes up. So it was a new experience when I had to get her up this morning to go to a doctor’s appointment in the city.

Many people use the word precious very freely. Not me. It’s a word that I have rarely had any occasion to use unless I was doing a Lord of the Rings imitation of Smeagol. But Maddie’s reaction to being woken up this morning was the spot on definition of the word precious.

I softly called her name. Maddie wiggled and just barely opened her eyes to determine who was waking her up. She saw it was her father and gave me the warmest and most loving smile I have ever seen. Then she closed her eyes and went back to sleep.

I gently prompted her again, “Madddieee.”

She greeted me with that same smile before quickly falling back asleep.

Its little moments like this that makes this the best job anyone could hope for.

However, by the time we got out the door, we were in a serious time crunch. I bundled Maddie up in the stroller against the nasty wind blowing off of the Hudson River and took off.

We had 14 minutes to scamper one mile, buy a ferry ticket and board the ferry. And they’re off… Maddie and I were half speed walking and half jogging as we made our way through the streets of Jersey City.

I could see the ferry crossing the river as we steamed towards the ticket terminal. We burst through the doors with our adrenaline pumping! There was only one person in line – Niiccee!!

Maddie wheeled up behind the woman in line who was counting out $13.75 in quarters??? And the clerk was going through each one, “Nope, this quarter is Canadian – oops, so is this one.” Meanwhile, our ferry is docking right out front and the clock is ticking. “Oh, this one is American, right?”

“Hmmm, let’s see, I only need one more dollar,” said the befuddled woman. Before she could make a move I slapped down a buck and calmly said “Sold – Please print her ticket and give me one to Wall Street!” Maddie eyed me curiously as people started to board our boat.

The clerk laid down the woman’s ticket and ours came next. I snatched the ticket just as the ferryman was chaining up the entrance – “One more coming!” I announced. He lifted the chain as Maddie and I darted onto the platform. The boat lurched backwards and Maddie gave me that coy smile that said, “You can not be serious!”