While our boys were out of town, my middle girls and I dropped Lu off with her beloved Nana and took off…2015-05-28 iPhone 110055
…through some turbulent skies2015-05-28 iPhone 110057
…over our old homeland of Washington D.C.2015-05-28 iPhone 110062
…to be greeted by my brother and a gorgeous sunset in NYC.2015-05-28 iPhone 110067
We were all so excited and the girls got Taylor Swift “Welcome to New York” blasting in the car as we drove over the bridge into the city.2015-05-28 iPhone 110066
Elle has been dying to get back to NYC since this trip back here, and Grace and Claire had stars in their eyes about seeing that great city.  My Dad served his mission there and has somehow instilled this tremendous love for that place in all of us…enough that three brothers have lived there.  That love has filtered through to the grandkids and they were head-over-heels in love at first sight.
Eli took us on a little night driving tour of the city while he had a borrowed car,2015-05-28 iPhone 110070
…swung us by for a late-night dinner at Shake Shack,2015-05-28 iPhone 110079
…and whisked us into his awesome apartment where we got to meet our newest cousin/nephew, Dean:2015-05-28 iPhone 110080
That may have been the highlight of the trip right there.  These girls begged me about 427 times through the trip to please have one more baby ;).  He is a dreamboat baby I tell you, so sweet and calm and good-natured and we all fell in love.

The girls fell in love with the New York living arrangements too and thought it was awesome to have a wall-to-wall sleepover every night.2015-05-28 iPhone 110082
(Yes my brother and his wife are saints to host us all with their toddler and new baby in tow…the same ones who traipsed all over Japan with us a few months ago pregnant and with a toddler {here}

…I’m telling you these guys are good.)

We got up the next morning and headed to eat our New York bagels in Central park.2015-05-29 NYC 109225
Then the girls and I took off on our own little adventure.2015-05-29 NYC 1092402015-05-29 NYC 109247
We went to the 9-11 memorial and were mesmerized by it’s beauty and reverence.2015-05-29 NYC 1092592015-05-29 NYC 1092672015-05-29 NYC 109263The newly completed building was beautiful and had a line all the way around it for the new observation deck but we had other places to see the view in mind, so we headed to Grand Central Terminal to check it out.2015-05-29 Elle's NYC 109732
This idea was spurred by Elle who had seen it in “Gossip Girl.”  Sometimes I wonder how my kids know what the heck stuff like that is because we don’t watch much television around here but then I remember we are infiltrated by social media in every direction these days.  I had no idea what it was and after Elle pulled up the clip with Grand Central Terminal on her phone I’m sure it’s about as good as it looks, but I have to give it the thumbs up that it made my teenager daughter so interested to see a cultural and historical landmark 🙂2015-05-29 Elle's NYC 1097362015-05-29 Elle's NYC 109746
We read up a little on the history of that gorgeous place and did a little bit of super interesting “people-watching.”2015-05-29 Elle's NYC 109753
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Then we took off and made our way, through so many streets that look like this…2015-05-29 NYC 109290
…to meet my brother at Bryant Park.2015-05-29 NYC 109287
That place is gorgeous too, and from there we headed up to our family favorite place to observe New York.2015-05-29 Elle's NYC 1097772015-05-29 Elle's NYC 109787
Two of my brothers got engaged in this spot, and it was so fun to have the girls there.

Quite honestly we could have stayed up there all day long it was so gorgeous and exhilarating.
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But alas, all good things have to end so we soaked in the views one last time and headed over to St. Patrick’s Cathedral.2015-05-29 NYC 109331
We marveled at it’s beauty and how the stained glass casts such beautiful light.2015-05-29 NYC 1093142015-05-29 NYC 1093222015-05-29 NYC 109324
And then went to the MoMA for some serious art. We missed the Met (which we visited last time) this time around, which I love, but the MoMA is pretty darn awesome too.

Claire and I were especially excited since there were a few works of art we had just studied for Art Masterpiece in school (a program I volunteer for each year).

I mean, how cool is it to get to see Starry Night up close and personal?2015-05-29 NYC 109337
And we just barely did Picasso’s “Three Musicians” recently (at the end of the post back here).2015-05-29 NYC 1093402015-05-29 NYC 109347
Loved seeing some of my favorites from my Art History class at Boston University.2015-05-29 NYC 1093542015-05-29 NYC 1093552015-05-29 NYC 109366
Oh boy I love hanging with these girls…2015-05-29 NYC 109364
…and sharing them with my great brother.2015-05-29 NYC 109368
Eli took my favorite picture of the day:2015-05-29 iPhone 1101872015-05-29 NYC 109373
We had to have a little bit of Magnolia:2015-05-29 iPhone 110190
…here’s a better pic.2015-05-29 NYC 109377
Explore Rockefeller Center a little bit:2015-05-29 NYC 109379
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2015-05-29 NYC 109384
…take a picture of these gigantic lego creations for Lucy:2015-05-29 NYC 109388
…and head back to snuggle up Dean as much as possible.2015-05-29 NYC 109391
Day 2
Julie and Eli live on the fourth floor of a four-story apartment building with no elevator.2015-05-30 Elle's NYC 109855That means they need to get those two little babies up and down those stairs over and over each day, plus everything else they have to lug all over town. 

They kind of rock.  Have I mentioned that before? 🙂

We had breakfast at this awesome place right next to their apartment,2015-05-30 NYC day 2 109393
…then stopped for the world’s best cookies.2015-05-30 iPhone 110198I am not kidding, they are pretty much the best thing I have tasted…aside from Thai food and Japanese curry and Chicken Tikka, BUT oh boy those babies are dreamy.

We took the subway and headed to the “High Line.”2015-05-30 Elle's NYC 109901
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We all love that little Zara so much!2015-05-30 iPhone 110218
Then the girls and I headed off to catch “Wicked” at Times Square.

I’m telling you, we were as giddy as could be heading into that thing.2015-05-30 iPhone 110233
Elle and I had seen it when she won the “lottery” for tickets in Boston years ago:2007-10-20 Boston 0108(more on that back here)

We adored it so much that I’ve been dying to take the little girls.2015-05-30 iPhone 110225
They were definitely not disappointed.  This picture of them being excited about the candy at Times Square only shows a fraction of the “Wicked” excitement 🙂2015-05-30 NYC day 2 1094252015-05-30 iPhone 110239
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After we soaked in Times Square for a little bit we met up with Eli and Julie and headed to Washington Square Park (in Greenwich Village) to have a New York pizza picnic dinner.
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That is an awesome place for people watching.  There was everything from super talented street performers to a very drunk guy taking a bath in the huge fountain.

We were all mesmerized by a big group of guys who could do flips and jumps like nobody’s business.2015-05-30 NYC day 2 1094672015-05-30 NYC day 2 1094712015-05-30 NYC day 2 109477
2015-05-30 Elle's NYC 109918
We headed out as the sky got darker and all the city lights started to light up the night.
If you look closely you can see the Empire State building through this arch.  2015-05-30 Elle's NYC 109919
Congrats if you made it this far…yowzas that’s a lot of pictures, and I still have more!

To be continued…(part 2 is HERE)

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  1. My husband and I visited NYC for the first time in May 2014. We heard about levaine bakery before we went and made a special trip there to get some cookies. You are absolutely correct about them being the world's best cookies!

  2. NYC should pay your for advertising their incredible city! This is astonishing! Hugs to everyone including that incredible Eli and Julie family!

  3. You guys picked cool places to go! I love Jacob's Pickles (so yummy for brunch) and of course Levain. The museums and parks are also must-sees! My sister and BIL live in NYC and both of my daughters will be in college there starting in August (sob! my youngest is leaving me!). We usually visit several times per year with so much family there. Always new things to discover!! Sounds like a great trip 🙂

  4. Great pictures. My hubby and I have been wanting to go to ny for a long time!! Any chance you want to share where the family special spot is??

  5. My husband and I traveled up the east coast 6 years ago next month. We spent two days in NYC but it wasn't long enough! I am happily living vicariously through your photos. I love that the shape of your niece's glasses is similar to your dad's. Cute little connection there. And on a separate note, I thought I saw a boy that looked exactly like Max on the NBA finals last night (in the audience)!

  6. It's so great that your kids get to experience this! I just sent my just-graduated son on a solo trip to NYC. My sis-in-law and her family live in Manhattan (yes- the typical family of six squeezed into a small prewar apartment) but he was on his own wandering about the city daily. He even hopped aboard a train and went to Toronto for a few days! I was more excited for him that nervous really. He did some networking, went to museums, and had a wonderful experience. I think it's so important for our kids to go out and do things like this. I LOVE your idea of the junior year summer trip/internship. I may do that with my other kids. 🙂 Love your family!

    ~Sheila from Alaska

  7. Wowzer girl, I sure love your pictures! To think I knew you when you were taking photography classes. You are definitely making me think I need a mother/daughter trip.

  8. My husband and I JUST went there for the first time a few weeks ago (we live in DC) and absolutely adored it. I knew I would have a good time there, but I was not prepared for how much I LOVED NYC – the energy, the speed, the beauty of nature and the beauty of buildings and architecture. All of it. Much of what you did is exactly what we saw and did. Memories!

  9. where was your secret family spot? would you mind sharing — I would LOVE to know!! 🙂 I am heading there in April and am hoping to find a rooftop to go on !!

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