Friday, May 16, 2008

Day 4

**Just a little note if you checked the blog early yesterday--I was having computer troubles, so I didn't post the pictures until last night, so if you missed them, they're there now.

We actually got up a little earlier on this day in order to grab breakfast at a restaurant instead of our usual feast from those oh so familiar golden arches. The diner we ate at was housed under a bridge and flanked on either side by a street, so it was fun to watch the city activity as we ate our delicious food. Satisfied, we walked to our first stop of the day, one of my favorites, the New York City Public Library. As the daughter of a librarian, I was eager to visit this place and take a lot of pictures for my mom. It was amazing to see the collections of books housed amongst such beautiful craftsmanship. I was quite amused by the printed signs stating "drop books off here" taped to the gorgeous fluted wood columns at the receptionist desk. I guess it seemed odd that something with such beautiful history and architecture was actually a functioning library. Before we left, we took a quick glance at the Gutenberg Bible and the actual stuffed animals that inspired A.A. Milne to write Winnie the Pooh. The next stop was St. Patrick's Cathedral. We spent a good 45 minutes inside trying to get pictures from every angle, but our pictures don't do this place justice.

As with the library, the detail and craftsmanship put into this structure is remarkable. On to the next thing on our agenda, a trip to FAO Schwartz. Finn was sleeping as we arrived in one of the most magical toy stores in the world, but he woke up just in time to try out the big piano made famous in the movie Big. Still sleepy, I sat him down on the keys, and he proceeded to walk off the piano, lay on the floor, hide his face and cry. Audrie, however, impressed us with her skills, playing Chopsticks as far as her legs could reach. After watching the big piano show, the kids scanned the store to find a special small gift courtesy of their MiMi. Now, when you tell a kid that they can pick out a small souvenir in a toy store like FAO Schwartz, some stress is involved. Finn picked out a collection of small tractors, while Audrie eventually settled on a magic kit. We grabbed lunch at a pizza place determined to be the best pizza in the world by Oprah's best friend, Gayle. It was a little hole in the wall, but full of character and local flavor. Our last stop of the day was Sheep Meadow in Central Park. We let the kids run and play to their heart's desire. I imagine that this was Finn's favorite part of the trip after spending most of the time riding in a stroller. We finally had to drag the kids away and head back to the hotel. And I just remembered, this is the day we took our detour to Queens, not on Day 3. Oops! Oh well, we eventually made it back to our hotel. Then, at 11:00 PM, Jonathan decided that we couldn't leave New York City without seeing the Empire State Building up close, so we grabbed our jackets and headed out, leaving Finn behind with MiMi and Aunt Susie. It was quite chilly atop, but so worth it to see the lights illuminating the land as far as the eye could see. Popsie put a few quarters into the coin operated binoculars, peered through and informed us that The Gap was having a sale on jeans, AND that he read the price tag on one pair and they were a bargain at $19.99! He always knows how to crack us up. We rode down the elevator, snapped a few more pictures, and called it a night.


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