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outings

one weekend, two festivals. And hold the “hove”.

one weekend, two festivals. And hold the “hove”.

June 17, 2013 |  Category:   dining out family growing up half life outings

I think we might be all festivaled out from the past few weekends. We didn’t set out to spend Father’s Day weekend at 2 festivals. Actually, I was looking to recreate the tradition that we started last year – spending a peaceful day strawberry picking at a farm. We did decide to go to a strawberry festival on the North Fork, but we didn’t realize what a carnival-type scene it would be, crowds and all. I thought it would be more of a quaint, relaxed country type affair – you know, where people judge the best pie and race little piglets or something, but it ended up being more like Coney Island, but in the middle of farm land. We… CONTINUE READING

urbanization, public spaces, and a changing NY

urbanization, public spaces, and a changing NY

June 3, 2013 |  Category:   life nyc outings remembering

I was talking with a friend while sitting on the grass on Governors Island over the weekend, observing just how many public parks and green spaces have opened in the city within the last 5-10 years – essentially the time we became parents. Aside from Governors Island, we now have the High Line, the Hudson River Piers and Parks, the Brooklyn Bridge Piers and Parks, the Williamsburg waterfront, and countless other playgrounds and car-free pedestrian plazas. Most of these spaces are still works in progress, spanning development over many years and opening to the pubic in phases, often one pier at a time for example, while funding gets established. Indeed, it’s been interesting to see the progress over the years… CONTINUE READING

Planting Fields at Coe Hall

Planting Fields at Coe Hall

May 30, 2013 |  Category:   life outings

I think visiting the Gold Coast mansions in Long Island is quickly becoming a favorite weekend pastime of ours. Last month it was the Vanderbilt Mansion; this past Memorial Day we made a visit to the Planting Fields at Coe Hall, the former estate of the Coe family. Unlike some of the other estates that we’ve visited, many of the rooms at the 64 room Tudor-style mansion are being restored just as they were when the Coe family lived there during the Gilded Age (oh, and all these Gold Coast mansions are weekend country homes, btw. Most of these families had main residences in the city). The formal dining room is set with fine china and silverware, and intimate photos… CONTINUE READING

remembering the north fork

remembering the north fork

May 16, 2013 |  Category:   life outings

I will confess, I have never been to the Hamptons. Not once in all my life long years as a New Yorker. When we think of Long Island beaches, we usually head to Robert Moses or Jones Beach as it’s a quick drive from my parents’ house, but when we want to spend a day tootling around the island for some peace and quiet, we head to the North Fork. It’s kind of like the anti-Hamptons and it might just be one of our favorite places to go. Things are quiet out here. Yes, you might hit some traffic as there really is only one main road going all the way to the end until there is no more land,… CONTINUE READING

on a farm in the North Fork

on a farm in the North Fork

May 15, 2013 |  Category:   life outings

Some photos of our day at a farm on the North Fork of Long Island last Sunday. Picking season isn’t nearly here yet so we wandered the grounds, tasted wine at the winery, smelled the flowers, watched a border collie herd some geese and ate some crepes. A quiet day out in nature seems like the best way to end a busy week.… CONTINUE READING

adaptation

adaptation

May 2, 2013 |  Category:   life outings

I think I’ve decided that I kind of dislike zoos. The kids like going to zoos, so we go, though not often. I think the last time we were at the Bronx Zoo was about 5 years ago when Claudine was a baby, though Mia’s been much more recently through camp. All those animals in cages. I guess it was a reflection of my own mental state when we went over the weekend that made it a bit of a downer. That and getting that Smashing Pumpkins “despite all my rage I am still just a rat in a cage” song stuck in my head over and over again. Sheesh.   I’ve been watching a lot of documentaries lately, some… CONTINUE READING

cherry blossom weekend

cherry blossom weekend

April 29, 2013 |  Category:   life nyc outings seasonal

Cherry blossoms are now at its peak here in the city, and like thousands of other New Yorkers we flocked to the Brooklyn Botanic Gardens to revel underneath fluffy pink and white blossoms. It was sandal weather too, and the girls and I walked a million miles over the weekend. Along our walks, they like to collect clusters of blossoms that have fallen off trees and bring them home to place in shallow bowls of water.   The blossoms will probably be gone in another week or two. After that, summer isn’t far behind. 2 more months of school left in the year. Time doesn’t stop for anyone, does it?… CONTINUE READING

a step back in time at the Vanderbilt mansion

a step back in time at the Vanderbilt mansion

April 15, 2013 |  Category:   life outings

Do you know about the Gold Coast Mansions on the North Shore of Long Island? If you’ve read the Great Gatsby, then you do. Yes, the Gilded Age, where new fortunes were made in steel and other industries. These were the lavish homes of some of the wealthiest American families like the Astors, Whitneys, Guggenheims and Vanderbilts. At one point there were over 500 mansions built along this 16 mile stretch, but less than half survived; only a handful are open to the public.   We’ve been to 2 of these mansions located near my parents’ house a number of times – Old Westbury Gardens (where the family threw me the best birthday surprise) and The Nassau County Museum of… CONTINUE READING

the ocean calms us

the ocean calms us

March 24, 2013 |  Category:   life outings

The air was amazingly still at Jones Beach. With the sun warming us, we didn’t feel cold at all and it was nice seeing the ocean again for the first time since August. Evidence of Sandy destruction lingered, with all the facilities and concession stands fenced off and 4 of the 6 fields closed. There were dunes where there were none before, as tops of buried wooden fences peeked up from sandy mounds. Despite that, it was nice to see that there might be beaches to enjoy this summer as repairs get underway. We weren’t really sure what to expect from those aerial photos we saw 5 months ago after the storm, but one after another we are seeing announcements… CONTINUE READING

saturday at moma, or the day the kids out museumed us

saturday at moma, or the day the kids out museumed us

March 5, 2013 |  Category:   art + design life nyc outings

In keeping up with our resolution to see more art this year, I wanted to spend last Saturday at one of the major museums. When I brought up MoMA with the girls, I was surprised to hear that neither of them really remembered which museum I was referring to. Had it really been that long? I remember chaperoning a field trip during preschool 2 years ago, but maybe that really was the last time. Once we got to MoMA, each of them remembered certain things like the sculpture garden and the helicopter suspended from the ceiling, but this visit really was a new experience for them and one where Claudine has been asking to go back soon ever since.  … CONTINUE READING

greenwood cemetery

greenwood cemetery

January 15, 2013 |  Category:   life nyc outings

  The cemetery. Not the first place to come to mind when thinking of an outing to take the kids on a weeekend, but why not? Especially when you have one as beautiful as the Greenwood Cemetery in Brooklyn. I believe it’s one of America’s oldest cemeteries and perhaps, one of the most beautiful. Some notable people are buried here: Jean-Michel Basquiat, Leonard Bernstein, the Steinways, Peter Cooper (the Cooper Union founder where I went to school), members of Theodore Roosevelt’s immediate family, and most recently just last year, two time Pulitzer Prize winning American composer, Elliot Carter, who Mark and I both admired during our music studies in college.   I think the girls were a little confused when… CONTINUE READING

new museum first saturdays

new museum first saturdays

January 9, 2013 |  Category:   art + design life nyc outings

So far we’re making good on our resolution to see more art. I have only been to the New Museum once since it moved to the Bowery around 5 years ago. I used to go more often when it was located in Soho on Broadway when I was in art school and graduate school in the 90s. It was much smaller then – 2 floors in the Astor Building – but now the New Museum is a 7 story building with a skyroom on the top floor with views of lower Manhattan. This is where they hold activities for kids on First Saturdays for families. The monthly event is free, but keep in mind that you only have access to… CONTINUE READING

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