We visited Libby, Peter, and Sofia at their house once Libby got back and got a day’s rest. Helena and Liam played “The Impossible Quiz” for hours on Peter’s computer while Dalen gave Libby pointers on breastfeeding. Peter and I watched football and went to get lunches.
Pop-pop was busy but Dori came over to say goodbye. I couldn’t fall asleep before we left (at 11:30), so Dalen drove for about 8 hours while I unsuccessfully tried to sleep in the van. We made it home to our messy house and began planning new furniture.
Last day of play in the apartment
The new mom at home
Dad trying to sleep on the way home
Liam wanted a bouncy ball from this rest stop to and from New York
Overlooking the highway just west of Chicago
In Illinois on the way home
Dad trying to rest despite Helena’s best efforts
The kids never seemed to notice that we lived in an unfinished apartment for two weeks.
We take the train to Prospect Park, eat lunch at a diner nearby, then meet Dori. The zoo is on the other side of the park. We begin walking. We lose our direction. We walk some more, and some more, and more and more. On grass, on pavement, through woods. It is awfully hot once again. We take little breaks at times, a playground with a sprinkler, a spot with ducks by the lake. I ask people where the zoo is. “There’s a zoo here?”
We eventually find theÂ carousel, which is adjacent to the zoo, and spend the rest of the afternoon there.
The total trip was about 6 hours all outdoors on a hot day and getting home was really a pain with weekend train schedules and I don’t think that I heard a complaint the entire time.
We took the train into downtown New York in the morning. We got a call that Libby was admitted to the hospital to be induced, but we had no idea how long that would take, and the “reports” coming in didn’t all seem to make much sense.
We went to see Statue of Liberty, but the line was really long (and once more it was hot), so we viewed it from very far away. We took the Staten Island Ferry just to go for a boat ride, then came back up through the financial district. We ate at Subway which was a thrill for the kids despite the fact that they didn’t really eat their lunches.
Later that night Libby did have her baby girl, but it was too late to go see her.
The light was so bright that I couldn’t see what I was shooting. Lady Liberty is right behind them!
Liam being silly – difficult to take his picture
Staten Island Ferry terminal
On the ferry
On the ferry – Helena is telling us EVERYTHING about Staten Island
100 heat index + no nap = exhausted
Always chewing gum now
Dalen’s favorite part of the whole trip
In front of the burial place of dad’s favorite president
Helena wanted to head back to Sam’s Italian Restaurant because last year he called her “Shorty”.
When we went in, Sam was told that he had called her Shorty last year, and they immediately became friends. Despite being busy and Sam being the only one up front in the restaurant, he had a lot of fun with the kids. Helena was even following him around by the end of the night. Libby and I had a 21″ calzone which, despite me eating some of the leftovers, is probably still decomposing in some landfill in New Jersey. Peter said it was the best calzone that he ever had, so there were at least three of us eating it.
The kids have been waiting for this day. Last summer Pop-pop took Helena and Liam to his office, and they’ve been wanting to go back. So we took all three kids there, and despite no toys, they played for a couple of hours, mostly going in and out of the bathroom. The secretaries took Helena and Ada to McDonald’s for lunch for a bit, as well.
On our way back home we stopped out for drinks which we had at an outdoor table and we talked to a lady with a dog with two different colored eyes, watched what we though just might be an apartment building on fire (nope), and listened to the trains below us and felt the warm air come up through the sidewalk.
And the kids are much more comfortable with the neighborhood. They now run ahead to the apartment building, and Helena knows most people on the street by now.
All aboard on a cloudy, windy, cold day after days of 100 degree heat index days. None of us caught any regulation fluke although enough was caught (fluke, crabs, and sea princess?) so the kids didn’t get tooooo bored.
Before we boarded, the kids got to talk to people catching crabs from the shore which they liked. Once on the boat, the kids had a great job until the weather drained them of their energy. It rained just a bit on the way back to shore.
We went to the aquarium on a ridiculously hot day. Sitting outside in the sun to see the seal show was difficult. Ada had trouble keeping her eyes open because it was so hot and bright.
Pop-pop met us there later just in time to see the penguins and sharks. After lunch, pop-pop took the kids into the gift shop which took up a lot of time. Helena got a mood ringÂ necklaceÂ of a dolphin which she was really concerned about because it wasn’t changing colors (it did when we got to theÂ air conditionedÂ train back to Brooklyn), Liam got a truck with a cube full of sharks, and Ada got another stuffed animal, this time a walrus which was named Rosie, like so many other of her stuffed animals.
We then went to see a 4-D movie of Planet Earth which was too much for Helena, so I had to take her out of the theatre.
We spent some time preparing (Dori bought shovels and pails, then realized that there weren’t enough shovels, so we had to go to the “dollar store” – where they had the quarter ride), then took the kids’ first trip on the subway this trip out to Coney Island. While waiting for Pop pop, the kids liked the shop with the live lobsters. Helena had to show everyone. Pop-pop got a sandwich next door and ate it in the subway, so now the kids think that is the thing to do.
While at the beach, tried to figure out how to change legally and without incident (failed – Dori got yelled at because she had Helena changing where it wasn’t allowed and Ada just decided to take her clothes off on the beach), we went to games and rides. Helena and Liam had ice cream while Ada passed out after all the sun. Dad, mom, Pop-pop, Helena, and Liam rode on the Wonder Wheel which we all loved because we know and like the Dan Zanes song. Curiously, a dog had his own car to himself over and over.Â We then took the subway home after going to the bathroom at the messiest bathroom in New York (at the subway station).
The ride before the rides
Liam was all sand by the time we left
Christina with the two kids who were awake
Wonder Wheel (and ice cream)
Liam and Helena playing a game – they both “won” prizes
Dog’s pernament car
Helena and dad in the rocking car
Liam not so scared
Christina, Dori, and Sleeping Ada
View from the Wonder Wheel
Once back in Brooklyn, Pop-pop and Dori had had enough and couldn’t muster the energy to go out to eat.
We arrived at noon the day after we left. We had no directions to where we were staying, so as I crossed over into Brooklyn, Dalen called Libby to get directions to dad’s old apartment that was still paid for, but empty of furniture except the couch that he was going to throw away, a television that had no cable or antenna, air conditioners, and some kitchen things (no microwave) that Dori (I think) brought over.
I fell asleep for a few hours and when I awoke, my father already picked Helena up and had her out. We went out to dinner at Pacifico where I was still out of it and not feeling too swell. I don’t remember anyone ever eating anything in my family, but we got to see Libby and Peter, Dori, my father and Christina, and part of Brooklyn on our walk.