Another Adventure …

What kind of crazy people are we?

We left Florida on December 20. Three dogs in the back seat and the truck loaded up with presents and a Honey Baked Ham … New York City and Christmas with two of my three children. We planned to spend one night in Richmond, VA on our way and then a night just shy of the city. Only one wrong turn which sent us into Washington, DC … at least we weren’t towing the boat! Smooth sailing!

Almost There!

Almost There!

With my daughter’s help, and having made good time, we ended up in Washington Heights and our little sub-let one night early.

The little apartment we rented was about mid-way between my son’s and my daughter’s apartments. Allowing for adjustments for all the dogs and super convenient for us – not to mention really reasonable rates!

Lobster Feast!

Lobster Feast!

Christmas eve was spent eating (mimosas started off our day) and baking cookies. Our family tradition is Spritz cookies. It’s still more fun to make them when you have someone else to decorate them. I love that my kids all value that tradition – started by my mother – it’s simply not Christmas without Spritz! A lobster feast for dinner, with thanks to my brother the lobsterman, had us all a mess and very happy. Christmas movies and lots of laughs … or was it the wine? I almost forgot to have the kids open their Christmas Eve gifts from Santa.

Christmas Day was low key – relaxing over coffee and muffins, Skyped with the missing daughter and her father in Chicago. The NY kids had to work but we hung with my boy and all the dogs. Ditto on Boxing Day.

IMG_2636Our big outing into mid-town was dinner and going to Kate’s show. We went to Qi for dinner and I love their food. Seeing my girl one more time as the star of Rock of Ages was a special treat for me – and my boy went with his old mom. N decided to skip the show and visited the Strand Bookstore at Union Square which he adored despite a couple of wrong turns and perhaps a wrong address (hence the wrong turn!)

On the 27th we packed up the dogs and presents and tearfully kissed the kids goodbye. Heading north in our truck to our “camp” in Maine.

camp /kamp/ n. A place usually away from urban places where tents or simple buildings (as cabins) are erected for shelter or temporary residence.

Camp Warner

Camp Warner

Think primitive. No running water. No plumbing. Think outhouse with a very (VERY) cold seat. And melting snow on the wood stove to wash dishes. Our mattress on the floor in the living room. Windows frozen with condensation. We carried all of our stuff in from the street with our Christmas snowshoes! A simple dinner in front of the wood stove and I was ready for bed. Too many late nights and I was ready for bed … probably long before I actually climbed in. Despite the “camping” and the cold, I wasn’t ready to leave when we heard that there was a Nor’ Easter coming in! I can’t wait until we are there for all the winter storms!

Next to Marblehead and a visit with my youngest brother and his family. We’ve loved getting to know their friends and love any chance to visit this charming town full of friends and family. So much so that I forgot to take any photos of the visit!

New Year’s Eve day we headed to Connecticut … a trip down memory lane for me at Shady Glen in Manchester and then a visit to the cemetery to check on the headstone for my parents. Then on to Westport to my college roommate’s new apartment … had to check on my “roomie” since we were so close!

What a wonderful trip! I am so grateful that my N loves my family as much as I do and that he’s willing to drive all the way to Maine and back so I can knit!

Gone knitting … Happy New Year!

NYC Easter Trip

We spent the Easter weekend in New York City. Loved staying at the Times Square Westin Hotel and had a lovely room with a great view! Not enough pictures were taken with my camera (phone)… But here it is in a nutshell!

Times Square M&Ms store

Times Square M&Ms store

 

Margaritas in the afternoon with my three babies!

Margaritas in the afternoon with my three babies!

What were we thinking? We’re Floridians … and it was cold!

Rock of Ages at the Helen Hayes Theater

Rock of Ages at the Helen Hayes Theater

 

Go see my kid in the starring role – you won’t be sorry! She’s there through July!

A Sunday Morning "hike" ...

A Sunday Morning “hike” … through an “alley”

 

And a snack near Rockefeller Center at Bouchon

And a snack near Rockefeller Center at Bouchon

 

My little dogs do NOT like the big city. And while they were eager to be included in the trip, they were perhaps even more eager to go home!

Please can we go home now?

Please can we go home now?

 

Great Weekend!

Gone Knitting!

 

 

 

 

 

Proud Mama!

You can tell I haven’t been knitting enough because I am blogging this week about WIPs, our new Big Brown Dog (Monk) and now being a proud mom. This is supposed to be a place where I write about knitting but it’s also my way of sharing bits and pieces of my life.

I have three big pieces of my life in my three children. The last few years haven’t always been easy. When parents go through a divorce, it directly affects a family and my kids have had some “issues” to deal with which have not been easy. It’s been difficult for me to be perceived as the “strong” parent because I’ve had to live a life without seeing them enough -I ‘m not sure there’s a chance of seeing them enough now that they’re grown and on their own. I have had to find peace living a life that’s radically different than the old one and especially around birthdays and holidays. But I am getting away from the purpose of this post …

Easter Day Daffodils on Fifth Avenue!

Easter Day Daffodils on Fifth Avenue!

We spent a weekend in New York City around Easter time and all three of my kids were there. I was thrilled to have them all in the same city and I am so proud of the people that they’re becoming! My youngest, my son, is in transition now and thinks he’s moving to New York. A terrifying prospect for a mom but he feels it’s time for him to give it a try – and why not try while your sister is there and you have a couch to land on! My younger daughter is my “body double” (maybe not today’s body, but even I see the likeness from when I was young!) and she’s got a real big job at a university in Chicago and seems to be content in her life there. My oldest one is why we were all there …

On January 1, she got engaged to long-time love, Spencer and one of the steps is to meet his family which we did. They’re great people and we will all support this wonderful couple. Our kids!

We also went to see my daughter in her first starring role on Broadway in “Rock of Ages”. The show has been on Broadway for a long time and is in the Helen Hayes Theater which is a small house, intimate and the perfect venue for this 80s rock party. I am proud of my girl who is living her dream and building a career. She’s got an amazing talent – and I’d like to take some credit for having encouraged her to do what she loves … and her beauty, too, of course!

This week I got a text messaged photograph.

IMG_1250

Yes, my kid is on a bus stop poster!

 

Yes, I’m one proud mama!

Gone Knitting!

Road Trip! The Kindness of Strangers

My grand-dog, Mabel, always happy to ride in the car!

This weekend, I put a lot of miles on my daughter’s car, took some long subway rides, knitted in public and watched my son (my youngest child) graduate from college.

I wanted to blog really badly when I arrived in New York at my daughter’s apartment. But didn’t bring my laptop and was sure NOT going to attempt a blog entry on my phone. So, now that it’s not as fresh, I want to mention that I was struck by how many people on the uptown A train (express from Howard Beach to 190th Street) were kind to each other!

When I lived in New York and was pregnant with my first child, I remember long train rides, standing. I was the size of a subway car for goodness sake … and nobody seemed to notice my balloon legs and Omar-the-tentmaker “dress”? But I am happy to report that kindness (and manners) are alive and well in 2012. A gentleman in a suit got up and gave his seat to a woman with a tiny baby on her chest (in a baby carrier – get your head out of the gutter!) Another man gave his seat for the woman’s little girl. An older lady nearly fell into the lap of a woman seated. Rather than copping an attitude, the lady helped her sit and said it was “no problem”. It was sweet to see! I’d likely have written more if my mind was still fresh but alas, it’s not!

Thursday plane, train and subway from Maine to my daughter’s apartment in Washington Heights (Manhattan). Friday a ten-hour drive from New York to Cincinnati. Saturday brunch, graduation and dinner. I also managed some knitting in public both on my son’s porch and at Starbucks! Sunday the return ten-hour drive from Cincinnati to New York – with a lovely traffic jam only five miles from my daughter’s apartment that delayed our Tony watching for over an hour! And today, subway, train and plane back to Maine! Lots of travel for a momentous occasion … my last child’s graduation from college! That means three have successfully completed four years of college and they all are employed! I am one proud mom!

I made a lovely new knitting friend at my gate this afternoon. I believe it’s safe to say that I have never met a knitter I don’t like! She’s from New York State and was heading to Maine on business. On her needles a shawl (pattern had no photo … brave soul!) and in her suitcase, a pair of socks in progress. A woman after my own heart! Her 401k is being earmarked for yarn while her husband’s will pay for retirement. Hey, a girl on a fixed income has got to have a stash of yarn to knit with! I say, that is mighty good planning! We had a great chat and agreed that when traveling we both plan and pack our knitting first!

As nice as it is to travel, I will be happy to sleep in my own bed tonight. Listening to my little Lola snore. I am grateful for friends who open their houses to this Queen Bee and for precious time spent with my children. Tonight I’m too tired to even download photos. So, suffice it to say, I’m not knitting … but I’m going … to bed! 🙂