Posts Tagged summer

Citi Field and one last summer weekend

And just like that, summer is officially over.  How did that happen so quickly?  Just before the summer’s warmth slipped by, Jeff, Jack and I had the chance to savor the last weekend of my favorite season, NYC-style.

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Baseball, as I’m sure you know, is such a big part of our summer.  With the Mets games streaming nonstop on our tv from April to September, it’s no big secret that we’re big fans.  Last year, we said goodbye to Shea, and even though this was a less than desirable season (again), we made our inaugural trip to Citi Field on this brisk, but sunny Saturday.

I should note that due to Jeff’s influence, we sort of boycotted going to Citi Field for most of the season—because we’re huge fans of baseball, and well, because of obvious reasons.  I personally think it should be called the People’s Stadium and that all seats should be MUCH more affordable…  But, anyway, per usual, while everyone is getting all excited for fall and football, we’re still doting on our boys of summer.  I loved spending the last weekend of summer with my favorite guys, watching our favorite team, in perhaps the best city in the world!

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As usual, we pulled out our best Mets gear and headed to the sparkly new stadium in Queens.  But unlike past trips, we enjoyed the luxury of pre-paid parking, so we drove there this weekend!  Once we arrived, naturally, we were in awe of Citi Field’s novelty.  For as long as Jeff’s been a fan, the Mets’ home has always been Shea.  So, to drive down the Grand Central and approach a brand new brick ballfield with a totally different name was almost surprising.  After we finally found our cushy parking spot just a few feet from the main entrance, the boys practically sprinted their way into the ballpark.  (You know the Mets are struggling if tickets and parking are easy to come by!!)

IMG_0363IMG_0357IMG_0352IMG_0302IMG_0327IMG_0319Our seats, which overlooked right field on the Field level, were pretty awesome. On Field Level of Citi Field, there’s a big concession area right behind centerfield, which was close to where we were sitting.  As soon as we got there, Jack and I wandered around, checked out Fan Fest and I even grabbed some gourmet tacos.  True story: I heard from some moms at our playground that the tacos were a must-have (seriously!) and dude, were they ever!  But from the tempting but never-ending lines at The Shake Shack and Blue Smoke, to my delicious taco combo from Taxiquera, as Jeff said best, the glorious new stadium resembled a mall with a food court.

Is it possible that beat up ol’ Shea Stadium with its history and character is much better than this multi-million dollar spectacle?

I thought the new stadium was beautiful and cool, especially the Jacki Robinson Rotunda—who wouldn’t want to be greeted with that kind of beauty!  However, the newness and novelty of the entire stadium overall, seemed unbalanced with its “every man/blue collar fanbase,” not to mention, another lackluster season.   In addition to exploring the new stadium, the Mets ended up winning against the Nationals.  It was a very fast-moving game, which apparently had a lot to do with both teams sucking.  I confirmed this observation from mr. baseball stats, himself  :)

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Being able to bring Jack to his second big league game is something we’re quite grateful we’re able to do.  At not even 2 years old, I swear, our kid has seen and done more cool activities than some people I know.  Ok, so he might not have sat still for all 9 innings.  In fact, because of Jack’s curiosity and inability to sit still, I got to see so much of the stadium, especially around the Field Level attractions.  I love the way Jack dance-walked around the ball park’s “little city,” with his oversized hat and Mets jersey, even stopping to chase and giggle with some big kids.

By the way, if it were any other circumstance—such as if they had a winning record, or if we had a bigger family or if we bought these tickets ourselves—we certainly wouldn’t have been able to afford a day out at Citi Field!  It’s so much fun, but certainly not cheap!  It’s kind of sad that a small family has to go into debt just to attend a baseball game these days…

As my diehard Mets fan hubs often says, “that’s the life of a Mets fan.”

(Usually not in that context, but it definitely applies!)

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And as for the hopes of a winning season, as everyone else continues to say, there’s always next year.

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Back home and daydreaming

So, I’m back!  Actually, I’ve been back since Saturday, but I’ve been busy trying to organize my thoughts, catch up on emails and shake this exhaustion.  My time at BlogHer was great, but my experience deserves a slew of posts of their own.

IMG_3103Since I’ve been back, the boys and I have been busy trying to get back into the swing of things.  While I was away, I heard Jeff and Jack had a great time bonding together.  They got along famously without me—no surprise about that.  But on the second day that I was gone, Jeff said that after we spoke on the phone, Jack got upset.  As in, he threw a tantrum and then was sort of blah the rest of the day.  It was as if the first day without me was a novelty, and then the second day was like, “um, mommy’s gone and this sucks.”  As much as I loved the idea of the two of them growing even more inseparable in my absence, I thought, for sure, Jack would forget me when I got back.  So glad that wasn’t the case.

While I was in Chicago, I missed the start of our church’s annual feast.  I know I keep saying things like this, but since this is probably our last summer here as Hoboken residents, attending the St. Ann’s Feast was so crucial for me.  I missed the first few days, including our favorite NJ shore band.  But alas, Jeff and Jack went to the free Friday night concert, and well, danced their butts off.  So, while I sipped my vodka cocktails, my boy danced his little butt off to The Nerds.  I loved that I was able to witness the hilarity via cellphone.

As sad as I was to leave the conference a day early (since I only had tickets for one day,) I was truly ready to come home.  The boys met me at the airport with their arms (and the little one’s mouth) wide open.  What a homecoming!  I know it was only 2 days, but I’m so glad I don’t have to travel solo that much anymore.

Jack and Jeff at St. Ann's

The guys and I had dinner at the feast, i.e., we had street meat and listened to some fun tunes.  Once again, Jack had a blast dancing and putting on a show for anyone who would watch.  This one, he loves an audience and performing—not sure where he got that from (Jeff).

On a somewhat related note, you know how we always say our town is a bit crooked? Funny how it’s all over the news now, what with our ridiculous mayor, by the way who wasn’t even in office an entire month, getting arrested for an FBI sting. But I love how our priest makes a “cameo” in the Times. It kind of sucks that the place we’ve been calling home for our entire married life, is tainted by more negativity. And to think, we’ve worked so hard just to be able to pay our taxes and be able to afford to live here, while we have elected officials pocketing bribe money and contributing to the laundry list of corruption…awesome, no?

As if we didn’t already have our minds made up, now, it’s really time to get out.

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IMG_3115Considering we haven’t hung out with anyone for months, Sunday was a much needed excursion to see our friends at a BBQ.  In between chasing and wrangling the Energizer toddler, I had fun catching up with friends and enjoying the glorious food. YUM and thanks J & M! You guys are the best host and hostess!  And like we always do after visiting these friends, we’re daydreaming more than ever.  But this time, some plans are in motion.  Well, sort of.  If you know what that means, you know why we’re excited, but still not getting our hopes up.  Lots more change upon the horizon…

Anyway, it’s good to be back.  Now, it’s time to focus on the Hawaii trip and the events surrounding it!  It’s never a dull moment around here.

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Water sprinkler love

Not too long ago, a family member asked me, “So, how’s it going with the whole space thing?”

As in, are we tripping over each other and pulling our hair out because we have no room to move.

Well, yeah, sometimes, but whatever.  We’re living within our means, remember?

So, per usual, I shrugged my shoulders and this time answered, “Going ok.  How bad can things get when on the weekdays it’s basically just the boy and me and on the weekends, we’re never home.”

Never.

And I love it.

Jeff, however, could do without all the errand-running, festivals and City trips.  He’s such a trooper, though.

With another “free” weekend on our hands, we took advantage of the sunshine and caught up on the family time with, what else?

Summer activities.  Ok, city summer activities, but fun nonetheless.

The weekend went a little like this: brunch at one of our favorite spots overlooking the Hudson, quality time at the playground, a little summer shopping, more park fun…but it wouldn’t be a fun summer weekend without a street festival!

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Street meat, games, inflatable slides, and because we live in Sinatra’s hometown, yes, there was plenty of Sinatra, too.  Everything was going well—until Jack set his eyes on the sprinklers.

While in line for the pony ride, it was like a record scratching and then, everything went silent.

errrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrgh———-

He spotted it.

WATER!!!

I tried to ration with our 1.5 year old (that was a joke) that we weren’t prepared for him to run in the sprinklers today.  No towel, no swim trunks, nada.

Oh good God.  Can you say meltdown?  Uncontrollable, hysterical tears—as if I told him there was no more party in the tummy for Yo Gabba Gabba.

So, we stripped him down and let him frolic in the sprinklers alongside of all the other kids.  It wasn’t so bad running through the sprinkler with kids two times his size (in his brand new shorts, no less!) I’m learning to pick my battles, here.

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After he was done, I must say though, we looked pretty klassy strolling him around in dripping hair, soaking wet shorts and no shirt.

Oh, those kids and their sprinklers and water toys. Especially these urban kids. In retro movies, you see always see a neighborhood turn into complete pandemonium when the fire hydrant gets turned on.  In modern day, most city areas have water features and sprinklers to assuage the city kids in the summertime.  I wish I could replicate the roaring laughter that goes on around these sprinklers.  Oh, the awesomeness.

Jeff and I had the beach and our swimming pools growing up, our city kid has water sprinklers.  I have a feeling there will be a plethora of trips to city parks to frolic all summer long.

Eh, there could be worse things in life than discovering the uncontainable excitement that a water sprinkler brings a kid at summertime.

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