Tree Topper

The house is almost fully decorated and twinkling bright!  We have 5 Christmas trees of various sizes around the house with the main ones being a real one in the family room, a small fiber optic tree in Quinn's room, and of course the one in the top front window that Don put up in early November.

We continued our tradition with putting The Buddy on top of the main tree.  This year Quinn got in the act and helped Don place The Buddy.






Don told Quinn to make sure The Buddy faced the easel so Quinn was checking on his placement.


Don got it perfectly set and Quinn was double checking the placement to make sure The Buddy was looking the right direction.


Oh buddy!  You look great on top of our tree!



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Snapshots

Someone turned the camera on me!


But that doesn't mean that I missed my shot.  My aspiring photographer.


We can't leave Don out of this.


And a joint effort.  Smooches!


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Ground Zero Day

We took Corky and Meg in to the city on Monday to visit the Ground Zero site.  You need to reserve the tickets ahead of time but they are free.   We took a train in that runs directly from Newark Penn Station to the World Trade Center.   It's a bargain at $4.00 round trip and the ride is only 20 minutes.  I think we just discovered a new way to get in to the city.

Don took the day off, but there was too much going on at work to not check his blackberry frequently.  He also had a conference call with his boss later in the day.  Poor guy.  

The motion and gentle sounds of the train put one little guy right to sleep.



This is the World Trade Center (WTC) train station.  Lots of construction going on and lots of construction workers around.




The light and very reflective buildings were wreaking havoc on my photography so some of the photos may look a little funky, like this one below.   You can see the Freedom Tower (or WTC 1) on the left.


This is the South Memorial Pool with the yet unopened Museum in the background.  The names of all those lost in 9/11 are etched in bronze around 2 separate pools.  

The 2,983 names of the victims of the 9/11 and 1993 attacks are inscribed in bronze parapets surrounding the twin Memorial pools. The arrangement of names is based on a system of “meaningful adjacencies” that reflect where the victims were on 9/11 and relationships they shared with others who were lost that day. Broadly, names are placed within nine primary groups and within those groups, names are arranged by affiliation, so that the employees of a company or passengers of a flight are together. The arrangement also honors more than 1,200 requests made by victims’ next-of-kin and surviving colleagues for specific names to be next to one another .  


You can see the special attention that was given to this tree.  

All but one of the Memorial trees are swamp white oaks.  The one that is not is a Callery pear tree, known as the Survivor Tree because it once stood on the original WTC plaza. After 9/11, it was nursed back to health and now thrives again at the site.




A family self portrait taken in the reflection of the museum.


A reflection of the Freedom Tower in the museum.


After all the heavy stuff of Ground Zero, we walked to the other side of the island to Southstreet Seaport.  It's a busting pier with restaurants, shops, water taxis, tall ships, etc.   We had lunch outside overlooking the water on a beautiful day.




It was great to check out some new sites in NYC and experience the city without having to drive in.  A great day all around!

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Red Bank

Corky and Meg visited for a pre-Thanksgiving celebration.   Quinn was excited to have his Grandpa and Grandma Meg here because he gets lots of extra attention.   On Sunday morning we all headed to the gym for a 9:30 am Spin class.  The teacher was very helpful to the two newbies we brought along but he was also one of the tougher teachers we've had in a while.  But, we all survived and were energized to start our day.

We headed south east to the little town of Red Bank which is known for it's arty and eclectic downtown area.  It also has a nice river waterfront.  We had a hard time keeping the little one sand and water free.









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Oh What a Night

What is going on here?


Quinn often finds unique places to hide and watch his video.  You can often find him under a kitchen stool or under the kitchen table.  In this case, he decided to lie down in the alcove by the door to the garage to watch a video.  I'm not sure how much time had passed before Don and I noticed it was pretty quiet over there.  He was sound asleep at 7 pm.


This is a tricky situation for us.  Do we put him to bed and hope he sleeps through the night or wake him up knowing he'll be up until 11 pm?  We decided to put him to bed.   Bad move.  He woke up at 11 pm and was up until about 8 am.  Oh What a Night!


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The Buddy Picnic

When I pick Quinn up from school, there is always lots of stuff in his cubby.   Sometimes it's fun stuff like the dream catcher he made at school today.  Other times it's business related non-fun stuff.  I was really excited when I saw this in his cubby a week or so ago.



We let Quinn pick out any stuffed animal he wanted and he chose the buddy.  This stuffed animal was given to Don and I by mom after Apollo died in 2003 (?).  Don and I used to have so much fun with this buddy hiding him in each other's suit cases and other funny places to surprise each other.  Quinn has also taken a liking to him and was very excited to take him to school for a picnic.  He even wore a special tie shirt for the picnic  :)


It was sprinkling just a tiny bit the day of the picnic and Quinn asked me to use the umbrella, which we didn't have in the car.  Instead he zipped the buddy up in his jacket to stay dry and warm.  This camera-toting mama was sorry I didn't capture that image but it was very sweet.  Quinn and the buddy had a great time at school and enjoyed a great big cracker for their picnic.

Today when I picked up Quinn from school I found this in his cubby.


Just one more reason to love Sundance.

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November Fun

On Tuesday we had two very fun playdates at our house.  Lots of boy fun was had.  After a playdate, Quinn always needs a little down time.  He likes to curl up in the recliner and watch TV or a little video.  



We are having some unseasonably warm weather so we all went outside to enjoy before it started raining.  Our street is a mess with leaves and branches waiting for the town to come by and take them away.  But Quinn and Lucas had a great time racing down the driveway and crashing in to the giant leaf pile at the end of the street.





The pumpkin that Quinn painted over a month ago at Terhune Farms has survived the weather and the squirrels.  He's been asking to make a Jack-o-Lantern so tonight we finally got around to carving our pumpkin.  Quinn was telling me exactly how to carve it.  The pumpkin had to have two triangle eyes, a triangle nose, and a happy face not a scary one.   It was alot of "Miss Bess said to....".  And "Mrs. A said to never touch the stem...".  It's nice to hear him relay what he's learned from school.

Here are our two little pumpkins.



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Canoe Trip

On Saturday we headed south to Princeton to take a canoe trip down the D & R Canal.   Quinn was pretty excited and even got his own little Quinn sized paddle.   Off we go.











We expected to see more fall foliage but the trees were pretty brown.


A view over my shoulder of the canoe captain.  Don did a great job of keeping us on course.



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