Tuesday, April 10, 2007

NYC Vacation - Day 2

(Photos on the way)

Exhausted. Next time we fly, we won't make the mistake of getting up in the wee hours to take the earliest flight possible. The good news for today is we are starting off with just walking around Times Square and taking in some of the shopping.

Emily and I woke up early and quietly headed out to pick up breakfast. We weren't sure what to expect and after the previous night wanted to relax in the room to eat, so with coffee, OJ and other assorted breakfast goodies we headed back to surprise Dad and big sis Katie with breakfast. I hadn't been sure about staying around Times Square(42nd Street), however, it turned out to be very convenient and more fun for the kids than other areas might have been. It's easy to find little shops and eateries - oh and a Starbucks on every corner.

We headed out around 10:30 and just started walking toward 44th via 8th. There were some souvenir type shops we had seen the night before. My favorite is a nicer theater shop on 44th I think called Circle Theater. (268 W. 44th) I don't know why the address sticks with me and not the exact name of the shop. The shop carries song books, books, nicer souvenirs and the atmosphere is a bit more book shop than souvenir shop. We picked up something nice for my mother and headed to Broadway.

The girls had fun taking pictures of all the "adverts" as they call them and checking out the shops. Our second stop was Virgin Records. They were having a $10 CD sale and with three stories packed with music, tee shirts, videos, games and accessories, there was plenty to see and do. My girls love music and they both found CDs. Em picked up a game for her Gameboy and Kates purchased a tee shirt. They both found iPod cases with the Virgin Record logo on them in a small clearance cubby. Hubby picked up a few CDs. If you have teens into music, this is a must-see to put on your list.

After we exited Virgin Records we noticed the huge Hersey store display and we started heading that way. We had no idea there was a triple level M&M store across the street. We visited the Hersey store, which honestly has more going on outside than in, but the highlight between the two was the M&M store. We had fun taking pictures and looking at the merchandise. Emily picked out a tee shirt and I bought a mug. We were doing our utmost best to bolster the NYC economy this morning. Tourist tip - this shop was great for all ages.

After more picture-taking we stopped to have lunch. I remember having hotdogs from the street vendors when I was a little girl. I thought those were the best hotdogs I'd ever eaten, so I'd been talking them up. Hubby, Katie and I had a dog, but Ems wanted a pretzel. A pretzel for lunch? What the heck. It's vacation, right? We grabbed sodas and waters and headed back to the hotel room to store our loot.

We had planned the afternoon for our visit to the Empire State Building. It was several blocks away from the hotel and since our feet were a bit rested we decided to walk. It was still pretty cold and we had found out by checking the web site that the wait could be up to two hours. Ugh! It really wasn't a bad walk and Macy's had its windows decked out for the spring flower show. (sorry for the reflections)

Katie enjoyed seeing the New York versions of some of her favorite stores and shopping in a few of them. As we approached the ESB we noticed the line wrapped around the building and up the sidewalk. We waited for about 20 minutes when we heard the folks ahead of us talking about a three hour wait. Yikes! We decided to bag it and try again the next day.

Fortunately, we did some great souvenir shopping on the walk back to the hotel and then ducked into a fun little local pizzeria on 6th (I think) not too far from the hotel. Abitino's has great pizza and friendly staff. We had tried a couple of others, but they wouldn't make plain pasta for the anti-sauce youngest. Fortunately, Abitino's was happy to oblige and we had fun eating without a long wait.

Party animals we are not. After a couple of long days, we were all ready to pass out. With both the Met and the Empire State Building planned for our final full day in NYC, we were going to need to get some sleep.


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