Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Vacation is officially O.V.E.R.

We got back into town late Friday night and to say I was naive about going back to reality is an understatement. 

Boston had tryouts for a traveling baseball team early Saturday morning then it was just going to be a lazy day by the pool.... which it was, but then we had Madi's parents vs players game (where almost no other parents showed up), Sunday lazy day as well... then Monday came - BOOM - reality hit me in the face!!

Boston's new team had asked him on Saturday if he could come watch 1 of the 4 games they had this week to make sure he wanted to play and then to come to batting practice on Thursday...no big deal, 1 game, added to Madi's dance on Monday & Thursday...WRONG.  They called him about an hour before we were going to leave for the game & dance and asked if he wanted to play.  So, I went to St. Joe with Madi for dance & acro, while DJ took Boston to Savannah for baseball.  Savannah is about 25 minutes PAST St. Joe.  His game didn't start until 7:30 and Madi's acro class got over at 7:50, so we headed that way to watch the end of his game.  After the game they asked if he would be able to play in the Tuesday double header games, of course he said yes.  Those games were at 5:30 & 7:30, it is HOT at 5:30 (this is me whining!!)  At 5:30 the temperature was 99* with the heat index making it 110*.  The boys complained a little, but not nearly as much as all the adults just sitting and watching!!  He is loving this team, they are a lot better than his spring league team, but he is by no means the star of the show, which is good, he will work a little harder and learn a lot more now.  They have another game tonight, then batting practice tomorrow night while Madi has dance again.

As of now, the kids have no plans for Friday night - woohoo - but Saturday, Madi has try-outs for competition team at Darcee's.  It's a good thing we just refinanced our house, because we will need the money we saved to pay for all of the gas, equipment, costumes, uniforms, meals, etc etc for all of these added events for our minions.

I am a little concerned that one of the two is going to get burnt out, but at this moment, the both of them LOVE what they're doing, so if there's an opportunity for them to keep going instead of taking a break, we're going to let them do it.

Here's to next week being a little quieter . . . Madi's schedule will be the same, but Boston should only have a practice or two and no games... unless they get their tournament scheduled.



Monday, July 8, 2013

Family Vacay to Boston

DAY 1:

Day 1 started off a little early.  We got up at 3am. WHAT was I thinking with a 6:30am flight?!  Oh, well, it went MUCH smoother than we had anticipated!  We made it to Boston by noon (eastern time)... a full day of vacation awaited!!

watching OZ while we waited to board our plane in KC

the kid has it made!!

Madi & I waiting for take off!

such pretty fluffy clouds


We checked into our hotel, which was in the theatre district.  We got all of our clothes put away, the kids checked out every nook & cranny of our room and then off we went to Faneuil Hall/Quincy Market.  First on the agenda was to find lunch because the kids were starving.  We walked through Quincy Market at every food vendor in there, but it was HOT, so we decided to see if there was somewhere close by that you could sit & eat in the air conditioning!  When we got outside there was a street performer starting a show.  This grabbed the kids attention, so we watched for almost an hour until he was done.  After, we went back into Quincy Market where Madi & I chose pizza from Regina's - it was AMAZING - Boston got his first meatball sub (which he LOVED) and DJ got the lobster roll he'd been waiting to have since last time we were here (8yrs ago!)

watching the "amazing Bob" 


While we were in Quincy Market we decided to book a duck tour.  We took a shuttle to the hahbah (harbor) and our drivers name was Bahby, we weren't sure if that was Barbie or Bobbi!!  Anyway, the kids (and I) LOVED the accents of our driver & guide.  We didn't quite get the tour we were expecting, but it was REALLY interesting!  So interesting that MadiGrace fell asleep :)  We saw "old ironsides" the USS Constitution and the meeting place where the Declaration of Independence was first read.  They have read it from that very spot every year since then.

Boston Fire Department

Old State House
-Site of where the Declaration of Independence has been read since it's beginning

Madi Grace asleep on the duck tour

BOSTON





After the ducks it was time to head back towards the hotel.  We did a little shoe shopping for the kids and then came back to the hotel to get cleaned up & figure out what was for dinner.  We looked online at TripAdvisor for something in the north end that was family friendly.  Al Dente had great reviews, so we chose that.  It started off a little rocky, very small place & no one came to see us for quite a while, but after that, everything was great.  The food was amazing!  By the time dinner was over it was pretty late and we had already had a FULL day so we headed for bed!



DAY 2:

Day 2 started a little later!  Madi & I woke up earlier than the boys, so we went out for a little bit to shop for new tennis shoes for her and some coffee for me!  We walked around a few blocks close to our hotel, got coffee, OJ, and some donuts to take back to the boys.

We took the subway to Fenway for lunch at the Cask & Flagon, bought our tickets for the tour & then headed to the Yawkey Way Store where we wanted EVERYTHING!!  We settled for just a couple things each.  We all enjoyed the Fenway tour even though the temperatures were HIGH.  It was really neat to be there when there wasn't a game going on.  I think if we had purchased tickets for the 4 o'clock tour (last one of the day) that we could have seen a lot of players on the field because there were a couple warming up during our tour (3pm).


video
First time for the kids on the subway







our tour guide was really good

some kids go to work with dad at the office, ours go to a restaurant,
this lucky guy was at work with dad at Fenway Park, hitting balls off the Green Monster!!!

view from the Monster seats

Looking down at the Monster





The seat where Ted Williams hit the ball at his last at bat - over 500ft





Larry Lucchino on the street outside of Fenway


We went back to the hotel to rest for a little bit then back to Fenway we went on a very FULL train!  The kids got buttons, bracelets & stickers from fan assistance since it was their first game at Fenway.  Our seats were close to right field, with some great people sitting behind us & a really cool usher.  Once he found out what Boston's name was (I'm guessing the sign helped) he tried to get the kids on the jumbo tron.  He took them both to the front row & pointed them towards a camera.  They never made the jumbo, but it was nice of him to try.  We asked the kids if they wanted to go to a game again the next day & Madi smiled and said yes, Boston smiled shook his head like crazy & then said duhhhhh!  We tried to catch the train back to the theatre district, but the line to get down to it was ridiculous, so we got a cab.


the kids with their AWESOME signs that Suzy made for them!!




These guys in the front row thought Boston's name was SUPER cool and
kept trying to get Shane Victorino's attention.  
"Come on Shane, give the kid a wave, his name is Boston
 - SHANE - SHANE - give the kid a wave!"



the kids LOVED these guys who were making music from the buckets



DAY 3:

Day 3 started off a lot like day 2!  Madi & I woke up, went to get coffee & OJ then did a little shopping at H & M where Madi had to have a dress (she NEVER wears dresses), but we're on vacation, and I love seeing her in a dress, so I said OK.  She asked if she could wear it that day, she got a TON of compliments on it, so hopefully she'll wear dresses a little more often (probably not though).  Boston had been asking for lobster since we arrived, so we went to Legal Sea Food (recommended by our concierge) - we were under impressed.  Should have known better than a chain!!  Anyway, after that we headed to the aquarium!  Besides the fact that it was PACKED, we had a great time.

in our dresses :)

LOBSTER!

looking WAY too old!

jellyfish

penguins


biggest turtle I've ever seen!!



After the aquarium we got ready for the game & headed to Fenway, again on a PACKED train!  We even left early because we were meeting a friend of ours we met in Manhattan while he was stationed at Ft. Riley. We met Nick & his sister at Jerry Remy's.  Remy's had a great view of Fenway & the food was tasty!  We got to see a great game with a walk off homer by Gomes.  We went to a train station a little further outbound & was able to get on instead of waiting at the Kenmore station with hundreds of other people who couldn't get on the train at that station because it was already full!  (There were still tons of people at the other station, we just got lucky!!)

A tradition for Smitty - Jager Bombs (yick!)

After Gomes walk-off homerun






DAY 4:

Day 4 started a little later than the previous days.  We've had 3 FULL days of vacation and it must have been wearing on all of us, because we all slept til 9 (or later for some).  Once we got up & around we headed to Pizzeria Regina in North End.  -AMAZING!  If you're in Boston, TRY THIS PLACE!!

This was the St. Anthony - white pizza with 2 sausages, peppers & onions

Madi & I rockin our USA shades

stopping for a splash on our way back from the North End 



We were planning (since before we got here) to go to the Esplande to listen to the Boston Pops and watch the fireworks, but everything we've read says you have to get there at the crack of dawn to get close enough to see the orchestra & if you're that close, you probably won't be able to see the fireworks.  It also says to get a spot along the river close to the shell that you'll need to get there early & plan to stay the entire day.  We saw a lot about watching the fireworks on the Cambridge side of the river where they have speakers set up and there are a LOT less people and family friendly (not that the other side isn't) and you don't have to get there and spend the entire day there just waiting for the show, so we decided to do that.

We at dinner at the red house before heading to the river for the fireworks - the lobster was AMAZING!!


at the only Curious George store in the world where the kids both got new books

Some of the boats on the river waiting for the fireworks

I don't think I've ever seen SOOOOO many people in one place!

video

DAY 5:

Day 5 was all about packin up & getting ready to come home!  We tried going to Sam LaGrassa's on more than one occasion while we were there, but it was completely packed with a line out the door the first day, closed on the 4th and then when we tried going for lunch this day, was closed again.  We were really disappointed, but tried out Rico's down the road.  It was just OK.  We killed some time by walking around the financial district then decided we should probably head to the airport.  Our flight ended up being delayed almost an hour but other than that, we got home just fine!

the kids played a lot of rock - paper - scissors during our delay!!


It was a fabulous trip, but as always, it was nice to get home to our own house!  Thanks to some amazing house sitters (Kelcy & Kelsey) our house was EXACTLY how we left it!  Thanks girls!!