After spending three weeks in California, the four of us came back with a penchant for all things urban and quintessential New York City. Ok, the other three probably didn’t miss this place as much as I did even for the teeny blip of time we were gone, but my skin was crawling for the city.

Crawling.

So, the first weekend we were back we took to the streets. We started with Times Square, on a Saturday. Let it be known that this is one of my least favorite things to do in NYC on one of the worst days to do it, but that’s how hard up I was. I wanted the lights and noise and sheer grandiosity of it all.

So we left our apartment and just started walking. That is the beauty of this city: A billion destinations and no need for a car or umpteen trips in and out of a car seat. THAT, is freedom.

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We stopped at the Disney store and picked up a couple of things and then headed to the American Museum of Natural History. This museum is in my top five most favorite things about New York City… There’s always something new to see, it’s familiar and changing and always entertaining. And, to top it off, we recently discovered the water park on the terrace in front of the planetarium.

Coupled with a couple of burgers and hot dogs from Shake Shack on the nearest corner, we had ourselves the best picnic ever.

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City picnic

His first summer.

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I can’t help but think about these experiences and just sort of bask in the beauty of them. Beau is learning to crawl/walk in the fountains of the American Museum of Natural History while Jack and Justin practice catching ball. While I’m enjoying the moments as they are happening, I find myself scrambling to snap them too. I just hope my memories are as clear as the photos I’m taking years down the line.

We walked home through Central Park while the kids ate popcicles and climbed rocks. There is no shortage of entertaining events happening in the park any given day, but on weekends it can be a real spectacle. We caught a small concert, a play, and a roped off dancing roller “rink”. The kids had the most fun just climbing rocks and running in the grass, being kids.

One Million Acts of Kindness

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I admit that I haven’t been quite as ambitious as the last two years, taking the kids out on adventures like this by myself. I have tried them without Justin, but especially now that Beau is very mobile, my attention just cannot be split evenly amongst all three. I’m always watching the baby to make sure he isn’t eating something he shouldn’t/pulling himself up on something he shouldn’t/crawling into areas he shouldn’t. So the big trips like this-the ones that I used to do all summer with the other two-are few and farther between. We decided against camps or classes for Jack and Zoe mostly because of our travel schedule, so these days during the week we head to the local spray/playgrounds (I like to call them ghetto beaches, but they’re really pretty awesome) with picnic lunches that I make my very own self.

The days are long but the weeks fly by. I can’t remember where I heard that, but it is so totally true. Life with little people is all consuming, crazy-wonderful-exhausting and magical. I’ve taken to Instagram lately and my feed there has really become a diary of my days of sorts. Short, quick, and sometimes just the perfect way to memorize a moment that I might otherwise forget to remember.

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I practically stood on my head trying to get this reaction. All it took was a look from Zoe.

There's just something about brothers

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You can find me and these photos on Instagram, @MommasGoneCity.

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{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

Loukia July 31, 2012 at 4:06 am

How true is that… the days are long but the weeks fly by… sigh.
It’s so important to cherish all these moments, all these memories… it hurts my heart, just thinking how quickly my children are growing!
Lovely pictures as usual, J. xo

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Patty July 31, 2012 at 1:07 pm

I love every word and picture in this post. You really captured NYC living :) I can believe how much all three kids have grown…they are just gorgeous!

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Marta July 31, 2012 at 5:18 pm

Oh I love love love all of your photos. I also think its adorable that they are both wearing their NYC shirts in your day about the town. Makes me feel like I really should venture out into the city more, but I get so comfortable in the suburban ease.

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Monica July 31, 2012 at 5:19 pm

The photos of your family are lovely. It looks like you are really enjoying your time together and taking advantage of all the awesome things that the city has to offer. I too struggle with being fully present in special moments…yet trying to capture them on film. I do think that looking back on photos is a way to capture precious times forever…besides recalling memories in my mind..I’m so glad to visually revisit them.

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Ashley July 31, 2012 at 11:59 pm

Good for you – I avoid times square like the plaque! Usually my idea of adventurous is letting them play in the water at the playground (lame, I know…).

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wendy @ mama one to three August 1, 2012 at 3:16 pm

I love how I recognize every single place of your adventures. ;) how do I not run into you more often? Your story is inspiring, as is your smile. See you soon! xo

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Phoenix preschools August 3, 2012 at 4:38 pm

Love you posts and pictures!!! So lovely!!! :D

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Kat August 10, 2012 at 3:49 am

I am loving all these shots! You’ve inspired me to mosey downtown with my kids and take a picture of my own city!….errr…one of these days. They are precious, aren’t they?

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Elaine A. September 11, 2012 at 3:39 am

I think it’s so amazing that you are there, raising your kids in one of THE most amazing cities in the world. I truly <3 NYC! And I love watching your life on Instagram. :)

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