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December 14, 2006

Who Needs Expedia When I’ve Got You?

Bill and I are taking the boys to New York after Christmas. We’ll hang with Aunt Lulu and Uncle P and the new baby some, but we’ll spend a lot of time out on the town. We already have plenty of activities planned: Korean barbecue, Dylan’s Candy Bar, the Rockettes, Chinatown, the Brooklyn Art Museum and so forth.

I also have individual outings planned with each child, including Porter and Mama’s Sushi-Eating Extravaganza, Drew and Mama’s Knifty Knife Purchase and Finn and Mama’s Search for Cool Threads.

I’m always looking for ideas on things to do with the kids. They went to the Museum of Natural History and the ESPN Zone when I had my spine surgery up there.

Finn is 11 — does anyone have a suggestion as to where to find him some cool shirts that hopefully are less expensive than Abercrombie? I’m not sure he’s quite big enough to fit into Urban Outfitters, but that problem will probably solve itself naturally within the next couple of months.

The boys will eat pretty much anything although I haven’t offered them escargot yet, so restaurant recommendations are welcome as well. We’ll travel by cab, bus or subway but are headquartered on the Upper East Side (Land Of The Expensive French Bistros). We like to eat at cheaper places.

All right readers– show me what you’ve got! Thanks!

Posted by Anne Glamore @ 10:21 am • Glamorous Escapades,Wanderlust: Travel Tales   

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19 Responses to “Who Needs Expedia When I’ve Got You?”

  1. You can always take them to Serendipity 3 for some frozen hot chocolates! Yummy!

  2. Take Finn to H&M. Super trendy, super cheap. The quality isn’t amazing (though it is dramatically better than, say, Old Navy), but it sounds like he’s growing fast enough that it won’t be an issue. Plus… you’ll find great stuff for yourself, too.

  3. Take Finn walking down lower Broadway (b’twn Canal & St. Mark’s Place.) Tons and tons of cool clothing shops and most of them are pretty inexpensive since they cater to the NYU crowd. Also take him to Love Saves the Day, a great funky thrift store.

    Re: Food. Some of the best (and cheapest) food in NYC can be gotten from street vendors. At lunchtime, look for the vendors with the longest lines. The locals know what they’re doing.

    Chinatown has great dim sum and also great inexpensive food for dinners. Venture out to Brooklyn for better prices as well.

    There is also a Brooklyn Children’s museum and the Brooklyn Children’s Zoo (small but fun).

    Also in Brooklyn is the less crowded of the two big public ice-skating rinks.

    If the weather is nice, a walk across the Brooklyn bridge is good. You can get food when you’re done on either side with just a short stroll.

    The submarine is still where the Intrepid was.

    The fabulous union square farmer’s market is open year-round, but I don’t remember if it’s Wednesdays and Saturdays or what.

    There is an absolutely fabulous library down on W.10th Street and 6th Avenue, just one block away from Rays Pizza. It used to be a court house and it was my favorite place to go when I was 11.

  4. I agree with liz… I just moved to NYC from the south and the absolute BEST thing I’ve done since I’ve been here is walking across the Brooklyn Bridge at night after having pizza at Grimaldi’s in Brooklyn- it’s famous, not too expensive, really good and has an awesome atmosphere, esp for the boys. You’ll have to wait in line, but it’s totally part of the experience. The walk isn’t too long and should be a fun outing for three active boys. Once you cross to Manhattan, it is easy to hop on the 6 to get to the Upper East Side. Do it! You won’t regret it!

  5. Anne, have you ever asked the guys at the Summit Abercrombie to show you the clearance stuff in the back? I have two boys, 7 and 11, and purchased the long sleeve button down (regularly $39.50) for $3.90 during the summer. Also, I’ve found the t-shirts for $6.90/regularly $15.50, swimsuits $9.90/regularly $29.50, belts $6.90/regularly $44.50, etc.

    I buy the t-shirts as birthday gifts, and all of the boys love them.

    The Galleria store doesn’t put out nearly the sale merchandise that the Summit store does, so try it first. My older son has a red t-shirt that he’s worn now for 3 years that is still as thick and sturdy as it was when I bought it. The only trick I have is to hang them to dry instead of the dryer, then you’ll just have to press them each morning as you’re warming up their boxers with the iron!!

  6. I’ve never been to NYC, so I don’t have any personal advice, but I do have a kids guide book, and something that strikes me that your boys might like is Chelsea Piers. The guidebook says that it’s a 30-acre “sports city.” They can roller skate, inline skate, or skateboard there, as well as having two giant gyms with deep foam diving pits, and stuff like balance beams, trampolines, and regular gymnastic stuff, AND a huge rock-climbing wall. The facility also has ice hockey, swimming, golf, bowling, and just about any other sport you can think of! I want to go! Can I hitch a ride with you? The guide lists the contact ifo as “Pier 62, 23rd Street on the Hudson River.” http://www.chelseapiers.com It’s open from 6am to midnight. This is what I thought of first when you mentioned that you were looking for ideas.

  7. If you’re going to be getting Korean BBQ, I recommend checking out Pinkberry in Koreatown.

    In response to Jenni’s post, be aware of the weather if you choose to walk over the bridge; the winds are killer, and it’s usually not until the dead center when you realize you’re frozen solid.

  8. I agree with Amelia about H&M – I’m pretty sure some of the bigger ones have a kids’ section. Even if they don’t, the men’s stuff is SO TINY in the small sizes that it’d probably fit Finn.

    As for cheap awesome places to eat – I heartily second Grimaldi’s, but also Westville in the West Village, very chill and friendly with great comfort food. And for a slight splurge that you and Bill will LOVE, get some afternoon pizza and a cheese platter at Otto, on 5th ave and 8th St. And on the plus side, that place is so loud and bustling (and AWESOME) that no one would even notice three boys. Lastly, if the weather permits, and you want to show the boys some real New York pasttime, grab falafels at Mamoun’s on McDougal and take them to Washington Square Park and watch the denizens of the Village go by.

    Other stuff you should definitely consider doing with them – Museum of the Moving Image in Astoria is REALLY hands-on and awesome, kids absolutely love it. There’s so much to touch and try. Also consider letting them rent bikes in Central Park if the weather permits and doing the Park Loop on a weekend. OH, and don’t miss the Brooklyn Children’s Museum.

    Email me when you’re in town if you want any last-minute suggestions!

  9. I agree with Amelia about H&M – I’m pretty sure some of the bigger ones have a kids’ section. Even if they don’t, the men’s stuff is SO TINY in the small sizes that it’d probably fit Finn.

    As for cheap awesome places to eat – I heartily second Grimaldi’s, but also Westville in the West Village, very chill and friendly with great comfort food. And for a slight splurge that you and Bill will LOVE, get some afternoon pizza and a cheese platter at Otto, on 5th ave and 8th St. And on the plus side, that place is so loud and bustling (and AWESOME) that no one would even notice three boys. Lastly, if the weather permits, and you want to show the boys some real New York pasttime, grab falafels at Mamoun’s on McDougal and take them to Washington Square Park and watch the denizens of the Village go by.

    Other stuff you should definitely consider doing with them – Museum of the Moving Image in Astoria is REALLY hands-on and awesome, kids absolutely love it. There’s so much to touch and try. Also consider letting them rent bikes in Central Park if the weather permits and doing the Park Loop on a weekend. OH, and don’t miss the Brooklyn Children’s Museum.

    Email me when you’re in town if you want any last-minute suggestions!

  10. I definitley agree with all of the previous comments, especially Grimaldis! There’s also a pizzeria and an incredible view. Get away from the crowds and go to the park between the bridges – the night view is spectacular.
    If you are going on a sushi splurge fest, I suggest you go to a place that has all you can eat for a reasonable price. If you’re interested in visiting Brooklyn, Bay Ridge has a great all you can eat sushi place called Fontana. Not sure I remember the address, but once you’re there ask just about any Russian and they will point you in the right direction – it’s a great place to eat some raw fish and be surrounded by the Russian crowd. Also, if you have a good weather day, dress warm and go to Brighton Beach – there are lots of awesome places there with cheap food (can you say oily, delicious, meat and cabbage stuffed pastries? 1 dollar?? YESSSS!!) You can also take the kids to the Boardwalk that runs the length of Brighton Beach and Coney Island and see the theme park in it’s hibernating for the winter mode. There might even be a minor-league baseball game, you’d have to check the schedule.
    In terms of shopping, definitely check out Broadway between Chinatown and St. Marks.
    The Union Sq. Farmers market is open on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.
    If you get some alone time with the hubby, I would recommend an indian restaurant on UES called Yuva. It’s excellent and romantic šŸ˜‰
    Definitely go to Mamoun’s and sit and eat in Washington Sq. Park. Another place is called Shade Bar that operates a take-away creperie during the day – VERY TASTY! That’s on West 3rd right next to the park.
    Another adult activity would be to go to this Belgian Beer Bar that serves the best fries in the city along with some very taste belgian beer. You want mussels? They have them. That’s West 4th right off 6th Ave.
    If you have any Qs, email me and I will be happy to come up with more ideas.

  11. if you are going to grimaldi’s, you might as well get dessert at the bklyn ice cream factory. right on the waterfront (maybe chilly, altho not if our springlike weather continues) and yummy!

  12. Can’t help with shopping, but one of our favorite things to do is go to wolman rink ice skating in central park. Also, there are great rocks to climb on that you have to drag the boys away from. The central park zoo is also fun and nearby…what’s that animated movie from last year that was based on the zoo? Intrepid is also great for boys. I think you can also skate at bryant park behind the public library….There’s also Nintendo world and Sony WOnderlab…but if you don’t want to encourage the video game scene, steer clear of that. Serendipity is a treat..you can make reservations too. (and it’s right by dylans). Be careful at Dylans, my husband ended up with $27 worth of m&m’s! The top of the rock observation tower at rockefeller center is also worth the trip. If you want to get show tickets…theatremania.com and broadwaybox.com are good for discounts. There’s a show at the union square theatre called Slava’s snow show which is a little off the wall, but fun for kids. Blueman group is always a hit with the boys. Also, my son loved wicked (almost as much as his sister).

    Have a blast!

  13. I’m thousands of miles away in the UK but I want to go too!!!sounds great we need more kids stuff here that isnt hugely expensive and usually sold out!

  14. The Modern Museum of Art would boost their creative minds. So would the Guggenheim. Since you are staying close to the Metropolitan I would at least take the older son to see the Egyptian tombs.

  15. I’ve lived on the Upper West for years, but just finished grad school in the Village, land of cheap food AND cheap clothing for everyone. Try getting off at Bleecker (on the 6, from the Upper East) and walking West. You’ll find falafel, John’s Pizza (kind of like Grimaldi’s, but the neighborhood’s more fun), Cones Ice Cream, Bruno’s – cookies for the boys, and amazing gelato and rich desserts/coffee for you guys, and my personal favorite, the Indian Bread Company. It has the best naan and paratha I’ve ever had in the city, and there are lots of kid-friendly options there. There are many more places that I can’t remember, but the walk is always fun. There are lots of novelty shops for the boys. I have taken my family to some/all of these places on Bleecker, sometimes on the same trip, never spent more than TWENTY a person on the entire trip… and I have rolled home happy, most of the time with a new dud or two for myself. Have fun!

  16. shopping in soho can be a bear but there’s a new shop called Uniqlo, flagship, new store from japan, inexpensive, cool shirts. http://www.uniqlo.com/us/stores/ny_soho_store.html
    also, you can check out H&M which is virtually next door. north from there on broadway, there is an urban outfitters, i don’t know how big finn is, but they have a great selection of t-shirts, even in size small. i spent an hour in there deliberating over my brother’s hanukah gift. t-shirts abound make choosing tough.
    serendipity sounds like a good recommendation – right around the corner from dylan’s actually. patsy’s is always a crowd pleaser, for pizza. chelsea piers can be fun, but it’s kind of off the beaten path – for sporty activities. not sure you all are into golf but you can hit balls in the direction of the river from three stories up. it’s kind of a thrill. and feels death-defying because of the height. good times. šŸ™‚

    HAVE FUN!

  17. I think most of these have been covered, but here are some notes/recommendations:

    * When going for Korean BBQ, plan to go straight home afterwards, or risk the stares of anyone within smelling distance. Though delicious, you will reek of carcus until showering, and even then the smell may still escape through your pores! You and Bill should order some green soju, if you care for an adult beverage. Tasty, but strong, so be forewarned. My favorite places in K-town are Kunjip and Kum Gang San. Order the tongue and the kalbi and prepare to eat yourself silly. Mmmmmmm!

    * Serendipity 3 is awesome for their frozen hot chocolate, as well as for lunch. Be sure to make a reservation, though! It is very busy almost year round.

    * The Empire State Building is now open until midnight! It might be the only reasonable thing to consider doing after a Korean BBQ dinner, since the wind would theoretically blow the stink off!

    * Chinatown and Canal Street are always interesting, and I imagine that kids would get a kick out of some of the shops lining the packed streets. Since you said the boys are cool with different foods, I would recommend that you check out 88 Palace, located at 88 East Broadway, for some dim sum. It’s super cheap and located right under the Manhattan Bridge.

    * Walking over the Brooklyn Bridge on a warm sunny day would be wonderful, but as previously mentioned, it can get frigid out there! We’ve been having some unseasonably warm weather lately, so it might be a good way to tire the boys out, or digest after a big lunch.

    * Speaking of big lunches, if you want to be fed more than anyone ever should consider eating, check out La Mela in Little Italy for some pretty hefty family style Italian. It’s a very gaudy, goofy restaurant that offers huge portions of tasty (if not exactly high class) food. Also excellent is Picolo Angolo, which is in the West Village.

    * I fully support the H&M suggestion. It should work out for sure, most certainly if you go to the one near Herald Square (I believe), which houses a kids’ department.

    * It may have been mentioned already, but the Intrepid moved to NJ to undergo restoration recently.

    Have a great time!!

  18. My favorite city! Have a wonderful Christmas there! I have no real suggestions, though I love to go to Joe Allen’s after a show, there is usually someone famous eating there. Are you going to any plays?
    Although the Rainbow Room is cool because of the view, last time we went the service and food were HORRIBLE. Horrid.

    Have fun and be careful!

  19. […] One year ago in My Tiny Kingdom: Who Needs Expedia When I’ve Got You? […]

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I'm Anne Glamore, wife, mother, lawyer and blogger. I have three boys, and I'm desperately trying to train them to become Southern gentlemen, but that may be an unrealistic goal. At this point I'd be ecstatic if they'd quit farting at the dinner table. If you're new here, check out the Readers' Favorite Posts below or browse through the Categories. I write about my attempts to teach the boys about peckers and sex (which we call "making googly eyes"), my struggles with hepatitis C and spine surgery, the boys' adventures with fire and pets, my mom's death from ovarian cancer, my love of cooking (with plenty of recipes) and anything else that crosses my mind. Join me on Twitter or StumbleUpon or Email me. I'm happy to speak to your group or club.

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