Tuesday, December 23, 2014

The Eve of Christmas Eve

Way back in 1988 -- on this very date, in fact -- we took a picnic to the park. Let me explain the "we." I had just moved to England at the end of October and met some friends named Sarah, Stuart, and Euan. We got this crazy idea to have an "American meal" by way of a picnic in the nearby Lydiard Park (one of my very favorite places to visit whilst living in England).

It was freezing cold and damp, the kind of cold that penetrates through whatever you're wearing and makes you cold down to your toes. We took peanut-butter-and-jam sandwiches, salt-and-vinegar crisps, a pint of milk, and Euan was kind enough to find a can of Schweppes American ginger ale (I'd mistaken ginger beer for ginger ale at our first time out as a group) for me.

It was fun. We were young, crazy, and silly. People stared as they passed. But a memory was made. I think Stuart and I remember it more vividly and with far more nostalgia than the day deserves, but it's still fun.

Years later, in the heart of our living room, we decided to revive the "Eve of Christmas Eve picnic in the park" idea with the same menu...and our kids. It's been a fun remembrance with them.

Fast forward to this year. and we decided to go one further and picnic in Central Park with them. We didn't quite make it to the park (it was the "perfect" weather) due to the wetness. Still, a memory was made.

Our first stop was a surprise visit with Santa in Macy's Santaland.
Ethan had requested this earlier in the season, but we didn't think we'd get there. When he told Santa he had been hoping to see him, Santa said he wondered when Ethan was going to come and visit, that he'd been waiting for him. Ethan was amazed!

We made it to Central Park, but we were so tired and cold 
that we decided to forego having our picnic there.

Our "selfie"

The Build-a-Bear Workshop was on our list of places to visit.

Ethan found a huge bucket of Nutella.

Waiting for the subway.

Edward found a newly-retired LEGO set he'd been wanting...
the last set in FAO Schwartz. Christmas money well-spent!

Emily used her Christmas money for some sale clothing
she found at Aeropostale in Times Square.

Love visiting our lion friends outside the New York Public Library.

And we finally got our "picnic" (the one that Stuart lugged all around New York City for us): our own homemade sandwiches and salt-and-vinegar crisps. We had some Schweppes ginger ale in the car, but we enjoyed that at a later date. 
This year's picnic included Starbucks.

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