Thursday, December 11, 2014

Thanksgiving weekend

We drove to New Jersey for Thanksgiving to visit my sister-in-law and meet our new 4-month old niece.  This fall has been very hectic and over scheduled, so my little family of four really appreciated the time together.  We stopped in Pittsburgh on the way.  My son has been accepted at Pitt for fall 2015, and we wanted to take another peek at campus and the city:

I had been there once before, in the summer of 1997, and was surprised then by how pretty a city it is. It looked even lovelier with fresh snow coating everything.  I think my son would be happy living there, but he is still considering all his options.

Then on to New Jersey! My sister-in-law lives in Jersey City, right across the river from Manhattan.  We spent two days being crazy busy tourists.

from top of the Rockefeller Center

from top of the Rockefeller Center

from top of the Rockefeller Center

Empire State Building from top of the Rockefeller Center

new World Trade Center

9/11 Memorial

9/11 Memorial

Washington Square Park

Ellis Island

Registry Room at Ellis Island

Statue of Liberty as seen from Ellis Island

The 9/11 Memorial is in the footprint of the towers.  I spent a lot of time fighting tears while we were in that part of the city.  I don't personally know anyone who died in the attacks, but the world changed that day, and all the imagery from that day replayed vividly in my mind. The memorial is in the footprint of the towers.  The motion of the water, rushing down into the pool and then down again to a seemingly bottomless pit was gorgeous and also disturbing.  Down, down, down, everything down.  I felt overwhelmed.

We also visited Ellis Island.  My grandmother came through there in 1913, and even though she was only 4 years old, she remembered her arrival and talked about it from time to time. I wanted to be there to see it for myself.  Some of the displays corroborated with her stories, which fascinated me and made me feel close to her.

If you visit Ellis Island, you are also required to visit Liberty Island, where the Statue of Liberty is.  Our ferry tickets gave us access to the pedestal, which would get us up to her feet, but the lines were so long that we didn't bother.  We did ask about tickets to the crown, and those you need to reserve 2 months in advance!

I also insisted on visiting Purl Soho.  What kind of crafty blogger would I be if I didn't stop in? I bought two skeins of yarn in colors that reminded me of a New York City winter afternoon, and I will make myself something cozy to commemorate my trip there.

 All photos except the last 3 were taken by my husband with our little point-and-shoot.  I opted not to bring my DSLR on this trip because I knew the days would be long and on foot, and I didn't want to carry it around. I knew I'd be sad not to have it, and yes, indeed, my fingers itched to have it so many times!!  I thought I'd be okay with just the camera on my phone, but it's been taking rubbish photos lately (painfully obvious on the two I took inside Purl Soho).