A neighborhood walk

A few of you have already done Google Street View to scope out just where Joe, Brook and Henry have moved to...but in case you haven't...or aren't sure how, I thought it would be fun to give you a glimpse.

When you walk out of our apartment door, you enter a small hallway area that is common to the 3 apartments in the home we live in.  Our landlady has it decorated, it's very homey and welcoming:

Through that door you find this view:

Go down the first set of stairs and glance to the right:

Henry was quite excited to see that I put his toys out in the garden.

Back down the stairs and through the white gate

Turn right and head toward Ditmars Blvd, one of the main streets in Astoria.
Our house is the third on the block.  An alley way separates the shops on Ditmars from the houses.

Whomever painted the sign on the roadway must have a 2 year old, "no, no!"  And don't you just love how there IS a car parked there?  Sometimes there are 2 or 3!

After the alleyway you can smell it.  It being the bakery.  Martha's Country Bakery.  The smell of donuts and cupcakes.  All with lovely outdoor seating.  Joe purchased two cupcakes from them the other night, one peanut butter and one vanilla with chocolate frosting.  Both were tasty, but the peanut butter was mmmmm, mmmmm, mmmmm!

Standing on the corner of 37th Street (our street) and Ditmars, facing south, you see Alba's Pizza across the street.

Henry already recognizes this as the "Pizza Store" and often asks if we are going there for lunch or dinner.

To the left (east) is the dry cleaners, a cheap Chinese food place (we have yet to eat at) and the grocery store.

A look at Ditmars, still facing the same direction (east).

Alright, let's head west, walking toward 31st Street where the train is.  On our same block, next to Alba's, is a hardware store.

This shop has a bunch of stuff in it.  Household needs (such as soap), toys, and random junk no one really needs.  These "99 cent and up" type stores are very common.

We are still on our block...a deli we have yet to try, but I've read good things about.

Two good lookin' guys walking down the street.

And lookee...another bakery.  We haven't tried this one yet.

I'm not exactly sure what this locked box on the street corner is...but it's decorated with various stickers which is not at all surprising.

Walking a bit further down the street we see Brooklyn Bagel & Coffee Company.  We have tried this place and it is tasty.  Joe purchased some bagels for his breakfasts and the other day I got us a couple sandwiches.  The bagels are HUGE!  and delicious.  Surprisingly, I have yet to try their coffee!

On the same block is this little shop.  We went inside the other day and they sell all sorts of hardware type items and household goods.  We purchased a metal cart from here that we use for hauling big loads, like for laundry...or toting home an air conditioner from 2 miles away.

It's very common for these types of stores to have a bunch of stuff on the sidewalk for sale.

And guess what?  Another bakery!  We haven't tried this one either.

One cool kid.

Also along the street is a butcher.
"Greek & Italian Specialties" is what the awning reads.

Across the street is a very popular, and well known Greek restaurant called Taverna Kyclades...the blue awnings between the trees.  They have quite a bit of outdoor seating and the sidewalk area is very narrow here.  There is often a wait for seating, so sometimes navigating with the stroller though this area is an adventure.

There are several sushi restaurants in our neighborhood - I've heard this one is good...Watawa.

We are almost to 31st Street now.  There is big bank on our left with a few benches that are almost always full with people waiting for the bus.

The corner of 31st and Ditmars is a busy intersection.

Looking to the left (South) as we cross 31st Street.  The bridge you see there with the billboard on it is the train.

I bought strawberries from this guy the other day for $2 which I thought was a good deal.  Then I saw them for 99 cents and now they are 3 for $4.

Walking down 31st toward the train

You never know what you might see on a New York City street...

Passing the stairs for the train.  This has recently been changed - it was the N and W stop, but as of June 27 some major changes are being done to subway and bus routes and one of them is that the Q line now comes to Astoria and there is no more W train.  It's a bit of a bummer because the W goes directly to Joe's new office.  With the Q coming here instead he'll have to transfer to another train to get to work.

Walking under the train bridge

Just on the other side of the bridge is the post office - which was our final destination on this little walk...so now we are going to turn around and head back toward our house.

But first!  Henry learned a new skill today while he and I were grocery shopping.  He can now show 2 and 3 with his fingers.  He was quite proud when he shouted, "Mommy!  I did it!" in the middle of the cheese section.  Here he demonstrates it for all to see...

Another shot of the train bridge - it's impossible to capture in one shot, it's just massive!

On the other side of the bridge - Key Food, the green awning, across the street is another grocery store.  I haven't been in there yet.

And what do we have here?  Another bakery! AND pizza.  It's Joe's dream come true!

Too bad my name isn't Rose!

Walking down the street just a few feet is a Street Meat stand.  There are a couple more across the street too.  These are usually pretty tasty eats, but we haven't tried any here in Astoria yet.
A typical street view in our neighborhood - just to show you all that YES, there are TREES here! :)
This is our street, 37th.

Here is a better shot of the grocery store on our block.

And the laundromat.

In case you are wondering, $1.75 to wash and $0.25 per 8 minutes to dry.

And the oh-so-wonderful Dunkin' Donuts that is at the corner of 38th and Ditmars.  One block baby!

We went inside for a couple iced coffees and Henry was given a free donut.  He was thrilled!

After our little walk the boys headed to the park, just 1.5 blocks away.  I'll take pictures there soon to share.  I hope this gives you an idea of our little neighborhood that we are finding ourselves liking more and more each day!


Moving - by henry

Grammy and Poppa dropped us off at the airport.  Mommy, Dada and Grammy were all crying.  I didn't quite understand why everything was so sad though.  I waved goodbye and we went into the airport.  We passed by a cool playground, but Mommy said we didn't have time to play - maybe later.  Dada and I sat down and watched the iPad while Mommy went and got coffee and snacks.  Dada took me to the playground, but I only got to play for a few minutes, Mommy needed us.  I played around the waiting chairs and watched the planes instead.  It was fun.  Then it was our turn to get on the plane.  We waited for a long time, but Mommy gave me my camera that Grandma Dar gave me and it took REAL pictures!

A guy.

Mommy didn't like the waiting.  She was being silly.

We started to move a little bit.  I beeped when the plane backed up.

A Ba-Mo! (Mommy's edit: ba-mo = motorcycle.  And this isn't a motorcycle at all, but a scooter.  Close enough for a 2 year old though!)

We weren't allowed to watch the iPad yet and I was bored.  But look, Mommy had ANOTHER surprise for me!

It's BUZZ!
When the plane took off I said, "Bye Grammy!" and I blew her a kiss.  I played with Buzz and some stickers for a while, then we were allowed to watch the iPad.  I watched Monsters Inc.  It's funny.  Then I wanted to take another picture.

My pants.

The plane started moving up and down, up and down.  I got tired and closed my eyes.

Mommy must have taken that one.

When I woke up,


the plane was stopped.  Mommy and DaDa were eating.  I was hungry, but really tired.  Eventually I ate.

It was yummy.  Ham sandwich.

DaDa liked his too.

I was really happy after I ate.  Mommy gave me fruit snacks!
The plane took off again and we watched more on the iPad.  It was fun.

Planes are big.

When the plane stopped again I asked Mommy if we were in New York City.  "Yep" she said.

DaDa was being really funny.  I think he was tired.

We waited for our suitcases.  Mommy changed my diaper too.

No suitcases yet.

My pants.  Again.

My suitcase!
Pretty soon we had all our suitcases and we walked to where there were lots of taxi cabs.  DaDa and all the suitcases got in one that looked like a van.  Mommy and me waited for the bus.

We had to wait a looooooooong time.  I wanted to run around, but Mommy wouldn't let me.  It was hard to sit nice.  The lady sitting next to Mommy liked me.  She was nice.

I wanted to play with Mommy's phone, but she wouldn't let me.
The bench we sat on had some letters on it.  I told Mommy which ones they were.

A bus did come.  We got on with lots of other people.  Mommy had to stand and hold me.  I held onto her very tight like a good boy.  Then the bus driver stopped very quickly and Mommy told the bus driver to not do that.  She wasn't too happy he was a bad driver.  A nice man near us stood up and we sat down.  People said some not so nice things about the bad bus driver.  I looked out the window and saw lots of things.  I saw a digger!

Pretty soon we got off the bus and walked for a little while.  I took a nap.  When Mommy took me out of the stroller I saw all the pretty flowers outside of our new house.  I got out of my stroller and went inside, there was DaDa!!!  Mommy started to take pictures of the new house with her camera, so I did too.

This is the floor in my bedroom.

I'm not sure what that funny thing in my bedroom is.

Mommy kept saying she was tired and hungry, but she was smiling a lot.  So was DaDa.

Here is Mommy and DaDa's room.

We went to eat pizza across the street.  Mommy got something with sausage, but I didn't like it.  DaDa's was better.  We stopped the grocery store and bought me some tube yogurt (Mommy's edit: GoGurt).  Then we went back home.  It was time for sleeping.

DaDa unpacked some of my clothes for bedtime.
Here is Mommy's suitcase, she got her jammies on too.

I fell asleep very quickly.  I slept in the same bed as Mommy and DaDa.  They have to move me a few times during the night.  I'm not sure why.  I think I heard Mommy tell DaDa that she almost fell off the bed.  DaDa said something about me sleeping horizontally.
In the morning DaDa was all dressed up like he was going to church, but Mommy said he was going to his new big office and he'd be back in a little while.  He went and got coffee and donuts first though!  I had a chocolate one!

After DaDa left Mommy and I watched a movie on DaDa's computer.  She said soon my toys would be here.

We read some books and played a bit.  I wanted Mommy to take a picture of me in my new room.

I like it.
Mommy in my room.

Mommy took these.  They are out my windows.

Very pretty.  It smells good.

I went back to Mommy's room and watched a little bit of Cars.

Then a guy came and did something with some cords and a box.  He went outside.  Mommy said something about the internet working now so I can watch my cartoons if I wanted.

But instead of watching more cartoons, I wanted another picture in my room.

And I took one of Mommy in her room!

Then DaDa came home and Mommy said the movers would be here with my toys very soon.  I ran to the door when DaDa came.

My toys came very soon after DaDa was home and three guys brought in all our boxes and stuff.  It was neat.  They carried stuff on their backs.  I was so happy to have my toys!!  Mommy, DaDa and I ate lunch after the guys and the big moving truck went bye-bye and then I was very tired, it was nap time.  Mommy and DaDa worked on unpacking the boxes while I slept.

I like my new house.  I like New York City.