Better Luck Next Time!!

Sunday July, 25th

We slept soooo well that night!! 🙂 Which led to a much better day for moods and energy.

We started out the day at this kitschy diner called Ellen’s Stardust Diner which was a block away from our hotel. It was a lot of fun!!

(This picture was actually taken that night cuz I forgot to take a picture of it when we were there. 😛 )

The food was pretty good..the french toast was de-lish!! The waiters not only served you as in a typical restaurant, but they also were all aspiring Broadway singer/actors. In between bringing out orders and filling drinks they took turns showing off their stuff.

Pleasantly, most of them were very talented. 😀 This guy’s name is Zach and he actually just got a Golden Ticket on American Idol for this upcoming season..so keep your eye out for him on TV! They rattled off all the people that have started out there and now are famous..but I couldn’t tell you who they were. 😛

The day before was absolutely the ‘lowest’ point of our trip. The weather was so hot and humid and riding in the hot subway just compounded the misery along with our lack of sleep.

Sooo…on this day we decided to stay away from the subway at all cost! LOL! We chose to pay for a City Sights Tour Bus tour and let me tell you…This was worth EVERY penny. It truly is the best way to see the city. The guides know so much about the history, the buildings, fun facts that you would never know if you saw the city on your own. Not only that, it takes you literally ALL over Manhattan and you are able to hop on and off wherever you want! We paid for the 3 day ticket which came with some other freebies. It was great! 😀

We hopped on at Times Square..
We headed towards Lower Manhattan towards Battery Park and The Statue of Liberty. We really wanted to make sure we saw Lady Liberty. 🙂

On the way we went through the Fashion District and there is this cute little info. booth!


If you look closely it looks like those wires are actually threaded through the needle! LOL!

It took us around over to see the New York Hotel. There is something about this building that makes it look fake to me, and at the same time it’s so interesting!


New York likes to do everything BIG. I guess that might be one of the reasons why they call it the Big Apple. (Hardy, har, har! 😛 ) This is a post office. It’s open 365 days a year. Around the top of the building the postman’s creed is etched into the building.

“Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds”

Next on the tour was the Empire State Building!


We didn’t get off the tour bus at any of these sites…we just enjoyed the tour and took pictures of as much as we possibly could on our way down to the statue. 🙂

Next we saw Macy’s!! Macy’s logo has always included a star in one form or another, which comes from a tattoo that Mr. Macy got as a teenager when he worked on a Nantucket whaling ship.

The statues on the building you see in the foreground were placed there by the store’s employees in memory of the store’s second owners, Isador and Ida Straus, whom were very beloved and died on the Titanic. (See.. you would never know that on your own!! 😛 )

The architecture in New York is amazing!! We spent the entire time looking up in the sky and by the end of our trip our necks were sore. LOL!!


An artist Antony Gormley, made31 statues of himself, anatomically correct, and placed 27 fiber glass ones on top of buildings all over NY..4 heavier ones made of cast iron are placed around Madison Square Garden. They are 6ft tall. Look very close and you can see him! 🙂




After 9/11 school children placed tiles on this fence to remember the fallen Americans. This is the only ‘finished’ memorial to this day…even though it’s unofficial.


As we headed through West Village and Greenwich Village I saw this store and it just cracked me up! Hahahaha!


I love the panita dome and details on this building.


It’s not everyday you see a Chinese McDonald’s in America!!!

We did go through China Town several times but we never hopped off there. I kept trying to get Jared to agree to it but for whatever reason we never did. It’s something we both regret. They told us it’s the 2nd largest “knock off market” in the world just after Hong Kong.

Beautiful!

Roof top gardens!!!


As the bus was speeding by this sign I tried to capture it for Walker. LOL!!


Look at those carved statues! LOVE!


I’m a sucker for details, details, details….



We finally made it to Battery Park and the weather seemed to have taken pity on us for yesterday. It was a GORGEOUS overcast, windy and shortly after this picture rainy day!!! Yay for rain!!! 😀

Battery Park is a 25-acre public park located at the southern tip of Manhattan Island facing New York Harbor. The Battery is named for the artillery battery that was stationed there at various times by the Dutch and British in order to protect the settlements behind it.

With the mass European emigration of the middle 19th century immigrants settled the Battery area, the location was less favorable to theater patrons and Castle Garden was closed. The structure was then made into the world’s first immigration depot, processing millions of immigrants beginning in 1855 – almost 40 years before its successor, Ellis Island, opened its doors.


Within the park lies Castle Clinton, an American fort built on a small artificial off-shore island immediately prior to the War of 1812 and named for mayor DeWitt Clinton. When the land of Battery Park was created, it encircled and incorporated the island.

That darn bird ruined my shot!LOL! But I still love this picture with the Statue of Liberty in the background. 🙂

While we stood in line to get on the ferry to take us over this guy kept the crowd entertained with his steel drum.

He was really good too!

As I mentioned before it rained on this day. To be more precise, it started to down pour on us while we waited in line for the ferry. It was cold and wet and fabulous! 😀


Even though the weather felt amazing..it wasn’t the best for pictures. These look a bit gloomy …what can ya do? 😉


Ok so this is something both Jared and I hadn’t known before. Lady Liberty’s foot is up in the back. Interesting. 🙂

The Statue was a gift from France and it was shipped to us in pieces. We were too poor to build it and so for years only the torch was on display.

View of Manhattan from the where the statue is.

After we walked around in the rain admiring the Statue of Liberty we hopped on the ferry to take us over to Ellis Island.

We only look a little frizzy and soggy..hahaha!

We deiced to pay for the $8.00 audio tour and I’m SO glad we did. We wouldn’t have gotten as much out of the museum if we hadn’t. The go into a lot of detail and you really get a better understanding of what those immigrants went through to enter this country. It was excellent.



In one of the rooms it had said that the workers at the island became so familiar with the luggage and how it was tied they didn’t even have to ask where the immigrants were from. They just knew!


The picture below doesn’t do this room justice. It is a BIG room.

To enter the United States you had to pass all of these different level of tests. First was a normal round of questions like your first and last name, where you came from, how much money do you have, ect. Then you had to be examined by a doctor who would check you for health issues as well as mental issues.

One of the examinations used a button hook to examine your eyes for this highly contagious disease. They had one on display..I would NOT want someone using that hook to pull open my eye!!! SHIVER!!!

They would mark the coat lapels of immigrants with chalk. Each mark meant something different. One woman told a story about her family member (her sister I believe) that had warts on her hand and she was marked accordingly as a “no go” and a kind stranger mentioned to her to turn her coat inside out (it had a silk lining and looked like you could reverse it.) Her sister made it through.

These families would travel by boat for months and months and it didn’t matter if they were together or not. If you didn’t pass they would send that one member back to wherever they came from and in most cases never saw them again….

Another test was given to those where there might be a question of mental state. They wanted to make sure you were healthy but also to make sure you could support yourself once you were here.

Here are some examples of some of the tests that were given.

It’s hard to read that sign but the purpose of the blocks is to follow what the docotor did with each one and in what order.



In the test below you need to match the images.


Find the four smiling faces.


Match the leaves.

Well…did you pass???

This is a display of money from all over the world!


This example below of the sail boat was my favorite one on display. Simple…but says so much!


The stories these stairs could tell….
This room was also called the “Kissing Room” for obvious reasons.

After our tour of Ellis Island we made it back to Manhattan and found the Hershey Store. I found this giant 5 pound bar of chocolate. I wanted it sooooooo bad!!!!

It was $40.00…Jared wouldn’t let me get it. I kept telling him how much fun it would be to get it. We could invite all of the kid’s friends over for a party and have it for dessert! We’d be the COOLEST PARENTS EVER!! But he wouldn’t cave….

I should have totally gotten it anyway!! Hahahaha! ;P

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