Thursday, January 21, 2010

Keeping Pace with the Paces

The best part of this city is sharing it with family and friends. I did the math, and if I'm right - we had more than 60 individuals stay at our place in 2009. Obviously, a lot of people came in groups or couples, and there are two repeats (holla! Ash and Ali!). But that's the grand sum of folks who actually slept at our place - not even the fun dinners, lunches, quick hellos (usually over something sweet, because that's how I roll...) we've been able to make work with friends visiting from out of town.

It's crazy to me how different each friend or family member's trip has been. Ultimately, you do end up seeing the same things - but each memory is really specific to the people.

That's what made the visit from the Pace gals such a treat - we've had three infants convince their parents to visit this year (thanks Elsie, Van and Rowan!) - but Miss Abbey and the little Haydster were the first kids to crash at the Riley digs. And seeing this city through their eyes... and at a slightly slower pace, but impressive for those little legs nonetheless... was so much fun.
Hayden was totally digging the Museum of Natural History. In each room, she'd run up to the displays, climb over the bar meant to keep kids' noses off the glass, dutifully press her nose against the glass and then kneel down with her hands in the air. Praise on, little naturephile :). We didn't get a picture of the scene, but I do love this one Ashley captured of Uncle Nobie (as he came to be known over the week) and Hayden at the museum. Hayden also loved her a little Shake Shack. But really, who doesn't approve of greasy, fried potatoes and double-fudge mint truffle shakes?
Abbey's highlights seemed to be anywhere with a little space. If you read my sister's blog (or if you ARE my sister), forgive me for swiping the photos and the observation right from the page. But that Abbey was shakin' her groove thang every time space permitted and it was adorable. I can understand the desire, though - she was probably feeling a little "what the?" from the dramatic drop in square footage from suburban home to city studio combined with "no Abs, you really can't run around..." on every subway and bus.
Abbey also seemed to take to corporate life like a fish to water, familiarizing herself with the corner office and providing at least as much input as I usually do on a client call. And I can't forget perspective from my other favorite girl - the mom extraordinaire and all-around amazing woman whose genes...ahem... I happen to share in common (although - how did she get so many looks fab with two kids genes?).

I hope it's fair to say Ashley's highlights consisted of the modern miracle that is Junior's Devil's Food Cheesecake...
...and our flea market finds in Chelsea. We haggled with the best of them and Ashley came away with a vintage radio and the ultimate respect of the man who sold it to her who thought she was uber-hip for decorating her girls' room with flea market finds.
Thanks to Ashley's sweet generosity, I came away with a few treasures of my own. I didn't think to snap a picture of the hat or giant sun dial I proudly/sheepishly carried back into the house after swearing to Noah upon our departure, "I didn't really need anything..."
Ashley and I have more than a handful of memories together. In fact, we have a lot of memories we often confuse for our own when it turns out it's the other's. That'll happen when you're 18 months apart, both start with the letter "A" and have almost identical hobbies/interests/pursuits for 16.5 years.
And though the matching jumpers and waistband days are more distant and our hobbies/interests/pursuits have taken their own paths, the memories are all the sweeter.
Thanks for visiting, Ash!
I readily admit - I cried when they left. Ashley's fault. She left a note.


AJ and Cindy said...

adorable little kids!Thanks for commenting on our blog, I too, read yours often and I really should comment more! We hope all is well with you two!

Nicole said...

What a sweet post. Thanks for making me smile, lady. :)

Corey, Alisa, and Elsie said...

What fun times! You ARE very lucky to have welcomed in the new year with such darling little ladies!

Ashley said...

I wish you could narrate my life. How about we move somewhere fabulous together, I'll photograph yours and you'll narrate mine :) I keep having dreams about New York. I'm trying to convince Justin to move there. It's not working.

Claire said...

Wonderful! So glad you've had so many visitors! Sounds like a FANTASTIC trip with your sis! And mmmm, now you've got me thinking about Shake Shack..... mmmmm