Monday, July 15, 2013

Philadelphia in photos

The Amtrak was a success. My mom and I kept discussing how we were in Virginia and then in 2 hours we crossed several state lines and had arrived in Philadelphia. These "red shirts" were fabulous. We didn't know about these guys until the conductor asked if we wanted help from one and then basically answered the question for us by saying we did. They loaded our luggage on the cart, took us to the taxi line and even ensured we had a taxi to take us to our hotel. It was raining so we were grateful to not have to stand in the rain.
The view from our room was awesome. We could see if people were wearing shorts or pants and determine how hot it would be outside, whether or not there was traffic and which direction seemed best for the days adventure.
Our first night in Philly we decided on Italian and Hayes fell asleep during dinner so I put him on the table. The owner loved it! She took pictures and our waiter brought his friends by our table. Our entire vacation people have been so welcoming and loving towards Hayes, which has made for some beautiful memories for his mama and papa.
We headed out in the morning to take in Philly before our scheduled tour of Congress Hall.
We found pockets of Philly that had small boutiques with found objects and specialty items which made walking around and browsing feel more like a treasure hunt.
US in the U.S.
History. Such a surreal experience to stand where our founding fathers stood.  Because these are National Parks our docents were actually park rangers.
We worked up a bit of an appetite and happened upon Jones Restaurant. We arrived at a time where they served snacks off an in between menu. We had no trouble finding some well deserved treats, we also had hummus (not pictured but a healthy choice).
I didn't realize Mother's Day was founded in Philadelphia, good job Grandma Jeanne for being a fact finder. We thought it was appropriate for take a picture, since I am a new mama and all. I still love saying mama.
and my own mama...mama squared.
Walking Philadelphia was enjoyable because there are so many sights to see and the layout is well thought out.
I read about the cookie insomnia and had to try it- I couldn't finish the sandwich because it was so big.
We walked all day and into the night which helps considering how many snacks I seem to find.
Bored with my request for a selfie on our way up to our hotel room.

Good night Philly.
Is he not the cutest little cuddle bug?
Okay, grandma I am ready for my bus tour!
Taking a bus tour in a city this large really helps to determine areas we want to explore further. We sat on the top deck of a double-decker which also provided us with a great view, although we had to pay attention to low hanging tree branches.
After staying on the bus for every possible stop we decided to leave our view and comfortable seats to tour the city by foot. First stop? The Reading Terminal Market.
Hot cookies straight out of the oven. No complaints here.
We were so exhausted from walking in the heat that air-conditioning and an ice cold cola felt like life-savers.
Grandma found a sweet baby blanket at Industry and I found some fun costume jewelry.
Something to consider.
I finally went into an Anthropologie and clearly I saved my visit for the right one. How beautiful is the ceiling?
On our last day we tried to get in as much as possible. We walked and walked in 98 degree heat and don't even ask about the humidity.  We passed Benjamin Franklin's burial site and found all of these pennies, turns out we had walked by it earlier in the week and didn't know it.
We wanted to visit some boutiques when we were in the area earlier in the week but they were closed. So, we decided to speed walk 15 blocks to visit them before we had to leave for the airport.  It was fun while we were in the stores but the speed walk back to the hotel was like a Bikram yoga class without a mat or an ability to lie down.
We arrived to the airport together and then we wished grandma safe travels as she flew home to Seattle. We had an hour to walk around and then we too were homeward bound. Apparently Hayes knew I'd be posting this picture on the blog and offered a nice wave shot. Not really but it is perfect (minus the blur).
This guy slept from take off to landing and a little longer. How lucky was this mama traveling alone with a baby for the first time? He is such a good little boy. I managed to drag 3 pieces of luggage while carrying two bags and a sleeping baby, I think I was motivated to see papa.  Well, I can honestly say that it was an unforgettable experience. It was more than I could have asked for, better than I imagined and I am so happy that I was able to share the experience with Matt, Hayes and Jeanne (my mom). What a lucky girl I am to have this opportunity. I am grateful beyond measure.

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