Henry’s grandfather, Paw Paw Butch came in from New Orleans yesterday to visit and celebrate Henry’s birthday on Saturday and his own on Sunday. Today they rode the SeaGlass Carousel in Battery Park before taking the Staten Island Ferry and returning home to have pre-birthday bear cake (as specifically requested by Henry) and play some more.
Today, we took a ferry ride to Governor’s Island with Colm and Eamonn. We had not been there since before Henry was born and it was nice to see the landscaping changes as well as some really interesting art installations. We also explored the Vintage Bus Bash that was taking place there over the weekend. This was a chance to see vintage New York City buses from the New York Transit Museum. Although I had a great time, it was a really hot day and my mind was on finding shade and liquid much of the time. Luckily there were free fans at the transit exhibition and Henry tried to help cool me off on the way home.
We celebrated the Fourth of July holiday without ever really leaving the neighborhood. There were festivities downtown that included reenactors in Revolutionary period costume, several replica ships docked in the harbor (like Layfeyette’s Hermione) and, of course, fireworks. Henry also became an actual movie-goer, when we took him to watch “Inside Out” , his first movie in a theater. He enjoyed it even though it was a struggle for him to weigh his seat down.
Recently, we watched a movie that showed the Statue of Liberty in the first scene and ever since Henry has been saying he wants to see the “Schachoo of Liberty”. I would point it out to him on our jogs last summer, but the view from the stroller is not quite the same as seeing it close up while riding the Staten Island Ferry. He was excited and kept saying we were riding a blue boat. He also enjoyed seeing the tugboats and barges passing by. His first time on the ferry was a few years ago and he was only seven months old.
Henry had previously been to Coney Island when we met Jacqui at the finish line of the Brooklyn Half-Marathon, but he didn’t have the chance to visit the amusement parks or play on the beach. Since his cousin Shannon had never been, we decided to pay a visit, making it Henry’s first actual time at a beach and in the ocean.
Henry had become very fond of his favorite tub toy, a blue rubber duck. So much so, that he often took it to play with elsewhere—even in dry environments. When he forgot it a couple of months ago while visiting friends, we quickly found an identical replacement online. Unfortunately he just can’t seem to keep track of his ducks and has lost it again somewhere on the streets of New York City.
I think Jacqui and I felt duck’s loss more than Henry did. The transition to a post-duck phase of babyhood marks a passage of time and evokes a sort of sentimental nostalgia for his younger days even this early in his life.
However, as you can see below, Henry’s adapted quite well and has moved on to sailing one of his frogs around the tub in a toy boat. So now we’ll have to cherish his frog phase.