This year, after much planning and anticipation, we took Max and Elle to see the US Open (and NYC) over Labor Day.
Don’t worry that Grace, Claire and Lu need a turn for a trip because their time is coming soon enough…
We have wanted to take Elle to see some real tennis for a few years since she’s pretty into it (and we want to make her even more into it) and those teenagers of mine were starting to think “suburb mentality.” I sometimes just don’t like that suburb mentality. I want them to have “big-world” mentality.
New York is a pretty good place to get that :)
The excitement was palpable.
And the leg-room was miniscule (at least for all these six-foot and over folks):
My brother and his wife and baby live on the Upper West Side. She is from Switzerland and they plan to move back there at some point, so we wanted to be sure to get in a trip while they were still there. Plus my parents were going to be there, and then we found out my brother and his wife were going to drive up from D.C.
Party times in NYC.
We all met up at a little Japanese restaurant for a joyful reunion.
We only overlapped one day with my parents who were staying in their friend’s house which happens to be incredibly amazing.
He has a rooftop patio that takes your breath away with a gorgeous view of both the Empire State Building and the Chrysler Building.(My brother Eli took that picture BTW…that’s why it’s so good…he is an awesome photographer. Check out his pictures of Brazil over on his blog HERE. Wow is all I have to say about that.)
The rest of us stayed in my brother’s one-bedroom apartment which to me was even more awesome because it gave us that real NYC feel. He was quite the host. We were sad his wife and daughter were in Switzerland so we didn’t get to see them, but we may not have fit if they were there!
The U.S. Open
We got grounds tickets which I loved because we could get up close and personal for so many of the matches.
We all wore these little radios around so we could listen to the commentary as we went and we all got the U.S. Open aps on our phones so we could look up all the players and information.
My lunch companion:
We watched from every different vantage point.
This is the only picture I have of my Mom there before she and my Dad had to take off:It’s a good one, right? Ha. See the back of her head there as she’s lovingly grilling Max about something or other?
Eli and Julie had to take off earlier as well, but Tal stuck around with us til the night was through.
…and even brought some apricots to share (you kinda had to be there to catch the humor of the apricots…).
I love this series of trying to get a decent shot of all of us together:
Even more grumpy Max:
A little pep-talk:
Eyes closed Elle:
The jackpot (with or without Elle’s blurry hand):Phew!
We happened to run into some of our great friends who used to live right next to us in the desert.
Watched a little Martina Hingis who now plays mixed doubles.
…and headed back to the city….
…for a late-night city tour. We went to Times Square first.
From there my brother picked us up in a “zip car” and showed us the lay of the land, starting with the very important “Shake Shack.”
…which closed ten minutes before we got there so we opted for Gray’s Papaya instead.
We went by Rockefeller Center and Radio City Music Hall and the awesome LDS Temple at Lincoln Center (where my brother got married a few years ago back HERE).Then headed back to my brother’s apartment with visions of tennis and big cities in our heads and slept as soundly as could be.
September 11 Memorial
The next morning we headed to see the under-construction 9/11 Memorial. We stood in line for a while which never bothers me if you have views like this to look at:
…and you run into great people from BYU days in line :)
I thought is was incredible how they set up this memorial, and I was so glad we got to be there. The twin reflecting pools make the largest manmade waterfalls in North America.
The names of every person who died are etched in bronze around the edges.
I love that they used parts of the old World Trade Center buildings to build the new one…and that it is so incredibly reinforced at the bottom:
Although we are wearing smiles, the feeling was so somber and sacred in there.
We couldn’t pass up the opportunity to see a Broadway play right in Times Square.
We saw Newsies which in my mind couldn’t compare to Wicked or even come close to Les Miserables, but it was a great show and I loved the message, plus the singing and dancing were pretty darn good. Perfect for these kids.
Here are Dave and Max from our last-row seats.
Oh man I love NYC.
So does Elle who stole my camera most of the time.
Extra great to be with these guys there, not only because we love them, but because they lived there one summer and knew right how to maneuver us around.
Especially loved hanging with our cute little Zara.
U.S. Open (again)
We couldn’t resist going back one more night to the U.S. Open.
Especially since Federer was playing and my brother hooked us up with free tickets. We started up here in the top of the rafters of the Arthur Ashe stadium:
…and by the end ended up here:
Max and I lucked out that one of the ticket ladies let us go up right on the courtside near the end. I will always remember sitting down on the fourth row with Max next to me shaking with excitement, the hugest ever smiles ever stretched across our faces. (We had some other doubters that we could get in, but Max wasn’t deterred in the least. Love that about that boy).
Here are my brother’s pictures of Federer up close and personal:
…and here he is when he recognized us in the crowd and waved:Ha!
Not sure where Max took off to after that, but here are Elle and Dave who made it for the very last game of the match.
We went home completely euphoric. Best night ever.
On the subway after with my brothers and Tal’s Swiss friend who came with us.
How I love to see my boys with my brothers.
Tal caught me taking a picture:
Here it is:
We kinda liked the subways.
And I kinda liked following these three tall people around.
To be continued…