Friday, March 24, 2006

Home Again!

Hi everyone.

I had another great day in New York City before arriving back home in Iowa late tonight.

Kristin and Amy's flight wasn't scheduled to leave New York until 4:00pm so this gave them some extra time to explore more of the city today.

So they decided to take a yellow cab to a place called the Metropolitan Museum of Art. It is a HUGE museum. I wasn't so sure I wanted to spend the morning looking at old paintings and photos but Kristin promised me I would have fun.

Guess what, she was right! The museum is really COOL. It has many, many old paintings but Kristin says some of them are the most famous and most expensive in the entire world. I had no idea!

I could tell immediately that Kristin and Amy like different things. Amy likes bright colors and paintings that were located in a section called "Modern." Many of those paintings looked like something I could create in art class. Maybe I could be a famous artist someday!

Kristin, on the other hand, loved the rooms with European artists. These paintings are much older and are very, very famous. They also look like they were VERY hard to make. I can barely stay inside the lines of a coloring book!

Guess what? Some of the paintings I saw today were made more than 200 years ago! That is REALLY old!

Kristin says one of her favorite artists is Claude Monet. I learned today that he lived from 1840 until 1926. He painted in a style known as "Impressionism." I have no idea what that means but his paintings are very nice. Here you can see me with Kristin standing by a painting called, "Bridge Over a Pool of Water Lilies." It is very famous.

I noticed that many of the paintings by this man looked very similar. Kristin says that's because he made many paintings with images of water lilies. I learned water lilies are a special kind of flower that grow in water.

But my favorite part of the museum was the section that is all about Egypt. I know Aunt Lynn wants to travel to Egypt. Do you know where Egypt is? See if you can find it on the map.

Egypt is famous for very old pyramids and other large stone buildings called known as "temples." Kristin says they are thousands of years old and were built to honor rulers and other important people. Many times these important people would be wrapped in special cloth when they died. Do you know what they are called? They are mummies. I thought a mummy was a cartoon character or something I could dress up like on Halloween. I had no idea they were once REAL people. Very strange but also very interesting.

Here I am with Kristin standing near part of a REAL Egyptian temple that is INSIDE the museum. How cool is that? Can you see the drawings on the stones?

Before we left the museum, Kristin and Amy walked through the gift shop. Kristin bought me a book so I can learn even more about the museum and a postcard of the Monet painting I had my picture taken by. She also let me pick out a special gift for Aunt Lynn and my mom.

After we left the museum, Kristin and Amy had lunch at the hotel and then we took another yellow cab to the airport. Just as we were getting out of the car, Kristin's phone beeped. Kristin said it was a message telling her that our flight was delayed. I was hoping that didn't mean we would be stuck at the airport for a long time. But Kristin was able to get us onto an earlier flight and the rest of the trip was uneventful.

Here you can see me helping Kristin unpack my new stuffed bear and taxi.

I want to thank Kristin and her friend Amy for taking me along with them on their trip to New York City. I can see why Kristin says she likes to visit NYC. I want to go back again. There are so many things to see!

I can tell Kristin is very tired and I am starting to get very sleepy too. So I think I am going to head to bed now.

Until next time.....

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Very Busy Day

Hi again. I've had another very busy day here in NYC. But Kristin has had an even busier day (I will explain shortly).

This morning I got to sleep in because Kristin and Amy's meeting was pushed back until noon. It was nice to get some extra sleep.

Before the meeting, we had breakfast at the restaurant connected to the hotel. Then we got into a big yellow cab and rode "downtown" for Kristin and Amy's meeting. I LOVE riding in the big yellow cabs. The drivers all speed really fast when the stoplight turns green and then they stop just as fast when the light turns red. It's like riding a rollercoaster at the fair! I'm not so sure Amy and Kristin like the rough ride I sure do!

It turns out that Kristin and Amy's meeting was at a photography agency called "VII". It sounds like the number "7" but it is spelled VII. Do you know why it is spelled this way? Kristin says that's because the V and the I are Roman numerals. Do you know what Roman numerals are? See if you can learn more about them.

Kristin says some of the best photographers in the entire world work for this agency. She also says the foundation has hired the agency to take pictures of many different countries in the Middle East. Kristin and Amy are the "team leaders" for this project. I think that means they are in charge.

VII sent four photographers to many different places in the Middle East including Kuwait, Egypt, Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, and even one place I have visited: the United Arab Emirates. See if you can find all of these countries on the map.

So for three hours Kristin and Amy viewed many, many pictures on a computer. All of them were very interesting and I even recognized some of the pictures of Dubai. Kristin says she and Amy are working to select the "best" of the pictures. They all look great so I think selecting "the best"is going to be a very hard job.

After looking at SO many photos, I decided not to ask Kristin to take my picture at VII. I think she needed a break.

Plus, I haven't told you why Kristin was so busy today. Just before we left the hotel, Kristin's friend Simon called her cell phone and I could tell by the look on her face that something was wrong. She did NOT look happy. I'm not sure I understand exactly what happened but Kristin says some of the audio in the radio program we mixed in Los Angeles had to be changed FAST. Kristin spent most of the cab ride on the phone with so many different people that I lost track.

But after lots of calls and messages with Simon, Keith and her friend Rima, Kristin says the team was able to "fix" the problem. Whew! For awhile I was worried that I was going to be headed back to Los Angeles! I like LA but I am starting to understand that traveling...or "being on the road" as Kristin calls it is very tiring.

After Kristin solved the problem with the radio show, she and Amy took me to a place in NYC that I haven't visited before. It is a place called Rockefeller Center. Kristin says this is a very famous part of the city. The main headquarters of NBC is located in Rockefeller Center. Here you can see me with Kristin standing across the street from the "Today Show" studio.

No one was in the studio at the time but it was still neat to see.

Then Kristin showed me something very cool...and I mean COOL! Guess what? There is an outside ice skating rink in Rockefeller Center! Kristin says many people skate there. We didn't have time to skate today but you can see the ice rink behind me and Kristin in this photo.

Then Kristin took me to a very special place. It is the spot where a HUGE Christmas tree is placed every year. Kristin says it is a special part of New York City's holiday celebration. And she says the tree is WAY taller than any Christmas tree I have ever seen.

Of course there wasn't a tree there today but there is a special plaque that marks the spot where the tree is placed. Here you can see me on the "official" tree spot. Now I want to come here at Christmas time to see the tree. Kristin says she has seen the tree on some of her trips here. I am SO jealous.

After our visit to Rockefeller Center, Kristin and Amy had dinner near Times Square before we walked home. Man, we sure have to walk a lot here. I am glad Kristin told me to wear my "walking shoes".

That's all for now. I'm headed back to Iowa tomorrow.

Until next time.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Greetings Again from The Big Apple!

Hi everyone! Greetings again from New York City.

Today I am here with Kristin and her friend Amy. Amy is the production manager and creative director for the Stanley Foundation. Amy is very nice.

Amy and her staff help Kristin and Keith create the CD folders and other printed items for their radio program. Remember me standing with the Security Check and 24/7 CD folders at Rima's house in Los Angeles? Amy and her staff created those.

Kristin picked up Amy before 7am this morning and we drove to Moline to catch a flight to Chicago. Boy...I have been to O'Hare airport so many times with Kristin that I think I could find my way around without any help now!

We had to wait a bit before boarding our next flight to New York. Here you can see me helping Amy work on her laptop while we wait for our New York flight.

I am SO excited to be back here in NYC. We are staying at a different hotel this time, the Hilton Garden Inn Times Square. It isn't far from the last hotel I stayed at here in New York and it is one block away from central Times Square. So cool!

Here's the view of the New York skyline from Kristin's room.

Tonight, Kristin and Amy had some spare time so they decided to walk to a place called Macy's. Kristin says it is a very famous department store here in NYC. The store we visited today is the original Macy's location and Kristin says at one time it was one of the largest department stores in the world!

I normally don't like shopping....that's something for girls to do. But, as we got closer I thought I recognized the store. Kristin says I may have seen it on TV. Kristin says Macy's sponsors a HUGE parade on Thanksgiving day and the store is in the background. The parade doesn't have floats like the Great River Days parade in Muscatine. Instead it has GIGANTIC balloons of cartoon characters. I think I have actually seen this on TV but I am definitely going to look for the parade next Thanksgiving day.

Kristin and Amy walked through the store looking at "girl" things like purses, shoes, jewelry, and make-up. But then we took an escalator to the basement. Guess what? The escalators are made out of wood! I have never seen wooden escalators before. Kristin says they are some of the original store escalators. I had no idea!

The basement...or "cellar" as it is called at Macy's had a replica of the Statue of Liberty. Remember on my last trip here that Kristin bought me a Geoffrey from Toys R' Us dressed like the Statue of Liberty? Well, here's a model of the real thing. Can you see me in this photo? (Hint...I am near the tablet).

Kristin said I had to have something from Macy's so she bought me a "Macy's" bear dressed like the Statue of Liberty. I think this is great. It will look very neat next to my Statue of Liberty Geoffrey that I got last time I was here. Kristin also bought me a small stuffed yellow cab. I am SO excited about this. I really like riding in the yellow cabs and now I have something to remind me of them after we leave New York.

It was dark when we left Macy's and started walking back toward Times Square. As soon as we walked outside I noticed a VERY tall building off in the distance. The top was colored with cool yellow lights. The yellow reminds me of the yellow cabs we driving all around NYC. Do you recognize this building?

Kristin says this is the Empire State Building. is REALLY tall and very cool at night. Then Kristin reminded me that I actually "climbed" the lego replica of the same building at Toys R' Us the last time I was here. Someday I think I want to visit the top of the Empire State Building. Kristin says she has been to the top observation deck and she tells me it is pretty neat.

Amy and Kristin stopped for dinner and then we walked through Times Square. I really like walking through Times Square at night. The lights are so cool and exciting. I always seem to spot something new every time I am in Times Square.

Our big night out must have made me very tired because I fell asleep on the way back to the hotel. So, Kristin kindly tucked me into bed with my new bear and cab.

I know Kristin and Amy have lots of work to do tomorrow but I'm still not sure what. I guess I will learn more about that tomorrow.

Until next time....