Adventures with Big Cuz

I must clarify something before I begin. I did something a bit out of the norm for me. Usually I see things through the lens of my Canon, and not necessarily experiencing it. So, this time I opted for my phone camera more often. You will see an assortment of photos in this post, some from both cameras.

A special two weeks was spent with my Big Cuz (BC). She flew out for a visit, and we filled it with such wonderful memories. She moved to the states when she was 20 (and I was 10) but has lived most of it on the west coast. We had a lot to show her, and she just loved all the green!

The first thing the oldest and I did was take her to breakfast at our favorite place, the Blueberry Café. We then had a family dinner night with all the kids, and Hubby’s parents too. They had just come back north from Florida for the summer.

The next trip was out to Yellow Springs, and one of the special shops there I knew BC would enjoy. Then it was off to Young’s Dairy for fun, fried cheese curds and ice-cream. BC had never had cheese curds until here, and it was such fun introducing her to them, and the local wildlife, lol.

The Friday morning of Memorial Day weekend the wild child and I drove BC out to New Jersey to visit other cousins there, SZ and BZ. On the way we stopped in Pittsburgh at the Duquesne Incline Railway. If you look back at the wild child and my visit to Chattanooga last August, we checked out the Incline Railway to Lookout Mountain. It was such fun we really wanted to see what Pittsburgh had to offer. Although not as long or high, it had its own charm. The car was authentic, and level, not on an incline with stairs like in Chattanooga. At the top we ate lunch at a restaurant with perfect food for the hot day, and a fantastic view!


Back on the road to New Jersey we arrived that evening. The next morning, we all headed into Philadelphia for the day. We walked around a bit and settled on seeing the National Constitution Center. We saw a performance in the round theater that literally brought us to tears. We walked to the City Tavern and had a wonderful meal. I just love the ambiance of the place, and of course the food!











The next morning cousin BZ brought home some yummy donuts. Yes, a bacon donut! Then SZ drove us to the American Treasure Tour in Oaks, PA. What and adventure that was. There was so much to see. You just have to experience it to understand. Player pianos, music boxes and calliopes, doll houses and miniature scenes, and walls lined with old vinyl record jackets. We were driven around a display of old cars, a giant Snow White and the 7 dwarfs, a castle made of popsicle sticks, the first car you could buy from the Sears catalog, and so much more.











We then went to our favorite market Wegmans for lunch and the English aisle. We ate tons and stocked up on English foods. BC was so excited to be able to get thing she hadn’t had it years.

We went back to NJ by way of a wonderful covered bridge. On a side note. BZ showed me how to take pictures with my phone using a word. What a wonderful way to get that shot I wouldn’t have otherwise. I stuck the phone out the window and said “capture”, and here we have it!

What was really funny was later I was taking a picture of BC, and another word you can use is ‘smile’. I said “smile” and through clenched teeth she said, “I am smiling”. Guess “capture” is a better word, lol.

The next morning, we headed into NYC by way of the train. As I walked out of Penn Station this is want I saw. Keep in mind I only took my phone with me. This was the first time in NYC without my Canon. It felt strange at first, but then I was really experiencing the city. It was fantastic!

The reason we went to NYC was to meet up with other cousins that were visiting their son who lives there with his family. BC hadn’t seen them since they were children together, and it had been about 13 years for me. We all had lunch and walked to the Magnolia Bakery for the best cheesecake in the world!

BZ, SZ and the wild child went to see the 9/11 memorial. We older ones went to have a good old English cup of tea, and chat. It was such fun catching up, and meeting cousins we hadn’t yet met.

Back on the train to NJ we munched on big pretzels bought at Penn Station, reflecting on a wonderful day. Early the next morning we headed home.

The next adventure was the oldest and I took BC to SunWatch Indian Village. She enjoys the Indian culture and has seen a lot in the southwest. She has taken me to see Tuzigoot, and Montezuma’s castle on visits to her.

During all of this I was sneaking away to work on graduation gifts for my twin nieces. I wanted to make them something special, so with the suggestions of the youngest I made them personalized messenger bags. We took BC to the graduation party, and she got to meet more of the family. Not only the girls and their parents, but Hubby’s Uncle and cousins came into town for the celebration.

Our last adventure for BC was to go to Cincinnati to see the Terracotta Army at the Cincinnati Art Museum. The oldest, her husband, and the youngest went with us. On the way home we stopped by Ikea to get Swedish meatballs for dinner. The next day we put BC on the plane back to Arizona. We are all so pooped, but what a wonderful time we had <3