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Posts Tagged ‘Flushing’

Last weekend our synagogue took part in a ‘place of worship crawl’ of sorts… where we walked around the neighborhood and explored a number of different churches and temples all in a 10 block radius.  Rumor has it that Flushing Queens boasts up to 200 different places of worship – synagogues, Catholic and Methodist churches and Buddhist temples, Shinto temples.  At the end of our trip we got to go to the Flushing Quaker Meeting House – built in 1694!  Of course it’s chalk full of ghost stories and best of all, it seems to be the first site of religious freedom in America.  Its first members created a remonstrance to be accepted in Peter Stuyvesant‘s rigid idea of what New York/America should worship.  See the actual remonstrance here!

(to add: this is called the ‘Interfaith Unity Walk‘ and it happens twice a year in Queens.  I should also add that I did something like this with my mom when I was about 11 years old and it was really moving then, as it is now – how much we all have in common despite differing religions)

 

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When the weather gets this cold, there’s nothing better than something hot and brothy. After Sunday School we love exploring the food shops around Flushing’s Chinatown and someone at our synagogue recommended Sentosa. What a find! Their shrimp and green bean dish along with noodles in broth is amazing, and we loved the ‘Indian pancake’ in a chicken coconut broth. I’m already having a craving for more!

 a crisp blue sky over Chinatown

a crisp blue sky over Chinatown

Zoe has her own technique for eating noodles

Zoe has her own technique for eating noodles

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and lastly a trip to a Chinese bakery for almond and raspberry breads!

and lastly a trip to a Chinese bakery for almond and raspberry breads!

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Our synagogue is in the middle of what is now a large, thriving Chinatown. We love going to the New World Mall which has at least 3 floors of all the possible Asian foods you could possibly want. Just near our table we found Korean-Chinese, Japanese, and Vietnamese dishes to choose from. Check out the choices here. I hope to make this a regular habit ..

by the TV segment on the screen over this counter, Anthony Bourdain has already been here

by the TV segment on the screen over this counter, Anthony Bourdain has already been here

the dumplings are made right in front of us, and the ladies are entertained by our kids

the dumplings are made right in front of us, and the ladies are entertained by our kids

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Laoma Ma La Tan big bowls - shot from Meso Hungry

Laoma Ma La Tan big bowls – shot from Meso Hungry

Chengdu happy meal shot from queens.brownstoner.com

Chengdu happy meal shot from queens.brownstoner.com

we feel like we have been transported to another world with amazing food!

we feel like we have been transported to another world with amazing food!

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While we went to Target to get Zoe her prize for sleeping in her own bed, a snow storm hit and we needed to stop somewhere warm and cozy to eat. What better cold-weather dish than broth and noodles in this the more authentic Chinatown of Queens? We did a bit of walking around to find an underground ‘mall’ of more restaurants, and discovered how dumplings are made. Biang’s panda prints and green dumplings are hands down the best!

LOVE these panda prints on the walls of Biang

LOVE these panda prints on the walls of Biang

such a cold and blustery night

such a cold and blustery night

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some remaining bits of Chinese New Year

some remaining bits of Chinese New Year

Zoe checks out the dumpling making

Zoe checks out the dumpling making

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this basement mall of food feels more like a trip to Hong Kong

this basement mall of food feels more like a trip to Hong Kong

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We love Flushing Meadow Park – a park that may be on the verge of shrinking due to some controversial plans for tennis expansion.

It’s a quiet old place with the remnants of the World’s Fair looming just beyond where the more utilized US Open area is. The kids love to scoot around the globe. The Queens Museum of Art is nearby so we can duck in to warm our toes and check out the panorama of the city, and the vintage World’s Fair paraphernalia.

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Ezra’s friend Lea has had a great experience at the Queens Botanical Garden‘s summer camp – and she showed us the fruits of all her labor (pun intended) one day before camp ended. Aside from getting to see the grounds with water ways and an onsite eco-friendly friendly building (complete with solar panels which thrilled Ezra) – we got a glimpse of some great gardening ideas like reusing old shoes as planters! And Lea’s teacher even took a moment to proudly show us the herbs and nearly ripe vegetables in the Children’s Garden. And as always Lea’s little sister Mia was thrilled to be around flowers, and teaching Zoe everything she knows about them.



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One of my favorite New York holidays is Chinese New Year. In the past I’ve braved the crowds in Chinatown NYC, on Canal Street – until a mob pressed me and a tiny Zoe (then in my Ergo baby carrier against my chest) a little too hard and I got a little freaked out about bringing the kids back there. This time around we tried Chinese New Year in Flushing, Queens and I gotta say: this version is much more kid-friendly. There was a lovely parade and then the crowd broke up and promptly went to eat in one of the 40 top Cantonese restaurants – all located in this predominantly Asian-populated Queens neighborhood. As much as I missed the part where the dragons visit all the businesses (as is done in Manhattan), I was happy to be among a more tame crowd. And the kids had a great time watching marching bands and seeing the colorful costumes.
Year of the Dragon, here we come!


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