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Posts Tagged ‘Queens’

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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While Zoe was doing her garden camp, Ezra tried on drama camp at an Astoria School.  Serious  Fun offered a chance for kids to pull together a play in 6 weeks.  Some kids tackled sound and lights, others painted backdrops and gathered wardrobe.  Ezra got to hone his acting chops – as “Mike” in Homeroom – and we are so so proud of his solo!  What a talented cast!

See it here:

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the crowd grows while anxious kids stay behind the curtain

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kids managing music and lights

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decorations outside in the halls make you feel like you are really in the school with the play!

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Okay I know I mentioned that we’ve been having rainy weather, but when the sun did come out this summer it was GLORIOUS!

It’s nice when you can get to a museum in the summer time, that also has a ‘cooling off’ feature in its art.  This was the case with the outdoor installation titled LUMEN by Jenny Sabin Studio. Not only beautiful to experience, sit under and walk through –  but also spritzes water on you at various intervals!  The kids seemed to love this ‘sprinkler art’ – as they called it.  (Have a great weekend!)

 

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Zoe took this amazing shot!

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Well it’s been a mild winter so far, and today the temps are in the 60s – which I’m kind of digging.  But tomorrow we are meant to have a snow day off… will it happen?  Will we have another day like the one shown below.. which was back in the beginning of January and blew away within a day?  Or will it linger?  And I wonder how our new friend Louie will cope with snow –

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Well here’s what’s been going on here: we had a dusting of snow that lasted for all of a couple of hours and then melted away as rain within the same day.  It was pretty enough to photograph but didn’t linger long enough to turn into snowmen.  My Jewish kids were once again tapped for their acting skills – as Zoe played the Grinch in the school play just as her brother did 3 years ago.  I’m glad the school hung on to that backdrop that I made all those years ago!  This year was spruced up with a sled made from the janitor’s cart – it was Zoe’s favorite scene, riding in that thing.  We got to squeeze in a kid-version mash up of Swan Lake and Nutcracker called ‘Ballerina Swan‘.  Zoe loves posing with the dancers!

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Zoe’s classmates from front left: Haitia, Isabella, Grace and Annissa

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is pretty fabulously diverse. It’s why we moved here. It’s why we raise our kids here.

That’s Ezra to the right in a photo taken by his dad (below). His last school – and most of our neighborhood – is predominantly Spanish speaking or Asian/South East Asian and Bangladeshi, Hindu, Muslim and Chinese.

My in laws joke that if they want to travel the world, all they have to do is come and visit us.

We all live on top of each other with the same goals: love our kids, stay well, help our kids thrive. When I travelled to India and South East Asia that was my takeaway – we all seem culturally different but we really have so much in common.
And kids in Ezra and Zoe’s classes are hungry for knowledge .. future doctors and lawyers and teachers. The gratefulness for opportunity is palpable – when you cross a border or an ocean to do something new for yourself you don’t sit around waiting for opportunity. You find it and take it. It’s a great vibe to be around.

Recently everyone’s been seeming and feeling a little scared, even if here legally. It’s ironic to me that the President elect is from Queens. I think he’s lost touch with his origins – but then realize that I’m assuming something that younger New Yorkers experience. Maybe he grew up in Queens when Archie Bunker’s character was developed? See here.

It never occurred to me that having my kids in a dual-language Spanish speaking program (or that our neighbors have their kids learning Chinese) would be an ‘elitist’ endeavor. I thought growing globally was a ‘looking toward the future’ thing that we were all on board with. It’s ironic how you perceive ‘success in the future’ as one thing, and then it can in theory shift so quickly. I can’t imagine now that we know how to access global information so readily, we would want to shut it out so thoroughly. But only time will tell.

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and scenes from Zoe’s Multicultural Day Celebrations at school:
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some pix of our summer thus far –

 

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beach going in Long Island

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lots of tomatoes from our garden – and lots of water trips to stave off the heat

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The cousin crew enjoys Brooklyn for a day

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Zoe didn’t want to let Ezra go to the Grand Canyon without her

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showing Tali midtown and the Rockettes!

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took cousin Tali out for tea in the big city

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Zoe saw Niagara Falls with Aunt Becca and cousin Tali!

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al fresco back yard movies are the best

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large flowers sprouting in our front yard

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a new cousin Angelo was born

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lemonade stands

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friends back from long trips

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trying out the longest slide on Governor’s island

 

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Zoe got her ears pierced!

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Zoe’s penchant for dresses and sandals never ends

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Ezra has been making and photographing his own breakfasts

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and miraculously this boy got to Hamilton for his birthday!

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