Getting ready to go

Welcome to our Boston Trip Blog!  This will be an ongoing update of all the fun we will be having in Boston this week.  Please feel free to share this site with friends and family by simply cutting and pasting the address above to send to them.  You can also enter email addresses in the sidebar to receive notices whenever the blog is updated.

Organizing a big trip like this takes a lot of time and effort but it is so much fun!  We have been crafting the itinerary including identifying the various places we will go, how we will get there, and what special experiences will be part of each place.  We have a basic itinerary, but there will be lots of times that the kids will make choices for us too.  We have also been insuring a good, safe adventure by planning ahead and taking all the right precautions.  We do know the metropolitan area well.  "Beantown" is such a wonderful city, rich in history, culture, and adventure.  Here is our list of events as of now:

Harvard Square
New England Aquarium
Freedom Trail
Boston Museum of Science
Imax Theater
Maparium at the Christian Science Center
Museum of Fine Arts
Quincy Market
Fenway Park Tour
Shear Madness Show

By the way, if you would like to see our specific Google Calendar of events for the week just drop me an email request (PGilmore@vermontcommons.org) and I will add you to the Google Calendar list.  It will be the most up to date information on where we are and where we are going at any moment.

One of the nice things about this trip will be our opportunities to work with the class as a whole.  There will be lots of opportunities to make decisions as a team, work in smaller teams, and share as individuals.  We recognize that this is a special group of kids and we are looking forward to bringing them even closer together.

Onward!   Heather and Peter


Day 1 - We made it!

OK, so two mountain ranges and two snowstorms later - here we are!  We made it across Vermont, New Hampshire, and Massachusetts with one pitstop and came directly into Alewife Station without a hitch (albeit two hours late due to snow).  Our first exposure to the "T" went just fine and we arrived at Harvard station in good form.  Racing up the steps to Harvard Yard we met up with representatives from our sister school in China (bet you didn't know we were doing that!) in front of John Harvard's statue.  It was a fun visit that only happened because the teachers were visiting Boston today.  After touring around Harvard and imagining the literally miles of tunnels underground between the libraries and through the stacks, we sauntered over to the Harvard Coop for hot chocolate and some time browsing books.  Later we retraced our steps back out the red line and drove over to Rebecca Coll's house in Needham.  It was a memorable first visit to Boston but only the first of many to come!

Emma and Hot Chocolate at the Harvard COOP

Sasha at Harvard Station
Haaavad Yaad
Class Briefing and Meeting in the Evening


Day 2 - Aquarium

What a day in Beantown!  We started out with early rising, a classic EWeek breakfast, and a ride in on the Greenline that all went very smoothly.  After a steady commute through Newton and under Boston, we made it to the Aquarium right on time and the kids were so excited to see the seals, penguins, pufferfish, sharks, rays, etc. etc.  After lunch in the museum we set off on foot to experience Faneuil Hall, the Paul Revere House, and the Old North Church along the famous Freedom Trail.  Spending the late afternoon in Quincy Market and enjoying dinner amongst the dozens of delicious foodshops  was a treat for everyone.  Finally, we hit Mike's Pastry Shop in the North End for a fantastic ending to a great day.  A beautiful Boston scene greeted us as we walked through the gently falling snowflakes and Christmas light lit evening back to the Haymarket T stop.  Safely at our abode in Needham the kids are engrossed in a great game of Apple to Apples as I write this.  Heather and I are contemplating the weather report of 10 inches of snow???  Enjoy the pix everyone!

Breakfast in Needham

At the New England Aquarium
A cold weather buddy!

A flying turtle??

Xavier petting rays

Yes, Sasha pets a shark!

Paul Revere Statue

In the Old North Curch

Hot Chocolate break
Jalen's Pepperoni-pizza-bagel thingy

A magical evening walk through Boston


Day 3 - Science Museum!

The predicted foot of snow did not quite materialized yet Boston Public Schools had cancelled last night - all the better for us!  The museum opened an hour late so everyone had a little more sleep time, and the travel in town went smoothly once again. The museum was all we expected and more.  We had the run of the place as our kids were able to enjoy each of the themed areas with no lines, waiting, or fees: The Human Body, Electricity, Physics and Motion, and the ever popular Butterfly Exhibit were enjoyed by all.  The Omni-Theater film (The South Pacific) was a fun respite, and we finished the afternoon with a stroll through Boston Common past the Statehouse. The kids chose to return to Quincy Market for dinner and we hopped on the T for the ride back to Riverside. (They are getting to be pros on the subway for sure!)  The evening included a nice time reflecting on the trip so far through silent personal writing, followed by a rousing game of "Fictionary" with everyone involved.  Big finish tomorrow so lots of sleep tonight!

Museum of Science Boston
Jacob on Stage

Owl Eye Butterfly

Oliver on the musical stairs

Heather observes a butterfly

The museum center

Boston Common

Quincy Market dome reflection on Eliza and Ana

Sharing thoughts about the day


Day 4 - Finale'

Our journey in Boston has just about come to an end, but we're made sure to make the most of it! Today started with a relaxed morning and a quiet "T" ride into the heart of the city. Our first destination was the Maparium, a massive, stain-glassed globe that we could actually walk through! After our adventure through the breath-taking, 88 year old structure, a chilling ten minute walk brought us to the Museum of Fine Arts (MFA) and we spent the next hour exploring the artifacts of ancient Egyptian, Greek, Roman, and Chinese cultures. After a lunch at the museum, we walked to Fenway Park and took an hour long tour of the Red Socks' infamous stadium, and then walked back to the MFA to continue adventuring for the next couple hours.  After a rousing Mexican dinner on Huntington Avenue, we journeyed over to the Charles Playhouse in the Theater District to enjoy the longest running play in Boston history - Shear Madness!  The murder-mystery-comedy-audience participation show was as good as ever with the kids choosing the murderer at the end.  Loads of fun for everyone.  Overall it was a great ending to a super trip.