A Christmas Tradition

Every year around Christmas time my oldest son and I go to Grand Central to see the Lionel holiday train show, riding as many different subway trains as possible to get there. We arrived just as they opened this year and practically had the whole exhibit to ourselves. He ran in circles watching the trains go in and out of tunnels, over bridges and along the elevated tracks.

"There's the MetroNorth train! ... The 1 train! ... Look Mom! There's the Polar Express!"  

Right across from the train show is Zaro's bakery where we get our favorite New York classic - the black and white cookie. We always get the mini 2-pack to share before heading to our next destination, the real tracks of Grand Central.  

A very favorite things to do is go from track to track, finding out where the next train is going and when it is leaving. Will it take people to New Haven, Connecticut?  Upstate New York?

We hang around as a couple of trains pull into Grand Central, opening its doors and delivering its cheery passengers into the heart of the city. 

After watching the trains and strolling through the holiday market in the terminal, we head out onto 42nd street to begin making our way over to Rockefeller Center.  

Once there we brave the mighty crowds, but still manage to snag a prime view of the big tree and the skaters below. Even Santa was doing a few laps on the ice. 

Our last stop is Magnolia Bakery for some of their amazing hot chocolate topped with big homemade marshmallow squares. There's no better way to cap off our day. With tired feet and happy hearts, we wait for the D train to take us back up to Harlem.  

It's no secret that New York City does Christmas better than anywhere else.  And lucky for us, it happens to be the place we call home.    


Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all!  Wherever you are, may your season be merry and bright.