Monthly Archives: December 2012

New Years’s Eve in Time’s Square!

Over one million people celebrate New Year’s Eve in Times Square. Getting a good view of the Ball Drop and staying comfortable during the long wait for midnight’s arrival will be easier with these helpful tips.

1. Arrive Early For the Best View of the Ball Drop

Folks begin arriving in the early afternoon on December 31. Some of the prime viewing spots will be filled by mid-afternoon. Be aware that you won’t be able to return to “your spot” if you need to leave to eat, use a bathroom, or move for any other reason.

2. Hit the Bathroom First

Go to the bathroom in Penn Station and do not drink anything else until after the ball drops!

Port Authority bus terminal, while crowded, is a good place to stop before you begin your wait in Times Square. There are public bathrooms inside of the Port Authority, as well as places to buy food and drinks.

3. Prepare for the Long Wait

Once you’ve staked out your spot in Times Square, be prepared to stick it out until midnight. It’s a good idea to have a nice big lunch before settling in. Unless you want to lose your spot, this means being dressed for the weather, with extra layers to add as it gets later and colder. You should also be prepared with snacks, drinks (no alcoholic beverages are permitted), and diversions. If you arrive in Times Square at 4 p.m., there are still 8 long hours until the ball drops at midnight. Bags/backpacks are not allowed, so wearing a coat with plenty of pockets is a good idea.

4. Be Ready for Crowds

Approximately one million people spend New Year’s Eve in Times Square. This means that if you are within view of the ball, you will frequently be tightly packed in, quite possibly for hours before the actual ball drops. The police will periodically “force” different areas to crowd in, but the crowding will typically lessen (a bit) shortly after.

5. Be Patient and Have a Sense of Humor

Your feet will get stomped on. People will block your view. Someone is bound to bump into you. Keep your cool and you (& those around you) will enjoy the New Year’s Eve Ball Drop.

6. Celebrate New Year’s Around the World

There is a mini-celebration every hour in Times Square, as different countries ring in the New Year around the world.

7. Consider the Weather

The weather in New York City on New Year’s Eve can vary widely. If it’s going to rain or be bitterly cold, you must dress accordingly!

Happy Boxing Day!

boxing dayWhat exactly is Boxing Day?

Boxing Day is celebrated on December 26th. Boxing Day, also known as the Feast of St. Stephen (after the first Christian martyr), originated in England in the middle of the nineteenth century under Queen Victoria. It originated as a holiday for members of the merchant class to give boxes containing food and fruit, clothing, and/or money to trades people and servants. The gifts were an expression of gratitude similar to the bonuses many employers offer their employees today. These gifts, usually given in boxes, gave the holiday its name, “Boxing Day.”

Today, Boxing Day is a holiday in the United Kingdom, Canada, and many other Commonwealth nations. It is a time for family and friends to gather with lots of food and fun. Outdoor sports such as soccer, horse racing and hunting are popular on this holiday. Retailers offer huge savings on many items on this day, making it the biggest shopping day of the year in Canada.

Peace and Acts of Kindness

On this day of mourning for the victims of the Sandy Hook, we look for ways to honor the memory of those lost.  At Au Pair in America, we promote global awareness and understanding.  We must begin as the most local level, within ourselves.  This video of children around the world singing “Let There be Peace on Earth” says it all:

26 acts of kindnessNewtown’s heartbreak has a lot of us asking, “What can I do?” Thinking about this, Ann Curry took to social media and asked people to imagine what would happen if all of us committed to 26 acts of kindness to honor each life lost in Newtown.

Great New Museum for Families Opens Saturday in NYC

momath museumDo you want to get your kids excited about math?  Check out this new interactive museum in NYC created by a former Au Pair in America host father, Glen Whitney!  It opens this Saturday, December 15th!

Mathematics illuminates the patterns and structures all around us. Our dynamic exhibits and programs will stimulate inquiry, spark curiosity, and reveal the wonders of mathematics. The Museum will have its grand opening on Saturday, December 15, 2012 at 11 East 26th Street in Manhattan.

Click on the link below for lots more information about the Museum!

momath GlenPictured is former Au Pair in America Host Father, Glen Whitney, who created the MoMath Museum!  Glen Whitney’s family had many great years in Au Pair in America until their children grew up!  They had wonderful years with great Au Pairs!