New Yorkers are such an interesting breed. First, we can’t imagine a life not lived in the center of this great city….. wait, is there life outside of this city?  Then the next day, we just throw our hands up in defeat, complain about absolutely everything - the subway, the smells, the line at the coffee shop - and vow to vacate the island as soon as possible. Since we’re never serious about actually packing up for good, taking a quick jaunt upstate usually helps to calm our city kid frustrations. After all these years in the city, we are pretty versed in the art of finding quality upstate towns. It’s really an art form! Specific must-have’s include, but are not limited too, cute main street, local townie bar, hiking area, affordable antique shopping, quality thrift store, mom and pop grocery store and just overall good atmosphere. I mean, is that really too much to ask for?

Recently, our search took us up to Palenville. It fit nearly all the requirements, plus we found a very large house on Airbnb that fit our whole tribe and had a fire pit (another must-have). Fresh air, long days of cooking and day drinking, lots of lounging and uninterrupted quality friend time….. heaven must be like this, I suspect!

During this trip, we were on a big hiking kick, which is some what of an odd thing considering New Yorkers aren’t particularly known as big hikers. We like to observe the country from the cute front porch of the Airbnb house, not really get down and dirty. But, we chose Palenville because it was close to the hiker magnet, Kaaterskill Falls. I mean, just Google Image that place and you’ll understand why the whole trip was planned around it. We’ve driven past the main waterfall a few times on other trips and vowed to make it back to see it specifically.

Oh, so maybe you’ve noticed we were the only one with a toddler in tow. I quickly weighed out the thought of hiking with her and reminded myself that I basically do that in the city anytime I take her out in the Ergo…. up/down subway stairs, walking on an incline all the way up to the park, getting to/from our apartment via the stairs, etc. So, I thought, I got this… it’s just like walking through the city with her. Bahahahaha! Have you ever done Crossfit? Have you ever done a Mud Runner? If those two things merged together, that is what it is like to hike with a 23lb toddler strapped to your chest. Did we think to borrow a hiking specific carrier that has that fancy metal bar support system thing going on? Heck no. I’m not that granola.

I will say though, one of our big motivations for getting out of the city is to watch Parker explore and discover new things. We have a wonderful advantage to both live in a bustling city and have towns like this just a short drive away. It’s also helping to combat her fear of grass. Apparently it’s a city kid thing.