Long Island Staycation

Last weekend, hubby and I packed up our family and headed up the Southern State Parkway toward Riverhead.  I was given the task of putting together a short staycation given that our week long vacation was interrupted by a business deal my husband had to work on.  I was a little bothered by it but hey, it comes with the territory.  I didn't want to go anywhere near the Belt Parkway nor did I want to cross the George Washington Bridge.  That alone stresses me out during any holiday weekend.  So we decided on an overnight stay at the Hyatt East End in Riverhead along with a visit to the Long Island Aquarium.

The trip was approximately one hour with absolutely no traffic.  Well, there was a little but we got through it.  Once we arrived at the hotel, I was elated to learn that the aquarium was practically attached to the hotel.  No walking or additional parking was required.  After we arrived, we dropped off our bags and headed toward the nearest Pizza Hut.  Without any recommendations, we didn't want to chance it by dining at an unknown pizza parlor so we didn't.  After dinner, we then headed back to the room to change into our bathing suits and headed for the pool.  My husband wore a V.S. Swim Club tee shirt given to him at last summer's meet and it caught the attention of another hotel guest who grew up in Valley Stream.  How cool! 

After a few preteen/tween slumber parties showed up to swim, we quickly made a b-line to the door.  After a peaceful night's sleep, we awoke one by one, showered, and headed downstairs to the complimentary breakfast buffet.  The buffet consisted of hot/cold cereal, toast, bagels, muffins, fruit, yogurt, and assorted juices.  I elected to order powdered eggs and paper thin bacon.  I should have eaten the free buffet.

We headed on over to the aquarium to play with the penguins only to find out that children under 6 could not take part in this special program.  No sweat because I think hubby and I were looking for a loophole after learning it would cost $50/person.  Yikes!  We then bought tickets to the butterfly exhibit which was amazing. 

No trip is complete without stopping by the Tanger Outlets - Riverhead  for a little shopping.  We stopped by Stride Rite, White House Black Market, Champion, Osh Kosh B'Gosh, and Potterybarn.  I can't wait to go back to Potterybarn. 

On the way back, we stopped by Smokey Bones in Ronkonkama which is where my husband and I first dined last year after our getaway to Quintessential B&B November 2010.  The food is really good so I highly suggest you check it out.

Left: My fearless children touching a Madagascar kissing cockroach or something like that. 

Right: Butterflies feasting on oranges.  Absolutely gorgeous.
My daughter sat still hoping one would land on her.  She was disappointed.

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