This trip to Boston was all about Dave's dad.  Since we wanted to make things easier on him, we chose one or two "bigger" things do do each day and then sort of filled in the gaps around those.  If you missed our post about DAY ONE in Boston, you can see that HERE.

Our two big things on the agenda for DAY TWO were:
1 - Explore Harvard University and Cambridge.  
2 - See a Boston Red Sox game at Fenway Park.

When we planned this trip, Dave and I figured that the mornings would really be our only time with just the two of us to do whatever we wanted.  When we travel, we especially love trying out local coffee shops.  We woke up early each morning to maximize our time together and coffee was first on our list.  

This morning, we figured we would have a little more time since we weren't meeting everyone until lunch so we selected a coffee shop a little further from the hotel.  

We headed to Thinking Cup Boston Common which was only about a 15 minute walk (when I say we went further).  Remember, Boston is a really walk-able city which we loved.

We are serious lovers of coffee and enjoy the accessibility to unbelievable coffee you tend to have in bigger cities.  Not to mention, their baristas have a skill level that we don't see much around home (no offense to our neighborhood Starbucks baristas).  You know we love you, too! 

We sat and enjoyed coffee while people watching.  There are a few Thinking Cup locations throughout Boston, but we figured it would be nice to be right across from Boston Common park.

After coffee, we took our time strolling through the park and the streets.  It didn't take long to realize how close things really were.  Just down the road from the Boston Common was the Granary Burial Ground (which we visited again later in the day with everyone) and Old City Hall.  

We found our way to the Boston Harbor next.  We hadn't had a good view of the water yet and were excited to see it.  With it being early, the temperature was perfection and the water was so peaceful.  

There were a handful of kids that were part of a summer camp running around waiting on their boat tour.  When we travel and see kiddos like this, we always think about how neat it would be to be growing up in a big city like this with such exposure to all kinds of fun, historic and educational things.

On our walk, we ended up near Quincy Market and Faneuil Hall and decided to go ahead and walk through even though we had plans of eating lunch there the next day. 
Not much was open, but it was the perfect time to be able to see things and not feel like you were fighting through the crowd to find a seat to eat.  It really allowed us to take in the beauty of the market and imagine what it would have been like so many years ago.

There is a Holocaust Memorial right across from the Union Oyster House.  We saw it the night before on our way to dinner, but didn't have the time to stop.  

This is right around the corner from the market along the Freedom Trail, so we walked back through to remember and pay our respects.  The memorial is beautifully done and provides visitors with a really unique experience while walking through.

With it being only 9 o'clock we figured we still had a decent amount of time to explore so we headed towards the North End of Boston.  Our plans included heading there on day three so we didn't want to see too much, but thought we'd explore in that direction to see a little more.  

On the way we walked through the Boston Public Market area.  We love walking through markets in different cities.  The fresh food, the people, the culture... we love it all!  We didn't pick anything up, but all of the fruit smelled SO good. 

We continued through a public park space.  Kids were playing in the fountains, people were napping with their dogs and other people were just using the space to get through on their commute to work.  Boston was similar to some of our other favorite big cities in that it had a lot communal park space.  

We absolutely LOVE to travel and explore new places.  The only downside of that is in most cases, it means having to leave our sweet Hopsen back home.  Whenever we can't take her with us, we always try to find a local dog shop to bring a special treat back with us.  The girl loves a good treat!

We found polkadogbakery which had a great selection of local stuff.  Whether you pick up a stuffed lobster or clam chowda treats, your pup will appreciate that you thought of them while you were away in Boston.  We picked up a bag of treats for Hopsen and are still trying to decide if she enjoys clams!  

The shop was right beside Boston's infamous Neptune Oyster.  Established in 2004, this is a popular spot for their raw bar and buttered lobster rolls.  Although there are raving reviews for this high-end oyster bar, if you talk to locals they agree that you can find a good lobster roll just about anywhere in Boston and don't necessarily need to spend 40 bucks on it. For this reason, we scratched it off our list.

Before we knew it, it was time to walk back towards the hotel to meet everyone.  Known for having the world's #1 sandwiches, Dave's dad selected Sam LaGrassa's for lunch.  If you know him, you know he loves a good sandwich.  Heck, he probably even enjoys a bad sandwich.  He just loves sandwiches. 

The restaurant is only open for lunch on weekdays, so this was literally the only opportunity we had to experience it.  And, we're so thankful we did because if you ask Big David this was probably his favorite meal of the entire trip.  I am not joking... he seriously loves his sandwiches.

Their portions are HUGE, so Dave and I split a sandwich and then got a couple of side items to try.  Everything was really good and his dad was thoroughly enjoying this first stop of the day.  

The lunch crowd here is crazy, so if you're wanting to experience it we would recommend going right when they open (11 AM), or for a later lunch once the lunch crowd has passed.  They close for the day at 3:30 PM.

The Granary Burial Ground was on Dave's dad list of stops he wanted to make on the Freedom Trail and was not far from Sam LaGrassa's so we went ahead and checked it off the list.  

He even stopped to get a map of the grounds on the way in so that he could find everyone he wanted to see.  I mean, what can you say... the guy loves history and knowing everything! 

The Burial Ground is pretty close to the subway stop at Boston Common, so we thought it would be best to get on and head to the Harvard stop.  We had full tummies and our first offical thing on the agenda for the day (besides lunch, of course) was seeing Harvard University and Cambridge.  

The subway was definitely the cheapest option to get to Harvard (about $13 for the five of us), but was NOT the easiest on Dave's dad.  We love using public transit in cities when we visit because it makes you feel a little more local, but went ahead and grabbed a car that afternoon on our way back to the hotel.

If you've never been, Harvard's campus is special.  I'm not sure if it is the history, the prestige or the people you know who have walked those very steps and made a lasting footprint on the world as we know it.  I can't quite describe it, but if you are ever in Boston you should do yourself a favor and go by.

We mostly walked through campus with Dave's niece.  Since we were visiting in the summer, there weren't a lot of students noticeably on campus.  I think it would be neat to visit during the academic calendar year where you could get more of a campus feel. #takeusbacktocollege

We made a few notable stops on campus like the John Harvard statue...  
(of course we rubbed his left foot)

... and, the Harvard Book Store.

We were only on campus for an hour or so, but I could have stayed all day (or semester!).   Dave's dad somehow knew there was an ice cream shop close so we headed there next.  

Lizzy's is a local chain that serves all kinds of goodness.  I ordered a kiddie cone of the mocha chocolate lace which is one of their top five flavors along with chocolate orgy which Dave's niece got.

We had a car take us from Cambridge back to our hotel for Dave's dad to rest up before our second major thing on the agenda for the day: seeing a Boston Red Sox game at Fenway Park.  Instead of resting ourselves, Dave and I thought we'd use the time to walk around and explore more of the city.

Our first stop was Hopsters Brewing Co. which had just recently opened in the Seaport District.   We enjoyed the walk as it was the first time we had gotten to walk across the bridge right where the Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum is located.  All of the water around Boston is lovely.

We didn't have a lot of interest in the Museum, but appreciated being able to see the ships and imagine that piece of our history unfolding right in the water below.

We turned down time to rest, but also realized the fact that we still had a long night ahead.  Since we only had two mornings to grab coffee from somewhere local, we decided to make a pit stop for more.  

We ordered our favorite iced combination from Ogawa Coffee, the first international branch of a Japanese coffee chain which was just down the corner from our hotel.  Let us just tell you that it was one of the best cold brews with espresso that we've had.  Ever!  And, we've had a lot.  It was THAT good.

We took our time walking back towards the hotel and decided to stop in the park right beside it to finish our coffee.  As we sat on a bench watching all of the people passing through and families playing together, it was completely obvious why people fall in love with this place.  

It literally has everything you could dream of wanting in a big city, but also has such history, charm and a smaller neighborhood feel.  We were loving everything (and I mean EVERYTHING) about Boston!  

Next, we headed to the hotel to change and get ready for Fenway.  Dave's dad is a lover of all things baseball and passed that tradition down to Dave.  Dave and I have had the opportunity to visit several MLB parks, but Fenway was still on our list.  And, what better way to experience it than with his dad!

When you mix all of the history (of Boston and of the game of baseball) literally everything was culminating to the perfect trip for Dave's dad.  It was everything he could have dreamed of.

Our seats for the game were awesome!  Shout out to the ticket sales at Fenway for this!  We wanted seats that were easy accessible with few stairs (if any) and they could not have directed us to better seats.  

We were close to the game and although there was an aisle for people to walk in front of us, the staff was great about keeping people moving and not allowing people to walk during plays. 

We had a ramp to access the section and did not have a single stair to climb.  We had Dave's dad sit right on the end and he couldn't have been more thrilled with the experience the seats provided.  Since we had been planning this trip for a while, we purchased our tickets for this game early on.  If you have specific seat requests, we would highly encourage you to do the same.  They worked out perfectly for us!

The Red Sox were playing the Seattle Mariners (which we were pumped about).  Truth be told, typically people watching and the concession stands are what keep me entertained at baseball games (they really should have a time limit!).  And although I still did my fair share of this, I have never seen a more exciting baseball game live in my entire life.  There were 34 hits!  Yeah, thirty-four hits in a baseball game!  Zero errors (from either team) and the Red Sox came from behind to beat the Mariners 14-10.  

Seeing Dave and his dad enjoy this game together was special (and worth the entire trip).  There aren't many things they enjoy more than a baseball game together.  This experience was a dream come true for his dad and Dave sat there filled with joy knowing that he had made it happen.

Then, Brock Holt hit a foul ball that was coming right in our direction.  Dave got up from his seat and ran down the tunnel and in that very moment I knew, I just knew he was coming back with that foul ball.  As he ran up from the tunnel with the ball raised, the cheers for him grew.  There is no better way to describe it than saying it was literally like something out of a movie.  You couldn't make it up!

Dave got a foul ball at Fenway Park, enjoying an unbelievable baseball game, with his dad right beside him.  It was something that he couldn't have ever even dreamed of.  That foul ball was a beautiful sign of Dave's mom's presence.  There is nothing that would have made her happier than seeing her guys together in moment.  It was truly magical, there's really nothing more I can say. 

Oh, besides the fact that after visiting Fenway and seeing a game like that I might officially call myself some what of a Red Sox fan.  The energy, the environment and the fans were all awesome!  I seriously sat there and thought to myself, "heck, I think I'm a Red Sox fan now."  To be clear, not the bandwagon type of fan either... you just feel it when you are at Fenway.  Oh, look at my sweet guy with his foul ball!

If you ever find yourself in Boston, even if you aren't a Red Sox fan or even a big fan of baseball do yourself a favor and visit Fenway Park.  If you're there out of season, there are still tours of the park available.  However, if there's any way you can visit during a game - DO IT.  It was such a treat!

We let the crowd clear out at Fenway and took #allthephotos because after all, the ballgame was what we really came for.  As we left the park, we walked across the street to Sal's Pizza because a few of us were still hungry.  I was not in that category after getting nachos at the game.  I also did not get mine topped with lobster and bisque even though you could.  Seriously!  #onlyinboston  

Dave was not super impressed by the actual pizza, but it was a cool atmosphere and hit the spot with late night eaters.  Plus, it allowed things to really clear out before ordering a ride back to the hotel.  While Dave and his sister got the food, I sat across from these two and refrained from sharing, "no phones allowed at the table."  Seriously, too funny!

We returned to the hotel late and everyone decided on sleeping in a little the next day (minus us).  We had one more day in Boston and wanted to make the most of it.  If you missed our post on DAY ONE in Boston, you can see it HERE.  We'll be back to share what all we did and crossed off our list on day three. 

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