Wednesday, April 25, 2012

post-vacation honeymoon

the only thing better than taking a fabulous vacation without kids, is coming home to them. and an amazing husband. it's a family honeymoon around here and i want it to last forever. k & p run up to me a couple times a day and wrap their arms around me while telling me how much they missed me. it melts my heart.


husband rose to the occasion while i was away and went above and beyond the call of duty. he texted me pictures everyday of the kids, drove k to school and back each day, did the girl's hair, took all three kids to church...

...and built me this incredible porch swing! i've been wanted one for years and my man finally built me one. it's not quite finished, so i'll post more details later. i'm swooning over it...and him!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

new york day 4

day four was our last day in the city. we had so much left to do, but not nearly enough time. we were feeling pretty guilty about not seeing any museums or central park yet, but the day was really rainy and we really wanted to catch another show, so we decided to make that our first priority. the whole trip was super relaxed and we didn't make plans until the morning of each day. i liked it that way, but it wasn't super efficient. not to mention that we slept in a lot!

our first stop was tkts, a place in time square where you can buy discounted broadway tickets.
there were plenty of shows to choose from, but based on the time and price, we chose to see rent. bad choice. it's pretty much about AIDS in NYC the early ninety's. i could appreciate the message of love and hope, but the scenes got pretty risque. 

oh, we had an hour to burn before the show started, so we stopped at dylan's candy bar.
couldn't get over how cute it was. of course it was just a bunch of overpriced candy, but the shop was really fun and they had some pretty unique candy there. so we all spent way too much money on candy for ourselves and our kids and wrapped it up.

tables and chairs upstairs in the ice cream shop & the stairs with candy in them.

jen posing in a bathtub of gumballs.

after seeing rent, we were starving and decided to make our way down to little italy for some italian food and gelato. we were smart and stopped at local stores to get recommendations on where to eat. a cute little italian boy behind a gelato counter referred us to a restaurant down the street called, il cortile. good choice.

our waiter was swooning over jennifer. he seriously offered to meet up another day and make us his famous nutella dessert thingy. he also bragged about his 4 wins in a spaghetti eating contest

we loved fabrizio, but the food was even better than the service.
our appetizer of fresh mozzarella on tomatoes with basil was melt in your mouth deliciousness!
the freshness of the mozzarella was out of this world.

i had the lobster ravioli on the left and jen had lamb with a special mushroom sauce on the right.

 noel ordered potato gnocci stuffed with spinach. hers was my favorite, although they were all to die for. fabrizo then brought us out a complementary ricotta cheesecake. jen loved it, but noel and me, not so much.

our last meal in the city:(

even though it was late, freezing, and pouring rain, we had to stop and grab some gelato and italian pastries on our way home. the gelato was incredible. i ordered the salted caramel and was dying...
we tried to get home early-ish that night so we could hang out with craig and anne more. the only bad thing about staying with people so amazing while in NY is that you have to divide your time between the city and your company. it was hard because we wanted to stay and lounge with anne all day. in fact, we did that a lot in the morning:
notice how we overtook anne's bed?
i felt bad sleeping in every morning, but with all the walking and staying out late, we were so exhausted. also, i didn't have kids waking me up, so how could i not!?

on our last day, noel and i went running in the morning and anne took us to lunch and showed us around her little town before we headed to the airport.

i purposely came with a half empty suitcase, because i knew there would be a lot of shopping.
i stayed in my budget though!:)

this trip really was unreal. when i suggested it to my sisters a couple months ago, i wasn't sure if we'd all be able to make it happen, but we did!!! no one is pregnant or breast feeding, we had time off work, good husbands to watch our kids, an amazing place to stay, and a little money. i'm so grateful that it all worked out and i was able to have these 5 days with my sisters. words can't describe how much i love and miss them. every laugh and conversation had me smiling and wishing i lived near them again.

till next year ladies...

Monday, April 23, 2012

new york 3

on day three, anne was able to make it into the city with us. yay! the train station is about a 1/2 mile from her house, so we would walk there each morning and the train ride would be about 40 minutes right into grand central station.

then from grand central, we'd hop on a subway to our first destination of the day. the subway system really is genius, but man, some of those rides were uncomfortable. i love the variety of people to watch and to speculate where they're going or what their lives are like. but when it's super crowded, with drunk people, or loud people, and super hot, i get a little anxious.

this particular day, we did quite a lot of shopping. anne was the perfect person to share a trip to H&M and Anthropologie. after shopping, we went back down to chelsea to eat at a restaurant that kelly recommended, pastis. apparently, it's celebrity central, but when we got there, it was in between lunch and dinner, so they were only serving a couple things. because of that, we found an amazing burger place down the street and grubbed on burgers and sweet potato fries.

then we headed uptown to bryant park and grabbed some cupcakes on the way.
the cupcakes were just okay compared to our dessert at serendipity, but they def did the trick:)

bryant park was so gorgeous at night! there were quaint tables and chairs everywhere and lights floating in the trees. the landscaping was breathtaking. good conversation with these ladies was the icing on the cake of course.

me and noel on the train ride home.
noel bought me the cutest necklace for my birthday on our way to lunch. we found a gold mine of fun jewelry at this artist show in chelsea. she also bought herself the one that she's wearing.

we purposely got home pretty early that night to chat and relax on the couch, but as soon as we walked in the door, i crashed on the bed and couldn't get out. i was so exhausted!! i think i slept almost 11 hours that night. the girls kept talking out in the living room and when noel came into bed, she would not shut up and eventually was cracking me up. i can't even remember what we were giggling about, but she snapped a picture of me. that's the best. tired "drunk" giggling with your sisters in the middle of the night:)

Saturday, April 21, 2012

new york day 2

the saw violinist in the subway

times square

ray's pizza

 bubble tea

 Rockefeller center

cart side gyros.
SOOOOO yummy.

godspell in broadway. 
there were definitely weird parts in this show, but overall, the message was so upbeat, positive, and spiritual. the energy was off the charts. we got cheaper lottery tickets and had to sit on cushion seats on the front floor.

we got done with the show around 11pm and then headed to chelsea for a late dinner. 
spice market.
foodgasim x 1000!!! not to mention the atmosphere and people. the nightlife on a friday night in that part of the city was so fun to observe. while i was inside the restaurant reserving our seats, noel and jen were outside and saw kourtney kardashians boyfriend walking down the street with his posse. there were like 10 people surrounded him filming the show. i was bummed i missed it.

after spice market, we fell into a food coma on the train ride home. 
didn't get back to anne's until 3am. needless to say, we were exhausted.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

new york day 1

we arrived yesterday at our old friend from texas, anne anderson's house. she's pretty much amazing and we all three want to be her. her house is beyond gorgeous and i could write a whole blog post on just that, but i won't. we love being with her. our morning was slow; we slept in and slowly got ready while chatting with anne.

 leaving anne's house in the morning

as soon as we got to grand central station, we hit the market and bought some fresh bread and cheese.
couldn't get that down fast enough. reminded me of my trip to europe with karen, hillary, and anh, after highschool.

jen and noel navigating our way

 on our way to chinatown, we stopped at century 21 to shop a little. then to chinatown we went. 
dumplings, sesame chicken, and noodle soup. 



we got our shop on with all the cheap crap; scarves, purses, and souvenirs, but we also found the cutest man selling oragami made from grass. he was so sweet and made the most unique creations. jen of course made best friends with him, as she did everyone we met. 

 she also made besties with this statue man who scared the crap out of us when he moved as we were walking by him. then she talked sex with him. only jen...

next stop was the WTC site, 911 memorial. 
sacred place. period.

to end our first day, we stopped at serendipity for dessert.

 frozen hot chocolate and some peanut butter heavenliness!

by the end of the day, we were exhausted after 11 hours in the city. 
day one = success.

on the train back to annes'.