Sunday, April 8, 2012

Spring Break: Like a Fine Wine It Only Gets Better with Age

One of my friends threw that title at me a couple weeks ago. I love it.
What a great week it has been. So sad it's come to an end, but only a couple more months of school! Of course, I am excited to see the kids. I can't wait to hear about their break and tell them about my trip.

After SoulCycle Thursday I decided to head over to Brooklyn. I'm contemplating living in the area and had never been so figured I'd give it a look. I really had no idea where I was going, but I hear people live in Williamsburg, so I just took the metro to Williamsburg. I ended up not really seeing much there, because I had no idea where to go, so I walked along the water all the way to downtown Brooklyn. Yes, this is far, but there were no cabs inside and it was nice out, so it wasn't a bad walk. By point of reference in Brooklyn was Grimaldi's Pizzeria. I've heard about it from a lot of people so figured I would grab a slice for lunch. I had no idea I'd have to buy a whole pie, nor did I realize how ridiculously long the line would be, so I decided against waiting for the pizza.

I did get some photos of Manhattan and the Brooklyn and Manhattan Bridges. It is a beautiful view of the city.

I headed back to Manhattan, of course stopped for lunch at City Bakery, and then wandered around the city a bit. Again, this is just my favorite thing to do. I wish I could do it as a profession. Professional Walker in Manhattan.

Empire State Building. I went to the top a few years ago, but enjoyed avoiding touristy areas this trip.

This is Washington Square. Such a cool are near NYU between Union Square/ Flat Iron district and SoHo. It was slammed on Thursday afternoon and this guy was doing a juggling and acrobatic act. He lined up these four people and flipped over them. The squares remind me of Europe, and I love that.

I really didn't want Thursday to end. It meant I had less than a day left on my trip.  Even though we had done SoulCycle that morning, Alli and I decided to hit up a yoga class Thursday night. Note to self: I really will have to work on my time management when I move. As of now I'm about 6 minutes late everywhere I go. In New York that would be at least twenty minutes. I learned this when trying to get a cab at 6PM to get to a 6:30PM yoga class. This was not easy. I had to walk/run towards the right part of town and keep an eye out for a cab. I somehow made it to Laughing Lotus and I am so happy I did. It was an incredible class.

This is the studio where we practiced. Yes it is a screen shot from my phone, from their website. I didn't have my phone when I was there to take a photo. It was an hour and a half Level 2/3 class. I have never actually taken a harder level class. It was very doable but very challenging. My favorite part was when we were in Warrior III and I was able to gaze out the window down to 6th Avenue. Amazing!
After class we enjoyed my final dinner of pizza and beer. It was all just delicious. I still didn't want to go to bed when we got home, but I was exhausted and I crashed.

I woke up Friday morning so sad to leave! I was out of the house by 9:30 with about 6 hours to enjoy before my flight. I decided to walk down to Ground Zero and check out the new buildings and museum there. I was recommended to go by Kaffe 1668 for a cup of coffee, some of the best in town. It was a quaint but busy cafe and yes the coffee was absolutely delicious. No milk or sugar or anything needed. 

Check it out if you can, or at least look at the website. It has some pretty funny little photos and sayings.

I'm not sure why this didn't occur to me, but unfortunately, without a ticket, I couldn't see much around Ground Zero. It was interesting to go back though as I hadn't been since 2002. A lot had changed. The number of people around was insane. It made me sad that all these people came because of this tragic event, but I guess that's the same with most memorials.

One World Trade Center. 1,776 feet when it is completed. I think the goal there is 2013. I do hope to be able to tour it, the museum, and memorials at some point.

To avoid the crowds I headed down to Battery Park, though there were just as many people down there. It was gorgeous though.  A great bike and running path all along the Hudson. The wind made it very chilly, but I enjoyed it and even jogged a little.

SO many people in line to go to the Statue of Liberty. I don't know if I'll ever get closer than this, and I'm ok with that. It's got to be a cold boat ride.

I took one more trip by the bakery for my last shot of hot chocolate, mmm so good, then jumped in a cab for a long ride to the airport. So sad to leave but so stinking excited for my return!!!

I can't wait to use this again soon!

And then it was Easter. It's been a fantastic last day of Spring Break, but I still can't believe it's over. Church this morning was followed by yoga and brunch.

Mmm. No I didn't cook this.

It was gorgeous outside so a few of us hiked up Crowders Mountain. If you live in Charlotte and have never down this, you need to! If you look really hard to the right of the tree you can see the Charlotte skyline. It's no New York, it sure is little, but it's there!

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Sweating in New York

I love this city more and more each hour. Seriously. Everything I do, everywhere I go, everything I see- it is remarkable.

I'm over halfway through the trip and get a little downtime now as I'm not working at the store anymore this week. Working there for three days was incredible. I literally had to pinch myself a couple times as I kept catching a glimpse of the streets outside and all of the people and remembering I wasn't in Charlotte, but in New York City.  I even changed the mannequins in the window yesterday, which was super cool. So many people will see those windows! I was talking with some of the girls about places to do yoga here, and they were telling me about an instructor who is Lady Gaga's personal yoga teacher. Amazing too!

Tuesday I started my morning with a walk along the High Line to City Bakery.  I tried to find the High Line one of the last times I was here, looked for hours, but never found it. (I was too close to the river.) So glad I found it this time. It was a gorgeous day too.  I took tons of pictures, but these are my favorite.

This is in lower west side walking to High Line.

It crosses the street. Pretty cool you can sit and watch the traffic below.

One of my favorite shots. It would be great to run up here but it's pretty crowded. I can only imagine what it's like in the summer months. Can't wait to see!

So the High Line in where old freight trains ran to avoid the street level. APparently no trains have been on it since 1980. The neighborhood came together to create the park. Pretty incredible, check it out.

I made it to City Bakery for breakfast. A bacon maple scone with hot chocolate and a homemade marshmellow. So delectable! It's Spring Break and I'm in New York City so I'm enjoying eating lots of rich yummy food.

 I only drank about half of the hot chocolate before I was stuffed!

After work Tuesday I headed back to the bakery to meet Allison and head up to Central Park for a run through the park. This was absolutely breathtaking. We ran 4 miles with a group, and ended up doing it very quickly. I was totally distracted by everything around me. I've been through the park but never like this. And there were SO MANY people. It was insane and I loved everything about it. It also made me really excited for doing training runs here for Marine Corps and eventually the New York Marathon.

I took this while I was running.

Gorgeous. The sun starting to set.

Post run. We both felt so great!

I don't have a picture but post-run dinner was at Shake Shack where we had hamburgers, fries, and this scrumptious peanut butter ice cream concoction. I definitely recommend it. 

Wednesday was my final day of working here. After work I met Alli and her mom at a restaurant at the High Line for drinks and apps before meeting two of my friends for dinner. It makes me so happy when I realize all of the friends I already have here! 

This morning we were determined to make it to early morning class at SoulCycle. I've heard so much about it in and outside of New York. Even with a late night last night I made it this morning. It was a blast and the perfect way to start the day. 

Intense spin class with great music and upper body workout.

I will absolutely be attending SoulCycle when I move here. I sweat like crazy and I know my legs and arms will be sore. The class has a great energy about it and the instructor was wild. I loved it.

I snapped this shot on the way home this morning. The sky has been crystal clear blue since I got here, thought it was rather chilly this morning. I could just walk around here forever. More to come...

more delicious f

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

New York City

"The Uni-verse gave you your dreams and planted them in your heart. Any story or belief that you hold about why you can't have it is a lie. The Uni-verse has your back. The Uni-verse wants you to be happy. The Uni-verse made you to fulfill your purpose of living your dreams, giving your gifts and helping out and inspiring other people. Tell stories that back up your dreams - that enforce your gifts - that help you to thrive. THOSE stories are the stories that are TRUE and in alignment with your true nature."
from: Mastin Kipp at

A friend of mine shared that blog with me a couple months ago and I read it every morning. It is always very inspiring. Today, it is especially. I wasn't really sure what to title this blog. So I went simply with "New York City." After this school year is over, I will be moving from Charlotte. My current response is, "to NYC or DC," but what I really mean is to NYC. The past year or so this has really grown to be a dream of mine, which I will elaborate more on later. 

Yesterday I found myself working at a shop on Broadway in SoHo. This was unbelievable. Even six months ago I would have called you crazy if you said I would be doing that. 

I'm here visiting friends and working because it is our Spring Break (I love Spring Break!) 
I left Charlotte early yesterday morning.

US Airways actually saved me for once.

I finally started reading Hunger Games on the flight.

When I got into Manhattan I went and met my friend at the City Bakery. I had a delicious, delicious muffin and coffee for breakfast. (I had probably four cups of coffee yesterday which is very unusual for me. But I woke up at 3:30 AM so...) 

From there I walked to my home for the week. I could walk all over New York all day long. One of the things I am most excited about when I live here is not having a car. I could walk forever. Though these feelings may change in freezing and snowy weather, but I'll deal with that later. 

While I'm here I am hopefully going to look at a few apartments to live in and check out some potential jobs.  I am so excited to begin a life here!

Last night we joined one of our other friends for a Mexican dinner at La Palapa. We had mushroom and shrimp quesadillas, guacamole, and some sangria. We then went and saw my friend's new place and it is AMAZING. Check out his back deck.

That's only a corner of the deck. And yes this place is right in the heart of Manhattan. It is a steal, for sure. I was reminded to not get my hopes up about where I live. Yes, I will be fine living in an itsy bitsy room. I actually look forward to it.

I plan on doing a lot of sweating here this week. In addition to walking around the City I'm going to do some yoga, running, and of course check out SoulCycle. Any other suggestions? Could you ever live in NYC? If you live here, what is your favorite part?