Dinner on the Hudson

On Thursday night, Eva and I headed to Chelsea (the area where T.J. works in Manhattan) to meet T.J. after work with a picnic. We found a beautiful place right on the river and watched the boats go by with the Statue of Liberty in the distance. After dinner, we ran around the park with Eva for a while and walked through Chelsea Market, this cool old building that used to be a big meatpacking area. It was cool to see how they transformed the building into this neat and artsy place filled with unusual shops and restaurants.

Since we are in New Jersey now, it’s easy for me to make excuses to stay close to home not go into NYC, but nights like this really make me realize how much the city has to offer so I need to take advantage of it all! Plus, this mild summer weather (no rain this week, YAY!) really is wonderful.

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Central Park Zoo

Last Saturday, we spent the afternoon at the Central Park Zoo. Although it was on the pricey side, going to a zoo in the middle of the city is pretty cool. Unfortunately, the majority of the bigger animals were not out. But we did get to see penguins (which Eva went crazy over… I don’t know if I have ever seen her so excited), sea lions, monkeys, and a red panda. We kept walking around the park hoping the animals would come out, but we didn’t have much luck. Anyway, if you come to visit NYC, I wouldn’t recommend spending your money on this Zoo… it’s not like what you see in the movie Madagascar when they show the animals at Central Park Zoo, but it did make for a fun afternoon as a family.




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An Afternoon in the City

I grew up in a suburb of Cincinnati. We lived just about ten minutes from the city and whenever we were going there, we would say something like, “We’re going downtown.” Well, I’ve realized here in the NYC area, when you say you’re going “downtown,” you are referring to the financial district or the more southern part of the island. I keep having to catch myself talking to people from around here because to me, it’s just a phrase but to them it’s an actual location and then it gets confusing. Almost as confusing as writing it down here in this paragraph.

Anyway, that was kind of besides the point. But last Saturday, we went downtown… as in, just into the city for the day. Through T.J.’s work, we get to see a lot of museums and events at a discount or at no price at all. One of which is the Museum of Modern Art. And as Roy from The Office would say, that art is the best art of all the art. But really. It is my favorite.

We only spent an hour or two there because Eva was wanting to get out of her stroller by the end, but we did get to see some of my favorites including works by Andy Warhol and Ellsworth Kelly. And no, we didn’t get to see the rain room exhibit yet. But we will go back!

After the MoMa, we went into the Knoll furniture store which is basically like another modern art museum. Their pieces are beautiful and if I had a couple hundred thousand dollars to throw around, I’d buy a couch and kitchen table from there.

We ended the night off downtown (this time I’m talking about the location) right by the new World Trade Center buildings and ate dinner at Edward’s. This restaurant has food from Cincinnati, such as Skyline, Larosas, and Graeter’s, which is why I picked this place to eat at in the first place. Turns out they only serve it once a month and Saturday was not that day… Dang it. It was still good, but we will have to go back again to have some Skyline chili and black raspberry chip ice-cream.

It was a great day and we didn’t get on any wrong subways-we’re finally getting the hang of it!

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Alive and Well

Well, we made it to New York. We took a redeye flight from Salt Lake to JFK last Tuesday (Holy cow… has it already been a week?) and Eva slept for just about the entire time although we didn’t get much rest. We kept saying, “Boy, this is the way to fly… no entertaining your toddler and a direct flight!” Right? Sounds perfect. Until the next day when major exhaustion sets in. It took a couple days to get over it, but finally we are getting enough sleep for our busy days walking around the city.

We saw an apartment on Roosevelt Island the first day we got in town and immediately fell in love with the area. We applied for an apartment there, so if we don’t get that place (we should find out today or tomorrow) then we want to live SOMEWHERE on the island because it’s absolutely perfect for a family in NYC. It’s so quaint, lots of parks, kids, families, little shops, so clean, and very safe. Pretty much an escape from the city but just a stop away. Hopefully next time I write, I’ll tell you we got the amazing apartment we were hoping for (still a one bedroom because everything is so expensive… yikes) or at least have a plan if it doesn’t work out.

The weather has been all over the place. The first couple days were so humid that I took cold showers at night just to cool down. The next two days or so were cold and rainy… I even ordered hot chocolate once because I was so cold. The wind almost tipped Eva’s stroller over, and it broke our cheap umbrellas as soon as we opened them. The past two days though have been very pleasant and really helped my mood. The days when it was so cold and wet, it made me really miss Utah and question what we were doing out here.

Riding the subway hasn’t been too bad with Eva. I was worried about doing it with her stroller. If there isn’t an elevator, T.J. and I just carry the stroller down the steps… we’re practically experts at it now. At rush hour, it is very tight and probably wouldn’t work without T.J. helping me, but it still has been manageable and I feel like I’m getting a hang of the system. It really helps that T.J. was here last summer because he is used to being here and knows how the subways work. He always talks me out of wanting to get a cab so we save money.

Something I’m pretty shocked about is that Eva has been able to take naps in her stroller almost every day. I think the only day she took a nap in the hotel room since we’ve been here was on Sunday. But the rest of the time, she’s been amazing and napped for an hour or two while we are walking around the city. It’s been such a huge blessing because we have had a lot to do and not too much time to do it since T.J. started his job today.

I’m getting very sick of eating out and cannot wait to have a kitchen again to cook! It’s been hard not to even have a mini-fridge or microwave in the hotel room with us. I hate spending all of our money on so much eating out, but there’s not much we can do except find cheaper places.

Our first hotel ended last Saturday. We thought about extending our stay but it was pretty far away from the subway. So instead, we found a different hotel (last minute special) and it was totally worth the move! There’s so much more space here and is a lot easier with Eva. When T.J. was a little kid, his parents took him and his brother to a hotel (nothing fancy) and T.J. said, “We are living like kings!” Isn’t that the cutest thing ever? But really. After being in the tiniest hotel room ever, we feel like we’re living like kings over here at the Holiday Inn.

On Sunday morning, someone called us back about an apartment in Brooklyn finally. Because of the holiday weekend, no one was answering when we called! Anyway, we decided we needed to take a look at the apartment, which meant missing church. Well, we got to the apartment and the neighborhood seemed nice enough. Nothing great, but I didn’t feel like I’d be R-ed walking around by myself. While we were waiting outside for the landlord to let us in, a tenant saw us waiting and asked if we were looking to move in. She said they just moved in a week ago and were already broken in to, found out the apartment has bedbugs, and the building has rats. It didn’t take me more than five seconds to get the heck out of there. We found an LDS church nearby and made it to Sacrament meeting instead. Looks like we should have just gone to church in the first place!

T.J. started work today. He seemed excited but a little nervous. I’m sure he’ll do great!

There you have it. Our first week in a nutshell. Thanks for all of your prayers, thoughts, notes, messages, and calls! Pictures are on their way… the internet at our hotel is so slow!