Monday, December 27, 2010

New York, New York

I was able to take a long weekend girls trip to New York city the weekend of December 17th. Carl's sister Emily, is getting married and decided to do some wedding dress shopping in New York City. So Andrea(Carl's older sister), Nancy(Carl's mom), Betsy(Em's friend) and I all drove to Kansas City to fly to DC(where Em lives) to meet her. When we arrived Em picked us up and we headed to the mall where there was a store I wanted to visit(turns out I didn't buy anything, didn't like what I thought I wanted:) After the mall we made our way to Georgetown to visit Georgetown cupcakes, featured on TLC's DC Cupcakes.
There was no line so we parked and made the trek to the store. They were filming while we were there waiting, so my friends with cable will have to DVR them for awhile and see if we can figure out which episode we saw.

After we picked up our cupcakes we went ack to Em"s place where her fiance, Marzi, treated us to an Afghani supper. It was delicious. I am not a fan of lamb at all but there was dish with lamb and rice with raisins and carrots that was so delicious, probably one of my favorite things to date, so good! Here is a picture of our spread, the flatbread was wonderful as well!

Saturday morning we got up bright and early and headed to New York.  We met Em's other firend, Mandy there and we headed into the city.  We walked a lot!  We walked down Broadway, Al Pacino is starring in a show right now!
 We walked through Times Square, Radio City Music Hall and Rockefeller Center.

Along the way we say some super cool decorations. I love the huge Christmas lights and the very large Christmas Ornaments in the fountain.

 Along the way we also saw lots of people dressed up as Elmo, Cookie Monster, Minnie Mouse, Spongebob, etc. All wanting tips for taking pictures with people.

At Rockefeller Center it was beyond busy but we saw the big tree and got a few pictures. This was the best I managed to get with the famous skating rink in front as it was wall to wall people everywhere. After that we made our way up 5th avenue. Wow is all I can say, every store was beautiful. Here are a few of my favorites,


 Fendi and Tommy Hilfiger

Trump Tower

Tiffany & Co.

 Bergdorf Goodman.

We went to Central Park after walking 5th Ave and saw the skating rink. The lines were outrageously long but it was neat to see it.

We decided to go to Grand Central Station as well and made our way there after a much needed bathroom and coffee break. It was very crowded but such a beautiful place, I loved it all decked out for Christmas.

I have been to NYC before but it is definately a different experience going at Christmas time! The Chrysler building was near Grand Central and looked very pretty at night.

After we grabbed some supper we rode the subway to Ground Zero where it looks pretty much the same as when Carl and I were there in 06. Across from the site is a very large discount designer store called Century 21 where we looked around for awhile and I found Callie a cute little outfit. We decided to call it a night after a very busy day and headed back to your hotel. Our hotel was right across the river with beautiful views of the city's skyline, especially at night.

Sunday we again woke up bright and early and headed into the city. We found a little diner for breakfast and then made our way to Kleinfeld where Em's first appt. was. Unfortunately no pictures are allowed in the store but it was beautiful.  Em's consultant is featured on the show and we also met Randy(he even complimented Nancy on the color of her jacket:)  She tried on several beautiful dresses but we had yet to see the one that had been her favorite from the pictures she looked at(it was at a different store)

 Since Em hadn't seen the dress she really loved from pictures yet we left and headed to Starbucks for a break before her next appt. at a smaller designer store.  When we arrived for that appt. it was a different experience then at Kleinfeld.  It was only Em and us in the store and she was able to meet with the dress's designer.  She looked beautiful in many of the dresses she tried on and it was a hard decision but she decided on the one she fell in love with at Kleinfeld.  So we walked back to the store and she was able to get her measurements taken, the dress ordered, etc.  In the meantime she had bought us tickets to go see the Nutcracker Ballet at Lincoln Center and with the extra stop to order her dress she wasn't sure we would make it on time if we all stayed there with her so Andrea, Betsy, Nancy and I left her and Mandy to finish the dress details and we made our way to the subway and Lincoln Center. 

We found it easily and then decided to get a snack since we were all pretty hungry.  After our tummys felt a little more full we went into the beautiful theater and found our seats.  The ballet was very good and I loved seeing all the different costumes.  After the ballet we went back to New Jersey and found some dinner at a restaurant with very nice views of the city.

 Monday morning we woke up and said goodbye to Em's friend Mandy who had to head to the airport and the rest of us took the ferry into the city again after checking out of our hotel.  We found a great bakery/diner place for breakfast(one of the best bagels I've had) and then went to the fabric store Mood(featured in Project Runway) Wow I'm not a seamstress but all the fabric was impressive, there was some beautiful stuff!  After that we made our way to Macy's to see the Christmas windows and their decorations outside.

 We also walked in just to get a feel for the inside, it was so beautiful! 

After a quick stop at payless to get some different shoes for a few of us we split up and Andrea and I ventured to FAO Schwarz to find out boys some souvenirs.  When we had gone by Saturday there was line just to get in so we thought Monday may be a better bet, there was no line but wow what a crazy, busy place.  We did find the kiddos some cute NYC vehicles and then made our way back down 5th Ave. to meet up with everyone else.  On our way by Tiffany's we glanced in the door and wow is all I can say(I wish we would have had time to go in)

Of course during our trip being a bunch of tree farmers we paid close attention to how the tree business was done in the city.

 A little different then in Algona.  I did take a few pictures of wreaths for Carl as well, they had some gorgeous ones!

After our busy few days and getting the things we all wanted to finished we decided we should probably head back to the car and DC.  Good bye New York(one last picture by the skyline).

It felt like a long ride back but we made it safely to Em's house where Marzi again treated us to a great Afghani dinner!  The next morning we were up bright and early and Em took us to the airport where we had some time to kill so had breakfast and did a little shopping in the Smithsonian store before heading to our terminal.  It was another long flight back to Kansas City and drive back home but it was so nice to be back and see my family!  They did splendidly well while I was away but I was treated with lots of hugs and kisses when I got home!   

Monday, December 13, 2010

Just a Little Cold Weather Entertainment

Callie loves the song Itsy Bitsy Spider, every time she hears it she starts to "dance" this consists of her standing on her knees and turning round and round in circles. It is pretty funny. Here is a good example, in fact when I was looking at the videos she heard the song and started "dancing" while I was watching them. Silly girl.

On another note I made a few treats for the cast and crew of our church's Christmas production this past week. Carl insisted I make cake pops but because of transporting issues I really didn't want to, so instead I did cake balls and trees, with my wonderful husbands decorating help I think they turned out pretty cute. I did white balls with Christmas sprinkles as well but didn't get a picture of those, I used red velvet cake for the center which looked really nice in contrast to the white. This week I need to finish up our Christmas baking but I think I am cake popped out for awhile:)

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Moving Right Along

Slowly but surely. Maybe we will have this walking thing mastered by Christmas....
(For doing everything else so quickly she has been our slowest walker, go figure)

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Making the Season Bright

We've been decking our halls and trees the past few days. Our trees were delivered Monday afternoon and my wonderful husband strung 12oo lights on our 8 foot Frasier that night while I was at work. I had gotten the other Christmas decorations up during the day(the garland on the stair railing and fireplace mantle, as well as the decorations on the tops of the shelves and piano.) Tuesday was decorating the tree day. I decided to use all unbreakable ornaments this year due to a very curious 14 month old who loves to touch things she's not supposed to. She is just young enough she needs reminders quite frequently and I didn't want to risk finding glass in her mouth after one of the times she "forgets" not to touch and eat, so this sounded like an okay solution. I had lots of unbreakables already but filled in with a few new ornaments from Target(plus who doesn't like getting a few new ornaments every once in awhile) I think it turned out pretty well. Gabe is putting on the final touch. The downstairs tree is my tree while the upstairs tree is the kiddos. Tuesday night when Carl got home he put lights on the kids tree while they looked through all the ornaments they were going to put on. Before we got started I was trying to get a picture of the tree with the 3 of them, I didn't have very cooperative subjects. Many boxes were pulled out in excitement and they couldn't wait for Daddy to finish with the lights. We changed into Christmas jammies while we were waiting too, just seemed more festive. They even willingly modeled some of the ornaments for the camera. Then it was time to decorate. Ty got a little distracted with the noise making ornaments and really didn't help put too many on the tree but Gabe did a great job putting them on and making sure they were in a place where they wouldn't fall off. Callie had to go to bed before the decorating started because she was CRABBY, that girl needs her sleep. They were pretty proud when it was finished. Last night the decorating continued with the outside lights. Carl braved the cold and hung our lights and lit our wreath that he also made. I love Christmas Lights!