Sunday, November 3, 2013

Cait's Hotel- Part 2: Krisann

After Amber came, Krisann and her husband Nick came to visit. Krisann and I were roommates for about as long as you can possibly be roommates in college haha. 7 years. Undergrad and grad school. And we're still alive to tell the tale. I hadn't seen Krisann since I moved, so I was pretty excited for her spur of the moment trip. I'm working on convincing her to move here (hurry up and graduate Nick!), but for now I'll have to be satisfied with a weekend visit :)

We had a blast. So much fun to be back together again- hanging out in the city, exploring museums (Europe flashback!), and going out to dinner every night... okay and going out for dessert every night too. I'm going to need to do a lot of exercising after all these visitors!

I've pretty much turned into a tour guide these days- I know where to eat, where the next picture stop is coming up, etc. (You can ask my brother Derek about the monster e-mail he got this week with options for his trip here next weekend. I'm prepared for all visitors.)

I was going to show you the trip in pictures (like I did with Amber's visit because everyone loves pictures!) but since I apparently failed to take pictures that weekend (Krisann I'm going to need you to e-mail me all of yours!), I'll just describe to you how much fun you have when you visit me!

After sending them off to see all the tourist sites while I was at work (Statue of Liberty, 9/11 Memorial, Wall Street, Trinity Church, Rockefeller Center, Empire State Building... the list goes on...) we met up for pizza in DUMBO (an area of Brooklyn) then walked to the Brooklyn Promenade to see the Manhattan skyline.

After pizza we, of course, went to get dessert. Frozen Hot Chocolate at Serendipity. Yum, yum, yum. Probably my favorite dessert here (as evidenced by the fact that the host now recognizes me- but I haven't been there so many times that they know my name yet. I'll have to work on that ;). I can't describe it, but just know that it is incredible.  Then we took a cab home (I'm going to be prideful for a moment here- I'm getting pretty good at catching a cab. It does not involve whistling or yelling like they show you on tv- does tv ever get anything right?).

Saturday Krisann and Nick took a morning bus tour of the city, then we headed up to Shake Shack for lunch, and across the park to the Metropolitan Museum of Art. I bought a membership to the Met that day, and it's been one of my best investments. After the Met we headed up to the Guggenheim Museum (free Saturday evening admission). Krisann and Nick then headed to Wicked (love that show!) and we all met up at Junior's for famous cheesecake.

Sunday we went to church then spent the afternoon hanging out in Central Park. We had a picnic, then just relaxed and chatted, then took a little tour of the lower portion of the park. Since we were all exhausted we headed back to my place for a NY movie marathon.

Monday I had to go to work again :( so they headed off for more tourist destinations, then we met up at one of my favorite restaurants on Restaurant Row for some homemade Italian food. Delicious. And since you must have dessert every night when you visit here, we went to Magnolia Bakery on our way home.

 Loved having you here!

Cait's Hotel, Part 1: Amber

I'm pretty sure I've mentioned I love visitors. I had a lot of fun with my visitors in the month of October. I had a best friend from high school and a best friend from college come stay with me, and it was so great to see both of them! I always want to say how grateful I am for such wonderful friends. With both of them- even though its been a year (or years) since we've seen each other, it was just like it always was. We easily fell back into chatting and jokes and having fun the way we always had! I'm so glad I have such great friends like all of you who make my life so enjoyable!

Amber was my first visitor. We were best friends all through high school (there's nothing like debate buddies ;) and we would always see each other during holidays and summer during college, but I don't think we'd seen each other since right after I started grad school... So it's been a couple years. I was so excited to see her again. We, of course, had lots of fun during her week here. We saw a couple Broadway shows, ate yummy food, ate yummier dessert, rowed on the lake in Central Park, explored the city... Here is our adventure in pictures:

Manhattan LDS Temple

Times Square

Phantom of the Opera

Phantom of the Opera
Ready for brunch, Central Park, Broadway, and General Conference

Listening to General Conference on a beautiful day in Central Park.

There's not much that beats relaxing in Central Park.

That's right. We won the lottery for Newsies.

So glad you came! Be sure and come again soon :)

It's been awhile...

Blog fail. It's been waaay too long since my last post (according to all the requests I've received for updates). In my defense- I have to say pretty much everyone else's blogs have been neglected about as much as mine lately ;) (So there- all you slackers like me have now been reprimanded).

The last couple months have been busy! One of my friends joked that I was running a hotel, which is kind of true of the last little while. No complaints from me though (okay maybe a small complaint about the increase in the frequency laundry is required. There, I'm done!), I've really loved having all my visitors. I really, really, really love NYC and I love showing off my city (it's pretty great- so if you haven't been here yet, my hotel is still open for business).

In between weekends of visitors I've had to work or always had something going on... so by the time Sunday afternoon came around (blog time) I was exhausted. Or booked- I feel like Sundays have turned into some of my busiest days lately. Enough excuses... Here's the scoop on what I've been up to lately.

Sabrina and I decided Labor Day weekend required an adventure outside of NYC. So we took a little trip up the East Coast to Maine. Why not, right? I'll give you a teaser picture here and try to get around to an entire post about this trip in the near future :)

After our Labor Day weekend trip, my friend Julia who was visiting from Australia stayed with me for a week and we had fun trying new restaurants and enjoying the city. We even celebrated her 30th birthday while she was here by eating crepes, going to the movies, and eating Levain's delicious cookies topped with ice cream and chocolate. Yum. And apparently I failed to take pictures that week because we were having so much fun... Guess that means you'll have to come visit again soon, Julia! Or just move here, I'm not picky ;)

As usual, I spent more time in Central Park. The usual exploring, and even a night of opera performances at the bandshell.

My friend Elise got us free tickets for a preview tour of the last section of the High Line that is currently under construction. (Here's a tip for you. NYers love things that are free but require a ticket, especially if it allows you to see something before the "general public" ;) It was interesting to see and hear what they're planning. I really enjoy the section of the High Line that is completed, and I'm looking forward to the rest of it!

I officially made it to all five boroughs with a little Saturday adventure to Staten Island with Sabrina last weekend to find Sabrina Lane. We took the ferry, had a little bus adventure, and successfully found the street. After that adventure we got a bucket of popcorn from the theater around the corner and brought it back to my place for a movie night watching Hocus Pocus (a pre-Halloween must!).

Speaking of Halloween... I didn't do much other than work late and walk home. But I did get to see the light show at the Empire State Building, and it finished with the ESB looking like a pumpkin :)

A couple weeks ago Elise and I went to see the Broadway play "Once." It was a lot of fun- and we got to see one of our ward members make her Broadway debut! (That was actually the reason we went.) She did great, and it was a lot of fun to watch a show and know somebody in it!

Last weekend I hosted the Iron Chef event at my place- Ingredient: Apple. Sabrina and I made homemade apple cider- it was so easy, and sooo good. Seriously, I was disappointed at the end of the night that it was so good because there wasn't any left! I'm going to have to go back to the farmers market to get more NY apples.


And... Friday night I went to my first concert at Madison Square Garden (actually the first time I've been in there) with Elise. We went to Ed Sheeran and the concert was so good! And there was even a surprise appearance and performance by Taylor Swift. Bonus! And he debuted a new song about NYC (of course we're going to love it, right.)


So it's been awhile, but it's been fun!

Sunday, August 25, 2013

(Ad)Venturing out of the city

You probably didn't realize this, but up until last weekend I hadn't left New York City for more than 3 hours at a time (and only a few times for 2-3 hour periods- 1 beach trip and a couple of work runs to New Jersey) since I came back in January after Christmas vacation. That's a long time for me to be in one place!

So I finally scheduled myself a vacation and went to visit my friend Sabrina in Connecticut. It was a blast! In order to get there I had to take a train from Grand Central Terminal- which was kind of exciting since I hadn't ever done that before.

Got my ticket and I'm ready to go- and ready to study for my licensing exams...
Once I arrived we grabbed dinner then did a brief walk through parts of Yale's campus. Such fun architecture there. Don't you wish we'd had this bell tower at BYU-I or the U of U?!

Sabrina's words to me: "You like that bell tower don't you? I thought you would." She was right.

Saturday morning we made our way up to northwestern Massachusetts to go tubing with a group of people Sabrina knew from Institute. We got up there a little earlier than the rest of the group did, so we did a little relaxing on the banks while we waited for them to arrive.

This is the life

Floating down the river was so much fun! It was so great to just lay back on my tube and cruise down the river while watching the beautiful scenery. It was so incredibly beautiful up there, New England is amazing.

When we realized how far up into Massachusetts we were going we thought we'd see how far it was to Vermont- why not? Turns out it was only 30 minutes to the closest town so we decided to go have dinner in Vermont, since neither of us had ever been there before. Then we thought once we got to Vermont we'd see how far it was to New Hampshire and maybe go there, but before we could even map it we crossed another bridge from the Vermont town and found ourselves in New Hampshire. That makes 5 states for me in one weekend (New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Vermont, and New Hampshire). Impressive, right? I just had to make up for all those weekends of not leaving the city- crammed it all in to one haha.


When we got back to New Haven we had a bonfire and ate yummy s'mores. I'm pretty excited to eat more s'mores on our upcoming camping adventure!

I really love my s'mores.

Sunday morning Sabrina gave me a tour of Yale. What a great campus, I'm still wondering why I didn't go there! If only I'd seen the campus beforehand... Then we went to church, and I took an evening train back to the city. It was such a great weekend. I love NYC, but it was great to take a break from the city and just go relax somewhere else. Now I understand why people in NYC have houses in the country and visit them every weekend. I just need to be rich enough to afford that...