Travel

NYC by Kate Brightbill

UpperWest

Quality time in NYC is just what the doctor ordered. Two days, about fifteen miles of walking, and one night next to central park at the Essex House was perfect. 

Brian and I are a good match for traveling. We want the most out of our time, and we love walking the best. We're also big on food, but when it's such a short trip, we don't necessarily want to spent excessive time sitting and eating. I needed a good bagel, and Brian needed a couple good slices, and we were good. 

JW Essex House
Elevator

We got a great deal at the Essex House and couldn't have asked for a better location- it was so central to Manhattan. Met up with a friend and took a subway near Union Square and grabbed Thai at ROHM on 20th in the flatiron {totally recommend it... good food/location}, coffee at The Grey Dog on University {and the most massive brownie ever served}, then called it a night. Sometimes it's good to call it a night when you're reeeeallly jetlagged and you want to get the most of the next day. 

We wanted to stop at the ShakeShack, but ah, not enough time... 

We wanted to stop at the ShakeShack, but ah, not enough time... 

So we legitimately made the most of the next day. We grabbed bagels at Ess-A-Bagels... friends, that place is SUCH a delicious tourist trap. 

While seriously enjoying our bagels, we discussed the crazy tourist situation... The place is packed-line-out-the-door, and the friends of the ones out the door waiting were sitting in the 10 tables available... none with bagels yet, most with glares, and most also with five extra chairs for future companions. Yelp didn't mention this sort of madness.. we had some good laughs about the seriousness of ordering bagels there. Don't get me wrong, I'd go back in a heartbeat. The bagels are legit. I'm talking insanely good. How do the places in New York manage to get bagels so right, and why don't they give SF bagel shops their secrets? At least we've perfected the sourdough and the dutch-crunch breads. 

The Shop Around the Corner is, indeed, a cleaners now. 

The Shop Around the Corner is, indeed, a cleaners now. 

So I was browsing the good ol' internet Friday night and noticed the 15th anniversary of You've Got Mail {thanks to SometimesSweet Friday links}, and quite perfectly, we were in the vicinity of the sites where the best rom-com was filmed... so naturally, I dragged Brian to the Upper West Side with me. We discovered that The Shop around the Corner is a standard cleaners, rather than the enchanting deep-green-with-patterned-floors- book shop it once was, but gosh, I was excited to be there. The block was charming, and I decided that if I lived in Manhattan, the Upper West is my ideal. We made it to Gray's Papaya {W 72nd}and I embarrassingly took a picture there too, without any hotdog purchase. Somehow in the moment, it felt right to stand at that corner. In retrospect, I can't decide if it's awesome or ridic. Both, I think. 

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UpperWest
UpperWestSide
NYC Pizza
Central Park
The dream slices of pizza,  Bella Vita Pizza , 58th St.

The dream slices of pizza, Bella Vita Pizza, 58th St.

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Yes, I'll go back anytime. I love you so, New York City. I have the best husband ever! xo

 

Vacations are Beautiful by Kate Brightbill

Brian and I went on a trip! Without kids!  I missed them with all my heart, but we really needed this time away...

If you follow on Instagram or Twitter, this is old news. If you don't, hey... follow! 

I'm currently sitting on my own couch in our own home and I am refreshed and excited about life as can be. We flew in, gave our kiddos a million kisses and a couple little toys from our travels, and now we are blissfully enjoying our last moments of peaceful quiet before we hit the ground running tomorrow.  

Tomorrow is the day before Halloween, during which the girls and I will be scrambling to create a Halloween costume from who-knows-what. If you see them as cowgirls again on Thursday, you'll know that I had an epic Halloween fail and decided to re-use the rodeo ensembles for the holiday, but I'm hoping I have some creative tricks up my sleeve. I may need to scour Pinterest during their nap/rest time tomorrow.  

We didn't go far for our long weekend... a quick one-hour flight down to SoCal. We started our time at a pumpkin patch to hang with some friends and I'm hoping we can make it to the pumpkin patch with OUR kids before they notice the pictures of us enjoying a hayride with other friends' kids, ha!  

 

When our children aren't around, Brian and I turn our cameras on each other... and yes, we did do the wagon ride, corn maze and pumpkin patch on our weekend away... ;)

When our children aren't around, Brian and I turn our cameras on each other... and yes, we did do the wagon ride, corn maze and pumpkin patch on our weekend away... ;)

Brian and I needed this time away. Goodness, does anyone chase toddlers for a living and relate? The loveliness of motherhood can somehow get lost and forgotten in the depths of exhaustion, so this opportunity to refresh has just brightened everything. We had full, thorough, un-rushed conversations about any and everything that came to mind. Some may say we totally planned our weekend poorly because- well- we planned almost nothing, BUT, the lack of planning was intentional. Having absolutely nothing on our agenda meant we could improvise and do whatever we wanted!! At this stage in our life, this is a total novelty. 

I have so much to say, but so little time. Bedtime now, because two little cuties will be waking us bright and early tomorrow! More soon! 

 

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xoxo.