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Old Friends & New Beginnings

It’s been 7 years since I moved from California to New York.  It’s tough to maintain friendships when you’re 3000 miles away, but through the test of time, miles and bonds there’s the friendships that fade and those that last.

This weekend a dear friend came back to the city for a visit, Fran.  It was so great to see her!  She was one of my first friends in NY.  When I moved here I was totally a California girl.  Yep, totally!  Everyone would say, ‘you’re not from around here, are you?’ or ‘you look like you’re from CA.’  I don’t hear those comments too much anymore and I have to admit, I do miss it.  As a NYC newbie, Fran showed me how to experience the city and we absorbed it as single ladies.  Fun nights out, dinners, boutique browsing, cafes and enjoying early weekend shopping at the Young Designers Market (up and coming designers) in Soho, craving fashion on a budget!!  We were two spontaneous girls and up for anything.  Fun times to remember, for sure.

Now…I’m still living on the East Coast, married and a mom – Fran in a relationship living by the beach in So Cal.  Time has passed, a few miles were added, lives have become busy, yet here we are 7 years later having a girls’ lunch at Gina La Fornarina on the Upper West Side reminiscing and catching up – just like the old days.  And we could not have picked a more girlie spot to do it – decorated in pink and white, fresh flowers and tables filled with chatting ladies.    Only difference today – table for THREE ladies and make it snappy, we’re on a nap schedule!  We now have one New York little lady in the making.  Oh how I loved seeing my friend and daughter getting to know each other, bonding, and smiling together.  A new era with new memories to cherish.  Here’s a friendship in the making…

Getting to know each other on the streets of New York City…

Table for three ladies, please…and two cocktails and a milk, sir…

 

Frannie will you sit by me, please? :)   Friends indeed.  Special day!  Tugs at my heart…

Do you have friendships that have lasted or know will last through the winding, distant, sometimes bumpy, long roads of life?  Would love to hear about them.

Until next ride,

Amy

Restaurant Survival

Children’s section, please!  Ahhh, exhale!  So nice to be finally sitting, and can’t wait for my cold ice tea and a non-diet meal.  The city was sizzling hot, and we had been walking around for hours carrying the stroller up and down steps with Maddie in it, shopping bags and the baby “luggage” on our arms, and all the while, dogging the NYC sidewalk traffic.  Phew!!  So very nice to be sitting and relaxing in air conditioning at Patsy’s restaurant on the Upper East Side.

As a parent you know not to get too relaxed while dining out.  Moments, and I mean only moments, after ordering our refreshing drinks, it started.  We know what IT means, don’t we parents!  Maddie was not pleased about a few things and was not afraid to “voice” herself.  I want that fork, spoon, table bread, water, napkin, salt, pepper, crumb, whatever is on the table!  My husband and I quickly went into routine mode and pushed everything to the far end of the table.  No problem, we’ve got this.  We were now enjoying our table bread at two arms reach across the table.  Maddie, getting more antsy, tries to propel herself from the highchair onto the table.  She was getting loud, winy, and at that point, everyone in the restaurant knew it!  I tried to hold out, but couldn’t.  I unfortunately had to go to the restroom leaving my poor husband alone to man the toddler wheel.  Why do I feel guilty about having to go to the restroom?  Everyone does it…it’s a human necessity.  Oh, the life of a mommy…get in fast, get out fast!  No time for primping.  Still no problem, we’ve got this.

When I returned, 5 minutes later, I knew things just went from bad to worse!  Madison was tossing the sugar packets into the air and onto the floor.  I looked at Dean and he said, ‘let her…it’s making her happy.’  Apparently Madison had gone into a panic scream cry when I walked away and the waitress had to assist Dean in calming her.  Oh my!  Then the pizza came.  Maddie wanted out of the highchair and there was no stopping her.  I propped her on the bench seat, I was sitting on, and she started jumping and screeching as loud as she could, as the whole restaurant watched on, some joining in and participating.  Come on now, people!  Ok, problem, I don’t think we have this anymore.  All I can think is, please stop antagonizing her…can’t you see I’m trying to get some control here!  I propped my leg across the bench, so she would not fall as I tried to eat my pizza.  Talk about muli-tasking!  I’m not looking for peace or relaxation at this point, I just hope to eat.  Eventually Maddie exhausted us, the patrons, and the servers.  We INHALED our pizza and left the toddler-crime-scene!

Looking at this cartoon now…I laugh, but in the moment, I just want to sit at another table (not claim Maddie as mine) and watch the chaos from a distance!!  I’ll take the non-children section, please…next time.  ; )

Have you been in an awkward pubic situation and wanted to immediately dart away?   Please tell me I am not alone! :-)

Until next ride,

Amy

NY Sidewalk Flowers

 

Flowers can cheer me up and put an extra pep-in-my-step any day!  They can be cut and set out, at two in the afternoon, and the day would somehow feel like a fresh start.

This weekend we were walking around the Upper East Side, headed to Central Park, and we passed by one of the many charming characteristics that make NYC so special, the sidewalk flower shop!  There are so many things in the city that make it feel romantic, charming, and beautiful, and the sidewalk flower shop is one of them.   Always beautifully displayed, sometimes wraped around the corner, with a variety of stunning colors, petals and sizes, and a sweet scent that follows you down the street saying come back, come back.  Ok, maybe it’s just me hearing that, but those outdoor bouquets are quite the eye catcher!  Here’s the shop we walked by this weekend, and the flowers that were calling me back to take their picture.

Love how the flowers wrap around the corner and brighten up the block.  And, don’t worry if you forgot your cash, always an ATM inside!  Who wants to go home to an empty vase?  Unfortunately, last weekend we did, but not today!  On the way home I stopped by a neighborhood sidewalk flower shop and picked up some flowers I don’t normal choose, feeling inspired by something I saw on Pinterest, and this is what I came up with…

Hydrangeas are turning into my new favorite flowers for the apartment - a touch of classic and warmth.  Add a pop of color (I added purple baby’s breath – well, that’s what I’m calling it) and there’s no way a bouquet cannot brighten up and add some cheer to a room!

Do you have a certain type of flower you like to have around the house to brighten your day?  Do tell!

Until next ride,

Amy

Checking Out of the City

The summer is here and the New Yorkers are Not!   The NY mornings and evenings are magical, but the days are anything but!  Once the clock strikes noon, be out or be weary.  Don’t let the sticky air trap you in or the heat from the sidewalks scare you from getting to your car or train, don’t make the mistake of leaving too early and getting caught in the tailgate rush out of town, and don’t head back too late and catch the exhausted beach loving city slicker’s bumper push back to the city.  If you time it JUST right, my friends, the perfect weekend is ahead!

I’ve made my list!!  I’m Checking Out but hopefully Checking In, summer weekend bucket list.

East Coast Beach

I am a California beach girl at heart, but there is something unique and tranquil about the east coast beaches.  The dunes, the wild grass, the picket fences, the warmer water, and lets not forget those beaches that can only be reached by ferry!  Who wants to join me?  Check me in, Please!

Cape May, NJ

Cape May, a gem at the bottom of New Jersey.  Only a three hour drive from the city to the Painted Ladies!  Can’t pass up award winning beaches, a quaint fishing harbor and a possible whale spotting!  We went last year and loved it.  Check me in again, Please!

Acadia National Park, Maine

How I long for a camping trip…with a lodge!   The smell of the pine trees, the sound of a rushing river with endless streams, hikes to hill tops with beautiful views of God’s country, and waking up to the sound of chattering birds and restless animals outside your window.  Does it get better, I ask?  Check me in, Please!

Block Island, Rhode Island

Block Island is a real get away only a few hours outside the city.  First by car, then by boat and you’re there!  This place is only accessible seasonal, so it has that true vacation feel, if only for a couple of days.  Check me in, Please!

This may be a little far for a weekend getaway, but wherever it is please, please check me in!

Where do you hope to check in this summer?  I would love to hear about it!

Until next ride,

Amy

Sunrise in NYC

It’s a beautiful June morning in NYC!  No humidity, perfect 60 degree temp, and the horns aren’t honking yet!  Anyone who knows me well knows I love the mornings.

Why you ask?  It’s the feeling of a new start, the sun peaking over the tall buildings, the calmness before the hustle and bustle, the crisp air, the feeling as though you have the whole day to get things done and in your mind you know it’s going to happen, and lets not forget, the smell and taste of that morning brewed coffee.  There is nothing like going to a corner NYC mom and pops coffee shop where everyone’s on a first name basis!

Ah, the fresh start of a NYC morning. [Read more...]

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