Sunday, August 29, 2010

Massachusetts In the Summer

We decided that before we headed back to Utah that we needed to explore this beautiful New England country side! So we set off in search of Boston the weekend before we left. We drove down with two girls from Steven's work. One was another internship (Bridgette) doing exactly the same thing as Steve, and the other one worked in the marketing department with them as a full time employee (Michelle).

We had so much fun spending our little weekend up in the big MA. We got to see Boston, which is one of America's oldest cities. We did the famous "Duck Tour" which means you take these old army boat/buses on a tour around the city. Once you are done seeing the sights on land, you just drive strait up to the water and hop on in! It was half duck half car. One of the best ways to see the city though! We walked down some romantic streets with some of the most beautiful homes I have ever seen! Lots of the streets were made of brick and had that old time feel. We walked around some really old churches and got to see the cute little shops of Boston. We of course had to have some New England clam chowder when we were there so we headed to a place that was almost like Red Lobster. The clam chowder was to DIE FOR! so good.

The next day we headed up a few miles to the great Salem. It was so hilarious because this town wasn't your average Disneyland, but there were people flocking there like you would not believe! All they had was some cemeteries of the people who were involved with the Salem witch trials, and a bunch of witchy shops trying to get you to buy spells and potions. The best of all of these shops is called HEX. You walk in and all it is is a shop filled with voodoo dolls, special healing rocks, power casting candles, and of course some Ouija crap. These people actually believed in all of this stuff too! We were just minding our own business smelling some of the candles (because it was really the only thing we knew what it was!) and this lady comes over and says "Don't you dare touch the pregnancy candle!!" She then explained to us that she once picked it up and smelled it and she became pregnant within the week. What a crazy! haha We had such a great time just delighting in these people! One of our friends Michelle decided to get a physic reading by the most famous lady in all of Salem. She wears silver literally up both arms because she says it protects her. We could have sworn she was a witch!

After we had enough of the crazy witch people we decided to get some more... you guessed it... Clam Chowder! We went to this breathtaking little pier and ate at Capt.'s grill. Once again the chowder was a winner. I have never been anywhere on the East coast so to visit a place as beautiful as Boston was just amazing. There were so many cute fishing piers and just beautiful scenery! We were a little bummed we didn't visit in the fall because many say it is the most beautiful sight they have ever seen! We were just glad to get a little taste of it though. We had so much fun road tripping with our friends and would love to do it again!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Mother Knows Best

So my Mom came out to visit us in New York and we had so much fun! We saved lots of our touristy things for her so it was nice to finally get to see these fun things! We literally did so much stuff that it took up 300 pictures.... or maybe thats just cuz my mom went a little crazy? haha so I'll be doing the summing up version!

Her First Night in the Big Apple

She flew in pretty late that first night so we didn't have a whole lot of time to do much. But what we did do was take her right away to Times Square. It really is the most magical place in New York and she loved it! We went to the fun restaurant Bubba Gump Shrimp and had the BEST shrimp in the world! It was super pricy but so much fun!

Second day filled with Grass, Tiffany's, and a big sandwich...

It is kinda funny that we decided to do Central Park first because usually we liked to hit the park when we were sick of seeing only buildings but it was the best place to put it. She was in love with the park and we were pretty proud of ourselves because we felt we had finally conquered this ridiculously huge patch of land and were able to show her all the perfect spots! We then took her down 5th Avenue which is much more "First Day" in New York. She loved all the amazing shops because unlike us, she hadn't been to Vegas 8 hundred times and wasn't used to seeing Louis Vuitton every other weekend ;) It's pretty funny, because people expect 5th Avenue to be literally the most glamorous street in America, but to be honest its not that cool. There are tourists everywhere and its just a bunch of shops... So sorry for you 5th Avenue dreamers, I just wanted to let you know its not that cool. haha We then headed to the most iconic deli in New York. The Carnegie Delicatessen. Or Carnegie Deli for short :) My mom and I had to share a sandwich because they were so huge! (and a really crazy thing... two sandwiches for lunch still cost us $50!!... Thats NY for you)

The best part about her first full day in New York was we got to see the two most iconic shows on Broadway! Our matinee was the Phantom of the Opera. Soo good! My mom was so happy to see that show as her first broadway experience. Steven and I had already seen in earlier in the summer but it was still great to see it again! The show we saw at night was Wicked! We were especially excited to see this show because we had been patiently waiting all summer long to see this show! We had kinda crappy seats but it was so amazing! Glinda was actually the same girl who played Glinda in the Salt Lake performance my mom and I saw a year ago! She was super cute. Anyway we knew that after her first day, no other shows could compare!

Third day Broadway in Bryant park and Top of the Rock

So Thursday afternoons in the Summer are Broadway in Bryant park days. They have about 4 shows featured and the stars actually come out and sing their songs for you! They don't dress up or actually perform but you get to hear the music which is half of the magic! We got to see a peek at the Lion King, the Addams Family, Next to Normal, and of course Wicked! It was so fun to see them sing again and this time we could actually record it! (and don't worry my mom had her video camera out the entire time... haha) After that we took a trip up the street to visit Radio City Music Hall and the Rockefeller Center. We were able to snag a tour of the NBC Studios which was so fun because we got to see the set of some pretty sweet shows! The best one was Saturday Night Live. They said this is literally the most impossible show to get in! They say people line up Friday morning! After the tours we went to the Top of the Rock. Which basically means take an elevator ride to the 65th floor and step out on to the balcony to get some excellent views of Central Park! It was weird to be up that high and the city looked so amazing! That night we got tickets to La Cage. Steven and I had already seen it but it was so hilarious we had such a great time!

This was our Elphaba

.....This is a man :).....

Fourth day with Lady Liberty, Brooklyn pizza and a Historical Monument

We thought we were being clever by waking up somewhat early and going down to see the statue of Liberty, but I guess we didn't get there early enough! We had to wait in line about an hour just to get on the ferry! But it was of course worth it. We got to go to Liberty island, where yes you guessed it, the Statue of Liberty was! Then we took the ferry again over to Ellis island, which is the place that all immigrants used to come through to get into America. Both places were so amazing and very patriotic. My mom loved Ellis island a little more than Steven and I but it was still amazing to see the big rooms people had to wait in for sometimes weeks just to become a part of this free land.

After visiting the islands we headed over across the Brooklyn Bridge. There is this cute little pizzeria over there called Grimaldi's Pizzeria and there is always about an hour long wait out in the blazing heat! We had eaten there before but it literally is the greatest pizza in the world. It almost looks gross, but I think thats what makes it so good :) We then went to the Brooklyn Ice Cream factory and had the best Ice Cream ever!
on the Brooklyn Bridge!

We then went back across the bridge (by this time we were pretty much DONE walking!) We went down to the spot where the Twin Towers used to be. My mom was so in love with this spot! I felt so bad because when we got there the cute little chapel was closed and so was the little memorial store. she did get to see the actual site and she bought two little books on the buildings and Septemer 11. We found out that there will be two "footprints" where the original towers were. Which means two square waterfall memorials will mark the spot where those first towers were. The other spot will actually be filled with what will soon be the tallest building in America whien it is done!

What will be the tallest building in America when its done!Ground Zero spot
After we had a taste of the financial district we walked up to Little Italy! It was so cute because on weekend nights they block off the street and bring out all their tables to cover the sidewalks and everyone just walks right donw the middle of the street! We got my mom her first Canoli (which she loved) and took her to Rice to Riches! Steven and I were of course so excited about this... but after my mom had a taste or two she decided it wasn't exactly for her... what a shame. The french toast flavor is still my favorite!

Last day filled with Chicago, Canal, Mamma Mia! and some midnight sight seeing

We spent our last day mostly taking it easy. (especially after that crazy day we had before!) We went and got Chicago and Mamma Mia! tickets. After that we took a little trip down to Canal Street. Which is China Town for all of you who don't know what I'm talking about :) Canal is the bartering street of America! You can buy fake watches, purses, DVD's and pretty much anything else imaginable. You can barter with anyone and they will most likely make a great deal with you! My mom got some cute purses for my sisters and got some cute fake Tiffany bracelets! We had such a great time trying to talk down the ladies. My mom didn't really know the ropes in the beginning so we had to practice a few times until she finally got the purses she wanted! She also found a man who spray paints on hats and shirts and got one for Brooklyn, Halle and Mitch! They turned out super cute!

Our two shows for the day were first, Chicago. My personal favorite. :) The cast was completely different so it was fun to see it again! And our last show of her trip was Mamma Mia. She was sooo excited to see this one! We loved the music and were having a great time! Steven didn't quite understand what all the fuss was about but we didn't care because we really enjoyed it! I was super bummed though because I was actually sick all week long and didn't even have a voice to sing along! :( but it was still worth it!

At the very end of her trip we took her up to the top of the Empire State Building. We were so excited to finally go up to the top because we had been waiting the entire summer! The observatory was open until 2 am but we went up around midnight. The sights were breathtaking! It was so amazing to be able to look out and know exactly what we were looking at! It felt almost romantic to be up so high in the air with all of the beautiful city lights twinkling below us. (maybe just like sleepless in Seattle?)

My mom left for the airport at 6:20 on Sunday morning! We were super sad to see her go but we knew we only had two weeks to go before we would see her again. We were sure glad to play tour guides for the weekend and show her around this beautiful city we have come to love!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

She's my Yankee Doodle Sweetheart

So living in New York of course means you get to see all the great sights and shows, but it also means getting to go to one of America's most famous past times....

A New York Yankees Baseball Game

$70 worth of food, two happy fans, one lost game and a helmet full of ice cream later...

Who wouldn't love it? :)

Monday, August 9, 2010

a Weekend in the Nation's Capitol

Steven and I of course had to plan a trip down to D.C. for a weekend because we figured we were so close and it would be worth it to see where all of our country's magic happens. So we planned to take a bus out on Thursday night and only stayed until Saturday night. Now I know that sounds a bit weird, but that was the cheapest way to go.

We had such a good time! It was ridiculously hot and humid there but other than that it was amazing. We say almost everything we wanted to see including the Smithsonian museums of Air and Space, Natural History, American History and the Holocaust Museum. We saw how money is made and what the new $100 bill will look like (coming out in Feb. 2011) we even got to visit the Arlington National Cemetery where Pres. Kennedy is buried along with the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. We visited the Washington Monument, the Lincoln Monument, the Korean War Monument and the WWII Monument. We got to tour through our Nation's Capitol building, which was really beautiful and very insightful. We didn't, however get to see the White House. Now I know most people would go see the White House as their first stop, but we literally just didn't have enough time to fit it in. We did get to catch a glimpse of it on our bus tour and that was good enough for us. :)

We took a cab ride over to the most quaint town in all of America, Georgetown. We decided to go take a look because Steven is really thinking of attending Georgetown for his grad program (which is Sports Marketing) We loved seeing the sights and the beautiful old-time buildings, but unfortunately didn't even get to see the Georgetown Campus. We realized we may have planned too short of a vacation, but we still felt it was worth it! We did get to see this cute little bakery called D.C. Cupcakes that had a mile long line out the door! We didn't understand why all of these people where waiting until we turned on the TV that night to TLC when up pops D.C. Cupcakes! ha we had no idea we were at a famous bakery! But all in all Georgetown was so beautiful. I would live there in a heartbeat.

Such a fun weekend we had running from monument to museum. I think everyone should visit D.C. at least once in their life! And maybe make sure to add the White House to the list of must-sees ;)

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

A more than Eventful Weekend

Steven and I love theme parks, so it only seemed obvious that we had to visit one while we are out here! We looked it up and found a Six Flags Great Adventure in Jersey. So one day we took a two hour bus out there and had ourselves a little fun! We got sweaty, rained on and tired... but it was worth it!

The next day we met up with a few people from Steven's work who had a car and wanted to take us tubing down the Delaware River, So we packed up super early and starting making the two hour trek down there. Only to find out halfway through that there were going to be thunder storms all day long! We decided to turn around and drive all the way back to Jersey City and eat at an Arby's. (we literally drove about two and a half hours just to eat at this silly Arby's.) After filling ourselves full with a little more than just food we decided we had to finish our day with something grand or this trip would be for nothing!

Thats when we came upon Medieval Times. Now just for the record they almost had to drag me into this place because I am NOT a fan of things like this! But Steven sees the one in Vegas and every time we go down there he begs me to see it. So I knew at some point in our life we would have to go to this ridiculous place. And ridiculous it was!

Everyone got to wear a certain colored hat which represented a knight (and where your table was). They feed you this elaborate three course dinner, which of course you get to eat entirely with your hands... Meanwhile you get to cheer for your colored Knight in some battle that nobody really understood. Needless to say, we had a ball! I was glad they pushed me to do it because I got to laugh the entire night at Medieval jokes!