I have always enjoyed traveling, even if it meant sleeping in a tent when I was younger. I prefer hotels and cruise cabins now, but the motivation is the same...an adventure waiting to happen. Sometimes you will find me traveling with my husband and/or family. Sometimes I will travel alone, and sometimes I will travel with friends. I hope you find it entertaining to keep up to date with me as I explore the world around me. Warning...I like to take pictures of food so don't read if you're hungry. More adventures await...see ya soon...Amy.

Saturday, May 30, 2015

New York City: 30th Anniversary Trip Part Two

Today was a wonderfully full day. We started our day with breakfast at our hotel in the little restaurant next door. We have enjoyed our stay at this hotel and the location has been perfect for our traveling on the subway. We traveled downtown this morning to the World Trade Center site.

the new Freedom Tower

Danny had never seen the memorial fountains and none of us had been to the museum. The fountains are located in the footprints of the North and South Towers that were taken down by terrorists on September 11, 2001. It is so hard to believe that it has been so long ago that it happened.

Memorial Fountains

the names of lives lost are cut into metal so they will never wear away

when you see a white rose inserted in a name, that person had a birthday

We were very impressed with the museum and how they handled the display of debris, artifacts, and memorials. There were a couple of "cubbyholes" with tissue placed outside and inside was footage from that day that was very difficult to watch. The one that struck me the most was footage of people jumping or falling from the towers and words that were written by observers. I remember exactly where I was standing as I watched the second tower attacked and I saw that very same footage in the museum. It was horrifying and all of that emotion flooded back as I continued to walk through the museum. I found that I became overwhelmed with the volume of information and it became almost too much to take in. It was the same for everyone else and most of us found ourselves moving quickly through the rest of the exhibits in order to leave. It was just too emotional. Maybe I will handle it better when I go back another time. I know I will go back and possibly concentrate on the parts that I had to move quickly through.

No Day Shall Erase You From The Memory Of Time...Virgil

the name of this installment is: Trying to Remember the Color of the Sky on That September Morning. Each of the 2, 983 watercolor tiles is a different shade of color to represent the sky.

The Ladder 3 Fire Truck helped civilians escape from the North Tower on Sept. 11, 2001. Eleven firefighters were killed when the towers collapsed, crushing the vehicle

taking down the Last Column from the rubble

After leaving the museum, we stopped briefly into St. Paul's Cathedral which still stands as a reminder of where the firefighters took refuge and rest in the middle of their rescue efforts.

The new World Trade Center Subway Station under construction

We took the subway to Chelsea Market where we had some fabulous street style tacos at Los Tacos no. 1.

Chelsea Market

Street Tacos

We stopped into The Doughnuttery for teeny tiny doughnuts rolled in flavored sugars and Danny and Travis got some gelato from a gelato spot there.

these were the BEST truffles and we found them in Chelsea Market

Christy and I asked some questions in Eleni's about their nut free facility and Laurie picked up a cupcake from there. I have been craving a cookie from Levain Bakery and everyone indulged my whim with a subway ride to the upper west side. I stood in line for about 15 minutes to get into the tiny bakery and pick up my favorite, a fat chocolate peanut butter chip cookie as big as my hand!

my favorite cookie place in New York City

worth standing in line for!

yum....chocolate cookie with chocolate and peanut butter chips

We took our cookies back to the hotel to rest up for our dinner and "surprise event". Dinner was at Quality Meats, a very yummy and hearty meal. I think everyone enjoyed their meat selections and their side items. My favorite side on our table was the buttered edamame!

all dressed for dinner

watermelon pops

Pork Belly appetizer

We didn't have time for dessert as we needed to get to the "surprise event" and time was running short.

an Uber adventure

We arrived at the event just in time and I was so excited to see that we were attending the play, Finding Neverland.

ready for another 30 years and more!!

I was very disappointed, however, to see that the lead actor Matthew Morrison was out and his understudy was taking the role. He was the main reason I wanted to see the play because I saw him in South Pacific and have followed him on his TV series Glee. But, his understudy did a great job and we were all happy to see that Kelsey Grammar was in house and doing his role. He was great. I think we all would recommend this play to anyone coming to New York City! After the play, we hightailed it to the upper west side to try and get a little dessert at Sugar and Plumm. The website said they were open until 11:30 but when we arrived at 11:15, the door was shut and they had taken up the outside tables. I was disappointed but we found a little ice cream joint a few doors down, Emack and Bolio's, which had some pretty good ice cream. I certainly did not go without sweets on this trip! Tomorrow we head back home. It has been such fun to be surprised and to share it all with such good friends.

Friday, May 29, 2015

New York City: 30th Anniversary Surprise Trip

My surprise welcoming committee complete with Mimosas!

Danny and I celebrated our 30th wedding anniversary this week. Danny has been planning a surprise trip for me since Christmas. I had no idea that he could actually keep it a secret but I honestly had no idea what was in store for me. He told me this week what I should pack and said the weather would be warm. I had to promise not to search around on the weather app trying to figure out where we would going. In my mind, I had ideas, or you could call them wishes, but I really didn't know the actual destination. This morning he told me he had printed off our boarding passes and confirmations, made sure we had luggage tags on our suitcases and said we would eat lunch on the way to the airport which is about 2 hours away. Just shy of an hour out of town he had me get out my phone and set it to video. He then pointed to the upcoming exit which I knew was the exit to the local airport that we fly in and out of on private planes. This was the exit we were about to take, NOT the airport for a commercial flight. He said that my brother in law, Travis, would be our pilot for our trip and of course that meant his wife Christy would be along for the trip too. I was so excited! I love traveling with them! Danny drove our car out to the plane and out of the airport comes Christy AND my friends Sara Beth and Brian Howard!!! Sara Beth was supposed to be in New Orleans!!! They handed me a mimosa to sip on and went to find me a kleenex box to dry my tears of joy. What a surprise that they were coming with us. THEN, to my surprise drives up our friends Andy and Laurie Brister! They were also coming with us. Everyone had been working on this trip for months trying to help Danny plan and all of them were still holding the secret of where we were going.

We took off for our destination. Travis had said it would be a 4 hour flight, but that still didn't give me a clue and everyone else was keeping quiet about where we were going.  Christy fed us grilled chicken caesar salads while we flew. They were yummy!

The gangs all here! Laurie is very scared of flying (in small planes), but she had Sara Beth to distract her from her fears.

Christy prepared a yummy Caesar Salad and Iced Tea for us for lunch on the plane

As we approached our landing, I was looking out of the window trying to figure out where we were going. It wasn't until I saw the skyline and Empire State Building that I knew, New York City! One of my favorite cities to visit and one where any stay has never been long enough.

Travis and Christy and Danny and I received gift baskets from our investor and friend, Philip. Travis and Christy are celebrating an anniversary as well.

we stayed at the Hilton Garden Inn Times Square at 790 Eighth Avenue

After arriving at the hotel we took a stroll down Times Square to stretch our legs stopping first for a snack at Baked by Melissa. Baked by Melissa is tiny little cupcake tops. I have always wanted to try them and this location was right around the corner from the hotel.

Baked by Melissa...tiny little cupcake tops.

headed to Times Square

Brian and Sara Beth lived in New York before and for some time after they were married so this is home to them.

Celebrating 30 years of marriage!

We had a late dinner at Max Brenners, Chocolate by the Bald Man. This is one of my favorite places but more for the dessert than the dinner. As usual, I was pretty full after dinner, but found some room for a special dessert.

I didn't by this but it sure would come in handy sometimes.

It has been a wonderful surprise and day already. I'm looking forward to tomorrow as I am told there is another big surprise tomorrow evening.