Happy Christmas Eve! I have been very behind on my typical posting schedule the last couple of weeks, thanks in large to our moving house, cleaning and decorating, and altogether getting ready for the holidays. Throw in a long weekend trip a few days before Christmas and you'll have a recipe for everything slipping just a tad...! I'd like to think that many people are with me in this pre-holiday melee though and that I'll be forgiven. ;)
We still have not finished finding places for all of our things - since we don't have the built-in shelves and cupboards we had in our last house, it seems that there is nowhere to unpack things like books and DVDs yet. Storage will be on our To Get list after the holidays! After this place is a bit more tidy - hopefully tomorrow since we've company coming on Christmas Day!! - I will share photos of our new digs.
Despite the 4 day babymoon timing being just before the holidays, it was still a wonderful, wonderful time! We got to see old friends, watch some truly wonderful people tie the knot, visit some family, go to a couple of my favorite restaurants & try some new ones, and have time together just the two of us - rare these days (and about to become even more rare...!). Here are some of the photos I took whilst we were in NYC - I didn't even remember that I had packed the camera so all are on my phone, whoops. We truly lived in the moment though - and though we missed photo ops at a lot of points, the memories are there in my head. ;)
On Thursday we arrived and hit the ground running! We probably overdid it, if I'm honest, because my legs were burning that afternoon and night, and a bit tired the rest of the weekend too. Life has changed a lot since I lived in the city, and I forgot just how much walking I did when I was there (not to mention the 6th floor walk-up that I lived in, ha - no wonder I was in great shape!). We toured all through the East, West, and Greenwich Villages (my old neighborhood), and SoHo. We shopped pretty much straight away, ha - stumbled on a fantastic artist/crafter's indoor market on my old street, where I picked up the most awesome handmade bracelet! We saw Washington Square Park and that evening went up the Empire State Building to cross a major sightsee off our list. It was pretty amazing - FREEZING and windy, but because it was dark out not many people were up there with us. I'm partial to the views of the city at nighttime, the lights just make it so magical!
Friday was a day filled with friends and family. M's aunt and uncle live in Brooklyn, not far from where the wedding was to take place, so they came in and collected us in the morning and we spent a few hours visiting with them at their lovely home, having lunch and pastries. It was so nice to have the time to see family on this trip! They dropped us off at the church for the wedding that afternoon - and it was gorgeous!! The groom is a friend I made in London, part of the group of Americans who came together and became like family for all of us over there on our own. We did Thanksgivings, Super Bowls, Easters all together for several years - Pat's eggplant parmigiana is still one of my favorite dinners we had there! Then a few years later Pat met Fai, a wonderful girl from Thailand who'd been in London since she was 6, and the rest is history. They both moved to Bangkok a couple years ago, another couple moved to Singapore, and several of us in the group moved back to the US to various cities. So this wedding was our first big reunion since everyone started moving away - it was awesome to see these guys!! (Naturally we missed the ones who couldn't make it). The views from the reception were unbeatable - Giando's is right on the water, just at the base of the Williamsburg Bridge - insane! We had a blast catching up with friends and dancing (barefoot for me, heels suck when you're in your 3rd trimester).
On Saturday we did a bit more sightseeing, starting the day with brunch at an old classic that I used to meet the girls at when we all lived in the city. M's cousin met us and spent the morning tooling around with us, which was a ton of fun - she made the trip to Ireland to be at our wedding with us, and we hadn't seen her since then so it was great to have time together again. We went up to Rockefeller Center to see the tree and the ice rink, and went up to the Top of the Rock - again, great views! Better views, in my opinion, or at least certainly of uptown and the park. It's funny, when I lived there I *never* did anything touristy. It just wasn't on my mind, maybe I thought I'd live there forever. But I'm so glad that I did see the sights this past weekend, and with my wonderful husband - it was really special to take the time to go away together and do something different!
I'm so grateful that we were able to squeeze in this trip, between moving into the house and setting it up, and the holidays. I'm grateful that we were able to go to the wedding and see friends and family. I'm incredibly thankful that we're in our house and able to have family over for the holidays (as long as they forgive the mess and the minimal decorations as our box of Christmas things is the only one missing from the move, oops). I'm thankful for the season of joy and thanksgiving that reminds me of Jesus' birth and the ultimate gift that He gave to us all. And I'm wishing that each and every one of you have a wonderful holiday season, and that 2015 brings you happiness!