Monday, November 16, 2009

Zoo York

I realize that this post may encourage ridicule from my New York-loving friends, and I fully support comments bereaving my opinion. In fact, I will most likely see these comments as evidence supporting my theory.

Background information:
We drove to New York City on Sunday because Alexis and Justin were cool enough to share Cirque du Soleil tickets. This was a last minute day trip, and everyone was super stoked to show off New York to John. He had never been, and he was excited about Central Park, Time Square, and the Statue of Liberty. So, we set off on our mini-journey. We decided to drive because Alexis had a reserved parking spot a couple blocks from Madison Square Garden.

Now, in my younger day, I have been known to have some seriously fun times in NYC. Getting on the plane in Texas and arriving in the Big Apple always made my heart skip a beat or two. There was no place like New York; the shows, the hotels, the food, the drinks, the cabs, the architecture, the art. It was all so amazing to me. But (yes BUT), moving to another big city (Philadelphia) and also visiting several cool big cities over the past few years (Seattle, San Diego, Las Vegas, Miami, Boston, Tokyo, Chicago) has made me change my opinion of NYC.

First of all, where's the grid, people??!! I'm talking about the oh-so-user-friendly street system that makes navigating your way through an unfamiliar city easy. In Philly, we have numbered streets, lettered streets, and "tree streets". That's it! The tree streets run east to west, the numbers run north to south. If you need to find someone or something, all you need are the coordinates. Rocket science. New York is QUITE the opposite. You have numbered streets, and numbered avenues, and oh, what's this!?! NUMBERED Ways!! Hell. And you have lettered avenues, and street names in no particular alphabetical sequence or pattern. How did anyone ever find their destinations before GPS??

So, while attempting to navigate your way through the maze of streets, watch out for the mass of pedestrians that DO NOT FOLLOW cross walk signs. We were shocked at the complete disregard for WALK or DON'T WALK lights. If New Yorkers have some where to be, there is NOTHING that is going to stop them from getting there, including on-coming vehicles.

This section is gross, so if you have a weak stomach, skip it. I'm sure people (especially the homeless) find creative spaces to relieve themselves in Philly, I just have never seen or smelled it, so I like to think that Philadelphians are a tad more discreet. I'm sure you know where this is going... The sidewalk on Broadway was under construction (like all of Manhattan), so were forced to take a creepy detour through a dark tunnel. The entire tunnel was a pool of pee!!!!!! It smelled sooooooooooooooo horrible, and we found ourselves ankle-deep in urine. I'm NOT exaggerating. I almost threw up.

We went to a brew pub for lunch, the guys had a couple beers, Alexis had a beer, and we each had a small appetizer instead of an entree. The tab came: $126!!!! Whoa. That's all I can say. People pay obscene amounts of money to live in this zoo. Not only are the restaurants and bars expensive, but people pay $3600/mnth to share one bedroom apartments. (We asked.)

My final icing on the NYC cake: a guy in a fur-lined hoodie sweatshirt CUT us in line to pick up the car. In my pregnant state, I gruffed, "hey dude, we were here first!" He turned and acknowledged our presence, then handed the guy his ticket, got in his brand new Audi sports car, and sped off without a blink of an eye. I've always assumed money and manners go hand-in-hand...ha! Not so.

All-in-all, the show was amazing, and we had a lot of laughs on our adventure. But, why someone would pay three times what we pay to live in Crazy Town, USA, I will never understand! NYC is fun to visit, but at the end of the day, I want to lay my head down and get some peaceful sleep in a quiet Italian neighborhood next to a park :)

I get it now,

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Christmas Crafting...never too early!

Using my new sewing machine (thanks, Mom) and some patience, I crafted new Christmas stockings for John and I. I bought enough fabric to make matching ones for the baby and future babies that come along, and I think that these stockings will bring about a little bit of tradition to our new family. John grew up with a stocking tradition on Christmas morning. On Christmas Eve, Peggy and Steve let the boys open their presents, but on Christmas morning, they did stockings. The stockings were always jam-packed with treasures, and this tradition has carried through the years and is still strong today. I love Christmas at the Noel house, and I want to bring this tradition into our home. So, without further ado, I give you our homemade stockings that will hopefully last for the next twenty years:

Here's a couple close-ups of the lining. The fabric is so so cute, I have to show it off.

This was pretty much my first sewing project, but there will be more. Oh yes! There will be more.

Ahhh, sweet domesticity!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Welcome, November

Our friend, Bryan, from College Station came to visit us this weekend. We took him to Fairmount Park because he used to play disc with John, and John wanted to show him the "oldest course" in the US. I had actually never been out there before, and I'm SO glad I brought the camera along because this was a beautiful walk.
Also, here is a look at my first quilting attempt. I'm making matching Christmas stockings for John, Baby Noel, and I. Since I've never been a big red and green Christmas color fan, I'm quilting with blue and orange (our wedding colors). I'm using my new sewing machine, and having too much fun :)

Stay warm,

PS: I'm fifteen weeks pregnant.