Tuesday, October 30, 2012

East Coast Trip: New York

Very happy to be out of the car and in the hotel room

The final leg of our trip was in New York.  It was a nice drive from New Jersey to New York City, except for when we crossed the George Washington Bridge it cost $12!  I'm so glad we don't have to deal with bridge tolls in Southern California!  

We stayed at the Gansevoort Hotel in the Meatpacking District.  We stayed here a few years back and really liked the hotel.  It's close to some good food (ie Pastis) and nice shopping.  It's also within walking distance to Matt's brother's place.  The hotel is super trendy and modern, and they gave us a decent crib with a nice fitted sheet and blanket.   

Once we checked in, we walked over to Matt's brother's for dinner.  Bev made us a delicious dinner, and we had a fun time catching up.  The girls had so much fun playing with Leah.  They're such great older cousins.  

The next day, we ate breakfast Cafe Cluny.  It's a small, little joint that seemed to have regulars there sipping coffee at the bar or sitting at the tables with their laptops.  Apparently, SNL actors frequent the spot, but we didn't see any that day.  The front of the store had a sign that said "Strollers welcome."  Space is such a hot commodity here that many places don't have high chairs and can't accommodate a stroller, so those that can post it!

We headed back to the hotel and let Leah nap before we explored more of the city in the afternoon.  She quickly let us know when nap time was over. 

First NYC subway trip.  Obviously, very amused.  ;)

For the afternoon, we took the subway to the Upper West Side and ate lunch at the famous Shake Shack.  This was the one place I knew I wanted to eat at while in NYC.  The burgers were great and the frozen custard - YUM!  I'm totally craving one as I type this.  Leah really liked the fries - definitely my child!  

Next, we headed to Central Park.  As we were walking across, we wanted to give Leah a chance to play in the grass.  I pictured her crawling around exploring.  Instead, she just sat in the grass, a little confused, picking up and staring at the leaves.  Nevertheless, it was super cute.  We found a little playground area with swings, and as always, she got a big kick out of that.

That evening, Fred and Bev gave us a big treat and babysat Leah while Matt and I went out for dinner! We went to The Spotted Pig.  It's a small, quirky restaurant with staff that looked like they all belong in rock bands.  The service and food was excellent. I got the Crispy Pork Belly in Broth and Fall Vegetables and Matt got Sheep's Milk Ricotta Gnudi with Brown Butter Sage.  Such a fun little date night!  The only downside is that the place is so dark, I couldn't really see what I was eating.  I just knew it was delicious.

Our last day in New York we visited the 9/11 Memorial.  It still feels surreal that 9/11 actually happened, and you could feel the somber mood the minute you get there.  The picture above is from the original facade of the North Tower.  I look forward to taking Leah back here when she can understand the significance of this day.

Whew!  That was our trip!  Now were off to Asia!  Wish us luck!

P.S. Leah's fever broke Friday night.  She's also teething, so she hasn't been in the best of moods, but she's slowly getting back to her happy self!  

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