The Big Apple: Day 2

The Big Apple: Day 2

We were up early to grab breakfast before our tour.  We went to Europa (our fave for quick NYC breakfasts).

Then we went to Times Square to meet up with our tour guide for a Disney behind the scenes tour. To be REALLY honest, this was a theater lovers tour.  If you were only interested in the Disney musicals, I’m not sure you would have loved it as much.  But we were ALL in.

We learned about New York history, theater history, history of different theaters and shows, and then the Disney shows. (our tour guide Robert is in the plaid there. VERY talented guy!)

After walking through the theater district, we got to go inside and all through the New Amsterdam theater, which is the current home of Aladdin.

Then we got to try on some Disney costume pieces.

Mom as Ursula from The Little Mermaid.


Me as Sebastian!


Hats from Aida


Lion King masks


Newsie hats and papes (side note: the papes were VERY light compared to a stack of papers, but heavy considering they were tossed up and down a three story set piece). 


Mary Poppins costumes! 

We grabbed lunch at Shake Shack, did some shopping and then saw Carousel!  We somehow didn’t take any pictures there.

The show is a bit of a downer (it’s about an abusive loser husband), but it’s a beautiful ballet with a lovely score.  The stars of it were FANTASTIC. I even knew a guy in it!  A friend from college was in the show- and it was so neat to see him perform!

After the show, we did some more shopping and headed to dinner at Nizza (the food will come later, I promise).

Then we went back to the hotel to drop bags, change clothes and head to see Dear Evan Hansen.

I was SO excited before the show. I love the soundtrack.  The cast was AMAZING.  Most are original, except for Evan, Connor and Alana (oh, and the dad was the standby).  They were SO passionate. In fact, Rachel Bey Jones (Evan’s mom) and Taylor Trensch (Evan) both actually cried while performing.

Their performances were so authentic and moving.  I ugly cried during the end of the second half.  But it was worth it. This show made it into my Top 10 for sure.

The Big Apple: Day 1

The Big Apple: Day 1

Mom and I went to New York on a long weekend trip. It was a belated birthday trip (and really, should count as birthday and Christmas for like 3 years!). We took a direct flight out of XNA (about 1.5 hours north of us).  Everyone said this regional airport was quiet and wouldn’t take long to get checked in.


We stayed the night in northwest Arkansas so we didn’t have to get up super early. We got to the airport 1.5 hours before our flight…and it took 1.3 hours to get through the line!

We made it to our plane about 10-15 minutes before departure. But at least we made it.

So we missed breakfast. When we got to New York, we plopped our luggage at the hotel and immediately went to get pizza (the food will be it’s own separate post).

After pizza, we took a subway to Brooklyn and walked across the Brooklyn Bridge.  Not gonna lie, finding the pedestrian walkway was a bit of a challenge and out of the way, but we found it and got AMAZING weather and gorgeous views of the city.  (Side note: 75% of people were walking from Manhattan to Brooklyn. WRONG. Walking Brooklyn to Manhattan gave you views of New York as you walked. Much better).

I downloaded a walking tour from Atlantis Audio Tours for like $2- and it was SO worth it.  It told us to look for this sign, which was hilarious.  No locks on the bridge.  But yes to lox (what they called smoked salmon on a bagel).

The weather was amazing.  In the low 80s, sunny and breezy.

After walking the 1.5 miles across the bridge, we wanted to stop for a minute, so we got some ice cream at City Hall Park and enjoyed the day.

We got on a double decker bus to ride back to midtown (side note: the sign said $29, but that was STARTING at $29…it was like $59 each! But we had already decided to do it).  We got off the bus in Times Square and walked back to our hotel, where we met my friend Jonathan for a bit to visit. He lives in NYC and it was SO good to hug his neck.

We had a quick change and headed out for the evening.  (Side note: the women working the front desk at our hotel were THE NICEST.  They always complimented our outfits and offered to take our picture. It was the Club Quarters in Times Square.  Very clean and comfortable- would recommend).

We had to stop in Times Square for a pic!

We had dinner at the legendary Sardi’s- known for their caricatures of famous stars.  There are over 1500 throughout the whole restaurant! (food will be included in the food post next week).

After dinner, we went to see Hello Dolly starring Broadway legend Bernadette Peters.  She is 70 years old now, but she sang and danced like a 30 year old.

Mom illegally snapped this pic during the bows. Bernadette and Victor Garber played off each other SO well.  They even broke character laughing at each other twice- which was quite charming.

After the show, we walked to get Schmackary’s cookies and crashed for the night. A great first day- and a lot packed into really a half day in the city.

A beautiful mess

A beautiful mess

Most days, this life feels like a beautiful mess.  It’s fun, exciting but it’s also messy.  There are tantrums. There’s stress. There’s literal mess.  But there’s laughter. And hugs. And growth. And so much love.

Here’s a week in our beautiful mess!

Remi LOVES sitting on/in the sink when I do her hair. She does know how to turn on the faucet, so she doesn’t get to sit there too long- I’ve learned a time or two by her soaking herself turning on the water. ha!

This particular day, Remi hung out with Gigi while me and mom went to NWA for shopping, lunch and seeing Cabaret. I am so grateful for the support to take time for things I enjoy, getting “time off” and time to spend with my momma.

This girl LOVES brooms. It’s so cute.

Adding to the literal mess these days is her learning to use a spoon (and also a fork) by herself.  She’s doing great, but some foods are messier than others (I’m looking at you, yogurt.)

More silly sink sitting.  She’s so fun. So stinking fun. I was asking her where all her parts are- and this was her ears. You got it, baby girl!

Mornings can be crazy. She’s very independent- and we try to encourage that. One way is that I try to let her decide that she’s ready to leave and have her walk herself out of the door.  This particular day, she was posted up, like “I’m not moving until I’ve had my milk.”

And that evening we had more spoon mess, featuring guacamole. Such a big girl!

I’m reminded of these old Diamond Rio lyrics,

“What a beautiful mess, what a beautiful mess I’m in
Spending all my time with you
There’s nothing that I’d rather do”


So very true.

Weekend Recap: Sun, Friends, and Family

Weekend Recap: Sun, Friends, and Family

We managed to cram some fun into this weekend! Friday evening, Tyler and I had a little date night- early movie after work (The Jungle Book- so fun!), dinner and shopping.

I even managed to have a little bit of sugar free fro-yo built into my dinner (take THAT, gestational diabetes!!).

Saturday morning, mom and I took advantage of the water park’s early entry for season pass holders. We got there and literally had the wave pool to ourselves for a while. VERY relaxing way to start the day. 🙂

We met up with Tyler for a quick lunch, grabbed groceries from Walmart pickup, and then I met up with Amber.

Amber is a sweet friend from college (we joke that we are sisters because after I got married, our last names are the same!). She can’t make it to my baby shower, so she came down to spend the day together.

What a blessing!

We had Mexican food (like any girl friend date should!), did some shopping, and I showed her around some of the historic parts of town. And she gave us some of the CUTEST baby stuff, including a floral monogram onesie! In love!!

Saturday evening, Tyler and I just crashed at home.

Sunday, I went to church and then met up with mom for “Singin’ in the Rain” at the Little Theater. Since I was involved there last summer, it was so fun to be back and see my old friends. The show was amazing (if you’re local, there’s still time to go!) and we had a great time.

After the show, we met up with the family for Luke’s birthday dinner. I can’t believe he’s 9!

It was precious, he was adamant that his gift be wrapped in paper- he said it’s more fun to open! Sweet boy!

How was your weekend?