Mondays are rough. Especially the ones that happen right after returning from a trip! As you know, I flew up to New York on Friday so I could spend the weekend visiting my college friends/sorority sisters and celebrate the 25th birthday of my best friend Kerry! It’s been a year and a half since my last trip up to NYC, so I couldn’t wait to get back up and see everyone!
An added bonus for me, snow was in the forecast (despite it being the first day of spring)! Friday night Ker and I ventured out to find some dinner, and ended up at a cute little Italian place, Lea, after wandering aimlessly trying to figure out what we wanted to eat while the snow was coming down (so pretty though). This was my first time in Brooklyn though, so it was a bit difficult to take in the scenes while dodging snowflakes in my eyes!
We ended up sharing some delicious fried cheesy bites (we were so hungry there wasn’t even time to snap a pic), a margarita pizza, and a piece of hazelnut cake. The first two courses were very good! But we seemed to turn into “professional” food critics when eating the cake, which happened to have chili in it! It looked more like cake than pie, it was weird to have chili in cake (hello, spicy!), and it was a bit dry. We were glad we tried it though!
Afterward, we ventured back to her apartment and did a mini-binge of Netflix’s new show, Bloodline while we defrosted, before heading back out for adventure #2 in the Lower East Side (NYC). There we met up with Ker’s roomie Jess (also one of my sorority sisters) for a few drinks and good times jamming to some awesome old school tunes!
Saturday the snow was starting to melt and the sun was peeking out. A perfect day for adventures in NYC/Brooklyn for Ker’s birthday! After chowing down on the breakfast of champions (pizza + coffee), we began the day by walking across the Brooklyn Bridge, into Manhattan. This was something on my NYC bucket list for quite some time!
The bridge was built in the late 1800s – the architecture makes it so much more beautiful up close! It’s crazy that it’s still around! The views are definitely a lot better walking from Brooklyn into the city, so if you decide to make the trek across, that’s the route I recommend!
The bridge drops you near the Financial District area (downtown NYC), so we found a restaurant to rest our feet/re-energize and have a drink and some fries. Next, more food! We ended up bringing most of it back to the apartment as leftovers since we weren’t too hungry due to our previous food stop. But Junior’s is one of my FAVORITE New York places, and we were able to experience the original location, in Brooklyn. Plus, here, two more sorority sisters met up with us. What an awesome reunion!!
If you find yourself in NY, a stop to Junior’s is a must! They’re famous for some of their desserts – strawberry shortcake being my favorite! You can see a photo of it below. Yes it was 3 layers, and yes I accepted the challenge (even though it took me a few sittings to eat it)! Nobody could believe how big the desserts were – we could’ve had one slice for the entire table!
And I saw the BEST sticker/ad on the subway, EVER. Seriously, couldn’t stop laughing at this.
Post-food coma, we headed back to the apartment to vege out and relax for a bit before nighttime festivities (which included a bar with UNLIMITED popcorn – insert heaven hands emoji here ). SO many good, hearty laughs. It felt just like we were back in college and no time had passed at all. I missed these girls so much!
Sunday (yesterday) was my last day in NY, but it didn’t stop us from cramming a few more adventures in! Ker and I hopped on the subway and headed into Manhattan a little before lunchtime to be touristy and visit the Empire State Building! We’d both wanted to experience it for awhile, so we figured what better time to go than now!
Despite the Empire State Building being crazy expensive, we loved it! We splurged on the express ticket, which allows you to bypass lines, which saved us a ton of time. Definitely worth it if you’re on a time crunch or hate lines. It was so cool to see views from the north, south, east and west. The city looked so tiny from up above!
We also found a pigeon that was just working the camera big time. Couldn’t resist snapping a few model shots of it. It was pretty entertaining!
My favorite shot was looking northeast toward mid/uptown. What a sight to see!
Next up was a quick trip to Bryant Park. The Southwest Porch is one of my favorite low-key hangout places and we planned to grab a drink and enjoy the beautiful park on the sunny and not as cold day! Unfortunately though, it was closed for renovations. Apparently a new Porch will debut this spring. I can’t wait to see what they do to it!
So we turned around and headed back to Herald Square, since it was the first day of Macy’s annual Flower Show! I never got around to seeing it while I lived in NY, so it was really cool to finally be able to see it. The flowers were all so beautiful – I never realized how many different types there were!
While wandering through Macy’s to find the special guest, Martha Stewart, we stumbled across Patricia Nash, a handbag creator, who was promoting her newest line, meeting fans, and signing bags! I purchased one of her bags last summer and love it! I was so excited to meet her in person. What a nice treat to end the trip!
The last stop on the agenda was lunch at Hale & Hearty, one of my favorite quick dining places in the city. I used to get their chopped salads for lunch on just about every one of my interning days in college! Although it’s been quite some time, it was just as good as I remembered it!
This trip definitely felt like a whirlwind, but I’m SO glad I was able to make it up there. It was so much fun! I can’t wait until my next trip up in a few months. Fingers crossed, I won’t be dealing with insane flight delays again though. UGH, the worst!
Until next time New York…