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Travel

Best New York City Experience…so far.

April 8, 2017

New York City is like a giant storage unit that the world keeps stuffing awesome shit into.  It’s filled to the top and all the way to the back with food, sports, architecture, shopping, art, and entertainment.  Anytime you slide up the storage unit door, a pile of awesome spills out on your feet and you’re like “do we have too much awesome in here? Nah, I think there’s still some room in the back.”  We were lucky enough to make our 3rd trip to this amazing city recently and agree that it was our best New York City experience…so far.

First of all, I’d like to thank Matthew McConaughy and Kate Hudson for making this trip possible.  Seriously.  If it weren’t for the 2003 rom-com “How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days”, we never would have taken this trip.  Thanks to the scene below, going to a Knicks game at Madison Square Garden had landed itself on Lacey’s bucket list.  We take bucket list declarations very seriously in our household, so I knew we needed to make this happen asap.  We scored amazing seats (11th row) as the Knicks caught a beatin’ from the 1st place Celtics.  Lacey was dressed up in her custom Knicks jersey and seemed to be constantly in awe of her surroundings.  In addition to the game, there were a ton of celebrities on hand that were often hanging out directly next to where we were sitting.  The Knicks even honored the team from 1999 during the game which included every player Kate Hudson and Matty Mc-C cheered for during the movie.  What are the odds?!! To top it off, Lacey caught a Knicks shirt from the t-shirt gun people.  It couldn’t have gone any better.  Bucket list item checked off in style.

We only had 1 other pre-planned event for this trip; a live taping of Late Night with Seth Meyers.  This ended up being way more fun than I think either of us thought it would be.  While being led to the Late Night Studio within the Rockefeller Center, we walked by the main Saturday Night Live stage which was really cool to see in person.  As our tickets were free and didn’t have assigned seats, we were thrilled when the NBC ushers placed us in the 3rd row from the studio floor.  The guests that night were Chelsea Handler and Jake Johnson (Nick from New Girl).  We like those two a bunch so it made for an even more exciting experience.  They didn’t allow anyone to take pics in the studio so I grabbed a couple of screenshots from the episode to show where we sat. Shown at the bottom.

The rest of the trip was accidentally action packed, but in a great way.  We ate tons of delicious food at places like PJ Clarke’s, Toscana 49, dessert at Serendipity, and Juliana’s Pizza in Brooklyn.  We visited Central Park for some morning hot chocolate, we stopped by the “Fearless Girl” statue near Wall St., and quickly passed through Time Square on our way to catch a metro.  Lacey visited “blo“, a blow dry bar near our hotel in midtown.  Her hair is always awesome but I think she appreciated having someone else wash, dry, and style it for the day.

Last but not least, we visited the jewelry boutique where I purchased Lacey’s engagement ring 3 years ago.  Neither of us had ever been there before since I ordered her ring online.  The boutique was hidden in a nondescript office building in midtown on the 9th floor.  You had to pass through 2 security doors before waiting to be buzzed in through the main door.  It felt good knowing that it wasn’t an easily accessible, run-of-the-mill jewelry shop with “80% OFF SALE” signs everywhere.  The shop was filled with beautiful antique jewelry and had an amazing view of Manhattan.  We had Lacey’s ring cleaned and maintenanced while we were there.  I don’t think she has stopped looking at her ring since.

One thing that stood out to Lacey and I the most during this trip was finally being able to experience New York City the way we always wanted to.  Since our flights were free (thanks to the Southwest Airlines Companion Pass) we felt comfortable dropping a few extra bucks on tickets, dinner, wine, coffees, and desserts.  The more we thought about and appreciated that simple fact, the more we realized that it really did change our entire experience.  If we had to swap out our intimate dining experiences for fast food or if we had balcony seats at the game instead of our floor seats, it would have been a completely different experience for us.  Still fun, but just very different.  We couldn’t be more thankful for the credit card award options that let us get to places like this for free!

This was our best New York City experience…so far.  We’re hoping to catch a live taping of Jimmy Fallon and Saturday Night Live on our next visit!

Let us know if you have any questions!

Manhattan Brooklyn Bridge panoramic

Madison Square Garden Selfie

Madison Square Park

Madison Square Garden

Lacey Knicks seats

Lacey Knicks seats

Lacey Knicks seats

Lacey Knicks seats

Madison Square Garden Lacey

Fearless Girl Wall St

Fearless Girl Wall St

Time Square New York City

Manhattan Brooklyn Bridge

Statue Of Liberty

Brooklyn Bridge walk

Brooklyn Bridge

2nd time visiting the Brooklyn Bridge

Juliana's Pizza Brooklyn

Juliana's Pizza Brooklyn

Juliana's Pizza Brooklyn

Flat Iron Building

Central Park Lacey

Freedom Cone Brooklyn

St. Patrick's Cathedral New York City

Time Square New York City

NBC studios New York City

Late Night with Seth Meyers

Late Night with Seth Meyers

Late Night with Seth Meyers

NBC studios New York City

 

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Travel

Weekend in New York City

June 2, 2016

To break up the long flight from Boise to Italy, Mat and I decided to enjoy a weekend in New York City. Mat had only been to New York once, and I had only ever experienced Manhattan on previous visits, so we thought it would be a good time to explore other neighborhoods. Plus, one of our friends was going to be there that same weekend and wanted to go to a Yankees game. Done and done!

I was in charge of planning our first evening’s activities, so I made dinner reservations at The Print restaurant only for the mere fact that it let us get into the rooftop bar The Press without waiting in line. If you follow us, you know that we are lovers of rooftop anything….bars, restaurants, gardens, pools, etc. I’m not sure if we were just starving or what, but our meals at The Print were absolutely amazing; I even ate the veggies on my plate! After dinner we took the elevator up to The Press and the views from this rooftop bar were stunning! I really wanted to feel like Carrie Bradshaw and order  a cosmopolitan while in Manhattan, but my outfit wasn’t cute enough so I just settled for the view instead. Next time New York, next time!

After dinner and the views at The Press (and quite possibly the worst Uber ride of our lives) we went to Serendipity for dessert. Surprisingly, this was Mat’s idea, not mine. Luckily our last stop of the night was close to our hotel so we could walk off a few of the billion calories we had just consumed. We stayed at the Waldorf Astoria on Park Avenue which was so grand it reminded me of what the Titanic must have looked like. We could never afford to actually stay there, but luckily it was free because my husband is brilliant with travel points. Everybody there knew we couldn’t afford to stay there, and thus treated us so. Mat totally experienced a Pretty Woman situation (we call it getting “pretty woman’d”) when he approached the concierge to inquire about the brunch that was being offered one morning. The response was basically “We know you can’t afford it so go away.”; capital R rude!

Our second day in the city we spent in Brooklyn, which we absolutely loved! Manhattan is amazing and all, but Brooklyn seemed to be much more our pace and style. We walked across the Brooklyn Bridge and hung out down by the pier. We also had pizza at what is considered the second best pizza joint in the city, Juliana’s. This started our official pizza tour for the trip and it did not disappoint! We had wine and shared a margarita pizza, then had ice cream by the water while gazing at the beautiful view of Manhattan.

That evening we took the subway up to The Bronx where Yankee Stadium is located. It was so fun to be traveling the same direction with all of the rowdy Yankee fans! I especially loved the area right where you get off the subway; there were cute little restaurants with outdoor patios that had music blaring, street vendors selling Yankee gear and so much hustle and bustle! I bought a Yankees beanie (because I was so cold) and then we went in to find our seats. Yankee Stadium is so pretty! I also love that the subway runs directly by the field, so you can see it blurring by between the giant billboards above the stands.

Our last day in New York we started off with breakfast at a legitimate New York diner right off Wall Street, Pearl Diner. After the most delicious chocolate chip pancakes and coffee, we set off to experience Wall Street on a bustling Monday morning. I was slightly disappointed because I only saw a few men in suits-everybody else were just tourists like us. Then we went to check out the Freedom Tower real quick before we had to head to the airport for our flight to Florence.

Our few days in NY were jam packed but so fun! A few places I didn’t mention that we also visited were Grand Central Station, Rockefeller Center, Times Square and Radio City Music Hall.

Let us know if you have any questions on how we booked our hotel and flights for this wonderful weekend in New York City…for free!

Manhattan Skyline

Weekend in New York City Yankee Redsox Game

Weekend in New York City at Yankee Stadium

Weekend in New York City skyline

Brooklyn Sign

Brooklyn Bridge New York

Brooklyn Bridge New York

Brooklyn Bridge New York

Brooklyn Bridge New York

Brooklyn Bridge New York

Brooklyn Bridge New York

Juliana's Pizza Brooklyn New York

Juliana's Pizza Brooklyn New York

Juliana's Pizza Brooklyn New York

Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory

Brooklyn Pier New York

Manhattan Skyline New York

Brooklyn Bridge New York

Pearl's Diner Wall St. New York City

Lacey Wall Street New York

Wall St. Bull New York City

Grand Central Station New York

Freedom Tower New York City

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Travel

GoPro Vacation Video Edit

May 28, 2016

Lacey and I recently returned from what will be our longest trip of 2016.  We visited 9 locations in 3 different countries over 15 action packed days.  While we fully intend on sharing all of the location specific details with you from our trip, we wanted to start you off with a video edit that summarizes a large portion of what we did during this travel adventure.  Plug in your headphones, turn the volume up, and enjoy our very first GoPro Vacation Video Edit!

Additional Info:

Keep in mind while watching this that Lacey and I booked this trip for next to nothing.  We saved over $10,000 by utilizing credit card rewards points to book this 2+ week adventure.  There is no way we could have afforded flights to these places, stayed in the luxurious hotels that we stayed in, and participated in all of the adventures you see in the video if we hadn’t gotten the majority of it for free.  If you love to travel, there is no reason why you shouldn’t be doing the very same thing.  Check out this post for the details on how we booked this specific trip with points and let us know if you have any questions.

Stay tuned in the coming days for more details and beautiful pics from this trip!

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