Friday, February 17, 2017

The 2015 Christmas Season

I'm continuing to catch up on blogging about some key things that occurred during the year or so I neglected blogging. Honestly, we don't have a lot going on in the present day right now (yay winter), so it's nice to catch up.

I have been wanting to do a post to document our 2015 Christmas season. It was a pretty good one, and I think it's important to get at least one summary post in my blog history. I think pictures speak more than my words, so here are some photos and details of the highlights.

We put up our tree to kick off the season.

We attended the Blood:Water Red Tie Gala.

We saw Dave Barnes at the symphony hall for his annual Christmas show

We saw Santa!

We took Connor to his very first concert ever

The concert was a Jars of Clay Christmas show

After our trip to NYC, we saw Drew Holcomb and the Neighbors do a Christmas show at the symphony hall on Dec. 23. There were tornado warnings. It was sort of crazy.

We went to church on a very warm Christmas Eve

I managed to surprise Adam with deep dish pizza from Gino's East in Chicago for our Christmas Eve dinner.

We made cookies for Santa

Connor got the purple light saber he asked for from Santa!

I love this kid

We had a fun Christmas morning

Our family came over for Christmas dinner

Connor enjoyed hanging out with Grandma. We didn't know then that it would be our last Christmas with her.

A few days later we did Christmas with some other family. This is Grandma and her best friend of like 55 years.

The whole crew

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Christmas in NYC (circa 2015) Day 5 (and some 2012)

We woke up on Tuesday morning to rain. We had been really lucky to have good weather during our trip (though cold), so if it had to rain I'm glad it was the day we were leaving.

We only had a few hours, and the weather ruled out a lot of things we could have done. Before we left, we asked the owners of Joey's House of Pizza in Nashville where we would find the best pizza in NY. We were told to go to Spumoni Gardens near Coney Island, so we decided to ride the subway all the way there and have lunch. It did not disappoint.

Then we rode the subway all the way back, stopping for a little dessert at a cute shop in Grand Central. We enjoyed this at our hotel and then grabbed our bags to take the bus back to the airport and fly home.

It was another amazing trip to NYC at Christmas, and we got home in time to start celebrating Christmas with our families. 

I realized in writing these posts that I never actually blogged about our 2012 trip other than our engagement. I don't think you all care for all the details, but I thought I'd wrap up this trip's summary with some photos that covers the highlights of the 2012 trip. Enjoy!

Checking out Times Square when we arrived, and seeing ourselves on a screen!

We're sickening, aren't we?

We saw Richard Kind in FAO Schwartz!

Empire State Building Observation Deck

Flat Iron

Old escalators in Macy's on 34th Street

On Friday night, we saw Dave Matthews Band in Brooklyn (the original reason we booked the trip)

The Freedom Tower was still under construction

The closest we could get to the Statue of Liberty on this trip

We had dinner and dessert at Serendipity on Saturday. Little did I know he had a ring in his pocket.

The Proposal

These guys had been in line with us and were so excited!

The ring

I love this tree

We checked out a Harry Potter exhibition before heading home

My sister greeted us at the airport with this fun sign!

Monday, February 13, 2017

Christmas in NYC (circa 2015) Day 4

Monday morning we were up somewhat early to head over to the 9/11 Memorial and Museum. When we were there in 2012, it was still not completed. We knew when we planned the trip that we wanted to go see it, and I'm really glad we did.

I think they have done a superbly good job with it. One of the things we talked about after we left was how we think it was more meaningful to us than other museums/memorials we've seen because we so vividly recall the details of that day.

As you walk through the museum, you sort of experience the order of events of the day as you see, read, and head different things. You also see where the original towers had been. 

 It was kind of crazy to see steel bent to pieces or a firetruck damaged in this way.

It's definitely a very somber experience, and I was glad that everyone in there was pretty respectful. I was also glad we had started early, as it got a lot more crowded later in the morning. I really liked to read everything and spend time looking at it all, and that got harder as more people filled in.

We enjoyed seeing the fountains outside and the Freedom Tower in the distance. We've already decided that we'll go up in it on our next trip.

After we finished there, we headed to Brooklyn to a pizza place Adam had researched that was supposed to be one of the best. We had to stand in line for a while, and a bird pooped on me. So there was that. Ultimately, we didn't think the pizza was that great. It was good, but not anything amazing like people claimed.

After this, we wandered around Wall Street a bit and stopped in a sports bar to have a drink and watch a little football. It started to get crowded, so we headed out after a while.

I had read about a place called Dylan's Candy Bar and knew Adam would love it, so we made our way there. It did not disappoint.

We walked over to Bryant Park to explore a bit, and it ended up that we took one of my favorite photos from the trip.

After this, we made our way over to Rockefeller Center. I really wanted to try to get a good picture of us back in the area where we got engaged.

I ended up getting somewhat emotional. It was just a lot to take in being back in that spot and knowing how much life we've lived since then (and in only 3 years, no less!). It's just such a special place.

Plus, it's just beautiful at Christmas!

We wandered around for a bit and enjoyed the city lights one last time.

We stopped in a bar for a glass of wine and then made our way back to the hotel. It had been another great day, and tomorrow it would be time to head home and get ready to celebrate Christmas!