April 19, 2012

  • My Birth Story on Momaroo...

    Ack! I haven't updated in over a a year! So much has happened in the past year but the biggest thing has been this little one:

    If you're like to read how Luke came into the world please check out my birth story, featured over on Momaroo here.


March 23, 2011

March 22, 2011

  • My Collection of Random iPhone Pictures

    I got an iphone a few months ago (how did I live without this thing?!?) and from time to time will randomly take photos with it and forget about them.

    Today I was sitting on the subway and looked through the photos for the first time in a looong while. I thought I'd share them on my post today and "release" them from iPhone captivity. winky

    Photo of the tree across the street after one of the many snow storms this past winter. I love how the tree is all covered in snow and stands out against the red brick of the walkups.

    At a get together with some friends, we opened this bottle of wine which everyone really enjoyed. Our host admitted it was a $2.99 bottle from Walmart! stunned

    A few weeks ago I walked out of our apt and noticed these signs. Man vs Food: Harlem filming on our street!! I tried to hang out for a bit to see if I could meet Adam Richman but the PAs shooed me away. sad

    Several months ago I found a recipe for a semi-homemade birthday cake in a friend's cookbook and took a picture of it for later use (left pic). A few weeks ago I decided to recreate the cake for two friends celebrating their birthdays together (right pic).

    Walking to meet one of our editors for lunch, I met this orange kitty. She stood just like that the whole time I walked down the street (and probably for a long time after). The street was wet from an earlier rain shower and there were tons of people out headed to lunch, but none of that bothered this cute cat.

     My brother Jesse moved to NYC last May and works as a traveling sushi chef for a corporation that runs kitchens for several companies in NYC. Growing up we were the best of friends but ever since college we grew apart and moved to separate areas of the US. It always saddened me that our relationship deteriorated as we became adults, but with his move to NYC we've gotten the chance to start over.

    One busy day at work, Jesse texted me and asked if I wanted some food. It was 3p.m. and I hadn't eaten yet. I said yes and 20 minutes later he came to our office door with this box of goodness! I was so touched! (To be honest with you I almost started tearing up but I didn't want to freak out everyone at the office so I held it together silly) I snapped a photo of the box to remember Jesse's thoughtfulness. Since that day we've gotten to hang out several times and each time I feel like our relationship is improving, and it makes me so happy.

    Last week after a run in Central Park, my friends and I were starving and cold. We popped into Ivy's for a bowl of hot roast pork noodle soup. This was my fortune. keke What do you think this means?

March 21, 2011

  • My Top 10 (Sorta Touristy) Things To Do in NYC

    This is going to sound super cheesy but it was a childhood dream of mine to live in NYC. I visited my aunt and her family in the city several times growing up and spent my sophomore year winter break, senior year spring break and also my honeymoon in NYC. I really do love NYC! heart 

    My husband and I made the big move to NYC from Florida in the summer of 2006, and after almost 5 years of living here I've barely made a dent in checking out all the things on my "must see/do/eat" list!

    However, because I host so many out-of-town guests and frequently get asked what to check out, I thought I'd blog about my top 10 list of favorite things to do/see/eat in NYC (I also thought this might come in handy for some of the out-of-town folks coming in for the Xanga Meet Up). 

    In no particular order...

    - Hang Out on the High Line: This is an elevated park built on an old abandoned railway that starts in the Meatpacking District and will eventually go up the west side all the way to 34th St.

    July 2010: There are these cool wooden recliners along the High Line. Here my friend Mimi is taking a Coke break and catching some sun.

    The High Line is so different from any other green space in Manhattan. You can see some cool views of the Hudson River, lots of modern architecture of new buildings in the area and also lots of native plants.


    Check out those crazy looking buildings in the background!

    On the same day we saw a photo shoot with Jessica Szohr, an actress from Gossip Girl, in progress.cool

    -Walk Across the Brooklyn Bridge: This iconic bridge, one of the oldest suspension bridges in the US, is awesome to walk across from the Brooklyn side toward Manhattan.

    Image source

    You can get great shots of the Manhattan skyline with the Brooklyn Bridge in your pictures. Here's some info on how to walk across the Brooklyn Bridge from BK to Manhattan. 

    Oct 2005 -Walking across the Brooklyn Bridge on my honeymoon, imagining what it would be like to live in NYC. winky

     -Shop or Window Shop: There are tons of unique boutiques in NYC and pretty much every chain retailer out there can be found here. Lots of bargains can be found in NYC, but the reason I suggest shopping in NYC to my friends from Florida is that the sales tax on clothing (4.357%) is lower in NYC than in FL for clothes under $110 (until recently there was no tax on clothing less than $110sad). I love checking out the stores in SoHo (not during the weekends when it's packed) and window shopping in the West Village.

    -Bike, Run, Picnic or People Watch in Central Park: Renting a bike and taking a spin around the park (about 6 miles) or taking a stroll through the lower half of the park is a must do when you visit NYC! In nice weather, pack a picnic, bring it to the park and sit in the grass and people watch. On hot days you'll see tons of people sun bathing, on snowy days you'll see families snow sledding and building snowmen -every day you'll see joggers and bikers doing their thing. 

    Central Park is by far the most frequented place on my list. I'm in the park probably at least 3 days week biking, running or just drinking coffee and relaxing. It's my oasis in this crazy, busy city. happy

    My birthday picnic in Central Park last year. My birthday fell on the same day as the NY Philharmonic's annual Concert in the Park.

    -Snack and Sip at a Bakery & Coffee Shop: I have a serious sweet tooth and addiction to caffeine! blush Luckily for me there are great mom and pop shops throughout the city and a Starbucks on practically every street corner. 

    Momofuku Milk Bar's Crack Pie packaging

    Here's my short list of frequented coffee shops and bakeries:

    Levain Bakery (Upper West Side and Harlem) -best chocolate chip cookies in NYC

    Sweet Revenge (Greenwich Village) -awesome cupcakes and beer & wine cocktails

    Momofuku Milk Bar (East Village) -try the Crack pie, simple, yummy goodness in your mouth

    Joe: The Art of Coffee (multiple locations) -coffee, expresso, teas

    Think Coffee (East Village, SoHo, NYU area) -coffee, expresso drinks

    -Appreciate the Art at a Museum: I love visiting art museums. There are so many in NYC. Some of my faves are the Frick Collection, Neue Galerie and the enormous Metropolitan Museum of Art. I hope to check out the Whitney, the Museum of Moving Image and PS 1 this year.

    The Metropolitan Museum of Art's Roof Desk Exhibit from Oct. 2009. 

    -Brunch!: The weekends from 10a.m. to 3p.m. are all about brunch in NYC. I never "brunched" in Florida but here it's practically a way of life.silly I actually don't have a favorite brunch spot but I love to try new places with my girlfriends. NYCers -what are some of your favorite brunch spots? Always looking for new places to try. 

    -Escape to Governor's Island: I visited Governor's Island for the first time last summer and loved it! You take a free ferry to the island from South Ferry station and are literally transported to a deserted island. The island is only open from May to October but during those months there are tons of events. When we visited last summer we rented bikes for several hours and loved touring the island on our cruisers.

    You can rent single, double or quad bikes on the island.

    The day we visited there was a massive game of Capture the Flags: Zombies vs. Aliens going on

    There's a fun man-made beach with great views of southern Manhattan and a cafe that sells food, snacks and drinks. We can't wait to go back when the season opens! 

    The man-made beach with an awesome view of Manhattan

    -Learn and See More of NYC via the Empire State Building Audio Tour & Manhattan Harbor Cruises -This is actually two separate tourist attractions in one category but I love the self guided audio tour you can rent at the Empire State Building and also the tour the guides on the harbor cruise ferries give as you boat around the island. I've probably heard both tours over 6 times each but it's still entertaining and so educational. You end up learning so much about NYC! I highly recommend seeing the city from up high (you have to pay a little extra for the player) or from the water and listening to the tour guide (make sure to tip him if you liked his presentation).  

    June 2010: Circle Line's 90 minute Harbor Cruise Ferry. Those passengers look bored but they're having a great time!

    -Create Your Own Food Tour -I don't mean actual food tours you pay for (although the Greenwich Village Food Tour is great and highly recommended!) but I mean self-designed tours you can put together for any neighborhood. For example, my friends and I love to hang out in the East Village for the delicious and affordable hole in the wall restaurants/cafes. Instead of eating one meal at one restaurant we'll visit 4, sharing meals at each place so we can sample all our favorite dishes at each of the places without going broke or getting too full. This is also great for out of town guests, so they can try out a bunch of restaurants in one neighborhood in a short period of time.

    Here are two "food tours" I often take my out-of-town guests on:

    East Village: Baoguette, Pommes Frite, Ippudo, Caracas Arepa Bar and dessert at Momofuku Milk Bar or Sundaes and Cones

    Chinatown: Joe's Shanghai for soup dumplings (or Joe's Ginger if it's too busy), Nice Green Bo for scallion pancakes, New Malaysia for roti canai and mee goreng, Chinatown Icecream Factory for unique flavors of icecream and Banh Mi Saigon for banh mi 

    For more info on these restaurants, and other favorites you can check out my foodie list (always under construction) here.

    Ok this post is massive! stunned Hope this helps anybody that plans on coming to NYC or that's look for new things to try in the city. 

    What are your favorite things to do/see/eat in NYC?

March 17, 2011

  • Zynga and Xanga Are Not the Same Company!!

    On an almost daily basis people email and call us complaining about their missing Farmville and Frontierville credits, avatars and "restoration of their stables".

    Well I got some news for those people -we have no idea where your "red baseball hat avatar" went!!! wtf

    It boggles my mind how people get to the Xanga frontpage and then still manage to send us emails when there's no mention of any games on our site. Sometimes I feel bad reading these emails, because they're long and super detailed with all sorts of information on "horseshoe pit mansion" or "harvesting grapes" (sometimes the messages are really mean and nasty too) and I can tell the person is super involved with the games. But c'mon, there is no mention of any games on our site at all! confused

    Anyways, I usually am more amused about these emails and calls than annoyed and always email these folks back to let them know that they've confused us with Zynga. I'm sure they feel pretty silly after getting my response. hehe

    Have any of you ever thought Xanga was the same company that made Farmville, Frontierville, or any of those games? They must be super addictive!

July 16, 2009

  • Poor Little Guy...

    This morning I went for a walk with my husband and saw a raccoon stuck in the window bars of the ground floor of the townhouse next door. You rarely see wild animals in NYC (except tons of pigeons), so I was concerned that the raccoon was rabid or was hurt. The building is being renovated so people rarely go inside. My husband thought it would eventually work its way out since it was squirming around, so we went on our walk.

    We come back 40 min later and it managed to turn itself upside-down. I wanted to call Animal Control right away but then started to think 'I'm sure someone else called already.' I think in psychology class there was a term for this displacement of responsibility (forget the official term). So I hurriedly got ready for work and forgot about the raccoon.

    My husband leaves for work much later than I do. When he left 4 hours later, he sent me this picture:

    The raccoon was still stuck in the window bars! I felt sooo bad the little guy was still there. I called 311 (NYC services) 3 times to try and report the little guy but got disconnected each time. Finally, on the 4th try I got connected to animal control and let them know about him. I wonder how long it'll take for them to send someone. I really hope the raccoon isn't still there when I get home later today.

    I'm actually really scared of most animals but it really saddens me when animals get hurt or are mistreated. I wish I had called animal control sooner. What do you think they'll do with him? If he's not rabid they will probably let him go in the park no?

    ** Update***
    An hour after I placed the call, NYC Animal Care and Control called me and asked me how to get to our apt. I stayed on the phone with them until they located the raccoon. The ACC guy hung up with me once they found him, so I didn't get the chance to ask what would happen to him. But when I got home the little guy wasn't there, which was a relief to see. I want to believe he's frocklicking nearby in Central Park and maybe we'll meet again one day there.

April 8, 2009

April 2, 2009

  • Umm...thanks, I think...

    I recently had the following convo...

    Friend: Ohmigosh! Hi! You look great today!
    Me: Aww, really? Thanks!
    Friend: Yeah your face looks so small today!
    Me: Uhhh...umm...thanks.

    I think only in East Asian culture would this be considered a compliment, er I guess more like a complisult.

    What's the latest complisult you've heard lately?

March 31, 2009

March 3, 2009

  • I Love and Hate Snow...

    As a Florida girl, whenever it snows I'm just in awe of the white stuff. It's so pretty and makes everything look so clean! But within a few hours it gets sooo nasty, especially in NYC!

    However, living in NYC (without a car) I'm thankful that I don't have to shovel the snow to go somewhere or worry about the outside of my apartment. I'm sure people with homes and cars have it rough!

    Whenever I pass by a park, or a patch of the lovely white stuff I always have to touch it or make snow angels. It's quite embarrassing for my husband, who grew up with four seasons and is used to the snow.

    Are you a fan of snow? Does it annoy or excite you?